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SYFY WIRE obituary

Poltergeist III and V: The Final Battle screenwriter Brian Taggert dies at 81

By Christian Long
Poltergeist 3 Heather O'Rourke

Brian Taggert, a veteran screenwriter of both film and TV, has passed away at the age of 81. He died at his home on June 1, which was confirmed by the Los Angeles County coroner's office via The Hollywood Reporter today. 

While he had a number of projects to his name over the course of his career, Taggert is likely best known for co-writing the screenplay to 1988's Poltergeist III with director Gary Sherman. The film would be the last in the series due to the death of star Heather O'Rourke — who played series staple Carol Anne — four months before it hit theaters. 

He also co-wrote the 1984 three-part miniseries V: The Final Battle, which was meant to serve as a conclusion to the 1983 miniseries V, which used an alien invasion as a parable to the rise of fascism. The franchise continued later that year as a more conventional series that Taggert wrote on during its one season. 

After getting his start with a handful of TV credits for shows like Adam-12 and The Mark of Zorro, Taggert had his feature debut with 1982's Visiting Hours, a slasher pic that starred Lee Grant and Michael Ironside. 

Following Poltergeist III, Taggert returned to the small screen, writing or co-writing seven TV movies, including 1991's Omen IV: The Awakening. His final screen credit was Trucks in 1997, which was based on the Stephen King short story of the same name. Which happens to be the same short story that was the basis for the 1986 horror flick Maximum Overdrive — King's lone directing credit. 

At this time, there's no information on Taggert's survivors or a memorial service.

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