William Read Woodfield
LOS ANGELES--William Read Woodfield, an Emmy-nominated writer and producer who worked in movies and television for a quarter century, died here Nov. 24, 2001, of a heart attack. He was 73. Woodfield penned scripts for TV series including "Mission: Impossible," "Columbo" and "Diagnosis Murder." MSTies are most familiar with his work as both a writer and producer for the movie in episode 614- SAN FRANCISCO INTERNATIONAL.
But in some circles, Woodfield may be better remembered as an artist and photographer. His first professional photo assignment was a picture of Elizabeth Taylor with her new baby, which appeared in Life magazine. The issue of Playboy magazine that included his pictures of Jayne Mansfield sold more than 1 million copies. But perhaps his most memorable work was his photos of Marilyn Monroe, on the set of her uncompleted 1962 film, "Something's Got To Give": In one shot, Woodfield managed to capture Monroe as she shed her bathing suit by a swimming pool. The photos made banner headlines around the country and appeared worldwide on the covers of all leading magazines.
Woodfield was a still photographer for a number of films, including "Sparticus," and "Judgment at Nuremberg." He also did art work for Frank Sinatra, designing record albums and magazine layouts. His photos can be seen in the book "Sinatra: The Artist and the Man." His photos also appeared in magazines including Esquire, Harper's Bazaar and the Saturday Evening Post.
He left photography in the mid-'60s to pursue his writing career.
As a writer, Woodfield worked on several series by producer Irwin Allen including "Lost in Space" "The Time Tunnel" and "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea." He also wrote scripts for "Death Valley Days," "Sea Hunt," "Shaft," "Earth II," "Perry Mason," and "Ironside." One of his first films was the 1960 cult classic "The Hypnotic Eye."
In 1962 he co-wrote a book about the infamous Caryl Chessman murder trial, "The Ninth Life."
Woodfield also was a magician; he founded the magazine Magicana and, as the ongoing story consultant for the series "Mission Impossible," often worked magical illusions into the story lines.