The Famous Teddy Z

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The Famous Teddy Z
Genre Sitcom
Created by Hugh Wilson
Written by Richard Dubin
Wayne Lemon
Sid O. Smith
Robert Wilcox
Hugh Wilson
Directed by Frank Bonner
Richard Dubin
Max Tash
Hugh Wilson
Starring Jon Cryer
Alex Rocco
Jane Sibbett
Milton Selzer
Josh Blake
Erica Yohn
Theme music composer Guy Moon
Stephanie Tyrell
Steve Tyrell
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 20 (5 unaired)
Executive producer(s) Hugh Wilson
Running time 30 minutes
Production company(s) Hugh Wilson Productions
Columbia Pictures Television
Distributor Sony Pictures Television
Original network CBS
Original release September 18, 1989 (1989-09-18) – May 12, 1990 (1990-05-12)

The Famous Teddy Z is an American sitcom that aired on CBS during the fall of 1989. The series was created by Hugh Wilson and inspired by the true story of Jay Kantor, who was a mailroom clerk at MCA and later became Marlon Brando's agent.[1]


The series starred Jon Cryer as Theodore "Teddy" Zakalokis, a young man working in a Hollywood talent agency in order to avoid being stuck in his Greek-American family's bakery. When Hollywood star Harland Keyvo (a caricature of Marlon Brando) meets Teddy Z, he is so impressed by his honesty that he makes him his new agent. The humor is derived from Teddy's innocent approach to the business, contrasted with the snake-like behavior of his fellow agents. The cast also included Jane Sibbett, Alex Rocco, Milton Selzer, Josh Blake, and Erica Yohn.


Guest Stars



The theme song was written by Guy Moon, Stephanie and Steve Tyrell and performed by Bill Champlin of the rock group, Chicago.


Rocco's character, Al Floss, also made a crossover appearance on Murphy Brown, as the agent for several of that show's characters.


No. Title Directed by Written by Original air date
1 "Pilot" Hugh Wilson Hugh Wilson September 18, 1989 (1989-09-18)
2 "What's an Agent to Do?" TBA TBA September 25, 1989 (1989-09-25)
3 "Bobby the Chimp" TBA TBA October 2, 1989 (1989-10-02)
4 "Teddy Goes to Malibu" TBA TBA October 16, 1989 (1989-10-16)
5 "Teddy Makes $50, One Day" TBA TBA October 23, 1989 (1989-10-23)
6 "Teddy Gets Fired" TBA TBA October 30, 1989 (1989-10-30)
7 "Teddy Falls in Love" TBA TBA November 13, 1989 (1989-11-13)
8 "Teddy Sells His House" TBA TBA November 20, 1989 (1989-11-20)
9 "A Case of Murder" TBA TBA November 27, 1989 (1989-11-27)
10 "Teddy Gets a House Guest" TBA TBA December 4, 1989 (1989-12-04)
11 "Season's Greetings from Al Floss" TBA TBA December 11, 1989 (1989-12-11)
12 "Grandma Goes to Work" TBA TBA December 25, 1989 (1989-12-25)
13 "Teddy Meets His Hero" TBA TBA January 8, 1990 (1990-01-08)
14 "Teddy Gets a Better Offer" TBA TBA January 15, 1990 (1990-01-15)
15 "Agent of the Year" TBA TBA May 12, 1990 (1990-05-12)
16 "Teddy Goes to the Awards" TBA TBA Unaired
17 "How to Make a Television Show" TBA TBA Unaired
18 "Al Tells the Truth" TBA TBA Unaired
19 "Teddy's Big Date" TBA TBA Unaired
20 "Teddy Gets a Guru" TBA TBA Unaired


The series pilot was seen to be far stronger than subsequent episodes, but the series received two Primetime Emmy Award nominations, including one for the pilot, and for Alex Rocco, who won an Emmy as Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series,[2] but low ratings led CBS to drop it with five episodes unaired. It was later run in its entirety on Comedy Central in 1993 with episodes introduced by Rocco, and by Trio under the heading "Brilliant But Canceled."[3]

Awards and nominations

Year Award Result Category Recipient
1990 Emmy Awards Nominated Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series Hugh Wilson
Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series Liz Torres
Outstanding Directing in a Comedy Series Hugh Wilson (For pilot episode)
Won Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series Alex Rocco


  1. ^ "Trio Launches "Brilliant But Canceled" Television Month in December". 2002-10-22. Retrieved 2008-11-09.
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Tuning In Shows The Networks Tuned Out". Cable World. 2002-10-28. Retrieved 2008-11-09.

External links

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