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Sol Saks, a veteran comedy writer who created the classic ABC sitcom Bewitched, died April 16 in Los Angeles at the age of 100, a publicist announced Tuesday.
Saks wrote just one episode of the Screen Gems sitcom, the pilot episode titled, “I, Darrin, Take This Witch, Samantha.”
According to harpiesbizarre.com
, Saks drew inspiration for the story about a witch who weds a mortal man from two films: I Married a Witch
(1942), starring Fredric March
and Veronica Lake
, and Bell Book and Candle
(1958), with James Stewart
and Kim Novak.
Saks, discussing the similarities of the Bewitched storyline with the two movies in a 1999 episode of E! True Hollywood Story, said he didn’t have to worry about being sued because Columbia Pictures owned both of the movies as well as the Screen Gems television division.
Bewitched, which starred Elizabeth Montgomery as the beautiful nose-twitching witch, ran from 1964-72.
Before that sitcom, Saks wrote for such radio comedies as the long-running Duffy’s Tavern and for early television series including My Favorite Husband; Mr. Adams and Eve, which starred Ida Lupino; and I Married Joan with Joan Davis.
The New York native also wrote the screenplay for the film comedy Walk Don’t Run (1966), starring Cary Grant, served for a short time as a CBS executive in comedy development and wrote the 1985 book The Craft of Comedy Writing.
A 2009 interview with Saks can be found at the Television Academy Foundation’s Archive of American Television at www.emmytvlegends.org