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June 17, 1975 |
New York City
|Occupation||screenwriter, actor, producer, composer, singer/songwriter|
Steven Martini (born June 17, 1975) is a writer, actor, composer, editor, and singer/songwriter who with his older brother Derick Martini wrote the film Lymelife. Based on experiences from the Martini's childhood, Lymelife won the FIPRESCI award at the 2008 Toronto International Film Festival, and premiered at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival. Martini is also known for being the singer/songwriter for the Los Angeles based band The Spaceship Martini.
After the release of Major Payne, Steven moved to Los Angeles to work in film and television. Derick soon followed suit and before long they started making Smiling Fish and Goat on Fire, in which they play the titular brother characters. The Martini brothers have gone on to portray Alex and Morris Karnofsky in Louis - a silent film they co-wrote - based on the historical brothers who helped Louis Armstrong get his first trumpet.
Steven's grandfathers, Harold Martini, who was the leader of the 1940s big band the Indiana Seranaders, and Pasquale Pecorarro, a natural showman who entertained the family at basement parties in Queens NY. It was Pasquale's piano that was given to his older brother Derick in hopes the tradition would continue, but after the first lesson it was clear that Steven had inherited a more intuitive musical talent. It was also Pasquale's guitar which was left to Steven after his death in 1995, that Steven wrote his first song on. His father Frederick Martini owned and operated Zinno's Jazz club on 13th street in NYC while Steven was a teenager. Steven has been in various Los Angeles based bands, including 'Shag', 'Caboose', 'Dropastone', and 'Ric Veda'.
The story of Lymelife is based on Steven and Derick's childhood in the New York suburbs of Long Island. After the incidents of the film, Steven moved from Long Island back into his birthplace of New York City, where he attended the Professional Children's School with the Culkin brothers, who would go on to portray the Martini brothers on film. It was during this period that Steven met his first true love, Adrianna, whose father had Lyme disease. This relationship is the basis of the love story between Rory Culkin and Emma Roberts in the film.
During the Sundance Labs, Kieran Culkin played the role of Scott, which is based on Steven, and was later played by his brother Rory Culkin. Steven played Jimmy, the role eventually played by Kieran, and based on older brother Derick. Alec Baldwin played their father. His brother William Baldwin co-produced Lymelife.
Steven first appeared on film as Cadet Alex Stone in Major Payne. It was his goal to be a lead actor in a film so that he could fulfill his grandfather's dream of being on the big screen before he died. They watched the film together in theaters shortly before his grandfather's death. Steven has also worked as an actor on stage, in television, and silent film. He was one of the leads in the NBC TV series Prince Street, playing under cover officer Anthony Libretti, opposite Mariska Hargitay, Joe Morton, Vincent Spano, and Lawrence Monoson.
Steven's writing career began with Smiling Fish and Goat on Fire, a film he and his brother financed for $50,000 and starred as the title roles, which won the Discovery Award at the 1999 Toronto International Film Festival. Smiling Fish was co-written and directed by Steven's friend and fellow Professional Children's School alumni, Kevin Jordan.
His second script, Lymelife, was accepted in the Sundance Institute's Film Program, where he and Derick shot, edited, and scored several scenes, which were reviewed by creative advisers such as Robert Redford, Sigourney Weaver, Wes Craven, Frank Oz, Scott Frank, and Chris McQuarrie. Some of this experience was recorded in "Sundance 20", a documentary film made by director Doug Pray.
Steven is currently the singer/songwriter of The Spaceship Martini. The Spaceship Martini has played the first Sunday of every month since 2006 in an ongoing residency at Canter's Deli, and a residency The Unknown Theater. Most recently The Spaceship Martini recorded the score of Lymelife and the end credits song Running Out of Empty.
Steven started editing Lymelife during the 22 day film shoot in New Jersey on Final Cut Pro - a program he learned during pre-production. The film's score evolved out of the editing process.