Glen A. Larson, who was best known for creating the original versions of the TV series "Battlestar Galactica" and "Knight Rider," started in entertainment with three gold records for Capitol Records as a member of the Four Preps.
From the pop group, Larson made his way to TV and conquered it. After working on productions such as "The Fugitive," he signed a production deal with Universal. "Alias Smith and Jones" was the first project by which Larson gained a measure of popularity. Larson helped develop "The Six Million Dollar Man" from a novel ("Cyborg"), but was often accused of repurposing formats. He was even accused by George Lucas of infringement on "Star Wars." (Lucas lost the case.) The show Lucas referenced was "Battlestar Galactica," which, with its unheard-of $1-million-per-episode budget, did not last long but was an influential program in science fiction.
In the 1970s and 1980s, Larson produced a string of hits. Besides "Battlestar Galactica" and "Six Million Dollar Man," they included "Quincy, M.E." (1976), "Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries" (1977), "The Fall Guy" (1977-1978), "B. J. and the Bear" (1979), "Buck Rogers in the 25th Century" (1979), "Magnum, P.I." (1980) and "Knight Rider" (1982).
Today's remake-addled television landscape has gone back to many of his productions, as "Bionic Woman," "Knight Rider" and "Battlestar Galactica" have all been re-introduced or "re-imagined" as contemporary series.
Larson never abandoned his musical roots, though, writing the theme songs for "The Fall Guy," "Battlestar Galactica," "B. J. and the Bear" and more, though some are disputed. Larson is listed as a writer and producer on the most recent incarnation of the "Battlestar" universe, Syfy's "Caprica" television series.
Larson died Nov. 14, 2014, of complications related to esophageal cancer at the UCLA Medical Center in Santa Monica. He was 77.