‘Star Trek’ and ‘Roots’ Director Marvin J. Chomsky Dies at 92

Director Marvin J. Chomsky on set
ABC / Courtesy: Everett Collection

Marvin J. Chomsky, the multi-time Emmy-winning director known for his work on series such as Roots, Star Trek, and Hawaii Five-O, has died. He was 92.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Chomsky passed away on Monday evening of natural causes in a hospice facility in Santa Monica, California. He is survived by his three sons, Peter (and his wife, Genelle), Eric and David, and his granddaughter, Liliana.

Chomsky was born in 1929 in New York City and is the cousin of American linguist Noam Chomsky. He began his career in the film and television industry as an art director, set decorator, and producer on TV series such as Play of the Week and The Doctors and the Nurses. During the 1960s, he would move into directing, leading several episodes of The Wild Wild West, Star Trek, and Gunsmoke.

He would go on to direct various feature films through the 1970s and 1980s, including Evel Knievel (1971), Live A Little, Steal A Lot (1975), Mackintosh and T.J. (1976), Good Luck, Miss Wyckoff (1979), and Tank (1984). Chomsky would also continue his TV work, directing shows such as, Police Story, Roots, Holocaust, and Peter the Great.

His later work included the TV mini-series Strauss Dynasty in 1991 and the TV movies Telling Secrets and Triumph Over Disaster: The Hurricane Andrew Story in 1993. Chomsky’s final credit came for directing and producing the 1995 television feature Catherine the Great, starring Catherine Zeta-Jones.

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Actor and comedian also appeared in 'Rhoda' and was a familiar face on game shows and late night TV.

The famed director received many accolades throughout his career, including Emmy Awards for Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series for Holocaust in 1978 and Outstanding Directing for a Miniseries, Movie or Dramatic Special for Attica in 1980 and for Inside the Third Reich in 1982.