David E. Kelley

David is the Creator, Writer & Producer of Ally McBeal

Hometown: Waterville, Maine


Princeton, class of '79 (captain of the hockey team; his father, Jack Kelley, coached Boston University hockey team before moving to pro ranks). Law degree from Boston U., '83.

Law Life:

Practiced law in Boston for three years at the firm of Fine & Ambrogne

Big Break:

Captured the attention of top TV producer Steven Bochco with a movie script he had written while working as a lawyer. The film, "From the Hip," went on to be made in 1987, starring Judd Nelson.

To Television:

Joined Bochco's hit "L.A. Law" in 1986 as a story editor. Became executive producer in 1989.

To His Credit:

Branching out as producer, writer and show creator following "L.A. Law," Kelley co-created "Doogie Howser, M.D." (with Bochco) and then on his own created "Picket Fences," "Chicago Hope,'' "Ally McBeal" and "The Practice."


Married actress Michelle Pfeiffer in 1993; they live in Los Angeles with their two children. David Kelley might be described as living the American Dream, 1990's style: write a screenplay, move to Hollywood, make millions and marry a movie star. A former Boston lawyer, in the last decade he switched careers to become a successful television producer whose shows are recognized for their quality as well as receiving top ratings. David Kelley was born in 1956 and is originally from Maine. He attended Princeton University and Boston University Law School. He married actress Michelle Pfeiffer in November 1993. They have two children: Claudia Rose Kelley, born in March 1993, who was adopted by Ms. Pfeiffer eight months before their marriage, and John Henry, born in August 1994. Claudia Rose Kelley was christened and given Mr. Kelley's name at the couple's wedding ceremony. Mr. Kelley was an associate at Fine & Ambrogne in 1983 when he wrote a film script based on some of his legal experiences. Through a family friend, he got the script optioned and acquired an agent in 1986. It was produced in 1987, as a film titled " From the Hip, " starring Judd Nelson, Elizabeth Perkins and John Hurt. At the same time, producers Steven Bochco and Terry Louise Fisher (creators of the successful police drama "Hill Street Blues") were planning a new series set in a law firm, and looking for writers with legal backgrounds. They saw Mr. Kelley's script and invited him to Los Angeles to discuss writing a single script for "L.A. Law." The meeting was so successful that Mr. Kelley joined the show's staff as a story editor. The next year he became executive story editor, and after Terry Fisher left the s how, he became the supervising producer. Steven Bochco left "L.A. Law" after the third season, and Mr. Kelley took over as executive producer, while continuing to write many of the scripts himself. David has since produced more critically acclaimed and successful shows. He served as creative consultant on "Doogie Howser, M.D., " which was produced by Steven Bochco, and as executive producer and writer for "Picket Fences." He is the executive producer of "Chicago Hope." He is part of the television production division of Twentieth Century Fox, which has been owned by Rupert Murdoch's media conglomerate, The News Corporation Ltd., since 1985. He has written every word of this series so far including the cappucino scene & the contagious catchphrases. He has also penned the Claire Danes movie To Gillian On Her 37th Birthday & the upcoming hockey film Pond Rules starring Oscar nominee Burt Reynolds. David also occasionally plays in celebrity hockey games

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