Robert Lieberman, director of 'Fire in the Sky' and 'D3: The Mighty Ducks', dies at 75

Robert Lieberman, director of ‘Fire in the Sky’ and ‘D3: The Mighty Ducks’, dies at 75

Robert Lieberman, who has directed films including Fire in the sky AND D3: The mighty goslingsepisodes of The X-Files, Right AND Criminal minds and thousands of commercials, he died. He was 75 years old.

Lieberman died July 1 in Los Angeles after a long battle with cancer, his son, Nick Lieberman, who co-directed Searchlight Pictures’ Theatrical campwhich hits the big screen this weekend, he announced.

Lieberman has directed television commercials for companies such as McDonald’s, Hallmark and Oreo and has worked with talent ranging from President Clinton, Ray Charles and Jerry Lewis to Michael Jordan, Anne Hathaway and Kenan Thompson. He has received more than two dozen Clio Awards and, in 1979, the first DGA Award for advertising.

Related stories

Much of his work has been done through Harmony Pictures, the company he founded with Stuart Gross.

Furthermore Fire in the sky (1993), with DB Sweeney and Robert Patrick, and the sequel to Hockey D3: The mighty goslings (1996), with Emilio Estevez, directed by Lieberman Table for five (1983), with Jon Voight and Richard Crenna, e All I want for Christmas (1991), with Lauren Bacall and Thora Birch.

At the University at Buffalo, Lieberman essentially founded the school’s film program and became the first UB student to major in film.

He worked as a video assistant with the NFL’s Buffalo Bills, and after arriving in Los Angeles, the first telefilm he directed revolved around pro football: 1980s Fighting Back: The Rocky Bleier Storywith Robert Urich as the war hero and Pittsburgh Steelers going back.

Lieberman also directed a first season episode of thirty and something in 1987 and went on to direct 19 drivers, 16 of which went to series, including Gabriel’s fire, Strong medicine AND The Dead Zone.

Lieberman was married to actress Marilu Henner from 1990 to 2001 and they had two sons, Nick and Joseph. (Henner’s first husband, actor Frederic Forest, died in June.)

Survivors also include his third wife, Victoria, whom he married in 2010; two children, Erin and Lorne, from his first marriage; his son-in-law, producer Trent Othick; his stepdaughter, Kristen Konvitz, a UTA agent; and her sister Fern.

In September, Lieberman returned to Buffalo for the screen Fire in the sky at a local theater. On occasion, The Buffalo News she asked him what he would say to aspiring filmmakers.

“My advice to people who are looking to get into the business is that you have to be absolutely fearless and relentless,” she said. “If you want it, you must want it with your whole being, and then you must pursue it with your whole being.

“I wanted to be in this business and now, looking back on my entire career, I love having spent my life in this business. I have to go to work and enjoy myself: doing what I wanted to do, creating what I wanted to create; waking up in the morning with blank canvases and going out to paint, and with someone else’s money. It’s madness and I’ve been doing it for over 50 years.