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The television show "Diff'rent Strokes" will always be best remembered as the breakthrough vehicle for Gary Coleman (and his cute, wise-cracking character, Arnold Jackson). However, there were quite a few lesser-known figures who played a major hand in the show's success, such as writer/producer Ben Starr. Starr got his start during the formative stages of television, writing for such early 1950s programs as "My Hero," "I Married Joan," and "The Ray Milland Show: Meet Mr. McNulty." In the early 1960s, Starr landed his breakthrough assignment--writing 40 episodes for the hit comedy "Mister Ed." Subsequently, Starr would write for other hit shows (albeit in a very brief/often single show capacity), including "The Andy Griffith Show," "The Brady Bunch," and "Maude," as well as more extended writing assignments for "Chico and the Man" and "All in the Family." But it was "Diff'rent Strokes" that was Starr's "pièce de résistance," as he produced 70 episodes and wrote 27 episodes between 1978 and 1982. Starr would also latch onto two other long-term shows as a writer during this time, "The Facts of Life" and "Silver Spoons." Additionally, a pair of award nominations would come Starr's way over the years, including an Edgar Allan Poe Award in 1956 for the TV series "Climax!," and a Writers Guild of America Award in 1967 for the movie "Our Man Flint."
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