Sunday, July 20, 2008

The Sunday Salon: Where the Hell IS Desilu? by Howard Rayfiel.

The Sunday

This memoir was different than anything I've read previously which had anything to do with Lucille Ball in the simple fact that Lucy was just a small part of this book, which is to be expected of course because, this man has accomplished so much besides working for "The Redhead", if I may borrow Mr. Rayfiel's affectionate term for his friend and employer.

Howard Rayfiel comes from a long line of honest, hard working judges. He was raised on a moral code built on honesty, justice, and compassion for our fellow human beings; and that shines through as he regales us with stories of the corruption of the behind-the-scenes business side of Hollywood and the way he chose to conduct himself while working with men who would do anything, stoop to new lows, etc. all in the name of the almighty dollar. Mr. Rayfiel began his multi-faceted entertainment career as a theatrical lawyer in NYC, he later moved to LA where, through a chain of events, he was appointed resident counsel to Desilu Productions, Inc. As he was, in his own words, the lawyer who wanted to be a writer, he went on to the top of the ladder as Vice President of Lucille Ball Productions, Inc., Production Executive on Here's Lucy, a member of the Writer's Guild of America, and a member of the Board of Directors of the Association of Motion Picture and Television Producers.

This work is filled with anecdotes on many of Howard's celebrity friends which included but was not limited to, Lucy and Walter Matthau. This book is very good if, like me, you enjoy becoming acquainted with the private persona of some of your favorite personalities or if the script and story writing prospect is something that interests you a great deal.

All in all, I'd give Mr. Rayfiel's memoir 4 out of 5 stars.

Sunny Side Up!,

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