Glen A. Larson, the creator of hit TV shows including Knight Rider and Magnum, P.I., has died, aged 77.

Larson passed away at a hospital in Los Angeles on Friday following a battle with cancer of the oesophagus.

He began his career as a singer in 1950s pop group The Four Preps and later moved into composing theme songs for TV shows.

Larson went on to work behind the scenes in TV and is best known for creating a string of popular series including with Alias Smith and Jones in the 1970s, sci-fi show Battlestar Galactica, and murder mystery Quincy, M.E., which ran for seven years until 1983.

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His most successful creations including Magnum, P.I. starring Tom Selleck, Knight Rider with David Hasselhoff, The Fall Guy, about a stunt driver-turned-bounty hunter, and The Six Million Dollar Man TV movies, which later spawned the action series.

Hasselhoff paid tribute to Larson on Twitter writing, "Condolences to Glen Larson's family. Friend/creator of Knight Rider. Had 7 TV series at one time! Without him there'd be no KITT & Michael."

Edward James Olmos, who starred as Admiral Adam in the 2004 Battlestar Galactica reboot series, wrote, "Glen Larson, we thank you for the ride, you are battlestar, we will miss you. See you on the other side. #Sosayweall Admiral Adama."

- WENN