TV writer-producer Zack Estrin, whose credits include Prison Break and Lost in Space, died Friday in Hermosa Beach, Calif., of an unknown cause. He was 51.
Estrin had a successful career in TV, starting with credits on Charmed, Dawson’s Creek and Tru Calling, before rising through the ranks to serve as co-executive producer of Fox’s Prison Break.
Estrin was showrunner and executive producer of two ABC paranormal thrillers, The River and The Whispers, as well as co-creator and executive producer of ABC’s Once Upon a Time in Wonderland.
He also was showrunner and executive producer of Netflix’s reimagining of Lost in Space.
Born in Woodland, California, and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Estrin attended USC before starting his entertainment career in film. He was a producer on Stranger Than Fiction and O, a contemporary adaptation of Shakespearian ‘s Othello.
In a statement, Estrin’s family called him “our everything. The best husband, father, son and friend.”
“He loved to make everyone happy,” Estrin’s family said. “He loved to make everyone laugh. He loved being a writer-producer and being a part of creating these shows that people enjoyed. But above all, he loved his family and friends. Thank you all for being a part of his life and ours.”
Added WME president Ari Greenburg: “Zack was our client for nearly 25 years. He had a tremendously successful career and mentored so many writers. We are so proud of all his accomplishments and feel blessed to have called him a friend.”
Estrin is survived by his wife Kari Estrin, daughters Charlotte Estrin and Chloe Estrin and dogs Molly and Lt. Judy Hopps, in addition to mother Patricia Estrin, father Jonathan Estrin, sister Amelia Burstyn, stepbrother Dylan Arrants and stepsisters Julie List and Laura Humphrey.
In lieu of flowers, the family is asking that donations be made to The Zack Estrin USC Scholarship Fund. Checks can be sent c/o PNG LLC 11400 W. Olympic Blvd. Suite 590 Los Angeles, CA 90064.