Author, TV writer, and comic scribe, George Clayton Johnson, passed away on Christmas day, at the age of 86. Johnson penned the first episode of Star Trek, ever to air on NBC, “The Man Trap,” for which he is credited, alongside creator Gene Roddenberry.
Along with his Logan’s Run co-author, William F. Nolan, Johnson was credited for the CBS mini-series spin-off of the Logan’s Run film. His other TV credits include The Twilight Zone, Kung Fu, Alfred Hitchcock Presents, and Route 66.
Johnson also wrote the story on which the Ocean’s Eleven film was based, and is credited in the 1960 original, as well as the 2001 remake, and the sequels, Ocean’s Twelve and Ocean’s Thirteen.
According to a Deadline report, the cause of Mr. Johnson’s death was cancer. Deadline republished a Facebook post from the writer’s son, Paul B. Johnson:
Johnson’s son Paul posted this on Facebook:
My Father, George Clayton Johnson, passed away this Christmas day at 12:46 p.s.t. He was more than a reknowned writer, fan & hemp legalization advocate, he was a truly loving father & huband. His wife, Lola Johnson daughter, Judy Olive & I, his son, Paul B. Johnson mourn his loss. The outpouring of love from all of you has sustained us during this difficult time. In around 30 days I’ll post the info on a “lifetime celebration” party that we’ll hold in his memory. If all my friends who see this post will repost it to their friends, word will get out faster & I would be most appreciative. He loved his family, friends, but he had a special place in his heart for all of his fans, who sustained him & gave him a forum to share thoughts at a million miles a second…
Born in Cheyenne, WY, in 1929, Johnson dropped out of school in the ninth grade and spent his early adulthood as a draftsman following service in the U.S. Army and a brief stint in college. He broke into writing as a profession in 1959 penning the Alfred Hitchcock Presents episode “I’ll Take Care of You.” During this period, he sold a short story that later would serve as the basis for the Rat Pack film Ocean’s 11.
Per NBC News, Johnson and Jay Allen Sanford co-created the comic series, “Deepest Dimension Terror Anthology.”
Please share your memories of Mr. Johnson and his work, in the comments.