Welcome to DU! The truly grassroots left-of-center political community where regular people, not algorithms, drive the discussions and set the standards. Join the community: Create a free account Support DU (and get rid of ads!): Become a Star Member


(5,902 posts)
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 05:41 PM Aug 2016

Steven Hill, trailblazing TV star, dies at 94.

Source: MSN

Steven Hill, who originated imposing lead roles on two notable television series, Mission: Impossible in the 1960s and Law & Order in the 1990s, died on Tuesday in Manhattan. He was 94.

Born Solomon Krakowsky on Feb. 24, 1922, in Seattle, the son of a Russian Jewish furniture-store owner, Hill graduated from the University of Washington and at first moved to Chicago to work in radio.

He was 44 and a veteran stage and television actor in 1966 when he was cast as Daniel Briggs, the leader of an elite covert-operations unit, in the new series Mission: Impossible. But he left after the first season, paving the way for Peter Graves’s six-season run as the show’s lead.

Almost a quarter-century after that experience, Hill took on the role of the district attorney Adam Schiff on a new cops-and-lawyers series based in New York, Law & Order. He played the role, said to be modeled on the long-serving Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau, from 1990 to 2000.

In a 1996 interview with The Washington Post, Dick Wolf, the creator of Law & Order, called Hill “the Talmudic influence on the entire zeitgeist of the series.”

“Steven has more moral authority than anyone else on episodic TV,” Wolf said.

Read more: http://www.msn.com/en-us/tv/celebrity/steven-hill-trailblazing-tv-star-dies-at-94/ar-BBvXN3Z?ocid=ansmsnent11&OCID=ansmsnnews11


Hill in his best-known role, as D.A. Adam Schiff, in Law & Order[/center]
Steven Hill, trailblazing TV star, dies at 94. (Original Post) forest444 Aug 2016 OP
he was great in law & Order Skittles Aug 2016 #1
The one and only. forest444 Aug 2016 #3
I'm watching him on 'Law and Order', right now! Siwsan Aug 2016 #2
Synchronicity! forest444 Aug 2016 #5
My family always teases me about my addiction to the show Siwsan Aug 2016 #8
I hear you. forest444 Aug 2016 #12
My crush on Sam Waterston is enduring Siwsan Aug 2016 #17
Proof that it always helps to be versed in the subject matter when watching these shows. forest444 Aug 2016 #18
They did a great, and thinly disguised episode based on Robert Durst Siwsan Aug 2016 #21
He was an orthodox Jew in real life Peigan68 Aug 2016 #11
He certainly did. forest444 Aug 2016 #13
I see him often, on L&O. elleng Aug 2016 #4
I've been thinking of getting a box set of L&O for a while now. Now might be the time. forest444 Aug 2016 #6
YES rewarding! elleng Aug 2016 #7
Aha! forest444 Aug 2016 #10
Gotta have Directv or the other where I live, elleng Aug 2016 #15
No need....see if you have ION channel....it's broadcast. nt msanthrope Aug 2016 #22
Will do. Thanks! forest444 Aug 2016 #23
Our local library has lots of the Law and Order series on DVD. progressoid Aug 2016 #27
Fine actor. RIP. (nt) Paladin Aug 2016 #9
+1 narnian60 Aug 2016 #14
RIP bigwillq Aug 2016 #16
This is sad news indeed. NanceGreggs Aug 2016 #19
I confess I thought he had died years ago. Aristus Aug 2016 #20
Jack McCoy played by Sam Waterston. longship Aug 2016 #24
Love Lennie/Jerry. progressoid Aug 2016 #29
He was also a Harpers Bazaar model. longship Aug 2016 #30
That's My Purse! AngryAmish Aug 2016 #25
R.I.P deathrind Aug 2016 #26
He lived a long life, playing roles he made wonderful. Ilsa Aug 2016 #28
Imposing character on L&O KT2000 Aug 2016 #31
I was a big fan of his role in Law and Order. NaturalHigh Aug 2016 #32


(5,902 posts)
3. The one and only.
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 05:48 PM
Aug 2016

I watched L&O only sporadically once Fred "Reverse Mortgage" Thompson replaced him, and practically not at all when Sam Waterston left shortly afterward.


(5,902 posts)
5. Synchronicity!
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 05:49 PM
Aug 2016

I bet he would have enjoyed hearing that. He always struck me as something of a mystic in his own way.


(25,792 posts)
8. My family always teases me about my addiction to the show
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 05:57 PM
Aug 2016

So the odds of this happening - well, let's just say nobody will be surprised. He really was great. I loved how his character name would come up, every so often, after he left the show.


