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Biography

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Overview (1)

Date of Birth 1945

Mini Bio (1)

In 1964, Gary Reilly joined the New Zealand Broadcasting Corporation as a trainee, working his way up to Floor Crew, Floor Manager and On Air Director. After hosting a National TV Pop Show, and touring as a Master of Ceremonies for P.J. Proby, Eden Caine, and Ray Columbus & the Invaders, Gary was head hunted by an advertising agency as a writer, where he wrote commercials for Cadbury chocolates and Kellogg's cereal, among others.

In 1966, he moved to Britain and "starved" for a short period. He worked as an assistant dubbing editor for the BBC Drama division. He was also Production Manager on some commercials, and the Rank Organisation's "Look at Life" series. He eventually worked his way up to director for some small commercials, as well as for the coverage of the Royal Shakespeare Company's "Merry Wives of Windsor" starring Ian Richardson. During this time, he also travelled to Ireland and Europe to work as production manager on commercials.

Returning to Australia in 1970, he joined Supreme Films in Paddington, Sydney as Staff Director. He directed various commercial campaigns for Qantas Airways, Mr. Sheen floor polish, Caltex petroleum products, among others. He also directed various documentaries on railway workers and worthy Government projects, teaming up with directors of photography Russell Boyd and Peter James.

In 1971, after forming a jingle writing partnership with Mike Perjanik, Gary wrote lyrics and produced jingles for Qantas Airways and Decoré hair products (Renée Geyer's first gig), otherwise freelancing as director on commercials and documentaries.

Around 1972/3, he met Tony Sattler, then Creative Director of George Patterson Y&R in Brisbane. Together, they shot tons of commercials and recorded lots of jingles. Around this time, Radio 2JJ started, for which Gary and Tony wrote all Anti-ads (a series of commercials for fake products), along with the sketch comedy and parody sci-fi serial "Chuck Chunder of the Space Patrol". It was later transferred to Radio 1, and lasted 200 episodes. Together they also penned a string of soap opera parody serials, including "Novels of Fiona Wintergreen" (300 episodes), and "Doctors and Nurses" (100 episodes). Meanwhile, Gary was "still directing bloody commercials and writing jingles".

In 1974, Reilly and Sattler were commissioned by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC-TV) to write 2 x 1 hour episodes of Flash Nick from Jindavick (1974), starring Grahame Bond and 'Rory O'Donoghue' from The Aunty Jack Show (1972), along with Garry McDonald.

The following year, the ABC commissioned Reilly and Sattler to write and produce a half-hour radio series "The Naked Vicar Show". Nationally broadcast Sundays at 12.30, it became a huge success, and had 26 episodes in its first run. Gary and Tony then produced and directed the Stage Version of "The Naked Vicar Show" in Sydney and Melbourne, which ran for two years, with four different versions.

After witnessing the popularity of "The Naked Vicar Show" with radio audiences, Channel Seven decided to commission 13 x 1 hour episodes of The Naked Vicar Show (1977) for TV, which Reilly and Sattler wrote and produced in 1976. A second series of "The Naked Vicar Show" followed.

In 1977, Reilly and Sattler also met Australian comedy legend Graham Kennedy, writing a tonight show for him. When Graham asked to feature in a radio series, Gary and Tony created 7 radio plays for Graham to star in, titled "Graham Kennedy's R.S. Playhouse". The series achieved great success, winning numerous awards. Gary and Tony continued writing for Graham, mainly hostings like the AFI Awards, and variety shows.

In 1978, frustration settled in, and Reilly and Sattler informed the Seven Network that "The Naked Vicar Show" was cancelled. As a way of trying out different formats for a potential sitcom, Gary and Tony wrote and produced four episodes of "Comedy Playhouse" for Seven. Of the four episodes produced, it was decided that "Kingswood Country" had the best chance, and was greenlit for development.

Production began on 26 x ½ hour episodes of Kingswood Country (1980) in 1979. It debuted on the Seven Network in January 1980, becoming a massive hit. The network then ordered another season. During this time, Reilly and Sattler also started developing "Brass Monkeys", a sitcom set in Antarctica. Tony Sattler travelled on a boat to research the South Pole, and Gary took a bicycle expedition through China.

