Family & Companions
Hugh Hamilton Wilson, Jr. was born on Aug. 21, 1943, in Miami, FL. Shortly after graduation from the University of Florida in 1964, Wilson leapt to a career in advertising, working his way to the top of the Atlanta, GA-based Burton-Campbell Agency by 1973. Two years later, however, Wilson endeavored a career switch and became a writer for "The Bob Newhart Show" (CBS 1972-78) by the following year. Ascending yet another professional ladder, Wilson soon graduated to status of producer for "The Tony Randall Show" (ABC/CBS 1976-78) before creating his own series altogether: "WKRP in Cincinnati" (CBS 1978-1982). Following his program's run, Wilson shifted his attention to movies, making his feature screenwriting debut with the Burt Reynolds-led comedy "Stroker Ace" (1983) and his feature directorial debut with the original "Police Academy" (1984). After a number of short-lived television projects throughout the latter half of the 1980s, Wilson wrote and directed popular moves including "The First Wives Club" (1996), "Blast from the Past" (1999), and "Dudley Do-Right" (1999). Around this period, Wilson began teaching screenwriting at the University of Virginia on an occasional basis. His final directing credit was a baseball drama, "Mickey" (2004), starring Harry Connick Jr. and written by novelist John Grisham. Wilson died on Jan. 14, 2018 at the age of 74 following a battle with lung cancer.
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Producer (Feature Film)
Special Thanks (Special)
Writer (TV Mini-Series)
Met future co-workers Jay Tarses and Tom Patchett while working as a shipping clerk at the Armstrong Cork Company, Lancaster, Pennsylvania
Worked his way up from copywriter to president of Burton-Campbell Advertising
Became an apprentice director at MTM Enterprises
Created the CBS sitcom "WKRP in Cincinnati", for which he also wrote, executive produced and directed
First feature film work, writing the screenplay for "Stroker Ace"
Made feature directing debut with "Police Academy", agreeing to write the film on condition he be allowed to direct it
Parodied the Western genre in the lackluster "Rustler's Rhapsody", starring Tom Berenger
Played a small role ('Customer at Mayday') in the feature "Burglar", which he also wrote and directed
Created and executive produced the acclaimed CBS series "Frank's Place"; also wrote and directed the premiere episode
Acted the role of D. Wayne Thomas on the Jan. 18 episode of "Frank's Place"
Helmed "The New WKRP in Cincinnati"
Co-scripted and helmed "Guarding Tess", starring Nicolas Cage and Shirley MacLaine; also provided the voice of the President
Directed hit film "The First Wives' Club", adapted from Olivia Goldsmith's novel
Co-wrote (with its director John Milius) TNT miniseries "Rough Riders", starring Berenger as Teddy Roosevelt
Produced John Shea's "Southie"
Co-wrote, produced and directed "Blast from the Past", starring Brendan Fraser
Gave a polish to the script and helmed "Dudley Do-Right", starring Fraser as the simpleminded titular Royal Canadian Mounted Policeman, Sarah Jessica Parker as Nell and Alfred Molina as his nemesis Snidely Whiplash; characters based on the animated characters created by Jay Ward from "The Bullwinkle Show"
Completed his final directorial work, the family friendly "Mickey", scripted by John Grisham