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An Interview with Larry

Larry Mollin 02568: The Story So Far
May 7, 2014
‘The Screenwriter’s Daughter’
December 24, 2019

A few months ago, I had a hot Skype date with none other than Beverly Hills, 90210 Executive Producer, Larry Mollin. Larry is a hoot! Not only did he dish about his experiences on one of my favorite shows, but brought a big ol' smile to my face. Larry Mollin started his TV writing career working on CHiPs, Renegade and Knight Rider. What would an action man have to bring to everyone's favorite zip code that normally deals with characters who moved from Minnesota into the foreign land of Beverly Hills? A lot. Larry worked on Beverly Hills, 90210 during the college years from 1993-1997.

 

Here's the hot scoop on his experiences working on Beverly Hills, 90210, having Vince McMahon as a boss and how he'd order his MegaBurger. LeeAnn Yops: Thanks for taking the time to talk with me. I met Darren Martin (the9021bro) at RewindCon as well as the majority of the cast… Larry Mollin: Darren is wonderful. Oddly enough, it took a fan to get all of the actors together in a certain way and it’s a wonderful thing. The cast bonded because of Darren. He’s been a good bell ringer, he’s a decent guy and I’m glad you got to meet him also. There are a couple of people who are really waving the flag and we appreciate it. The show was really important to all of us and we had no idea that it was going to go on forever like this, but I thought that we were making something pretty damn good and we cared about it as much as the fans. People were out there watching so we had to pay attention. I can only talk through season 7. After that, the show went to shit. They forgot the whole thesis of the show because they didn’t want to keep anyone else on and forgot that the show was about ordinary kids living extraordinary lives. After season 7 and college, they were extraordinary kids living ordinary lives. It made no sense to us for those who built up the show so it’s just stupid, they didn’t pay attention to the details that led them down the path to beaten storylines so no one was very happy about the “After-College Years.” LY: Can you tell me a little bit about your experience of writing on the show? Where you started? LM: I had come off of Renegade, which was an action show. Dear Chuck Rosin (original writer of Beverly Hills, 90210) had seen a screenplay I had written called “Borderline Normal” which got made into a movie in 1999, but he saw the actual screenplay in 1993, I think, Chuck had seen this script, because before that I had done a lot of action and some comedy, so Chuck thought I could really bring something to it. The minute I got in there, they told us, “We’re not only going to do 22 episodes, but now we’re doing 32 episodes a year.” Before, that was never done. It was in great fun, though because you really had to understand the oral tradition of the show. There was so little time to talk about stuff that you really had to come in there knowing that these people are not from the past and project the future. And basically, Chuck was very organized and I was very organized, we would layout the whole season, putting the bigger, more promotable episodes on during Sweeps months, November, February and May. We tried to have big, promotable storylines to keep going. We would plan out a season a year in advance, not every episode, but we would have a good sense of the flow and then we just worked like dogs to make the deadlines. Doing 32 hours a year, you had to produce two episodes at a time, 6 times throughout the year. That meant double casting, double pre-production, double production and double post-production. When I left at Season 7, I was basically the only one left standing. We had cancer, divorce, death and a heart attack from all the other executive producers. Jason decided that he wanted to go in a different direction, he got tired of the show and they basically threw the baby out with the bathwater and Jason decided that he made a big mistake, that he wasn’t an executive producer and he stepped down. It just kind of went downhill from there. It stretched out. LY: I mean, I feel with how the series ended, Jason wasn’t even on it, it wasn’t a lot of the original cast…

 

 

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