TV Producer Steve Bocho dies at 74

Tonya Becker
April 3, 2018

In October of 2014, he received a stem cell transplant from an anonymous 23-year-old donor.

On Sunday, Steven Bochco, who helped shape modern TV drama with innovative shows such as Hill Street Blues and NYPD Blue, died at 74. Instead, Bochco signed a six-year, 10-series deal at ABC, worth around $10 million. "He was a pioneer". They were not just "case-of-the-week" episodes.

House of Cards creator Beau Willimon said, "As a kid, "Hill Street Blues" and "L.A. Law" were rituals in my house". Blue was controversial for its willingness to push the envelope in terms of content, but was a critical and ratings juggernaut for much of its twelve-season run and picked up a total of twenty Emmy Awards.

In 1986, Bochco struck gold with another crime drama, L.A. Law. It was no "Perry Mason". Many of them were shows related to the law genre.


By the late 1980s, Bochco was in high demand.

Harris worked with the acclaimed television producer on his hit ABC comedy Doogie Howser, in which he played a teenage doctor trying to practice medicine while still living his life as a regular kid.

Steven Bochco was a true TV tough guy. He admitted to being disappointed that "NYPD Blue" influenced cable more than broadcast. "At first, television wasn't quite ready for this groundbreaking drama, certainly not on a network known for a talking vehicle..." In what might have been a marketing ploy, the network came under tremendous fire in an orchestrated outcry that included full-page newspaper ads.

Bianculli said that one of Bochco's lasting contributions was making characters real and relatable. When 20th Century Fox TV sold the rerun rights to "NYPD Blue" to its sibling FX cabler, Bochco demanded an accounting and was prepared to fight it out in court. He said, 'Well, let's do it that way.' I said, 'Think about "Barney Miller, " " Clark said.


A New York City native, Steven Ronald Bochco was born on December 16, 1943, to a violinist father and a painter-jewelry designer mother. He then attended Carnegie Institute of Technology, now known as Carnegie Mellon University. His mother, Mimi, was a painter.

The New York-native got his start in the 1960s, but before long, he was an in-demand television writer for Griff, McMillan & Wife, and Columbo (including an episode directed by a young Steven Spielberg). Grant Tinker was head of MTM Television when Bochco was recruited to the studio where he would launch "Hill Street Blues".

He is now survived by his third wife Dayna Kalins; his three children named Melissa Bochco, Jesse Bochco and Sean Flanagan; and two grandchildren.


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