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Production Notes for
the Universal Pictures Film Billy Elliot

ABOUT THE FILMMAKERS

STEPHEN DALDRY (Director), makes his feature film debut with Billy Elliot. Christened "the only director who genuinely understands how to excite the young whilst setting impressive standards for the world of theatre," Daldry is now applying his talent to feature films. He was, until recently, director of the Royal Court Theatre and remains director of their redevelopment programme.

He has produced over 100 new plays, many of which have subsequently been seen all over the world. His own directorial work at the Court includes David Hare's Via Dolorosa (Broadway), Ron Hutchinson's Rat in the Skull, Caryl Churchill's This is a Chair, Arnold Wesker's The Kitchen, Korder's Search and Destroy and for the National Theatre, the multi-award winning Machinal and An Inspector Calls which is still running in London's West End.

Daldry has also directed and produced for BBC Radio and Television and his first short film Eight was nominated in 1999 for a BAFTA. He has a first look deal with Working Title Films.

LEE HALL (Screenwriter), an award winning writer and playwright, drew this heartfelt screenplay from his own experiences as a young boy growing up in Newcastle during the miners' strike in the Eighties. His tale triumphantly exposes the strong bond formed within a community during a time of despair and the hope that is brought to them through an extremely talented young boy. Hall has written not only for film, but theatre, television and radio, too.

He is currently the Pearson Writer in Residence for the Royal Shakespeare Company and most recently wrote Spoonface Steinberg, which was originally written for radio and adapted for television on BBC2. His radio works include the multi-award winning I Luv You Jimmy Spud. His other screenplays include Solomon Grundy for Miramax, The Life of Peter Sellers for Maverick Films in the U.S. and Gagarin for FilmFour.

GREG BRENMAN (Producer) set up Tiger Aspect's drama department four years ago, out of which he has since produced the BAFTA-nominated and Broadcast Award-winning serial Births Marriages and Deaths. He also produced the RTS/ BAFT-nominated series and Indie Award-winning series Playing The Field. More recently he executive produced the BAFTA-nominated and three-time Gold Nymph winner Kid In The Corner for C4. In 1994 Brenman won the Cine Golden Eagle for his documentary A Stand Up Life for BBC/ Showtime.

In 1999 Brenman was appointed director of the newly formed Tiger Aspect Pictures, whose first film Kevin and Perry Go Large was recently released.

JON FINN (Producer) established his career in film as a production manager on highly-successful feature films and TV dramas, such as GBH, Map of the Human Heart, Orlando, Funny Bones and Roughnecks. In 1996, Finn was appointed production executive for Working Title Films, overseeing many of their feature film and television projects. In 1998, he produced Eight, directed by Stephen Daldry. The Jerwood Film Prize~winning script was also nominated for a BAFTA. The same year, he co-produced Jake Scott's feature film Plunkett &Macleane.

In 1999, Finn set up WT2 with Natascha Wharton, a division of Working Title, which aims to cultivate the talent of emerging writers, directors and producers in the UK.

BRIAN TUFANO (Director of Photography) has worked as the director of photography on ground breaking films such as Trainspotting and Shallow Grave and the recent success, East is East. Other works include A Life Less Ordinary, Quadrophenia and the highly-acclaimed Middlemarch (BBC), for which he received a BAFTA nomination for Best Cinematography.

MARIA DJURKOVIC'S (Production Designer) talent was recognized early, for while at Oxford University she won a scholarship in Theatre Design at the Riverside Theatre. Djurkovic's acclaimed career as a set designer spans 15 years, starting out in theatre, opera and ballet productions at major UK theatres (Oxford Playhouse and the Royal Opera House) and later designing sets for popular television dramas. These include Spender, Inspector Morse and In Your Dreams. Her list of credits in feature films includes Sweet Angel Mine, Wilde (which won the Evening Standard Best Technical Achievement Award in 1997), Sliding Doors and Fanny and Elvis.

PETER DARLING (Choreographer) has an extensive list of theatre, film and television credits, and on Billy Elliot teams up once more with Stephen Daldry (with whom he worked on the Royal Court Upstairs production of Body Talk). Darling's numerous productions for the National Theatre include The Blue Ball, The Beaux Stratagem and the USA Tour of Richard III, directed by Richard Eyre. He was involved in Channel 4's acclaimed Brass Eye and Merchant Ivory's Oscar-winning Howards End.

STEWART MEACHEM (Costume Designer) graduated from Wolverhampton Art College with a diploma in art & design before embarking upon a very successful career as a costume designer. He has worked on features, commercials and theatre productions, as well as serving six years at the BBC. Recent work includes The Spice Girls video "Who Do You Think You Are?" and "Shooting Fish."

JOHN WILSON's (Editor) illustrious career in both television and film, which began in 1976, includes some of the most innovative and highly-regarded contemporary works. His extensive history with avant-garde director Peter Greenaway, the lauded The Cook, The Thief His Wife and Her Lover, Drowning By Numbers and The Belly of an Architect. Wilson was editor for Steven Berkoff's Decadence and for Stephen Daldry's short film Eight (winner of the Jerwood Film Prize).

STEPHEN WARBECK (Composer) received an Academy Award® and a BAFTA nomination for his musical score of Shakespeare In Love. His other credits include Mystery Men, the British films Fanny and Elvis, Heart, Mrs. Brown, My Son The Fanatic, Brothers In Trouble, Different For Girls, Sister My Sister and O Mary This London.

His television credits include A Christmas Carol, Bright Hair, The Student Prince, Element Of Doubt, Truth or Dare and Prime Suspect, I-V.

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Michael W. Phelan: michael@baydance.com

Last modified: Tuesday, January 7, 2003 11:21 PM