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Len Steckler

  • Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York
  • Birthday: May 06
Date of passing: 
August 11, 2016

Len Steckler was a producer and director best known for his work on the 1974 children’s television special Free to Be…You and Me. Originally conceived as an album and illustrated book, the eventual ABC special — which featured Alan Alda, Michael Jackson and Mel Brooks, among many others — used poetry, songs and sketches to promote individuality and tolerance among children and teens. The special won an Emmy Award for outstanding individual achievement in children's programming, as well as a Peabody Award.

Steckler also directed and produced the 1977 telefilm Mad Bull, about an embittered professional wrestler. Additionally, he served as a producer on the telefilms Rodeo Girl, starring Katharine Ross; The Demon Murder Case; and Mercy or Murder? with Robert Young.

Steckler also worked on many famous ad campaigns, including the legendary 1970s TV commercial for Beautymist pantyhose, featuring New York Jets quarterback Joe Namath in the Hanes brand hose.

Len Steckler was a producer and director best known for his work on the 1974 children’s television special Free to Be…You and Me. Originally conceived as an album and illustrated book, the eventual ABC special — which featured Alan Alda, Michael Jackson and Mel Brooks, among many others — used poetry, songs and sketches to promote individuality and tolerance among children and teens. The special won an Emmy Award for outstanding individual achievement in children's programming, as well as a Peabody Award.

Steckler also directed and produced the 1977 telefilm Mad Bull, about an embittered professional wrestler. Additionally, he served as a producer on the telefilms Rodeo Girl, starring Katharine Ross; The Demon Murder Case; and Mercy or Murder? with Robert Young.

Steckler also worked on many famous ad campaigns, including the legendary 1970s TV commercial for Beautymist pantyhose, featuring New York Jets quarterback Joe Namath in the Hanes brand hose.

Also an acclaimed photographer and illustrator, Steckler worked on advertisements for Pepsi Cola (“Refreshes Without Filling”), Diet Pepsi (featuring supermodel Dovima), Noxzema (“Take it off — take it all off”), Max Factor, Cover Girl, Revlon and AT&T.

The native New Yorker attended Pratt Institute and the School of Visual Arts, returning to his roots in photography towards the end of his career. In 2010, he released photographs he had taken in 1961 of Marilyn Monroe with poet Carl Sandberg.

Steckler died August 11, 2016 in Los Angeles. He was 88.

 

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