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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk
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    Default Prolific TV producer Stephen J. Cannell dies

    Stephen J. Cannell, the voracious writer-producer of dozens of series that included TV favorites "The Rockford Files,""The A-Team" and "The Commish," has died at age 69.



    Cannell passed away at his home in Pasadena, Calif., on Thursday night from complications associated with melanoma, his family said in a statement on Friday.

    During three decades as an independent producer, he distinguished himself as a rangy, outgoing chap with a trim beard who was generally identified with action dramas full of squealing tires and tough guys trading punches.

    But his range was greater than for which he was given credit. "Tenspeed and Brown Shoe" was a clever detective drama starring Ben Vereen and a then-unknown Jeff Goldblum in 1980. "Profit" was a shocking saga of a psycho businessman that was unforgettable to the few viewers who saw it: Fox pulled the plug after just four episodes in 1996. With "Wiseguy" (1987-90), Cannell chilled viewers with a film-noir descent into the underworld that predated "The Sopranos" by more than a decade.

    "The Rockford Files," of course, became an Emmy-winning TV classic following the misadventures of its hapless ex-con private eye played by James Garner.

    "People say, 'How can the guy who did "Wiseguy" do "The A-Team"?' I don't know," said Cannell in an interview with The Associated Press in 1993. "But I do know it's easier to think of me simply as the guy who wrote 'The A-Team.' So they do."

    During his TV heyday, Cannell became familiar to viewers from the ID that followed each of his shows: He was seen in his office typing on his Selectric before blithely ripping a sheet of paper from the typewriter carriage, whereupon it morphed into the C-shaped logo of Cannell Entertainment Inc.

    That was all the idea of his wife, Marcia, he said, and it "appealed to my sense of hooey. ... I'm a ham."

    He was also an occasional actor, most recently with a recurring role on ABC-TV's series, "Castle."

    A third-generation Californian, Cannell (rhymes with "channel") got into television writing scripts for "It Takes a Thief,""Ironside" and "Adam 12." It was a remarkable career choice for someone who had suffered since childhood from severe dyslexia (he became an advocate for children and adults with learning disabilities).

    Cannell in recent years had focused his attention on writing books. His 16th novel, "The Prostitute's Ball," will be released this month.

    "I never thought of myself as being a brilliant writer, and still don't," he said in the AP interview. "I'm a populist. With 'Rockford,' we were never trying to be important. And as thoroughly hated as it was by critics, I loved 'The A-Team.' I thought it was really cool."

    He was a producer of the feature film updating "The A-Team," released earlier this year.

    Cannell is survived by Marcia, his wife of 46 years, their three children, and three grandchildren.
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.” -- Gen. George S. Patton

  2. #2
    Sinner's Swing! johnnybeane's Avatar
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    I love The Greatest American Hero.

    Stephen's shows and Mike Post's music were a great team.

    RIP.

    How we will always remember him.
    Last edited by johnnybeane; 10.01.10 at 01:05 PM. Reason: more
    My chat with Mike & Joe from Chickenfoot 1/7/12
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  3. #3
    Atomic Punk sixstring's Avatar
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    He created some of history's most iconic shows, at least for me. RIP, Stephen...
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]


    "20 minutes (late to work)? Shit. Last year I woke up three weeks too late.
    My advice is to go for the alien abduction story. Look bemused, dishevelled and on the verge of tears as you recount your story of intrusive and degrading medical tests.
    Worked for me anyway. I still have colleagues asking me what it is like to fuck a green womanoid with seventeen breasts.
    Alternatively just walk in and inform everyone that alcoholism is indeed a disease and that they should be less judgemental and perhaps a little more supportive."
    - graeme on the addiction to this place.

    "something tells me that after the nuclear holocaust, there'll be twinkies, cockroaches, and a dave vs. sammy argument going on somewhere".
    - han valen, 6.11.04

    "in my best "saw" scary movie voice: "oh, yes, there will be beagles."
    - hatchetforce, 6.7.06

  4. #4
    Atomic Punk LLFHS's Avatar
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    This is truly a loss in the entertainment world. Wasn't really a fan of The A-Team, but Rockford, TGAH.... Damn.

    LowLifeFlatHeadScum

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    Your Hacked Nude Photo Here!

  5. #5
    Baluchitherium steve mcqueen's Avatar
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    The list of TV show that he contributed to is huge.....he has had a hand in creating, writing or producing some of best shows ever.....all while struggling with dyslexia...... a true icon of my generation.....

    RIP.

  6. #6
    Good Enough SLEEPER5150's Avatar
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    Grew up on The Rockford Files. Great show. he'll be missed!
    Maybe as a tribute, I'll pull off a smokey as hell "Rockford Slide" out of the parking lot from work today!
    RIP Stephen.
    She looks so $#@!'n good ,so sexy and so frail....Somethin's got the bite on me, I'm goin' straight to Hell.

  7. #7
    ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ ○ Number 47's Avatar
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    Thank you Stephen, for all the great characters and stories that have populated my imagination, for nearly my entire life. As a young man interested in commercial art... the classic closing logo was such an inspiration for simple yet effective expression, I'd always wait through every shows closing credits just to see it. (Thanks for that video johnnybeane )

    RIP Mr. Cannell. Leave us knowing that an entire generation was forged from your craft.

  8. #8
    Atomic Punk ZeoBandit's Avatar
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    RIP Stephen. The A-Team rocked!
    "What we are dealing with here, is a complete lack of respect for the law" - Jackie Gleason, Smokey and the Bandit

    www.geocaching.com - The site where you are the search engine.

  9. #9
    Eruption
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    RIP Steve. HUNTER RULED!

 

 

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