Sunday Showcase (1959–1960)
2 user 5 critic

What Makes Sammy Run?: Part 1 

The story of an unscrupulous Hollywood promoter.



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Episode credited cast:
H.L. Harrington
Larry Blyden ...
Sammy Glick
Sammy's Brother
Al Manheim
Jay Lawrence ...
Sheik Romero
Mike Crowley (as Horace MacMahon)
Laurette Harrington
Ben Osborne
Sidney Fineman
William Post Jr. ...
Lucky Westover
Kit Sargent
Milton Selzer ...
Julian Blumberg
Zizi Molnari


The story of an unscrupulous Hollywood promoter.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Release Date:

27 September 1959 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Around 1956, Eddie Fisher and his agent Lew Wasserman were discussing roles for Fisher's acting debut. A project being discussed at the time was "What Makes Sammy Run?" by Budd Schulberg and Stuart Schulberg. Fisher wanted to play aggressive producer Sammy Glick, "the ultimate Jewish hustler. I knew a lot of real Sammy Glicks and I felt confident that was a character I could play." Lew Wasserman decided that the character was too much of a classic negative Jewish stereotype and that it would be bad for Fisher to play it. So Fisher went in the complete opposite direction (in retrospect, perhaps too far) with then-wife Debbie Reynolds in the squeaky clean comedy that Fisher hated, Bundle of Joy (1956), a film made to capitalize on the birth of their daughter, future Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977) "Princess Leia" Carrie Fisher. The Schulberg project "What Makes Sammy Run?" was eventually produced in 2 parts for this show, episodes #1.2 and #1.3. See more »


[first lines]
Al Manheim: Alright. Alright.
[moves across bedroom to stand in front of a dresser with a mirror, picks up an invitation and reads from it, talking to a woman getting dressed in another part of the room]
Al Manheim: "Worldwide Pictures requests the pleasure of your company at a dinner honoring Mr. Samuel Glick."
[tosses invitation down on dresser top, looks in mirror and begins tying a black bowtie]
Al Manheim: That's our Sammy.
[continues to quote parts of the invitation from memory]
Al Manheim: "... the occasion of his ...
See more »

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User Reviews

I am pretty sure that Hollywood is nothing like this....
21 March 2013 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

"What Makes Sammy Run" is an incredibly jaded look at Hollywood. It follows the career of Sammy Glick--a guy who would probably shoot his own mother if he thought it would help his career! And, it makes for a very interesting and very jaded look at Hollywood--much in the tradition of films like "The Great Man", "Death of a Scoundrel" and "What Price Hollywood?". But we all know that unlike this movie, Hollywood couldn't possibly filled with such conniving, dishonest jerks (ha!!).

When this made for TV movie begins, Sammy is only a lowly copy boy at a newspaper in New York. Yet, within a brief instant, he's gotten a huge promotion and is sharing an office with Al Manheim (John Forsythe). Not too long after this, he's off to Hollywood to work on a movie project. And, surprisingly, he convinces Al to join him later to help him. Al is thrilled but a little worried--after all, Sammy seems like a conniving rat. And, after spending some time there, it's rather apparent that Al's instincts were right--Sam is a rat! And, the ultimate jerkish thing that Sammy has done is claim credit for a script he didn't even write! Nice guy, huh? To learn the rest of the story, tune in to episode two.

Larry Blyden did a great job in the film as Sammy--plus the likes of Forsythe, Dina Merrill, Barbara Rush and David Opatashu sure helped make this a fine acted movie. But the big star was the incredibly biting script by Bud Schulberg--which was based on his best-selling 1941 tell all book. Schulberg was a natural for this, as his father, B.P. Schulberg was an old-time Hollywood exec--the sort of mover and shaker that make the city. Well worth your time.

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