Writer and producer Steven Bochco, known for creating hit television shows like Hill Street Blues and NYPD Blue, died over the weekend following a battle with cancer. He was 74.
Hill Street Blues premiered in 1981, and earned a total of 27 Emmy nominations in its first season. An early entry into the serial cop drama genre, the series focused on police officers working out of a station on Hill Street in an unnamed American city. Ultimately, the show lasted seven season and won 26 Emmys, and is considered Bochco's first hit. The show was revolutionary at the time thanks to an interracial cast and interlaced episode format, with most shows up until then have freestanding episodes.
NYPD Blue came around in 1993, and again featured a serial cop drama angle, though this time from the perspective of detectives in the 15th Precinct, a fictional area of Manhattan. That show ran 12 seasons, and won 20 Emmys out of the 84 for which it was nominated during its run. The show was controversial during its run, due to its gritty, realistic take on the personal and professional lives of police, as well as its depictions of nudity. Hulu added the series to its service last week.
A Manhattan native, Bochco got his start in entertainment after he moved to Los Angeles following college. There, he wrote for several series at Universal Studios, and later wrote the screenplay for Silent Running, a 1972 sci-fi film. The writer recounts much of his life in Truth is a Total Defense: My Fifty Years in Television, a self-published memoir.
Details of a memorial service for Bochco were not immediately announced.