Bill Lawrence

Bill Lawrence


12/26/1968, Ridgefield, Connecticut

Birth Name

William Van Duzer Lawrence



Also Known As

William Lawrence
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Bill Lawrence is one of Hollywood's funniest and most successful television Writer/Executive Producers working in the industry today. He's also one of the busiest: he taped this interview after a long day of working on the set of his most recent NBC Series, Scrubs. The time? Two o'clock…more


Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • Bill's great-grandfather, William Lawrence, founded Sarah Lawrence Collage.

    • Bill used to play baseball for the Houston Frogs.

    • He ran for president of his elementary school, Branchville Elementary School in Ridgefield, Connecticut.

    • The Ohio connection for Nobody's Watching was inspired by relatives in Cincinnati.

    • His show Nobody's Watching was a major hit on YouTube, but got low ratings when it aired on network television.

    • Bill's daughter, Charlotte, appeared in an episode of Scrubs as the little girl who looks exactly like Jordan (Christa Miller Lawrence). The appearance was uncredited, however.

    • Bill often puts himself into the background of Scrubs. According to the cast, he has done it more and more frequently as the seasons pass.

    • He says that the best part about working in an old creepy hospital [on Scrubs] is that no one ever comes by, so they can do whatever they want.

    • Bill and his wife are part of a co-ed softball team. They also play tennis competitively.

    • He credits Gary Goldberg with teaching him all that was involved in creating a series.

    • Bill allows dogs on the set of Scrubs, which he jokes was to wage war with the rat population.

    • Bill created a pilot called Nobody's Watching; however, the show was never picked up. It can still be seen on YouTube.

    • Bill has said that fans will know when Scrubs is over when the Janitor is given a name.

    • He has two dogs named Skye and Gus.

    • He was a writer for Friends during its first season on the air.

    • Bill wrote his first television script when he was twenty-two.

    • When Bill first met Christa, it was at a party in May 1998 and she already had a boyfriend. He made her promise to call him if they broke up. She did.

    • He is a big fan of The Simpsons.

    • Bill often pays the cast and crew of Scrubs to do or eat something gross. It is known as the Scrubs Factor.

    • He often uses the phrase "giant 'who cares?'", which was also used in an episode of Scrubs by Dr. Cox.

    • At the end of every episode of Scrubs, a child's voice comes on. This is a recording of his daughter Charlotte's first words. She is saying "Bye Bye".

    • He was nominated for, but failed to win, the WGA Award (for TV) for his work on "Scrubs" in 2003.

    • Bill has been nominated for two PGA Golden Laurel Awards (category: Television Producer of the Year Award in Episodic). He never won the award.

    • Bill has been nominated for two Emmys for his work with "Scrubs." Unfortunately, he failed to win both times.

    • While in college, Bill dreamed of writing the great American novel (of which he has had no luck on so far).

    • Bill and his wife Crista Miller have three children, Charlotte Sarah (born June 8, 2000), William Stoddard (born January 3, 2003), and Henry Vanduzer (born October 8, 2006).

    • Bill Lawrence is married to Scrubs star Christa Miller. They were married on November 27, 1999 at the chapel at the Convent of the Sacred Heart. Sacred Heart is also the name of the hospital on his show, Scrubs.

  • Quotes

    • Bill [On whether NBC has ever made them drop an episode]: They made us drop a medical marijuana episode, we replaced it with an episode with a dying patient paying a whore for sex, which apparently was just fine with the NBC censors.

    • Bill [On his best prank]: Since I did the license plate prank, I would say that's the best one. For those of you who don't know, Zach is embarrassed by his celebrity. So, I put license plates on his car that said "TV DOC" and had dollar signs around them. He didn't notice until days later at a restaurant valet stand, when everyone was looking at him like he was a complete tool. I feel retribution is coming this year.

