How ‘Star Wars’ Inspired Garry Marshall to Create a ‘Happy Days’ Character

Happy days it was one of the most successful sitcoms of the ’70s. And while the story was set in the ’50s, the show was influenced by modern culture. Of course, there is one Happy days a character who was directly inspired by Star Wars: New Hope.

Robin Williams, Ron Howard, and Henry Winkler on 'Happy Days'
Robin Williams, Ron Howard, and Henry Winkler on ‘Happy Days’ | Walt Disney Television / Getty Images

Garry Marshall succeeds on ‘Happy Days’

Michael Eisner and Tom Miller came up with the idea for Happy days (with the title first The New Family in the City) in 1971, when there was snow at Newark airport. Garry Marshall and ABC rebranded the sitcom Happy days. And it aired 11 seasons, from 1974 to 1984.

The series became the number 1 television show and spawned several other companies. Based on characters introduced to the show, Happy days producers of sitcoms created as Laverne & Shirley, Pork & Mindy, and Joanie loves Chachi.

The team of 'Happy Days'
The team of ‘Happy Days’ Walt Disney Television via Getty Images Walt Disney Photo Archives / Television via Getty Images

‘Star Wars: A New Hope’ was first released in 1977

Happy days entering its fifth season when George Lucas’ groundbreaking space opera, Star Wars: New Hope premiered. The film was not just a box office success. He has won several Academy Awards and has spawned one of Hollywood’s biggest film and TV franchises.

Previously Star Wars: New Hope, Write and direct Lucas American Graffiti. He threw Ron Howard in the lead role of Steve Bolander after seeing Richie Cunningham show him Happy daysoriginal pilot unsold.

How Star Wars inspired Mork’s creation of ‘Happy Days’

In 1977, Garry Marshall offered to capture his son Star Wars: New Hope. And after watching the movie, Marshall was inspired to create the character of the alien, Mork.

“Garry Marshall was watched Star Wars with his son Scotty, ” Happy days star Anson Williams appeared in an interview with the Hallmark channel. “And they came out, and Scotty asked his father, ‘Can you do a Martian program? And Gary said, ‘Yeah, we’ll come up with something. ‘”

Williams said Marshall then developed Mork’s character. But he noticed that Marshall started with an “awful” script.

“They didn’t make it out,” said the actor. “We got this script which was awesome.”

Robin William and Ron Howard on 'Happy Days'
Robin William and Ron Howard on ‘Happy Days’ Walt Disney Television / Getty Images

During the first record read, Williams said the team was amazed at how bad the script was. Marshall promised a better script the following week, but that one was “worse,” Williams said.

The first actor hired to play Mork had a hard time playing with the material. And he ended up retiring two days before the program was scheduled to go live.

“Gary comes down to the set and asks, ‘Does anyone know a funny Martian? Williams remembered. “Al Molinaro goes on,“ This guy I know from my Harvey Lembeck class is called Robin Williams. ‘”

Robin was hired for the role, and when it came to a set, Anson said he blew the producers and writers away. He developed most of Mork’s character from his first set day by doing unprepared work, including his snapshot, “Nanoo nanoo.” Robin on Mork was so well received, Marshall gave him the other show, Mork & Mindy, within a week.

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