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The Peabody Award-winning series (1963-1965) followed the experiences of a young, tough-minded, idealistic high school English teacher on his first job, and featured stars James Franciscus, Dean Jagger, and Burgess Meredith. Guest stars included Richard Donner, Claude Akins, Eddie Albert, Ed Asner, Frankie Avalon, Diane Baker, Herschel Bernardi, Beau Bridges, Richard Chamberlain, Johnny Crawford, Pat Crowley, Robert Culp, Kim Darby, Tony Dow, Howard Duff, Lillian Gish, Don Grady, Joey Heatherton, Sherry Jackson, Walter Koenig, Marta Kristen, Martin Landau, Cloris Leachman, June Lockhart, Claudine Longet, Vera Miles, Lois Nettleton, E. Jack Neuman, Robert Walker, and Beverly Washburn.

The series’ hallmark were inspirational tales of great integrity, but triumph turned to tragedy, when a chain of disastrous situations caused an abrupt cancellation. Learn how the series was conceived, developed, broadcast, and received by both critics and viewers.

243 illustrations. Index. Includes a complete episode guide with full credits, plot descriptions, vintage reviews, and appraisals by the author.

Appendices include:

  • Novak TV Series Awards 1963-1965
  • Jack Neuman’s Writers Guide
  • Novak’s Graduation Advice: Think
  • Principal Vane’s Speech to New Teachers
  • James Franciscus’ Columns for ‘TEEN Magazine (1963-1965)
  • Novelization of the Two-Part Novak/Dr. Kildare Rejected Script “The Rich Who Are Poor” by E. Jack Neuman
  • The Novak Game

About the author: Chuck Harter is a writer and musician, and his previously published books include Superboy & Superpup: The Lost Videos; Superman on BroadwayJohnnie Ray: 1952 The Year of theAtomic RayLittle Elf: A Celebration of Harry Langdon. He also wrote the television documentary Hey! Hey! We’re the Monkees, and has appeared as a commentator on many TV programs including North Mission Road, Cops: America’s Most Wanted, Places of Infamy, A & E Biography, Mysteries and Scandals, and Unsolved Mysteries.

“I’m so pleased that Chuck Harter is bringing the Mr. Novak experience to a wider audience. After you’ve read his detailed, behind-the-scenes account, I hope you’ll consider yourself part of the Novak family.” -Richard Donner

“Chuck Harter has produced a superlative book that is both fascinating and informative. Long life to Mr. Novak! and three cheers for Chuck Harter!”-Martin Landau

“Reading this book by Chuck Harter brought back many satisfying memories. You don’t have to have been an actor . . . just a student to appreciate the skillful way in which he unfolds the stories behind the cameras.” -Walter Koenig

The Mr. Novak television series was a landmark in the development of dramatic television. It starred James Franciscus with Dean Jagger and featured cutting-edge scripts, first-class production values and exceptional acting. It was the first program to portray teachers and students realistically. "Mr. Novak: An Acclaimed Television Series" by author, musician and popular culture consultant Chuck Harter is a profusely illustrated study that features: Comprehensive coverage of the original filming and air dates; An episode guide with vintage reviews and fresh perspectives; Interviews with over 35 actors who appeared on the show including Walter Koenig, Martin Landau, Beau Bridges, Tony Dow, Ed Asner, June Lockhart, and Sherry Jackson; Archival interviews with the series' stars and producers; A complete list of the many awards the series received, and so much more. Exceptionally well researched, written, organized and presented, "Mr. Novak" provides the reader with a complete and comprehensive profile of one of the finest TV series that ever aired. "Mr. Novak" is especially and unreservedly recommended for both community and academic library Television History collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Mr. Novak" is also available in a paperback edition (9781629331638, $30.00) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.95). 
- Wisconsin Bookwatch

 Review from Thrilling Days of Yesteryear


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