Writers

We are currently developing scripts with the following writers and directors

Ronan Bennett

Ronan Bennett was born in Belfast. His first novel, The Second Prison was shortlisted for the Irish Times Irish Literature Prize for First Book. His second novel, Overthrown by Strangers, is set in Latin America. The Catastrophist, the story of an Irish journalist working in the Belgian Congo in the 1950s, won the Irish Post Literature Award and the Belfast Arts Award for Literature and was shortlisted for the Whitbread Novel Award. Havoc, in its third year, is an historical novel set in 17th-century England. It won the 2004 Hughes & Hughes/Irish Independent Irish Novel of the Year. Zugwang, was published in serial instalments in The Observer over seven months in 2006.

Ronan has also written screenplays for film and television, Face, starring Robert Carlyle and Ray Winstone, Love Lies Bleeding, starring Mark Rylance, and Rebel Heart. He wrote the screenplay for the film Lucky Break, a prison escape comedy released in 2001, and co-wrote the controversial BBC eco-thriller, Fields of Gold. He also wrote the screenplay for Hamburg Cell, a docu-drama about the men who planned and carried out the 9/11 attacks.

Ronan Bennett is a regular contributor to The Guardian and The Observer. His more recent work includes the feature film, Public Enemies directed by Michael Mann starring Johnny Depp, Undisclosed, the third series of Top Boy starring Ashley Walters for Netflix and Gunpowder Plot, starring Kit Harington for BBC1.

Peter Bowker

Peter Bowker was born in Stockport and was a Special Needs Teacher for twelve years while writing and failing to sell short stories, novels, plays and poetry. He finally got his break writing for Casualty in 1991 and has, since then, written for many long running series including Where The Heart Is and Clocking Off.

His original work has included Undercover Heart, Flesh and Blood, Blackpool, Occupation, Marvellous and Eric and Ernie which became the most popular BBC2 single drama of the last twenty years.

He has won three Baftas, three Writers Guild Awards and has been the Royal Television Society Drama Writer of the Year four times.

His most recent credits include Marvellous, the multi BAFTA Award winning single film starring Toby Jones, an adaptation of John Lanchester’s novel Capital which aired last autumn and The A Word starring Christopher Eccleston, Morven Christie and Greg McHugh, all for the BBC.

Simon Burke

Simon Burke was born into a London-Irish family in the post-industrial North of England; he studied German at Oxford and after living in Berlin for some years he settled in London. His debut play, The Lodger, won the prestigious Mobil Prize and was performed in Manchester, London and Europe.

He wrote the hit TV show Chancer and is well known for adapting classics including Tom Jones, Sons and Lovers, White Teeth and Jane Austen’s Persuasion, starring Sally Hawkins. He also created the Zen trilogy for Rufus Sewell as well as the London-New York love story Ny-Lon, starring Stephen Moyer and Rashida Jones.

His short film Jealousy, starring Paul Nichols, has just been included in the Palm Springs, Rome and Austin, Texas film festivals.

He is currently working on an adapation of Vikas Swarup’s new novel The Accidental Apprentice and a film about the master forger Han van Meegeren for Steve Coogan’s company Baby Cow. Married with two children, he divides his time between Rome, Perugia and London.

Peter Cattaneo

Peter directed series 1 and 2 of Rev a comedy series for Big Talk created by James Wood and Tom Hollander. Series 1 received a BAFTA for Best Situation Comedy as well as host of other nominations across a number of awards including the British Comedy Awards, RTS Awards, Banff Television Festival and WGGB Awards.
Other work includes The Rocker for Twentieth Century Fox, Loved Up for BBC, Lucky Break for Film Four, starring Olivia Williams, Bill Nighy, Tim Spall and The Full Monty starring Robert Carlyle and Tom Wilkinson This film was nominated for four Oscars including Best Director.

Peter recently directed Episode One to Three on The A Word for the BBC starring Christopher Eccleston.

Chris Cornwell

Chris was born in Bangkok and grew up in Boston and London. After working as a trainee reporter on a holiday island in the south of Thailand, he started working as a full time journalist in London and joined the BBC in 2009.

In 2013, he wrote sci-fi short Exit Log, which won the Bombay Sapphire Imagination Series. It was shot and premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2014. After walking onto set to see a group of very talented people building a spaceship that until recently had only existed in his head, he decided to become a full time screenwriter. Following that, he studied screenwriting at NFTS. His graduation project, Hoover’s Men, was optioned by Pinewood TV and he’s got projects in development with Sky and Montebello.

Simon Donald

Simon Donald is an award-winning writer for stage and screen, whose play The Life of Stuff earned him both the Evening Standard Best Playwright Award and the London Critics Award for Best New Play when it was produced at the Traverse Theatre in 1993. In 2006, Simon wrote the television thriller Low Winter Sun, which starred Mark Strong and won the RTS Award for Best Drama Serial, as well as being nominated for a host of other awards. Low Winter Sun was remade for the US market in 2013 and aired on AMC. He has since gone on to write on the critically acclaimed mini-series, Wallander, as well as developing his own six-parter, The Deep, with Tiger Aspect and the BBC.

