I am a script editor of 25 years’ experience.
"Roger has the extraordinary knack of tuning in to what a writer is intending, then sharpening those intentions according to how they will affect an audience."
Richard Kwietniowski, writer-director
(Love & Death on Long Island, Owning Mahowny)
“Roger was script editor on a drama I wrote for the BBC. His notes, following each draft, were the best I'd ever had: perceptive and practical. Equally good on the big ('what's it about?') and the small ('is that the right word?'). The kind of notes that enable you to make maximum progress.”
Amelia Bullmore, writer and actor
“Roger has a welcoming approach, sharply critical eyes and ears, and a wide sense of cinema. Writers and film-makers love to work with him.”
Tessa Ross, independent producer
A word about how I work
I start by attempting to understand each project as the writer intends it. I continue to ask, throughout the process, the question 'what is this film about?' This provokes changing answers and further questions, leading the writer through the development of a theme.
I don’t adhere to set models of screenwriting. But I am specific about the form of each project, working with the writer to find the right shape for what they want to express. I spend a good deal of time on characters and their relationships. I think this is the muscle of drama, and few features can be structured successfully without it.
I also work happily with stage plays.
I am interested in hearing from producers, writers and directors with projects at any stage of development.
Script consulting for BFI Film Hub North
New feature Surviving Earth in development with writer/director Thea Gajic and producer Aleksandra Bilic (My Accomplice)
New feature Shooting Kids in development with filmmaker Elizabeth Stopford
iFeatures Lab 2019 (through Creative England/BFI)
Script workshop in Romania (through zazufilm.com)
Selected earlier projects:
Kelly+Victor Kieran Evans, 2012
Between The Mud And The Farthest Star Amber Films, 2013
I’m also a script-doctor. I wrote polishes for the following BBC single films:
Coup! Simon Cellan Jones, 2006
The Lavender List Colin Barr, 2006
I started in the Independents Commissioning Department of BBC TV Drama, where I worked with Tessa Ross in developing films, series and limited series.
Among the films were two by the Newcastle collective Amber Films:The Scar and Like Father. This has led to further collaboration through the years.
If you don’t yet know Amber’s work, now’s the time ... And please do support them from near or far.
I went on to be Head of Drama Development at TalkBack Productions, and then stepped off the edge into my own projects.
While I write and direct, I continue my work as a freelance script editor.
I am a visiting tutor in screenwriting at the London Film School, where I teach on the Screenwriting MA course, and run occasional workshops with the graduating students on the Film-making MA course.
I've worked with BA/MA students on the Directing course at Central Saint Martin's, and am now in my fourth year of working with those on the MA in Dramatic Writing.
I’ve also run an evening course in short films, organised by the LFS workshops department: How Long Is A Short?
'How Long Is A Short?'
A talk, illustrated with clips, in which I explore the short film and its many forms. I've given this talk at the London Film Festival, Goldsmiths University and even the Apple Store in Covent Garden. Please get in touch if you'd like to know more.