Don Reo

Don Reo

In 1975, Reo officially made the switch from show writer to producer. In February of that year, he was the producer when "Cher" (1975-76) debuted on CBS. The famous singer and actress's variety show featured numerous recognizable musical guests such as Elton John and Bette Midler. Although "Cher" ran for only two seasons, Reo's writing garnered his first Emmy nomination later that year in the category of Outstanding Writing in a Comedy-Variety or Music Series. After his stint as a producer on "Cher" ended in 1976, he quickly jumped into the short-lived sitcom "We'll Get By" (CBS 1975) before landing in the landmark television series "M*A*S*H" as a producer. In less than a year, Reo received his second Primetime Emmy nomination for Outstanding Comedy Series. Reo doubled as a writer and a producer again when he returned to the world of "Mary Tyler Moore," this time in its spin-off sitcom "Rhoda" (CBS 1974-78). After years of experience as a writer and producer, Reo made the jump as an executive producer by joining the creative team behind "Private Benjamin" (CBS 1981-83). Based on the hit Hollywood movie, the series made a television star out of Eileen Brennan, who won an Emmy and a Golden Globe for her portrayal of Capt. Doreen Lewis. After the show ended in January 1983, Reo continued to work as an executive producer and writer of television shows for short periods of time, including "Golden Girls" (NBC 1985-1992) and "Wizards and Warriors" (CBS 1983). The desire to wield more creative control prompted Reo to form Impact Zone Productions in 1989. The first show under his new production studio was the short-lived comedy series "Heartland" (CBS 1989), which told the story of a Nebraska farmer who had to move in with his daughter's family after he lost his farm. Reo struck gold with his next show, the NBC sitcom "Blossom." The show focused on the life of the youngest child of the Russo family, who must adjust to life without her mother while dealing with her father and two older brothers. The show launched the careers of Mayim Bialik and Joey Lawrence and enjoyed a five-season run.His next big project was a vehicle for John Larroquette after "Night Court" (NBC 1984-1992) ended its run, plainly titled "The John Larroquette Show" (NBC 1993-96). Larroquette played a recovering alcoholic who was given the job of the night shift manager at a St. Louis bus depot. After the show ran for four season, Reo's next successful series was the Damon Wayans-led sitcom "My Wife and Kids" (ABC 2001-07). Wayans starred as Michael Kyle, a husband and father of three children with a very distinct method of teaching them valuable life lessons. While "My Wife and Kids" ran on ABC, Reo created comedian Rodney Carrington's television sitcom "Rodney" (ABC 2004-06), followed by an executive producer credit in Chris Rock's semi-autobiographical sitcom, "Everybody Hates Chris" (UPN 2005-06, The CW 2006-09). Impact Zone Productions then followed up with the romantic sitcom "'Til Death" (Fox 2006-2010), which starred Brad Garrett and Joely Fisher as a married couple of 23 years living in Philadelphia. While those shows were modest successes, Reo once again became part of a hit sitcom with CBS's "Two and a Half Men." Although Reo was initially brought in as a consulting producer in September 2010, he became an executive producer a year later.