Nicholas Meyer

Screenwriter and Director

Nicholas Meyer headshot

Nicholas Meyer was born in New York City, the son of a psychoanalyst and a concert pianist.  He attended the University of Iowa, home of the famous Writers Workshop.

Meyer’s award-winning teleplays for ABC’s Judge Dee & Monastery Murders and CBS’s Night That Panicked America launched his screenwriting career, though the WGA strike of 1973 caused him to set aside screenwriting and try his hand at novels.  Target Practice was published in March 1974 and won an Edgar nomination.  It was followed four months later by his Sherlock Holmes pastiche, The Seven-Per-Cent Solution, which remained on the NY Times Bestseller list for 40 weeks and won the British Gold Dagger award for crime fiction.

Meyer’s screenplay for The Seven-Per-Cent Solution was nominated for an Academy Award in 1976.  The film starred Nicole Williamson, Robert Duvall, Alan Arkin, Laurence Olivier and Vanessa Redgrave.

In 2015 IDW published the graphic novel version of the book in five installments.

Meyer’s directing debut – from his own screenplay – occurred in 1979 with Time After Time, starring Malcolm MacDowell and David Warner. The film introduced Mary Steenburgen.

This was followed by Star Trek II – The Wrath of Khan (1982) and The Day After, (1983) ABC’s nuclear-themed movie, which remains the single most watched television film ever made, nominated for fourteen Emmys.  Its controversial telecast drew over one hundred million viewers.

Subsequent Meyer novels include two other Holmes pastiches, The West End Horror, (1976) and The Canary Trainer (1993); also Black Orchid (co-authored with Barry Jay Kaplan) (1977) and Confessions of a Homing Pigeon (1981).

Other directing credits include Volunteers, starring Tom Hanks and John Candy (1986), The Deceivers, starring Pierce Brosnan (1988), Company Business, starring Gene Hackman and Mikhail Baryishnikov (1991), Star Trek VI, The Undiscovered Country, starring Christopher Plummer (1992) and the HBO film, Vendetta, (1999), starring Christopher Walken.

Other screenplays include Sommersby, starring Richard Gere and Jodie Foster (1993) and contributions to the Dreamworks animated feature, Prince of Egypt.

His screenplay, The Informant, based on Gerald Seymour’s novel, Field of Blood, won the PEN award for Best Teleplay, 1999.

His screenplay for the novel The Human Stain by Philip Roth, starring Anthony Hopkins and Nicole Kidman, was released October 31, 2003.

His screenplay, Elegy, (based on Roth’s novella, The Dying Animal), was released in August of 2008.  The film stars Ben Kingsley, Penelope Cruz, Dennis Hopper, Patricia Clarkson and Peter Saarsgard.

Recently completed screenplays include an adaptation Dan Simmons’ novel, The Crook Factory, for Johnny Depp, and his two part miniseries, Houdini, aired over Labor Day 2014.  Meyer’s script was nominated for a WGA award and the series was nominated for seven Emmys.

His Hollywood memoir, The View from the Bridge, was published by Viking in 2009.

Currently he is writing I Medici, starring Dustin Hoffman for RAI TV (Italy) and a new television series, FREUD – The Secret Casebook, in partnership with Frank Spotnitz, (X-Files, The Man In the High Castle).

He is also a consulting producer and writer on the new CBS Star Trek television series.

More information