MUSEUM OF BROADCAST COMMUNICATIONS
        360 North State Street, Chicago, IL 60654-5411  P. 312-245-8200      Museum of Broadcast Communications (MBC) © 2017 All rights reserved.©  
 Museum of Broadcast Communications was made possible thanks to a generous grant by:
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Svengoolie Exhibit

Located on the 3rd Floor

Rich Koz, as humorous horror movie host Svengoolie, first opened the door of his brightly painted coffin to a national audience in 2011

as part of the launch of the Memorable Entertainment network (MeTV).

 

That allowed viewers throughout the country to join long-time regional fans in embracing Svengoolie as a fresh take on a program form

harkening back to the early days of local television. Koz played his character as the creatively silly guide to classic (and not-so-classic)

monster, horror and science fiction films. He won fans of every age with an unpretentious, family-friendly personality that spoke directly

to each home viewer.

 

In 1994, Neal Sabin, executive vice president of Weigel Broadcasting,

struck a deal to bring back Svengoolie for Chicago station WCIU

(Channel 26). Rich Koz unearthed the coffin and once again took

center stage, but no-longer as “Son of.” Jerry G. Bishop gave him the

proud papa smile and said, “You’re all grown up now. Just be

Svengoolie.” Both Bishop and Koz appeared together at the Museum

of Broadcast Communications event “The Night of Two Svengoolies.”

 

Over the next two decades, Rich Koz as Svengoolie became more

popular than ever. He brought his Emmy Award total to eight, and in

2004 was inducted into the NATAS Silver Circle. Svengoolie grew

from its Chicago base to other regional stations owned by Weigel

Broadcasting in Indiana and Wisconsin, then even further as part of

the company’s expansion with the national MeTV network.

 

In 2014, the Svengoolie studio set received a major overhaul. Key elements found a new home in this Museum of Broadcast

Communications display, acknowledging the program’s long history and the deep affection it has engendered in generations of fans.

Prop and Design History:    
This coffin was the second constructed for Jerry G. Bishop, and the one-and-only used by Rich Koz until 2014, with front art adapted to reflect his version of the character. The old set was the design product of Steve Wagner and Mario Martinez with ongoing embellishment from producer Chris Faulkner. Composer Doug Scharf (as “Doug Graves”) played the keyboard for Svengoolie’s songs. Svengoolie’s original “chicken shield” (used at the show close to protect him from the rubber poultry pelting) was fabricated and sent in by a fan from the early WCIU days, Rick Wagner. The new 2014 Svengoolie coffin (complete with its own lighting and internal ventilation system) was created by Acme Design, Inc. of Elgin.
On display is the original coffin, set walls and more! Exhibit Text by Walter J. Podrazik, MBC Television Curator Exhibit Designed by David Plier and Jim Roche, Svengoolie Co-Curators Sponsored by ME TV (logo with link)                                                                              
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MUSEUM OF BROADCAST COMMUNICATIONS
        360 North State Street, Chicago, IL 60654-5411  P. 312-245-8200      Museum of Broadcast Communications (MBC) © 2017   All rights reserved.©  
 Museum of Broadcast Communications was made possible thanks to a generous grant by:
                                                      I Terms Of Use I Privacy Policy I Contact Us I

Svengoolie

Exhibit

Located on the 3rd Floor

Rich Koz, as humorous horror movie host Svengoolie, first opened the door

of his brightly painted coffin to a national audience in 2011 as part of the

launch of the Memorable Entertainment network (MeTV).

 

That allowed viewers throughout the country to join long-time regional fans

in embracing Svengoolie as a fresh take on a program form harkening back

to the early days of local television. Koz played his character as the

creatively silly guide to classic (and not-so-classic) monster, horror and

science fiction films. He won fans of every age with an unpretentious,

family-friendly personality that spoke directly to each home viewer.

In 1994, Neal Sabin, executive vice president of Weigel Broadcasting, struck

a deal to bring back Svengoolie for Chicago station WCIU (Channel 26).

Rich Koz unearthed the coffin and once again took center stage, but no-

longer as “Son of.” Jerry G. Bishop gave him the proud papa smile and said,

“You’re all grown up now. Just be Svengoolie.” Both Bishop and Koz

appeared together at the Museum of Broadcast Communications event “The

Night of Two Svengoolies.”

 

Over the next two decades, Rich Koz as Svengoolie became more popular

than ever. He brought his Emmy Award total to eight, and in 2004 was

inducted into the NATAS Silver Circle. Svengoolie grew from its Chicago

base to other regional stations owned by Weigel Broadcasting in Indiana and

Wisconsin, then even further as part of the company’s expansion with the

national MeTV network.

 

In 2014, the Svengoolie studio set received a major overhaul. Key elements

found a new home in this Museum of Broadcast Communications display,

acknowledging the program’s long history and the deep affection it has

engendered in generations of fans. 

Prop and Design History:
This coffin was the second constructed for Jerry G. Bishop, and the one-and-only used by Rich Koz until 2014, with front art adapted to reflect his version of the character. The old set was the design product of Steve Wagner and Mario Martinez with ongoing embellishment from producer Chris Faulkner. Composer Doug Scharf (as “Doug Graves”) played the keyboard for Svengoolie’s songs. Svengoolie’s original “chicken shield” (used at the show close to protect him from the rubber poultry pelting) was fabricated and sent in by a fan from the early WCIU days, Rick Wagner. The new 2014 Svengoolie coffin (complete with its own lighting and internal ventilation system) was created by Acme Design, Inc. of Elgin.
On display is the original coffin, set walls and more! Exhibit Text by Walter J. Podrazik, MBC Television Curator Exhibit Designed by David Plier and Jim Roche, Svengoolie Co-Curators Sponsored by