On March 11, 1922 in Chicago was born Paul Alter, an American TV personality and director of several award-winning TV series. Alter is a graduated from New York University and the Yale School of Drama. Back in the early years while he was living in Chicago, Alter was studding piano with Teddy Wilson, from the Benny Goodman Quartet. The time spent with this talented musician helped him learn a lot about the music, and in the later years be his guide when composing film music. In 1969 Alter put his music talent to use for the first time and composed the music theme for “To Tell the Truth”. In 1950 he started working in television, and served as a key figure at Mark Goodson Productions. His first job as a game show director was with “Beat the Clock”. From there he went on to work on some 60 game shows and other productions.
He is best known as the original director of Family Feud from the show's origin in the mid-1970s until the early 1990s. For his contribution to this show Paul Alter was awarded with a Daytime Emmy in 1982. His second Daytime Emmy was for “The Price Is Right” in 1996. Over the course of his career that spanned five decades, Alter had a total of 14 Emmy nominations.
This television veteran helped create over 60 games shows and directed almost all of the pilots for the company’s shows, even if another director went on to lead the series. Outside the TV game show arena, Paul Alter gained attention with his lawsuit against the Walt Disney Co. over similarities between a story outline he wrote and the film "Honey, I Blew Up the Kid". Alter sued Disney claiming several similarities between that movie and his treatment, and when his case went to trial in 1993 the jury ruled in his favor, awarding him $300,000.
He directed the original version of Family Feud which ran on ABC from 1976 to 1985, and when the show was revived he continued to direct until he finally left the show and went on to direct “To Tell the Truth”. Paul Alter also directed both versions for the hit show “The Price Is Right”, one of the longest-running network series in the television history of the United States. He died from natural causes at 89, on June 11, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.