A Public Speaking Class at NYU Inspired Sherwood Schwartz to Develop ‘Gilligan’s Island’

Sometimes inspiration comes from the unlikeliest places. That was the case for Sherwood Schwartz, the creator of Gilligan’s Island. The famed writer and producer pitched the idea for Gilligan’s Island years after he finished his bachelor’s degree at New York University. A prompt given to the renowned producer during his undergraduate journey led to the creation of Gilligan’s Island. Schwartz wasn’t even planning on entering the entertainment business then.

The cast of ‘Gilligan’s Island’ | CBS via Getty Images

A public speaking prompt inspired Sherwood Schwartz to develop ‘Gilligan’s Island’

Schwartz pitched the idea for Gilligan’s Island to CBS executives in the 1960s. They were instantly interested in it. The idea was certainly a unique one. In the show, seven people live together on a deserted island after their boat capsizes. The series was presented as a comedy but offered a detailed look at the complexity of different social statuses and how people can work together when needed.

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