In 1980, the ABC commissioned a show for "50 Years of Radio". The decision was made to re-visit "The Naked Vicar Show" live from the Sydney Opera House. The show featured Ross Higgins, Kevin Golsby, Noeline Brown, Graham Kennedy, Doug Parkinson, and Renée Geyer, and was well received. Reilly and Sattler then wrote & produced 13 episodes of Brass Monkeys (1984), a totally bizarre show starring Graeme Blundell, Paul Chubb and Kevin Golsby.

In 1981, Reilly and Sattler created a new show, writing & producing 13 episodes of Daily at Dawn (1981). Set in a newspaper office, the series starred Paul Chubb, Noeline Brown, Robert Hughes, Henri Szeps and Julieanne Newbould.

After three seasons, "Kingswood Country" won the Logie Award for Most Popular Comedy Series in 1982. "Kingswood Country" continued production until 1984, when a weary Reilly and Sattler decided amicably to go their separate ways.

In 1985, the Seven Network asked for a game show. Under the banner of Jacaranda Productions (later re-named Gary Reilly Productions), Gary produced "The Trivial Video Show", the first game show to use new technology (Quantel Paintbox) with visual games. 100 episodes were produced, airing in 1986.

In September 1985, Gary developed and shot the pilot for a family sitcom "Hey Dad". However, no networks showed any immediate interest. He then wrote 4 x 1 hour episodes for a TV series "Portrait of a Family", with award winning Australian screenwriter Anne Brooksbank, but the series never made it into production.

Seven Network head executive Ted Thomas finally gave the greenlight for Hey Dad..! (1987) after 12 more episodes were produced in 1986. The show struggled at first, but soon found momentum and rocketed ahead in popularity with Australian (and surprisingly, German) audiences. Writing with former commercial copywriting colleague John Flanagan, Gary produced 293 episodes of "Hey Dad..!".

With "Hey Dad..!" still in production, Gary also wrote & produced 13 episodes of the Network Ten sitcom The Family Business (1989), 13 episodes of the "Hey Dad..!" spin-off Hampton Court (1991) for Seven, and 13 episodes of My Two Wives (1992) for the Nine Network.

After "Hey Dad..!" concluded in 1994, Gary wrote and produced 13 x 1 hour episodes of the comedy/drama Over the Hill (1994), starring Georgie Parker.

In 1996, Gary wrote a script for a telemovie with Anne Brooksbank titled "Wendys Gold", the story of equestrian Wendy Schaeffer. Unfortunately, the movie never made it into the production phase.

In 1997, due to the Seven Network wanting to bring back Ted Bullpitt for another run, Gary and his old "Kingswood Country" co-writer Tony Sattler re-united to write and produce 13 episodes of Bullpitt! (1997). Set in a retirement village with Ted still railing against the world, the show did well, and was brought back for a second season of 13 episodes in 1998.

After "Bullpitt!" ended, Gary organised and presented a huge equestrian event - the "Daybreak Horse Trials" - on his property in Yarramalong. To this day, it remains as one of the biggest equestrian events ever staged.

In 1999, Gary produced a 2 hour ABC telemovie, Marriage Acts (2000), based on the murders of Family Court judges. It was written by Anne Brooksbank, and starred Colin Friels.

In 2000, Gary produced the Olympic level "Daybreak Horse Trials", featuring Olympic teams from the United States and Australia.

After nearly four decades in the industry, Gary decided to retire in 2001, becoming a horse whisperer and "incompetent golfer". He eventually sold his farm and now resides in Sydney, raising his family with wife Julie Haseler, while waiting for interesting projects to come his way. Gary has a son, Matthew, who is a producer/director, and two daughters, Hannah and Eliza. When no projects appear, Gary smiles, and golfs some more.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Anonymous

Spouse (1)

Julie Haseler (? - present) (3 children)

Personal Quotes (1)

On writing partner Tony Sattler: We always took great comfort in the knowledge that if we made only one person laugh, we'd be sacked.

See also

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