by Jerry Corley Founder – The Stand Up Comedy Clinic

I had the most amazing lunch the other day. I was contacted by Bob Mills, one of the legendary writers for Bob Hope. He started in the business at the age of 39. He was a lawyer in San Francisco before that. He contacted me via my website and liked what he saw, so I asked him to lunch. I scheduled 90 minutes into my calendar for the lunch. I had a dentist appointment after that. We met at the Daily Grill in Studio City, one of those places you walk into and usually have some celebrity sightings.

Bob was already waiting for me as I am notoriously late. From the moment we shook hands I knew I was talking to someone special.  We barely ordered iced-tea and we were already neck deep in talking about comedy. This was subject that we both clearly had an absolute passion for.  Since I’m the one who usually does the talking about comedy I had to remember to shut the hell up and let him speak, for he had experiences that I’ve always dreamed about.

Bob was a member of one of the most famous writing teams comedy will ever know. Bob Hope’s guys–or I should say guys and one gal–were extremely loyal and they were well-paid. Bob could call them at any time of the day or night and ask for material and boy did Hope use material. He never did reruns with his specials of which he did close to 100 and he always needed fresh material for his live performances.

The stories Bob told me were fascinating. To have an insight on one of the most legendary comedians the world has ever known was priceless. Needless to say the lunch lasted 3 hours. So much for the dentist.

Bob wrote a fascinating book about his experiences with Hope, the specials, the tours and the stars they worked with. It’s called “The Laugh Makers.” I read it and I couldn’t put it down. I recommend this book to anyone interested in writing or performing…or anyone who loved Bob Hope.

I’ve included a widget for anyone who might be interested in buying Bob’s book. If you’re a comedian or a writer or remotely interested, get the damn book.

    2 replies to "Lunch with a Legendary Bob Hope Writer"

    • Bob Mills


      Thanks so much for the great endorsement. And your help in getting the word about the book out there. I hope you don’t mind if I add your comment about the book to my web site… praise coming from someone who really knows a lot about the craft means a great deal to me. Thanks.

      I’ve been doing lots of lectures (along with showing my Hope clips) and invite you to drop in one of them if you’re in the area. I think you’d enjoy the talks and the clips. Gene Perret dropped in to one of them at the Thousand Oaks Library on March 27. We recalled some of the great times we had on the road with BH.

      My next gig is at the J.C. Milken Jewish Community Center in Valley Village at 10:45 am, Tuesday May 3. I’m doing the South Pasadena Library on June 16 at 7 pm and that should be a fun one since they love show biz talks there. Nostalgia is in it would appear.

      Hey, it was great meeting you and let me know if I can ever help you with your stand-up school. Not enough people keeping the art alive.



    • jokedoctor

      Glad to do it Bob. Read the book and re-reading it now. Enjoying all the great stories. That was a golden age! Thanks for reading my blog. Looking forward to having you come in for a talk.

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