Before finding success with a string of TV hits that includes Spin City, Scrubs, Ted Lasso, and his latest creation, Shrinking, Bill Lawrence struggled like most Hollywood writers. Although, unlike most Hollywood writers, his learning process involved getting fired from three pretty huge sitcoms. In a new interview, Lawrence opened up about the early days of his career, and the valuable experience he gained from getting canned from Boy Meets World.
“I’m a big believer in mentorship, and one of the main things I tell young people now is, ‘If you get paid to write — even if it’s not your thing — if it generates an audience, it has massive worth,'” Lawrence explained. “If you can embrace doing what you have to do to then get what you want to do, things go very well out here — if you’re good enough.”
Unfortunately, Lawrence learned that lesson the hard way when he got a crack at the ABC sitcom.
But, man, if you live in this cynical, judgmental, snarky, “I’m working on this thing, but it’s a piece of shit” — that stuff will come back to haunt you. I was embarrassed about Boy Meets World and should not have been. A lot of people loved it.
I made it fairly clear that it was like, “Oh man, this is not my type of comedy,” and that was a monster mistake. And they were right to let me go.
Lawrence would also get fired from The Nanny and Friends for not being a good writing fit, but he put his best foot forward on both shows, which helped him get in the good graces of iconic TV creator Gary Goldberg. That relationship resulted in the creation of Spin City, and from there, Lawrence was off to the races. Now, he’s working with Harrison Ford on Shrinking, and it turns out Indiana Jones is a funny guy. Han Solo has chops, folks.