Surviving Gilligan's Island: The Incredibly True Story of the Longest Three-Hour Tour in History
Television movie that gives a "behind-the-scenes" look at the television series "Gilligan's Island," which ran from 1964 to 1967 on CBS. The story, told from the point of view of Dawn Wells (Mary Ann), Bob Denver (Gilligan) and Russell Johnson (the Professor), begins with the battle the creator faced convincing network executives to greenlight the original pilot. After struggling to cast the show, he fought to have the series picked up. The network couldn't argue with the favorable reaction audiences had to the seven unusual castaways and their plight. However, even after the series was picked up, the obstacles faced on "Gilligan's Island" were not only in front of the cameras. From Russell Johnson's reluctance to take the role that eventually solidified his place in pop culture to the private pain Natalie Schaeffer (Mrs. Howell) endured, the events taking place behind the scenes were far different from the lighthearted on-screen escapades of the shipwrecked seven.