Producer Marcy Carsey Remembers Grant Tinker: "He Gave Us the Courage to Be Fierce" (Guest Column)

Grant Tinker_Marcy Carsey_Inset - Getty - H 2016
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The Emmy-winning TV producer of series including 'The Cosby Show' discusses the impact the executive had on her career.

Sometimes a person's impact on your life and your work doesn't come into clear focus until you're asked to write about it. Grant Tinker, I now realize, had a huge impact on mine.

All of us in the television business knew the kind of person he was and what he stood for, how he protected and championed the creative process so that writers could hold on to the purity of their vision. He understood that some shows take a while to grab hold of an audience and that the more unique the show, the longer it often takes.

As a producer and network executive, he set a high bar for the rest of us. He gave us the example, and the courage, to be fierce in those jobs, to protect and nurture the creative process.

I love that Grant was an English major. Not business management, or communications or film studies. He built a production company, and then a hit network schedule at NBC, on respect for and understanding of the power of the written word. Our industry was so much the better for the quiet, powerful influence of Grant Tinker. And so was I. What a man, and what a loss.

Carsey is the Emmy-winning TV producer of series including NBC's The Cosby Show.

This story first appeared in the Dec. 16 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.