#15-Warner Bros. Studios, The Karate Kid’s Pat Morita, and Tales of Bruce Lee

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Quick link to iTunes Episode #15
Listen right now!

Listen right now!

 

KarateKid

Pat Morita as “Mr. Miyagi”

This conversation focuses on Bob’s experiences as Supervising Producer on Ohara, a Warner Bros. TV series that starred Pat Morita of The Karate Kid fame.

 Bob candidly reveals the difficulties in writing and producing a cop show for the former “Mr. Miyagi”.

The "Ohara" Cast

The “Ohara” Cast

He details a production plagued by a vague, constantly-changing franchise…a challenge made all the more difficult by a phalanx of bickering producers, studio chiefs, and network executives ranging from Brian Grazer to a Keith Richards look-and-act-alike.

Cuba Gooding Jr.

Cuba Gooding Jr.

Brandon Lee

Brandon Lee

Even with all the behind-the-scenes drama, Bob remembers the fun of writing great cop action scripts alongside L.A.P.D. Homicide Detective (and future Assistant L.A. Mayor) Joe Gunn, while casting future superstars like Brandon Lee, Benicio del Toro, and Cuba Gooding, Jr. in routine “day player” roles.

Bruce Lee on the "Longstreet" set with James Franciscus

Bruce Lee on the “Longstreet” set with James Franciscus

Those casting stories lead Bob to recall his friendship with Bruce Lee long before Enter The Dragon turned him into an international action superstar.

Bob even details his eyewitness account of Bruce Lee’s on-the-set humility and a display physical power that provides plenty of contrast to his experience on Ohara.

Clint Eastwood at work on the back lot

Clint Eastwood at work on the back lot

It may have been a case of “too many chefs in the kitchen” on Ohara, but Bob admits that working on the Warner Bros. Studio lot—and bumping into people like Clint Eastwood—made producing the show a true Hollywood Experience!

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