July 25, 2011
Emmy Award-winning writer John Markus began his career in high school, supplying jokes about his rural Ohio hometown to Broadway columnist Earl Wilson. After graduating from Stanford University he moved to Los Angeles, where he landed a job writing a revival of the animated “Mighty Mouse.” Accepted into Paramount’s apprentice program, he was a staff writer on “Working Stiffs,” a sitcom starring Michael Keaton and Jim Belushi.
After an assignment on Paramount's Taxi, Markus joined the original writing staff of “The Cosby Show.” He became the supervising producer for the series after six episodes and was promoted to co-executive producer for the second season. He remained as show runner with the acclaimed series until 1990. During his tenure, he wrote or co-wrote 67 episodes, earning an Emmy, a Peabody and two Humanitas prizes.
He also co-created the “Cosby” spin-off “A Different World,” which ran for six seasons on NBC.
Markus next co-created the critically acclaimed “Lateline” with Al Franken for Paramount Network Television and NBC. The critically acclaimed series holds the record for the comedy cancelled the most by NBC.
He was consulting producer on “The Larry Sanders Show,” co-writing the Emmy-nominated Ellen Degeneres episode, “Ellen: Is She Or Isn't She?” Markus next created “Kristin,” a series starring Tony-winning Kristin Chenoweth. His play “Sons of Liberty,” a prototype for an NBC television series, was produced at the American Place Theater and directed by Jerry Zaks.
Currently, Markus, along with Andrew Bergman is adapting the book The Moneyless Man for television, and with Tom Fontana, creating an original comedy, “Love, Death, & BBQ” centered around three generations of an Alabaman family that are heirs to a legendary barbecue restaurant.
He lives in NYC and Columbia County, NY where, as a trained Pitmaster, he practices the art of smoking large primal hunks of meat.
BBQ Pitmasters (TV Series), Executive Producer
Raising Dad (TV Series), Executive Producer (Pilot)
Kristin (TV Series), Executive Producer
Lateline (TV Series), Executive Producer
The Cosby Show (TV Series), Co-Executive Producer
The Cosby Show (TV Series), Supervising Producer
Kristin (TV Series), Creator
Kristin (TV Series), Writer
Lateline (TV Series), Creator
Lateline (TV Series), Writer
The Larry Sanders Show (TV Series), Writer
Time Warner Presents the Earth Day Special (TV Special), written material
The Cosby Show (TV Series), Teleplay
A Different World (TV Series), Writer
The Cosby Show (TV Series), Story By
The Cosby Show (TV Series), Writer
The Cosby Show (TV Series), Executive Story Consultant
Amanda's (TV Series), Writer
Gimme a Break (TV Series), Writer
Taxi (TV Series), Writer
The Larry Sanders Show (TV Series),Executive Consultant