Emmy award-winning director and broadcaster Daryl Duke died in his West Vancouver, British Columbia home on Oct. 21 of pulmonary fibrosis. He was 77.
Born in Vancouver, Duke’s film, television, broadcasting and journalism career spanned more than five decades on both sides of the border.
In the U.S. he is best-known as director of the 1983 miniseries “The Thorn Birds.” The adaptation of the Colleen McCullough novel remains one of the most highly-rated miniseries ever.
He received an Emmy for “The Senator: The Day the Lion Died” starring Hal Holbrook and a Christopher Award for “I Heard the Owl Call My Name,” a 90-minute drama for CBS.
Duke’s directing credits include a handful of features (“Payday,” “Tai Pan” and “David and Bert,”) TV fare such as episodes of “Columbo,” “Harry O,” “Wojeck,” “Night Gallery” and “Ghost Story,” and MOWs “The President’s Plane is Missing,” “Slither,” and “Florence Nightingale.”
He also produced “The Steve Allen Show” and “The Wes Crane Show.”
In Canada he was a founder and the first president and CEO of the independent Vancouver television station CKVU, now Citytv Vancouver, which launched in the mid-1970s.
Duke was inducted into the Canadian Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame and received the Directors Guild of Canada’s Lifetime Achievement Award and ACTRA’s John Drainie Award.
He is survived by his wife Anne-Marie Dekker; two sons; a stepson and nine grandchildren.