(5,902 posts)
12. I hear you.
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 06:06 PM
Aug 2016

I used to watch it religiously with my sister while we were in high school. Helped us bond a good bit more than we might have otherwise, I think.

Thanks to that, in part, I've always had a fond spot in my heart for that show - especially the '90s cast (which was arguably the best anyway, right?).


(25,792 posts)
17. My crush on Sam Waterston is enduring
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 06:17 PM
Aug 2016

Michael Moriarty was "ok", but couldn't hold a candle to Sam. The character of Jack McCoy kind of reminds me of the real life prosecutor, Juan Martinez, who prosecuted Jodi Arias. Very intense, very determined, and very dramatic.

My favorite shows have always been the shows that are loosely based on real life events. A few minutes into the episode, a light goes on about which real case they are only slightly disguising.


(5,902 posts)
18. Proof that it always helps to be versed in the subject matter when watching these shows.
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 06:28 PM
Aug 2016

It makes the experience a lot more rewarding, no doubt.

I remember a couple that, at the time, I thought might have been based on real-life cases. This was a long time ago; but one I remember being similar to the Bernhard Goetz subway shooting, while another was not unlike the Menéndez brothers case. I'm sure there were others.

Thanks for that, you criminologist you!


(25,792 posts)
21. They did a great, and thinly disguised episode based on Robert Durst
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 07:07 PM
Aug 2016

And one on the rape/murders committed by Karla Homolka and Paul Bernardo, out of Canada

I guess they change just enough detail to avoid legal issues.

And, of course, it is always fun to spot the famous and soon to be famous guest stars.


(137 posts)
11. He was an orthodox Jew in real life
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 06:03 PM
Aug 2016

In fact, that's the reason he left Mission Impossible after only one season in the 60's, they couldn't accommodate his religious schedule and he was committed enough to his religious beliefs to leave the lead role in the series because of it. Regardless of how you may personally feel about religion, the guy had integrity.

Was always glad he got another chance on TV with Law and Order.


(5,902 posts)
13. He certainly did.
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 06:08 PM
Aug 2016

Thanks you for that background, Peigan. It's so easy to forget that celebrities are real people first and foremost, you know?


(5,902 posts)
6. I've been thinking of getting a box set of L&O for a while now. Now might be the time.
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 05:52 PM
Aug 2016

I imagine that one of the most rewarding things of being true to one's art, is knowing that you'll live on in it once you pass on.

That definitely described Hill.


(5,902 posts)
10. Aha!
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 06:03 PM
Aug 2016

I've dropped my cable subscription a year ago; perhaps I should have switched to them instead.


(126,960 posts)
15. Gotta have Directv or the other where I live,
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 06:11 PM
Aug 2016

off the 'grid' pretty much. My friend near town had comcast, and just switched to verizon fios? so he's a victim of the cables, and when I visit, I won't have such access.


(5,902 posts)
23. Will do. Thanks!
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 07:15 PM
Aug 2016

It would have to be online, since I dropped my cable subscription last year. But it might just be.

Thanks again.


(27,813 posts)
19. This is sad news indeed.
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 06:29 PM
Aug 2016

My late GF and I were L&O fanatics, and often quoted Adam Schiff's sarcastic comments.

One of our faves: After gathering everyone in his office for a mid-trial meeting, Schiff says: "Quick, somebody close the door before a case we can actually win walks in here by mistake."

No one did sarcasm like Steven Hill - and yet he always brought a sense of wisdom, thoughtfulness, and caring to the characters he portrayed. I totally get the "Talmudic influence" comment - it was evident throughout his Adam Schiff years.

We TV and movie viewers were fortunate to have him for as long as we did.


(64,855 posts)
20. I confess I thought he had died years ago.
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 06:49 PM
Aug 2016

He brought some real-life career fatigue to the TV screen. No matter what episode I saw him in, he always looked rumpled and tired.

Long life, sir. Cross gently...


(40,416 posts)
24. Jack McCoy played by Sam Waterston.
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 08:20 PM
Aug 2016

And everybody's favorite, Lennie Briscoe!

But yes, Steven Hill was a huge part of a great ensemble cast. It just worked.

And one for Jerry Orbach, too.


(1,786 posts)
26. R.I.P
Tue Aug 23, 2016, 08:25 PM
Aug 2016

Love Law & Order in fact watching it right now. Love his character! Great actor, he will be missed!

Latest Discussions»Latest Breaking News»Steven Hill, trailblazing...