David Swift, a longtime producer and director in Hollywood who began his career in the late 1940s as an animator and later directed such films as “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying,” died Dec. 31 of a heart attack at St. John’s Health Center in Santa Monica. He was 82.
A Minnesota native, Swift began his career as an animator for Walt Disney Studios and later segued to comedy writing in both radio and television.
During the early 1950s, he created the TV series “Mr. Peepers” and “Jamie.” Swift wrote TV screenplays for “Playhouse 90,” “Philco Television Playhouse,” “The Rifleman” and “Wagon Train.” He also scripted most of the shows for Imogene Coca’s short-lived TV series “Grindl” (1963) and directed segments of “Barney Miller.”
He made his feature directorial debut in 1960 with “Polyanna” and followed that with “The Parent Trap” (1961), which helped make a star of Hayley Mills. Additional film credits included “Under the Yum Yum Tree,” the Jack Lemmon starrer “Good Neighbor Sam” and 1967’s “How to Succeed in Business without Really Trying.”
He is survived by his wife, Micheline, two daughters, Michele and Wendon, and two grandchildren.
In lieu of flowers, family suggests donations to The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children –Southern California. For further information, call (714) 508-0150.