His feature and cable movie credits include co-writing Paramount’s cult comedy classic, TOP SECRET; writer of HBO’S timely and biting political satire, THE SECOND CIVIL WAR; and writer/director of the hugely successful cable movie PIRATES OF SILICON VALLEY which was nominated for five Emmys including Best Screenplay and Best Picture, the Producers Guild Award for Best Film, Directors Guild Award for Best Directing and the Writers Guild Award for Best Screenplay. Other features have included directing AVENGING ANGELO with Sylvester Stallone and Anthony Quinn; and COUP D’ETAT (aka POWER PLAY) with Peter O’Toole.
Documentaries such as the KGB CONNECTIONS found expression in parts of THE COMMISSAR'S REPORT and also in his adaptation of Orwell’s ANIMAL FARM; while WITNESSES the powerful, award winning, behind-the-lines film on the last days of the Russian war in Afghanistan became part of the source material for a new work-in-progress book. His documentary CINQ DEFIS (for TF-1 and Le Monde) and the filming near the Mexican border in California near the legendary Palomar Observatory, became part of the inspiration for his novel THE TRUTH ABOUT THE NIGHT.
Other documentary subjects have ranged from the street gangs in Los Angeles, to the domestic travails of lower income families; and: life on the road with a huge traveling carnival moving across the Eastern Seaboard in CARNIVALS.
Martyn Burke's documentary UNDER FIRE: Journalists In Combat about the emotional and physical perils facing modern day war correspondents was short-listed for the Academy Awards in 2012 and won the prestigious Peabody Award the following year. His latest novel MUSIC FOR LOVE OR WAR was just published while he was working on the the adaptation of a previous novel, THE COMMISSAR’S REPORT, for HBO.
Martyn Burke divides his time between Toronto Canada and Santa Monica California.