Simon's latest series, Fortitude, produced by Fifty Fathoms for Sky Atlantic, launched in January 2015 and was Sky Atlantic's most successful drama launch to date. The second season just aired on Sky Atlantic in the UK and as an Amazon Original in the US.

Julian Farino

Julian Farino is a British director, writer and producer. He began his career directing documentaries at Granada Television, moving on to drama from 1997. His work for British TV includes an adaptation of Charles Dickens’ OUR MUTUAL FRIEND which won four BAFTAS including Best Drama; BOB AND ROSE, a romantic comedy which won Best Series at The British Comedy Awards; and FLESH AND BLOOD, starring Christopher Eccleston, which won the Prix Europa for Best Film. Most recently, in 2015 his film MARVELLOUS, written by Peter Bowker and starring Toby Jones, won three BAFTAs, including best Single Drama. He is currently directing THE CHILD IN TIME for BBC1, starring Benedict Cumberbatch.

Julian has directed two features: THE LAST YELLOW, for BBC Films starring Samantha Morton, and THE ORANGES, a US feature starring Hugh Laurie. Since 2004 he has worked on some of the biggest and most loved US shows, including SEX AND THE CITY, THE OFFICE, HOW TO MAKE IT IN AMERICA and BROOKYLN NINE-NINE. He has acted as both an executive producer and director on the first 4 seasons of ENTOURAGE and, most recently, on HBO’s BALLERS, starring Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson.

Misha Glenny

Misha Glenny is an award-winning writer and journalist. A former BBC Central Europe Correspondent who covered the revolutions in Eastern Europe and the wars in Yugoslavia, Misha is also author of the best-selling McMafia, now in production as a major TV drama, and most recently has written Nemesis: One Man and the Battle for Rio, the biography of the boss of Rio de Janeiro's largest favela. Fluent in several languages, Misha is consulted by governments, companies and is on the board of several NGOs.

Guy Hibbert

Guy worked for several years as a stagehand before writing plays for the theatre. One of these plays, A Master Of The Marionettes, became a TV “Play For Today” on BBC1 in 1989 and he has been writing screenplays ever since. He has received a BAFTA for Best Drama three times (No Child of Mine, Omagh and Complicit) and a fourth BAFTA Award for Best Writer, for Five Minutes of Heaven. Two other scripts, The Russian Bride and May 33d received BAFTA nominations. Guy also won the World Cinema Screenwriting Award at Sundance in 2009 and the Christopher Ewart-Biggs Memorial Prize 2010 (Northern Ireland peace prize) both awards for Five Minutes of Heaven. He has twice won the Mental Health Media Award for his contribution to the understanding of mental health issues in the UK.

More recently, Guy wrote, Eye in The Sky, directed by Gavin Hood for Raindog Films starring Helen Mirren and Alan Rickman.

Robert Jones

After cutting his teeth on The Bill, Ballykissangel and Pie in the Sky, Robert co-created the BBC Two series The Cops (also known as Stanton Blues) and the Channel Four series Buried which both won the BAFTA for Best Drama Series. In 2007, Robert also co-created Party Animals for BBC 2 with Ben Richards.

He wrote the critically lauded Lennon Naked for Blast Productions starring Christopher Eccleston, Rory Kinnear and Andrew Scott which tells the story of John Lennon in the late 1960s as the Beatles fall apart. In 2012, Robert wrote Secret State, inspired by Chris Mullin’s novel A Very British Coup for Company Pictures and Channel 4 starring Gabriel Byrne and Charles Dance and directed by Ed Fraiman. In 2013, his innovative BBC2 drama Murder directed by Birger Larsen for Touchpaper Television won the BAFTA for Best Single Drama and was followed by a series of three further episodes in 2016.

Lucy Kirkwood

In 2007, Lucy graduated with a degree in English Literature from the University of Edinburgh. Whilst there she wrote her first full-length stage play, Grady Hot Potato. In 2009 Lucy’s play It Felt Empty When The Heart Went At First But It Is Alright Now was produced by Clean Break Theatre Co. at the Arcola Theatre. The play, which received stunning reviews, was nominated for an Evening Standard Award for Best Newcomer and made Lucy joint winner of the John Whiting Award 2010. Lucy’s stage adaptation of Beauty and The Beast co-devised and directed by Katie Mitchell was performed at the National Theatre as their Christmas show in 2011. Her recent success, Chimerica, premiered at the Almeida Theatre in 2013 and subsequently transferred to the West End, earning Lucy the prestigious Best New Play at the 2014 Olivier and Evening Standard Awards.

Lucy also writes for television, and has written Skins for Company Pictures and more recently she created and wrote the new series The Smoke for Kudos and Sky 1.

Lisa McInerney

Lisa McInerney’s short stories have featured in The Stinging Fly, Granta and BBC Radio 4 and in the anthologies The Long Gaze Back and Town and Country. Her debut novel The Glorious Heresies won the 2016 Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction and the 2016 Desmond Elliott Prize.

