Steven Hilliard Stern was a Canadian director, producer, and writer.
He attended Toronto’s Ryerson University and served in the Canadian Infantry before beginning his show business career as a writer and director of radio and television commercials.
Stern moved to Los Angeles in the 1960s and landed a job as a writer with the ABC television variety show The Hollywood Palace, contributing special material for song/dance numbers, comedy sketches, etc. He wrote material for Steve Allen, Milton Berle, Bing Crosby, Peggy Lee, Victor Borge, Liza Minnelli, Sammy Davis, Jr., Louis Armstrong, and Jimmy Durante, among others.
The bulk of Stern's output has been in the field of made-for-TV movies, both in the United States and Canada.
As a director, Stern worked with some of Hollywood’s biggest stars, including Kirk Douglas, Edward G. Robinson, Rita Moreno, Ernest Borgnine, Art Carney, Karl Malden, Tony Curtis, Van Johnson, Bill Cosby, Christopher Reeve, James Coburn, Tommy Lee Jones, and Michael Douglas.
Stern was responsible for giving Tom Hanks, Kim Basinger, and Keanu Reeves their first leading roles.
Stern died June 27, 2018, in Encino, California. He was 80.