Martin Kaplan is the Norman Lear Professor of Entertainment, Media and Society at USC Annenberg. His uncommonly broad career has also spanned government and politics, the entertainment industry and journalism.
He served as chief speechwriter to Vice President Walter F. Mondale, and also as executive assistant to the U.S. Commissioner of Education, Ernest L. Boyer. As deputy campaign manager of Mondale’s presidential race, he directed the campaign’s speechwriting, issues, and research operations. He also worked with Boyer on education policy while a program officer at the Aspen Institute, a guest scholar at the Brookings Institution, and a senior advisor at the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.
He worked at Walt Disney Studios for 12 years, both as vice president of production for live-action feature films, and as a writer-producer under exclusive contract. He has credits on “The Distinguished Gentleman,” starring Eddie Murphy, a political comedy which he wrote and executive produced; “Noises Off,” a farce directed by Peter Bogdanovich, which he adapted for the screen from Michael Frayn’s play; and the action-adventure MAX Q, produced for TV by Jerry Bruckheimer.