Stuart Urban

 

Photo credit: Giulia Fassina

Photo credit: Giulia Fassina

 Agent:  Conrad Williams

Biography: Stuart has written and directed theatrical film and TV dramas that have sold around the world, and won him many awards, including two BAFTAs. Most recently, he wrote and executive produced four part true crime drama THE SECRECT (2016) for Hat Trick/ITV.

At 13, his first film was exhibited at the Cannes Film Festival. THE VIRUS OF WAR was a thirty-minute film about a fascist outpost on British Islands in the Atlantic. It is preserved in the National Film Archive.

His first feature-length BBC drama, AN UNGENTLEMANLY ACT dramatised the first 36 hours of the Falklands War. Written and directed by Stuart and starring Ian Richardson and Bob Peck, it won a BAFTA for Best Single Drama and many international awards.

From 1994-95, Urban directed OUR FRIENDS IN THE NORTH starring Daniel Craig, the most successful drama for 15 years on BBC2, which won him another BAFTA for Best Drama Serial. The Guardian recently voted it the number three drama of all time.

In 1995, he wrote the $6 million HBO/BBC film DEADLY VOYAGE which garnered a Silver Nymph for Best Screenplay at Monte Carlo and an NAACP Nomination in the US, proving to be one of HBO’s most popular movies of the year.

In 1997 Stuart wrote and directed PREACHING TO THE PERVERTED, theatrically released in 23 countries and a popular title on the film festival circuit. The first movie to treat the fetish/BDSM scene, it became a cult classic, with cats, cars, clubs and cocktails named after its characters and scenes. In 2013 it became the first European movie to be restored and revived by Kickstarter fans.

In 1999, Harold Pinter chose Stuart to co-write and direct AGAINST THE WAR, a hard-hitting documentary attacking the NATO bombing of Serbia for the BBC and Cyclops Vision.

From 2000-2001 Stuart wrote and directed REVELATION, a Cyclops Vision Production for Romulus Films. This mystical/supernatural thriller stared Terence Stamp and Udo Kier and was shot in Europe and the Mediterranean. It concerns the quest to locate and understand a relic that heralds the fusion of science and religion. Theatrically released in UK April 2002, REVELATION played for 5 weeks in the West End. Alexander Walker of the Evening Standard found it “excellent…a film with a brain behind it”.

Stuart has also directed factual television, e.g. BBC’s PANORAMA where he made the influential 2005 edition BLAIR V BLAIR, about civil liberties and terrorism.

In 2007 Stuart directed the theatrical documentary TOVARISCH, I AM NOT DEAD. Garri Urban, survivor of the Holocaust and the Russian Gulags, revisits the scenes of his past. Critically acclaimed on its release, the film was nominated for the BIFAs, Griersons, and won many international awards.

MAY I KILL U? (2013), written and directed by Stuart and starring Kevin Bishop and Frances Barber, is a black comedy about a cycling bobby who goes rogue after the London riots. Released theatrically in many countries, it won a Silver Melies as one of the best European genre films of the year. Philip French of The Observer described it as “funny, sharp and ruthless”, while Bizarre Magazine said it was “hilarious and thought-provoking in equal measure”.

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Recently Produced:

THE SECRET
4 x 1 hour true crime drama starring James Nesbitt, Genevieve O’Reilly and Jason Watkins. For Hat Trick Productions/ITV. Also Executive Producer. TX: Spring 2016.

In Current Development:

PEACE IN OUR TIME
Historical Drama, TV
2 x 90 minutes on the Munich Crisis of 1938, when war seemed about to break out in Europe. The question that faced the democracies: when is it right to fight?
Developed by the European Media Programme.

THE IMPERFECT SPY
Based on the non-fiction book by DJ Cole. TV.
The case of a famous spy, Geoffrey Prime who traded UK and US secrets in the 1970s.

THE GOLEM
Fantasy/historical. Adapted from the novel by Yudl Rosenberg. Feature film.
Classic “Jewish Gothic” tale of a man-made monster created from clay to defend the Jewish community from pogroms.

TOVARISCH
Adapted from the autobiography. Feature film.
The extraordinary true story of Garri S Urban, Gulag escaper (and father of Stuart Urban). Adventurer, lover….spy?
Funded by European Media Programme and BBC Films.

BABES OF BAGHDAD
Comedy–Musical. Feature Film
Every occupation needs a party. At Babes of Baghdad club, performers help the occupiers escape the horrors of war. Music! Booze! Girls! Bombs!
Whether Babe or occupier, your life will change forever.
Developed with the support of the EU Media Programme.
Attached: Paz Vega, Natalya Rudakova, Luke Goss.

DICING WITH LIFE
Genetic engineering thriller. Feature film.
Against his will, an athlete is “weaponized” by military scientists with a cocktail of viruses to which he is made immune. Can he ever return to normal, or is he to be a walking weapon in the war against terror? A dark romance ensues between the athlete and one of the female scientists….

OTHER SCRIPT COMMISSIONS (samples):

FLAWED LORD
Based on a true story
Famous fraudster Lord Brocket and his disappearing Ferraris.
EU Media Programme

MAXWELL
Based on a true story and book
The fall of Robert Maxwell, tycoon and publisher.
Producer: Kevin Loader
Commissioned by HBO and BBC