Gilligan's Island is an American sitcom created and produced by Sherwood Schwartz and originally produced by United Artists Television. The situation comedy series featured Bob Denver; Alan Hale, Jr.; Jim Backus; Natalie Schafer; Tina Louise; Russell Johnson; and Dawn Wells. It aired for three seasons on the CBS network from September 26, 1964, to September 4, 1967. Originally sponsored by Philip Morris & Company and Procter & Gamble, the show followed the comic adventures of seven castaways as they attempted to survive the island on which they had been shipwrecked. Most episodes revolve around the dissimilar castaways' conflicts and their failed attempts to escape their plight. Gilligan's Island ran for a total of 98 episodes. The first season, consisting of 36 episodes, was filmed in black-and-white. These episodes were later colorized for syndication. The show's second and third seasons and the three television movie sequels were filmed in color. The show enjoyed solid ratings during its original run, then grew in popularity during decades of syndication, especially in the 1970s and 1980s when many markets ran the show in the late afternoon after school. Today, the title character of Gilligan is widely recognized as an American cultural icon.