|Born:||August 16, 1939|
Boston, Massachusetts, USA
|Died:||February 24, 2015|
Biography and career[edit | edit source]
Maurice Hurley was born in Boston, Massachusetts. In 1972, he directed the film It Ain't Easy, with Lance Henriksen. Eventually, Hurley moved to screenwriting and producing.
Hurley is perhaps best known for his work on Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987-89), serving as the lead writer and producer for the series' tumultuous first two seasons. In a bizarre arrangement, Hurley was selected by Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry's lawyer Leonard Maizlish to run and oversee the new series, despite the fact that Hurley had never written science fiction before - making him senior to several longtime Trek veterans such as D.C. Fontana and David Gerrold. Hurley's insistence upon honoring Roddenberry's particular vision of the future - primarily, a dictate that the lead characters could not have interpersonal conflicts of any kind - led to severe conflicts behind the scenes and an astonishing turnover rate in the writers' room, with over thirty writers being fired over the course of the first two years.
Hurley left the series following the second season. Due to the contentious nature of his departure, he did not publicly comment on Star Trek until he was interviewed for William Shatner's 2014 documentary Chaos on the Bridge, also featuring Brannon Braga. Hurley later contributed two episode scripts and helped develop, with Braga and Ronald D. Moore, the story for Star Trek Generations (1994).
Before Star Trek, Hurley worked as a writer and co-producer on the cop series The Equalizer (1985-86), starring Keith Szarabajka. His later work included writing and producing Kung Fu: The Legend Continues (1993-94), Baywatch Nights (1996-97), Baywatch (1999-2000), and Shatner's 2002 film Groom Lake. Hurley also wrote six episodes of Joel Surnow and Robert Cochran's La Femme Nikita (1997-99), starring Eugene Robert Glazer and Alberta Watson.
Upon his passing in 2015, Hurley was survived by his wife of 43 years, Geraldine Garrett, and four children (three by his first wife, Adrienne St. John Geer).