David Kelley might be described as living the American Dream, 1990s’ style: write a screenplay, move to Hollywood, make millions and marry a movie star. A former Boston lawyer, in the last decade, he switched careers to become a successful television producer whose shows are recognized for their quality as well as receiving top ratings. David Kelley was born in 1956 and is originally from Maine. He attended Princeton University and Boston University Law School. He married actress Michelle Pfeiffer in November 1993. They have two children: Claudia Rose Kelley, born in March 1993, who was adopted by Ms. Pfeiffer eight months before their marriage, and John Henry, born in August 1994. Claudia Rose Kelley was christened and given Mr. Kelley’s name at the couple’s wedding ceremony. Mr. Kelley was an associate at Fine & Ambrogne in 1983 when he wrote a film script based on some of his legal experiences. Through a family friend, he got the script optioned and acquired an agent in 1986. It was produced in 1987, as a film titled From the Hip (1987), starring Judd Nelson, Elizabeth Perkins, and John Hurt. At the same time, producers Steven Bochco and Terry Louise Fisher (creators of the successful police drama Hill Street Blues (1981)) were planning a new series set in a law firm, and looking for writers with legal backgrounds. They saw Mr. Kelley’s script and invited him to Los Angeles to discuss writing a single script for L.A. Law (1986). The meeting was so successful that Mr. Kelley joined the show’s staff as a story editor. The next year, he became executive story editor, and after Terry Fisher left the show, he became the supervising producer. Steven Bochco left L.A. Law (1986) after the third season, and Mr. Kelley took over as executive producer, while continuing to write many of the scripts himself. Mr. Kelley has since produced more critically acclaimed and successful shows. He served as creative consultant on Doogie Howser, M.D. (1989), which was produced by Steven Bochco, and as executive producer and writer for Picket Fences (1992). He is the executive producer of Chicago Hope (1994). He is part of the television production division of Twentieth Century Fox, which has been owned by Rupert Murdoch’s media conglomerate, The News Corporation Ltd., since 1985.
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