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Norman Sedawie

  • Birthplace: Vancouver, British Columbia
  • Birthday: October 01
Date of passing: 
March 12, 2016

Norman Sedawie was a television writer, director and producer who worked on hundreds of variety and comedy programs from the 1950s through the 1980s. His notable credits included the Canadian musical variety series ParadeThe Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour and The Smothers Brothers Summer Show.

Norman Sedawie was a television writer, director and producer who worked on hundreds of variety and comedy programs from the 1950s through the 1980s. His notable credits included the Canadian musical variety series ParadeThe Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour and The Smothers Brothers Summer Show.

Born in Vancouver, British Columbia, Sedawie began working as a journalist when he was just 14 years old, and during his teens and twenties he worked variously as an entertainment editor, columnist and critic for The Vancouver Sun and Vancouver Province. He also worked as a stringer for Time, Inc. and the Toronto Star, wrote for magazines and was an award-winning comedy writer for the Canadian Broadcasting Company.

In addition to journalism, he was writing, directing and producing for commercial theaters in Vancouver in his teens as well.

Sedawie broke into television while still working as a journalist. By the time he left newspapers to focus on television, he had been a reporter on the crime and court beats, an assignment editor, city editor, photography editor, feature writer and columnist.

He eventually relocated to Toronto, where he worked for Tabloid, a nightly magazine show for the CBC that combined live and location segments. He also worked in nearly 200 documentaries during his years with the broadcaster, as well as numerous award-winning musical and comedy productions, many of which were aired internationally.

Other milestones during this period included producing the first original stage production at the 3,200-seat O'Keefe Centre in Toronto.

By the time he moved to the U.S. in 1965, he had worked on more than a thousand network programs in Canada.

In America, he worked with many celebrities, and for such major companies as ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox, Hanna-Barbera and DePatie-Freleng.

He also worked on the television movies The World: Color It Happy, an animated special that featured the voice of Woody Allen; Showbiz Goes to War, about Hollywood during the years of World War II; and Christmas Carol.

In 1970 he joined the Smothers Brothers Organization and went on to work on more than 20 programs for the sibling entertainers, including their acclaimed weekly series.

Sedawie later produced tha animated special The Bear Who Slept Through Christmas, and he and his wife, Gayle Gibson, won an International Emmy Award for producing the 1978 TV movie adaptation of A Christmas Carol as a one-person show starring impressionist Rich Little, who played all of the roles using an array of celebrity voices.

The couple's other collaborations included The National Love, Sex and Marriage Test, a special for NBC.

Over the course of his career, Sedawie worked with a long list of stars, including Marilyn Monroe, Bob Hope, Sammy Davis Jr., Frank Sinatra, Danny Kaye, Lucille Ball, Suzanne Somers, Stan Kenton and Mel Tormé.

Sedawie died March 12, 2016, in Roseburg, Oregon. He was 87.

 

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