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Stanley Milton Kallis

1928 - 2017 Obituary Condolences Gallery
Stanley Milton Kallis Obituary
September 5, 1928 - January 28, 2017 Writer and Television Producer Stanley Kallis fought the idea of death. It didn't suit him, but neither did living a life imprisoned in a body that could no longer live unfettered and so it was that on January 28, 2017 surrounded by his family, Lucetta and their 5 daughters, Stan took his final breath. Though born in Kansas City, MO, Stan's formative years were spent in New York City and Great Neck, Long Island. When Stan was fourteen his father, Mischa, was offered the position of Art Director for Paramount Studios and promptly moved the family to Hollywood, CA. At age sixteen, Stan enrolled at UCLA and quickly realized that his calling was in the Theatre Arts department where he received his Bachelor of Arts in 1949 and his Master's degree the following year, leading to his first job in the Motion Picture Industry as an assistant film editor. While still in college, Stan was introduced to Lucetta Jenison, a student from Lansing, MI, on a short leave from MSU. Through a prodigious long distance letter writing campaign, Stan and Lucetta realized they were a perfect match. Fascinating to read, their letters have now been bound into two volumes. Married in 1951, this year would have been their 66th anniversary. In the late 50's, with backing from his father and brother, 28-year old Stan wrote and produced three B-movies that catapulted him into a long and storied television career. Kallis received his first TV writing credit for Wagon Train in 1959. From there he was promptly hired as an associate producer to write episodes for the Dick Powell Anthology. The Danny Thomas Hour followed. In 1966, CBS asked Stan to develop what would become Hawaii 5-0. Flying to Hawaii with writer Leonard Freeman, they worked out the pilot and two years of episodes. Between 1968-1970, Stan produced Mission Impossible. In 1971,Kallis returned to Hawaii 5-0 as the show's Executive Producer, bringing a fresh new direction to the show's 3rd and 4th season. In 1973, a new and exciting series called Police Story, created by Joe Wambaugh, crossed over Kallis' desk based on the true stories of every day cops. It was the first series in television history to not sugar coat what a day was like for our real life heroes. Stan loved that concept. Not every show had to have a happy ending. Police Story won the Golden Globe for Best Series-Drama, and the coveted Emmy for Outstanding Drama Series. In the late 70's, Kallis produced Washington Behind Closed Doors, a 6-part mini-series which captured the Nixon era and won seven Emmy nominations. During the 80's, Stan's 6-hr Manion's of America introduced Pierce Brosnan to the American audience followed by Amber Waves, a TV movie which accrued seven nominations and won a Prime time Emmy. Two of a Kind starring George Burns was the winner of the ARC award and the Humanitas nomination in 1982. In 1984, HBO brought Stan on board to write The Glitter Dome based on the novel by Joe Wambaugh. It won the Mystery Writers' Edgar award. Kane and Able, I'll Take Manhattan, In The Heat of the Night and 5 episodes of Columbo ended the 80's. With the onset of what was to become "Reality TV" in the early 90's, Stan felt this was a perfect time to step aside and let the next generation take over, but then Brewster Place came calling and who was he to say no to one last series when it was Oprah doing his bidding. During Kallis' long and illustrious career, he was known in the writing industry as a "Writer's writer." He was a producer who elevated the careers of those he worked with to greater heights. He was a rock to many, a mentor and friend on both a professional and emotional level. He tried to make life better for others. In 2011, Stan and Lucetta retired to their beachfront home in Laguna Beach, CA where the evenings glowed with breathtaking sunsets as they enjoyed many "happy hours." Stan's retirement years were filled with reading, writing, music, studying the universe and, of course, many sweet hours with family and friends. A brilliant scholar and talented on so many levels, Stan will be remembered for his gentle humor, wit, conviviality and warm friendship. He was a gentleman at all times. Stan is survived by Lucetta, his wife of 66 years, daughters Karen Cheesman (Tim), Laurie Kallis (Doug Lung), Katherine Wenglikowski (Floyd), Jennifer Kallis, and Nicole Kallis (Paul Stark), grandchildren Shaun Kallis, Sabrina Kallis Sumarkoff and Hunter Wenglikowski, his brother, Albert and sister-in-law Trudy, numerous cousins, loving nieces and nephews. A Celebration of Life will be held in early September. Stan was a member of the Laguna Beach Museum, Laguna Beach Playhouse, California Yacht Club and the Santa Monica & Westside Philharmonic Committee. Because of Stan's deep love for classical music and the Los Angeles Philharmonic, a tribute gift may be given in the name of Stan Kallis by calling (213) 972-3530. Equally devoted to the Laguna Beach Playhouse, one could alternatively send a tribute gift by calling Teryll Sindell (949) 204-5343 For more information, contact Lucetta Kallis ([email protected])
Published in the Los Angeles Times from May 31 to June 4, 2017
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