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Bob & Esther Mitchell Collection
WGF-MS-005  
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Collection Overview
 
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Description
The Bob & Esther Mitchell Collection, 1945-1993 is comprised of materials relating to the partners’ television writing careers, including development materials, multiple drafts with handwritten revisions, and a selection of ephemera and publicity materials. Shows represented include Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, Charlie’s Angels, CHiPs, Combat!, The High Chaparral, Highway Patrol, Lock-Up, Perry Mason, S.W.A.T., and Swiss Family Robinson.
Background
Bob and Esther Mitchell were a married couple who wrote collaboratively for a number of popular television shows from the 1960s to 1980s. Both were natives of Wyoming and were married in 1942. Bob was born Robert Junior Mitchell on April 27, 1918 and attended the University of Wyoming, where he established the university’s Radio Department and produced, co-wrote, and directed two award-winning musicals. Mitchell served in the U.S. Army in World War II and took a bullet in the chest (which he carried with him the rest of his life). While recuperating, he began writing the stories of the other men in his hospital tent and was appointed as a media aide for the remainder of the war. Following the war, he joined his wife Esther in Hollywood and began writing for radio with his college friend Gene Levitt, with whom he would collaborate for many years to come. Both Levitt and Mitchell moved to New York in 1950 to write for The Steve Allen Show. Upon returning to Los Angeles, Bob began writing for television with scripts for crime shows such as Highway Patrol, Lock-Up, and Perry Mason. It was at this time that he began writing with Esther. Bob died on October 13, 1992 in Los Angeles. – from IMDb’s bio written by Esther Mitchell [http://tinyurl.com/q65dnet - accessed December 3, 2013] Esther O. Mitchell was born on May 31, 1920 and passed away one day short of her ninety-second birthday on May 30, 2012. Along with Bob, she wrote extensively for the war drama Combat! and the late 1960s science fiction show Land of the Giants. The pair wrote scripts together for over twenty years, including episodes for Cannon, Charlie’s Angels, S.W.A.T., Swiss Family Robinson, and CHiPs. (Written by Esther Mitchell)
Extent
5.6 linear feet
Restrictions
The responsibility to secure copyright and publication permission rests with the researcher.
Availability
Available by appointment only. Materials stored offsite. One week advance notice required for retrieval.