    • Bill [On whether Zach Braff has ever directed an episode of Scrubs]: Zach directs a few episodes every year. Including the Wizard of Oz homage that got us most of our Emmy nominations. How talented he is, never ceases to annoy me.

    • Bill [Responding to a fan's comment on his blog]: Excellent point! My wife IS hot. As I have a one month old child, I have not seen, nor touched her in quite some time.

    • Bill [On going back for a sixth season of Scrubs]: It's a lot like going back for your senior year of high school, except for the sixth time, which is dangerously close to what actually happened in my life.

    • Bill [On working with Michael J. Fox again]: I feel like the luckiest guy in the world.

    • Bill Lawrence [On the decision to write a Scrubs musical]: Yes! See, there's always been lots of talk about trying to write a musical. We're just too lazy - but we're gonna try it this year.

    • Bill Lawrence [On the formation of the Scrubs soundtrack]: We're very nerdy about it. The writers, the actors, and even the crew, everybody has iPods, everyone goes out and sees bands play. We're obsessive about finding small bands that have been overlooked. The biggest proponent of that is my wife. She picks so much of the music for the show that a lot of the writers and actors don't even go to me anymore when they have a song. They hand it to her. Zach picks songs, and Neil Goldman, one of our writers, picks out a ton.

    • Bill Lawrence [On his relationship with fans online]: I feel like if you're not that giant hit, you have to tap into what people who love your show like, and keep it interesting and satisfying to them. We strive to go to great lengths to do this. Because we happen to know our core group of fans are very Internet savvy, we made sure Scrubs was one of the first shows that NBC didn't own that was released on NBC's iTunes. We do blogs and tons of Internet stuff and try to keep them as loyal and hooked in as we possibly can. We lovingly call them our nerds. It's seriously a giant testament to them that the show's still alive.

    • Bill Lawrence [On the decision to have three characters be pregnant in the season five finale of Scrubs]: In the beginning, we really were going to have two characters be pregnant. But then my wife got pregnant, so we said 'Screw it, we'll have three babies.' People say kids always change a show, but on Everybody Loves Raymond, I think I saw those kids eight times in seven years.

    • Bill Lawrence [On the Scrubs timeslot]: I love that we're on Thursdays on NBC in the midst of the entire industry crapping on comedy. We're part of a night of four great comedies, and I think it's cool to be there. Sure it's our 150th time slot, but I'm psyched about it.

    • Bill Lawrence [On his wife's knowledge of the internet]: Christa, my wife, is obsessed - and that's why it's available to me. One of our couple arguments is that once the kids are down, her unwinding - especially being a music freak - is all about her updating her library and searching for music. For me to be such an idiot, we don't even have a stereo in our house. It's all played from my wife's computer.

    • Bill [On Scrubs storylines]: I think the show exists on a level where it just successful enough that we feel secure, so we do whatever we want.

    • Bill Lawrence [On seeing his wife at their wedding]: I'll always remember how blown away I was when I saw Christa in her dress. Everything leading up to that moment was pure terror and then, the second I saw her, she was so beautiful it had a very calming effect. The only nagging thought was, 'What on earth is this woman marrying me for?'

    • Bill: I don't know if you know the story behind it, but the medical advisor (on "Scrubs") is my buddy from college. His name is J.D.; he's the guy who I stole the story from. He's John Dorris instead of John Dorian, and he's been J.D. since college. And on the set, everybody calls him "Real," since he's the real J.D.

    • Bill: (when asked about doing a seventh season of "Scrubs") I think I'd only do the show with Zach (Braff), personally.

    • Bill: We have a point of pride -- and I don't think I've ever said this in an interview -- is we demand on our show ("Scrubs") equal amounts of male and female nudity. And it's actually why the character of The Todd ended up in a banana hammock all the time.

    • Bill: What bothers me is that the entertainment industry is the exact people who should be aware of all the stuff that's happening. And that's why the TV industry specifically is always two to five years behind every trend.