Dubbed "The Father of the Techno Thriller," author Michael Crichton first established himself as a physician and lecturer before turning his expertise to books, films and television. Though he penned several books under various pseudonyms, Crichton emerged as a best-selling genre writer with The Andromeda Strain (1969). Shortly after Robert Wise's successful film adaptation of that novel in 1971, Crichton moved into feature directing himself with "Westworld" (1973), a robot thriller set in a Western theme park. Over the ensuing decades, Crichton churned out numerous and eminently readable novels that tended to be plot-driven rather than character studies and made excellent fodder for screenplays; many of which he adapted and even directed. Perhaps his biggest success was penning the novel Jurassic Park, which was later turned into one of the biggest blockbusters in the history of film. Surprisingly pessimistic for bestsellers, his novels were meticulously researched and well constructed arguments supporting the author's various pet peeves - namely the arrogance of scientists, and the manifold abuses of political and economic power. Meanwhile, as a writer-director, he crafted several compelling thrillers, like "Coma" (1978) and "The First Great Train Robbery" (1979), as well as created one of the most successful television shows in history with "ER" (NBC, 1994-2009) - all of which helped to establish Crichton as a powerful and lucrative force in several mediums.