George Eckstein (1928-2009)

Writer/producer George Eckstein, who co-wrote the final episode of ABC’s The Fugitive, has died at 81, Variety.com reports. His career in television began with a 1961 episodes of The Untouchables; he was active throughout the 1960s, penning episodes of Gunsmoke, The Invaders, The Lieutenant and The Outcasts, among others.

Eckstein wrote a total of ten episodes of The Fugitive, including the two-part finale (which he wrote with Michael Zagor) and also served as a producer on that series. He also produced NBC’s The Name of the Game and a slew of made-for-TV movies, including Duel in 1971, which was directed by Steven Spielberg, plus several miniseries, including Harold Robbins’ 79 Park Avenue and Masada. In 1981 he produced Love, Sidney and in the 1990s he wrote three made-for-TV movies based on Perry Mason.


5 Comments

  • Eckstein sure would’ve packed a lot of experience into a short, if indeed he’d “died at 18.” I think you mean to say that he died at age 81.

    Cheers,
    Jeff

  • Speaking of typos, I mean to write:

    “Eckstein sure would’ve packed a lot of experience into a short PERIOD, if indeed he’d ‘died at 18.’ I think you meant to say that he died at age 81.”

    It happens to the best of us.

  • Barry I. Grauman says:

    Unlike today’s “superstar” writer/producers, like J.J. Abrams and Bill {“SCRUBS”} Lawrence, George Eckstein was unknown to most of the general public. But his work IS known to most people- the two-part ending of “THE FUGITIVE”, the 1971 ABC-TV “MOVIE OF THE WEEKEND”, “Duel” (which was later expanded into a theatrical feature, with additional footage), and his work on “GUNSMOKE”, “THE INVADERS” (again, for producer Quinn Martin, who originally hired him for “THE UNTOUCHABLES” in 1961), the “PERRY MASON” movies on NBC, et. al. The industry certainly knew who he was and what he contributed…and now YOU know, thanks to ‘RGJ’. Very few people of his stature are still in the “business” these days.

  • Jon says:

    I just found this tribute today. Also he was married in the 1960s to Ann Morgan Guilbert (Millie from DVD Show) and father to her children, including actress Hallie Todd [Eckstein].

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