David Gerber

David Gerber
Los Angeles Times


David Gerber
TV: West side of the 1600 block of Vine Street
Born July 25, 1923 in Brooklyn, N.Y.
Died Jan. 2, 2010 of heart failure in Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center, CA

David Gerber was an award-winning television producer and executive whose career included roles as executive producer of the 1970s series "Police Story" and "Police Woman" and the 2006 TV movie "Flight 93."

In a more than 50-year career in which he headed studio television divisions and his own production companies, the Brooklyn-born Gerber was an Emmy, Golden Globe and Peabody award winner.

Early in his career as an independent producer in the late 1960s and early '70s, Gerber was executive producer of the situation comedies "The Ghost & Mrs. Muir" and "Nanny and the Professor."

But he was best known in the industry for dealing with serious, often controversial subjects as one of television's pioneers of social realism.

He shared an Emmy Award for outstanding drama series as an executive producer of the groundbreaking "Police Story," an anthology series created by ex-cop Joseph Wambaugh that ran on NBC from 1973 to '77.

"Police Woman," a spin-off dramatic series starring Angie Dickinson, aired on NBC from 1974 to '78.

Among Gerber's other credits as an executive producer are the 1975 TV movie "Medical Story," the 1976 TV movie "The Lindbergh Kidnapping Case," the 1980 miniseries "Beulah Land," the 1984 miniseries "George Washington" and the 2001 TV movie "The Lost Battalion."

After earning a bachelor's degree at what is now the University of the Pacific in Stockton, he joined the Batten, Barton, Durstine & Osborn advertising agency in New York as a TV supervisor.

After forming his own company in 1972, Gerber became affiliated with Columbia Pictures Television, where he put in a stint as executive vice president of worldwide TV production.

In 1981, he was recruited to head MGM Television. He became chairman and chief executive of MGM Worldwide Television Group in 1991.

Gerber launched another independent company in 1992 and later served as president of All American Television.

"Gerber was a legendary, larger-than-life figure in the television business," said Peter Chernin, former president and chief operating officer of News Corp. and former chairman and chief executive of Fox.

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