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You're Lucky You're Funny: How Life Becomes a Sitcom [Englisch] [Taschenbuch]

Phil Rosenthal

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25. September 2007
The creator and executive producer of Everybody Loves Raymond, on how to make a sitcom classic and keep laughing

This laugh-out-loud memoir takes readers backstage and inside the writers’ room of one of America’s best-loved shows. With more than 17 million viewers and more than seventy Emmy nominations—including two wins for best comedy—Everybody Loves Raymond reigned supreme in television comedy for almost a decade. Phil Rosenthal was there at the beginning. United by a shared lifetime of family dysfunction, he and Ray Romano found endless material to keep the show fresh and funny for its entire run. Alongside hilarious anecdotes from the series and his own career misadventures prior to working on the show, Rosenthal provides an enlightening and entertaining look at how sitcoms are written and characters developed. You’re Lucky You’re Funny is an inspiration to aspiring creators of comedy and a must read for the show’s millions of devoted fans.


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“Rosenthal’s stories are universal, whether he’s getting fired from a night security job at NYC’s Metropolitan Musuem of Art after napping on a seventeenth-century bed or writing jokes for Bill Clinton and respectfully correcting the then president’s pronunciation of Yahtzee.”
Entertainment Weekly “[An] extraordinary ratio of laughs per page.”
—James L. Brooks

“Humorous and highly entertaining.”
—Carl Reiner

“[A] memoir as funny as the sitcom.”
Publishers Weekly

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

PHIL ROSENTHAL was the creator and executive producer of CBS’s Emmy Award– winning Everybody Loves Raymond. He also directed a video with Bill Clinton, cowrote the Writers Guild Award–winning telethon America: A Tribute to Heroes, and appeared in Spanglish and Curb Your Enthusiasm.

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5.0 von 5 Sternen Like vacationing with a funny friend 4. Februar 2007
Von Ellen Meister - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
I picked up Phil Rosenthal's "You're Lucky You're Funny" for research, as I needed a bit of background info for a novel I'm writing. My intention was to skim it and move on. After one page, however, I knew I wasn't putting down this book until I'd read every delicious word. It's not only hilarious, but so charming I feel like I've just spent a vacation with a favorite friend. A very smart, very funny favorite friend. Plus, it taught me more about the inside world of sitcoms than I'd even hoped.

But even if you're just in it for the laughs, this book is worth the price. Hell, the fruit-of-the-month story alone is enough to make me recommend it. And that's not even the funniest part (for my money, it's his description of the "all-inclusive" vacation from hell).

I read this in hardcover, but see that it's also available in audio format, which I think might be a lot of fun, as well. I listened to a clip, and Phil Rosenthal has a delightfully anachronistic Old New York accent--kind of a cross between Top Cat and Nicely Nicely from Guys and Dolls. So whether you read or listen, you're in for a great trip.

-Ellen Meister, author of Secret Confessions of the Applewood PTA
5 von 5 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Real life brought into our living rooms 31. Dezember 2006
Von Corinne H. Smith - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Both "Everybody Loves Raymond" fans and aspiring writers of any kind will enjoy this enlightening and amusing book. Phil Rosenthal reveals to us how he and his fellow "Raymond" writers transferred their real life adventures to the network screen. Part memoir, part tell-all -- but not TOO tell-all, for some names are withheld to protect the stupid -- "You're Lucky You're Funny" also provides an insight into a typical writer's road to Hollywood. As such, the book is humorous in its own right. And anyone who's seen the show will nod in acknowledgement as Phil explains the basis of selected plot ideas. By the way, Phil: a complete listing of all the shows would have been a wonderful addition as an appendix.

Rosenthal leaves us with his theory about the proliferation and seeming success of TV reality shows. Regular comedies and dramas aren't believable anymore, he claims. They're not written as if the plots or the dialogue could actually happen. So folks are turning to reality TV because they see real people making real-life kinds of decisions. And that also explains the popularity and relate-ability of "Everybody Loves Raymond," for it was based on the true but bizarre experiences of people connected with the show.

For more "Raymond" tales, devoted fans should also read "Motherhood and Hollywood: How to Get a Job Like Mine" by Patricia Heaton (2002) and "Are You Hungry, Dear? Life, Laughs and Lasagne" by Doris Roberts (2004). These three books don't overlap in their coverage; and all of them are made even more poignant now, with the recent death of Peter Boyle. Holy crap.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen I agree with James L. Brooks and His Rave!! 23. Oktober 2006
Von Ben - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
As I watched Everybody Loves Raymond all nine seasons, I kept asking myself, "Do people like the Barones really exist? Are they really out there somewhere in suburbia? If so, what do their real life neighbors think of them?" The answers to these and other questions were answered when I picked up a copy of Phil Rosenthal's laugh-out-loud memoir, "You're Lucky You're Funny." As much as I laughed watching ELR, I laughed twice as much reading Phil Rosenthal's book because the Barones are loosely based on his parents and truth is FUNNIER than fiction!

For me, comic genius and master director James L. Brooks says it best on the back cover of the book:

"There are books that evoke tight little smiles and nods of recognition that provide decent, restrained entertainment. Then there are books that have a whole section that you tell people about (like Phil Rosenthal's vacation at a family resort), maybe even get the interest of a room by quoting the story, and then do it enough to get a reputation as something of a live wire. And, then somewhere between "ever-so-rarely" and "never" there is a book such as this; where the reading time is increased exponentially by the number of times you must put it down because you are laughing hard and loud, the many trips for a pen to underline the particularly funny or wise passage, the trips to the john to avoid laughing accidents, the rereading which must be done on the spot so you get the words right for re-telling.

This is the book that is smart enough to declare depression the poor man's version of suing, that tells of the writer who finally agreed to marriage counseling because, "it's the closest I'll get to a threesome." And on it goes, clocking an extraordinary ratio of laughs per page and imparting so much sophisticated information and intimate detail (on creating and maintaining a classic television comedy) that it becomes at last and at the very least, the funniest textbook ever written. "

--James L. Brooks
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5.0 von 5 Sternen We're Lucky Phil Rosenthal's Funny 24. Dezember 2006
Von Ellen Hickey - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
I couldn't put this book down and I had to endure the mystified stares of my family as I laughed out loud. This is the story of a decent, mega-talented, hilariously funny man who went on to create a show that has now become one of the few classic television programs of our era. With inside stories regarding his life, the actors, and the writers who worked on Everybody Loves Raymond, the book recounts how the series was developed as well as how the ideas for many of the most memorable episodes, had their beginnings from real-life events. A brilliant, joyful read that I highly recommend to anyone who enjoys reading for sheer pleasure. Everybody loves this book!
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5.0 von 5 Sternen We're lucky to have You're Lucky You're Fuuny 20. Oktober 2006
Von Harry Tarsky - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
If you loved "Everybody Loves Raymond", as I and seventeen million others did, keep the love growing by reading this most enjoyable back story of the show by the insidest insider. Phil tells us of how the show came about, the attempts to power grab by some of the "Suits", what goes on in the writer's room, and how the inspirations for the segments came.

We also learn about how he grew up in New York, came to Los Angeles, paid his dues by writing for various shows, met and married. He also describes in excrutiatingly funny detail an "everything included in the price" vacation he took, along with wife and two children.

This book is so funny on its own, that even if you never watched his TV shows, and have no idea who Phil is, you'll love it.
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