Michael Cassutt has been writing and producing award-winning television since 1985. He was co-executive producer of the Showtime revival of The Outer Limits, which won the CableACE for best drama series in 1995. Actor Beau Bridges and director Stuart Gillard were also honored for their work in the two-hour premiere Outer Limits episode, "Sandkings," which was later released as a film.
Among his other credits: staff writer for The Twilight Zone (CBS, 1986), story editor for the acclaimed Max Headroom series (ABC, 1987, more recently re-run on the Sci-Fi channel), and producer for the CBS series TV-101 (1988-89), for which Cassutt won the Nancy Susan Reynolds Award of the Center for Population Options for a three-part episode called "First Love."
Cassutt was also writer and producer for WIOU, an ensemble drama starring John Shea and Helen Shaver (CBS, 1990-91), and then for Eerie, Indiana (NBC 1991-92). In 1992-93 Cassutt was producer and writer for the ABC police drama Sirens, and also wrote the two-part premier of its syndicated version (1994). He then worked on the first season of The Outer Limits. Most recently Cassutt was co-executive producer for the FBC drama Strangeluck (1995-96) and consulting producer on Beverly Hills, 90210 (1997-98) and Seven Days (1998-99).
He has recently contributed freelance scripts to Stargate SG-1 and Farscape, and has developed scripts based on classic SF by writers such as Arthur C. Clarke, Robert A. Heinlein, Clifford Simak, and Philip Jose Farmer, each onefor different reasonsstill unproduced.
Cassutt is also a writer of fiction. His historical thriller, Red Moon, about the dark side of the space race between America and the Soviet Union, was published by Forge Books in February 2001. His NASA novel Missing Man was published in September 1998, to universal praise from such diverse sources as Publishers Weekly, Analog Science Fiction, and the muckracking NASA Watch, which said, "This is a book about loyalty to NASA and loyalty to the truth, and what happens when these issues collide against a backdrop of the risky business of spaceflight and suspicious lethal accidents."
Cassutt has published two previous science fiction and fantasy novels, The Star Country (Doubleday, 1986) and Dragon Season (Tor Books, 1991). With Andrew M. Greeley, he co-edited an anthology of SF-fantasy stories with Catholic themes, Sacred Visions (Tor Books, 1991). He is also the author of over two dozen published short stories, most recently "The Longer Voyage" (selected for reprinting in The Year's Best Science Fiction, 1995).
Cassutt is also an experienced writer of nonfiction, not only contributing articles to such magazines as Space Illustrated, Space World, and books such as Magill's Survey of Science: Space Exploration Series, but as the author of the biographical encyclopedia Who's Who in Space. The third edition of Who's Who in Space was published in January 1999 by Macmillan Reference. The book contains biographies and photos of seven hundred astronauts and cosmonauts from around the world, for which Cassutt conducted dozens of interviews over a period of ten years.
His most recent work in this field is Deke!: From Mercury to the Shuttle, the autobiography of the noted astronaut, test pilot, and Apollo program manager Donald K. "Deke" Slayton (Forge Books, 1994). In February 1997 Deke! was selected by Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Ronald Fogleman as one of the "essential books" in the library of any Air Force officer. Cassutt is currently working on a book with former Gemini and Apollo astronaut Thomas P. Stafford, and is under contract to write Deep Black and Air Force Blue: America's Military Manned Space Programs for the Texas A&M University Press and NASA Centennial of Flight series.
Born in Minnesota and raised in Wisconsin, Cassutt attended the University of Arizona in Tucson and graduated in 1975 with a B.A. in radio-television. He has worked as a disc jockey and radio program director and as a network television executive for CBS. He has been a full-time writer since 1985. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Cindy, and two children, Ryan and Alexandra.
Visit Michael Cassutt's official website. His monthly column about science fiction television, "The Cassutt Files," appears on SciFi.com. Search for articles written by Michael Cassutt on SCI FI.
Photo by Cindy Cassutt