Barris worked as a programming executive at ABC for about a year before launching the Chuck Barris Productions banner in 1965 with a ,000 loan from his stepfather.Three years later, the company was delivering 22 half-hours of programming to networks per week. Barris finally made it in front of the camera when he began hosting “The Gong Show” in 1976.
Though it only ran two years on NBC and four years in syndication, the show is still remembered for its wacky spoof of the talent show format.
He introduced the amateur contestants dressed in colorful clothing with odd props, with judges Jamie Farr, Jaye P.
Born Charles Hirsch Barris in Philadelphia, he started out working as a page at NBC in New York, then worked backstage at “American Bandstand.” “Palisades Park” was recorded by Freddy Cannon and hit No. He formed Chuck Barris Productions in 1965 and created “The Dating Game,” hosted by Jim Lange, which introduced swinging 1960s double entendres to the formerly staid game show genre and ran for 11 out of the next 15 years.
In 1966 he launched “The Newlywed Game,” hosted by Bob Eubanks, which ran for 19 years; Game Show Network still airs a version of the show.
His autobiography, “Confessions of a Dangerous Mind,” was made into a film directed by George Clooney and starred Sam Rockwell as Barris.
“He also fabricated his life because it might have been the best way of getting at the truth.
With his innovative shows, Barris changed the face of reality TV but was derided but critics who nicknamed him "The King of Schlock," "The Baron of Bad Taste" and "The Ayatollah of Trasherola." On , which aired on NBC and in syndication in daytime and primetime from 1976-80, amateurs took to the stage to demonstrate their so-called talent in front of three celebrity judges. Barris' original idea had been to create a show that featured fine performers, but in his search for talent, he frequently encountered awful acts.
"I came back and said, ' Let's change the show, have all bad acts and one or two good ones, and people can make a judgment,' " he said in a 2010 interview with The Archive of American Television.
Over his long career, Barris wore many hits, from pop singer to author to film producer.