Melissa Jo Peltier

Author of fiction and nonfiction; film and television producer/writer/director

(Photo Credit: Nicholas Ellingsworth)

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Melissa Jo Peltier; Member WGAW, DGA, ATAS, AG (Photo Credit: Kate Miller Marble)
Peltier is a New Yorker these days, born a New Englander who made a 20-year detour through Hollywood after graduating Phi Beta Kappa and cum laude from Pomona College in Claremont, CA. Most recently, she is the author of the darkly comic Hollywood novel, "Reality Boulevard". She is also the co-author of six non-fiction works: "The Mommy Docs Ultimate Guide to Pregnancy and Birth"; plus five books with 'Dog Whisperer' Cesar Millan, all of which were New York Times Best Sellers.

A two-time Emmy Award-winning writer and producer, Ms. Peltier won her first Emmy for educational programming at the age of 23. Since then, she has accumulated over 50 national and international awards and accolades for her work as a producer, writer and editor of both documentary and dramatic television and film productions. Ms. Peltier is best known for her work as director and co-writer of the primetime documentary special, "Scared Silent: Exposing and Ending Child Abuse", hosted by Oprah Winfrey. This multi-network simulcast was hailed as television’s most watched documentary ever, and earned Ms. Peltier the coveted Humanitas Prize. Following closely on its heels was the Peabody Award-winning "Break the Silence: Kids Against Child Abuse", which Ms. Peltier also wrote and directed. In 1994, she was producer-director-writer of A&E’s four-hour special, "Titanic: Death of a Dream" and "Titanic: The Legend Lives On", then the highest-rated program ever aired on A&E, which won two Emmy Awards, including an award to Ms. Peltier for outstanding documentary writing. Three more Writer’s Guild of America nominations for documentary feature writing followed in subsequent year, as well as three primetime Emmy Nominations for Best Reality Show as an Executive Producer of National Geographic Channel’s "Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan". "Dog Whisperer" also won the People's Choice Award in 2010. Peltier is a co-founder, partner and executive producer at the Burbank-based production company MPH Entertainment, which has created over 350 hours of orginal documentary and reality television programming, dozens of which she produced, wrote or directed.

Peltier’s dramatic TV and feature credits include writing the Lifetime movie "Nightwaves" starring Sherilyn Fenn, and the story, "The Collector", for the hit CBS series, "Ghost Whisperer". With her MPH partners, she served as producer of the film "Men Seeking Women" (starring Will Farrell) and co-executive producer of "My Big Fat Greek Wedding," one of the most popular and profitable indie films of all time. Most recently, she produced the multi-festival-winning indie feature, "White Irish Drinkers", for Ovington Avenue Productions, of which she is also a principal with her husband, film/TV writer/director John Gray.

In addition to the Author's Guild, Peltier is a member in good standing in the DGA, WGA, PGA, and ATAS.

She is represented by Scott Miller at the Trident Media Group.

Published Works

Reality Boulevard
"...a book in the tradition of great Hollywood novels, from Carroll and Garrett Graham’s Queer People (1930) to Michael Tolkin’s The Player (1988), and reads like Paddy Chayefsky’s 1976 Network screenplay retooled for the 21st century" - Ken Salikoff, Kirkus Indie Magazine
"In this smart, funny, insightful novel, reality TV becomes all too real...Peltier examines the Hollywood world of writers, producers, rich kids, actors, wannabes and con men with a keen and often compassionate eye. " - Kirkus Reviews
"Once I started reading "Reality Boulevard," I could not stop...this is the best satirical look behind-the-scenes of "reality television" ever written." - Arnold Shapiro, Oscar & Emmy-winning Producer of Scared Straight; Rescue 911; Big Brother
“[Millan] arrives amid canine chaos and leaves behind peace.” —Malcolm Gladwell, The New Yorker
Non-Fiction (Co-Author)
“As complete a tome on the subject as one could want…If the answer you’re looking for in this guide cannot be found, the question is not worth asking...this is an impressive piece of work.” - Bookviews, June 2011