Richard M. Kerns, Producer of TV Commercials, Dies at 88

Richard Kerns
Courtesy of Ashley Kerns

Richard M. Kerns

He worked for EUE Screen Gems and later launched his own firm with director Stuart Hagmann.

Richard M. Kerns, who produced TV commercials for the Columbia Pictures offshoot EUE Screen Gems and for his own firm, has died. He was 88.

Kerns died Dec. 15 of natural causes at the Motion Picture & Television Country House and Hospital in Woodland Hills, according to his daughter, Ashley.

He was married to Joanna Kerns, who starred alongside Alan Thicke on the ABC sitcom Growing Pains, from 1976 until their 1985 divorce.

Originally from Seattle, Kerns graduated from Loyola University in Los Angeles in 1953. He served as West Coast president of EUE Screen Gems from 1961-78, then left to launch the commercials production firm HISK with director Stuart Hagmann (Mannix, Mission: Impossible) and two other partners.

Kerns executive produced commercials for such companies as IBM, McDonald's, Tide and Budweiser. He also was a member of the DGA.

In addition to his daughter, survivors include his sons Jack, Rick and Ed.