Rose Marie and Morey Amsterdam: More than just co-workers
You can't fake that kind of chemistry.
If only we could all experience a workplace like The Dick Van Dyke Show. The environment was friendly and productive, and invited any ideas, regardless of who they came from. To hear any of the show's cast and crew discuss the atmosphere on that show is to listen to someone think back to their best-case scenario. Over and over again, in the years that followed, all involved spoke so highly of that show and what it was like to work on it.
Take, for instance, Rose Marie. Before starring as Sally Rogers, Rose Marie had already built a life's work in show business. Her work in film dated back some thirty years when The Dick Van Dyke Show premiered. Rose Marie worked everywhere. Yet, she still looked back on her time on The Dick Van Dyke Show as a kind of pinnacle. Other projects may have paid more, but that sitcom was a creative peak for all involved.
"We have one big adventure with this show," she told The Morning Call in 1961. "If we're called on to do personal appearances, we won't just get up on stage and say 'Hello, folks,' bashfully. Three of us, Morey Amsterdam, Dick Van Dyke, and myself, are all experienced in nightclubs, Broadway and TV."
Rose Marie's relationship with Amsterdam, in particular, extended past the set of The Dick Van Dyke Show. Their mutual admiration is clear to anyone who has watched the show. They have an easy rapport onscreen that carries any scene featuring their characters. That dynamic made them natural bedfellows offscreen as well.
"In fact, Morey writes a lot of the material I use in clubs," said Rose Marie. "He's great. He knows exactly how to tailor material to a performer. There are some comedy writers who try to do the exact opposite. Morey's a fine comic and a fine man. And one nice thing about him is that, unlike a lot of comics, he isn't always 'on.'"
Their friendship flourished outside of the limelight and stayed with them both well into their later years.