Ashley Pharoah

Ashley is an award winning writer whose many credits include Life on Mars (Co-Creator/Writer) which won The International Emmy for Best Drama Series and the Broadcasting Press Guild Writer’s Award, Ashes to Ashes (Co-Creator/Writer), Where the Heart Is (Creator/writer), Wild At Heart (Creator/Writer). More recently, Ashley created and wrote The Living and The Dead for the BBC. He also adapted Moonfleet starring Ray Winstone for Sky.

John Ridley

John Ridley is known for his work in literature, television, and film. John is the creator of the Emmy®Award-winning series American Crime for ABC starring Felicity Huffman, Regina King and Lili Taylor.

In 2014, his feature script 12 Years A Slave which starred Michael Fassbender, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Lupita Nyong'o and Brad Pitt received numerous accolades, including an Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay. Additionally, John wrote and directed Jimi: All Is By My Side, an innovative biopic about Jimi Hendrix, which was released in 2014.

Nick Stevens

Nick’s adventure began when he wrote and directed a Lottery-funded short film starring Brian Cox (the Scottish acting grandee, not the physicist). More than a few years later, Nick’s reckless belief in his own talent was finally rewarded when ITV greenlit IN PLAIN SIGHT, a 3-part true crime thriller about Scottish serial killer Peter Manuel, starring Martin Compston and Dougie Henshall.

Nick is currently in development on a number of TV commissions. GLORY BOYS, a period returnable series for World/ITV about Scotland Yard’s legendary Flying Squad. INSIDE OUT, a contemporary prison drama for Clerkenwell Films. And, for Fifty Fathoms, PANOPTICON, an other-worldly reimagining of Glasgow’s most famous Music Hall, the Britannia.

Passionate about cinema too, Nick is also working on CITIZEN MARY. Scandi Noir meets British period drama in the extraordinary true story of feminist icon Mary Wollstonecraft’s 1795 journey north in search of a missing ship and a cargo of silver. Based on Nick’s original screenplay, the project is being developed by Nordic production outfit MAIPO and the NFI (Norways’s BFI).

Rhys Thomas

Rhys Thomas is an Emmy award winning director, producer, writer, presenter, broadcaster and actor. He was nominated for a BAFTA in 2013 in the Breakthrough Talent Category for his role as writer/director/producer of the critically acclaimed feature length documentary, ‘Freddie Mercury: The Great Pretender’ which subsequently won both an Emmy and the Rose d’Or for Best Arts Documentary in 2013.

Rhys started off writing and performing sketches on the hit British comedy series ‘The Fast Show’ when he was 17 years old. Two years later he became the youngest person ever to write and star in his own sitcom, ‘Fun at The Funeral Parlour’ which ran for two series on BBC TV. He was one of the lead writers on ‘The Eleven O’ Clock Show’ when it launched in 1999 and worked alongside Ricky Gervais and Sacha Baron Cohen. He co-wrote and script edited two series of the BAFTA winning ‘Shooting Stars’ and went on to write and star in two series of the Fast Show spin off, ‘Swiss Toni.’ Rhys co-wrote and starred as Gary Bellamy in the Sony Gold Award winning ‘Down the Line’ on Radio 4 and the subsequent tv spin off, ‘Bellamy’s People.’

In 2008 he presented the live 6 part BBC Three comedy series ‘The Wall’ with Alexa Chung.
Rhys created, wrote, produced and directed three series of the cult BBC Comedy ‘Brian Pern,’ which stars Simon Day as Pern and features Martin Freeman, Christopher Eccleston, Paul Whitehouse, Matt Lucas, Roger Moore, Michael Kitchen, Anna Maxwell Martin, Roger Taylor and Peter Gabriel amongst others. In 2016 he wrote, directed and starred in An Evening with Brian Pern Live at the Lyric Theatre, Shaftsbury Avenue to a capacity audience of over 1000 people. A UK tour is planned for the autumn. He is currently making his own review show show for BBC Four, a sitcom pilot for BBC Two and writing a Brian Pern book.

Jack Thorne

Jack began his screenwriting career on Shameless and Skins and lead wrote the darkly comic Channel Four series Cast Offs, broadcast in 2009. Jack's television work includes The Fades for BBC Three, and This is England ’86, '88 and most recently ‘90. Jack created Glue; his original pan-European crime thriller for Sky and Canal+ The Last Panthers, and his original 4-part series National Treasure for The Forge/Channel 4 starring Robbie Coltrane, Julie Walters and Andrea Riseborough recently aired to critical acclaim.

Jack has four BAFTAs under his belt; two in 2012 for Best Mini-Series and Best Drama Series for This is England ’88 and The Fades respectively and two this year; Best Single for Don’t Take My Baby and Best Serial for This is England ’90. Feature wise, Jack wrote the original The Scouting Book for Boys and adapted Nick Hornby’s A Long Way Down for director Pascal Chaumeil.

Jack continues to write for the stage where his plays have been performed up and down the UK and abroad. His Royal Court hit Let The Right One In transferred to the West End in spring 2014 and late 2014 his play Hope opened at The Court. Jack wrote Harry Potter and The Cursed Child which is currently on in the West End.

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