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Author Topic: Help Identify This Show  (Read 796 times)

chris319

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Help Identify This Show
« on: June 02, 2022, 02:21:43 PM »
OK, TV Guide gravediggers.

I'm looking to identify a local game show which ran on San Francisco's KRON-TV circa 1981. IIRC it was some kind of celebrity panel show along the lines of I've Got a Secret. One of my classmates from S.F. State named Sid Marsh may have been the producer. Sid went to L.A. in 1978 to become a writer on The Cross Wits along with his buddy Ed Liiv.

KRON-TV had a panel show similar to IGAS called "Claim to Fame" which appears to have run starting in 1985, several years after Sid's show. I distinctly remember Sid's show running on KRON-TV when I lived there in 1981, so the date of Sid's show is certain. There are bits and pieces of Claim to Fame on YouTube. The Q&A part is tenuous but they produced a package running one minute or so about the contestant's claim to fame, often involving some S.F. landmark or place of interest. The grand prize was California lottery tickets.

aaron sica

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Re: Help Identify This Show
« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2022, 02:37:17 PM »
It didn't appear to entirely be a game show, but doing some digging, I came across a show called "SFO".

chris319

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Re: Help Identify This Show
« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2022, 02:49:42 PM »
It didn't appear to entirely be a game show, but doing some digging, I came across a show called "SFO".

Do you have any more information about SFO, such as air dates?

aaron sica

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Re: Help Identify This Show
« Reply #3 on: June 02, 2022, 03:08:22 PM »
Do you have any more information about SFO, such as air dates?

It appeared to air on Saturday evenings at the beginning of '81, but then got a promotion to weeknights at 7. Didn't look to be airing past 1981. I actually found a clip:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1z1YerixPSs


chris319

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Re: Help Identify This Show
« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2022, 03:08:32 PM »
Here is the 1985 version of "Claim to Fame".

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aIfwawKRkUI

A fellow named Mal Sharpe brought a lawsuit claiming the idea for "Claim to Fame" was stolen from him. Unfortunately it is behind a L.A. Times paywall.

https://www.latimes.com/archives/la-xpm-1987-08-03-ca-444-story.html

chris319

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Re: Help Identify This Show
« Reply #5 on: June 02, 2022, 03:17:14 PM »
"SFO" isn't the show I was thinking of. ISTR a show with a format similar to IGAS/WML?.

mmb5

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Re: Help Identify This Show
« Reply #6 on: June 02, 2022, 09:26:40 PM »
The only mention of your guy in Variety was that he was the producer of Claim to Fame.  No mention of any local programming in 1981 for any of the KRON blurbs.

I'm surprised you hadn't heard of Mal Sharpe, he was at least barely famous in the 1980s for some commercials.  Anyway, here's the entirety of the article, all 86 words of it:

San Francisco TV personality Mal Sharpe has sued KRON-TV for allegedly stealing his idea for the game show "Claim to Fame." Sharpe, known for the commercials that sound like man-on-the-street interviews, filed the complaint in San Francisco Superior Court, charging the station with plagiarism and breaking a contract by not paying him for the concept used to develop the Saturday night game show. In the suit, which seeks unspecified monetary damages, Sharpe and Chambers also accuse KRON of intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress.
Portions of this post not affecting the outcome have been edited or recreated.

That Don Guy

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Re: Help Identify This Show
« Reply #7 on: June 02, 2022, 09:40:02 PM »
Was it definitely a weekly show? KRON did have a habit of airing pilots - the Mike Eruzione-hosted Starcade comes to mind.

chris319

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Re: Help Identify This Show
« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2022, 06:25:49 AM »
The only mention of your guy in Variety was that he was the producer of Claim to Fame.  No mention of any local programming in 1981 for any of the KRON blurbs.

I'm surprised you hadn't heard of Mal Sharpe, he was at least barely famous in the 1980s for some commercials.

I'm quite familiar with Mal Sharpe going back to the '60s. He used to do comedy radio commercials in the S.F. market.

Quote
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=058yFfpZFg4

chris319

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Re: Help Identify This Show
« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2022, 06:42:01 AM »
Was it definitely a weekly show? KRON did have a habit of airing pilots - the Mike Eruzione-hosted Starcade comes to mind.

I'm pretty sure it was a weekly series.

Thanks, Mike, for posting the article on Mal Sharpe's lawsuit.

It's possible that there were two runs of Claim to Fame, one in 1981 and a "revival" in 1985.

I don't think the 1981 version would have made Variety but it might have made the S.F. Chronicle (owner at the time of KRON-TV) or the S.F. Examiner.
« Last Edit: June 03, 2022, 07:34:48 AM by chris319 »

RMF

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Re: Help Identify This Show
« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2022, 12:22:06 PM »
The San Francisco Examiner is in the newspapers.com database, and, from what I've been able to piece together there:

Claim To Fame appears to have started its run in April of 1987, and I've found no evidence of any run prior to that. It continued to September of 1988 as a Saturdays at 6:30 program, and then aired for about a month in February and March of 1989 at 12:30 weekdays (probably, but not definitively, as reruns of the 1987-1988 episodes rather than as a new production).

The Examiner of 4/3/1987 has some useful information as it relates to Sid Marsh, including that he was hired by Bob Klein (the executive producer of the program) after it had already shot a pilot. The article also indicates that he hadn't been active in local San Francisco television, going from working for Ralph Edwards to Chuck Barris, and as having served as a writer/producer for Love Connection during the three previous years.

Interestingly, the Mal Sharpe lawsuit does not appear to have made the Examiner- the references I've found for him from the period are chiefly in the context of several TV specials he did locally, but with nothing connecting him to a game show.

I hope this information has some value- it does seem to indicate that the program wasn't Claim To Fame, but I haven't spotted anything suggesting what it could be.

chris319

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Re: Help Identify This Show
« Reply #11 on: June 03, 2022, 03:16:44 PM »
The KRON-TV Wikipedia page gives these dates for Claim to Fame:

Quote
KRON-TV's Claim to Fame (19851989)

I definitely recall something running on KRON-TV that Sid was involved with when I lived there in 1981. It definitely wasn't "SFO", the talk/variety show.

You might have to search the TV Listings or "TV Log" for KRON-TV listings for 1981. Either TV Guide for the market, or the Chronicle or the Examiner would be the places to look.

chris319

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Re: Help Identify This Show
« Reply #12 on: June 03, 2022, 03:40:42 PM »
Watch the above-linked "Question Man" clip.

There is one error which the audience can see. Can you spot it?
« Last Edit: June 03, 2022, 03:53:45 PM by chris319 »