Ben Elton is a multi-award-winning novelist, playwright, television writer, screenwriter and lyricist. He is also a theatre, screen and TV Director, a Stand-Up Comedian and a very occasional actor. Born in Catford South East London in 1959, Ben was state educated and studied drama at Manchester University, where he now holds an honorary Doctorate. He began his professional career in 1981. Ben married Australian musician Sophie Gare in 1994 and became an Australian citizen in 2004. He and Sophie have three children and live in Fremantle Western Australia.
In 2007 Ben Elton was awarded the Special Golden Rose D’Or at The International Television festival in Lucerne Switzerland for his life time contribution to the Television Arts.
Stark (1989), Gridlock (1991), This Other Eden (1993), Popcorn (1996), Blast From The Past (1998), Inconceivable (1999), Dead Famous (2001), U.K. No 1. High Society (2002), Past Mortem (2004), The First Casualty (2005), Chart Throb (2006), Blind Faith (2007), Meltdown (2009), Two Brothers (2012), Time. And Time Again (2014)
Six of the above were U.K. No 1 Bestsellers. Ben Elton’s novels have also been hugely successful in Australia (three No 1’s) and are published around the world.
The Young Ones (1982/4) Writer (with Rik Mayall and Lisa Meyer). Alfresco (1982/4) Performer and Co-writer with Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie and Emma Thompson. Happy Families (1985) Writer. Blackadder 2 (1983) Co-writer with Richard Curtis. Filthy Rich & Catflap (1986) Writer. Saturday Live (1986/7) Comedian/Host. Blackadder The Third (1987) Co-writer with Richard Curtis. Friday Night Live (1988) Comedian/Host. Blackadder Goes Forth (1989) Co-writer with Richard Curtis. Ben Elton The Man From Auntie (1990 and 1994) Writer/Performer. The Thin Blue Line (1995/6) Writer/Co-director. The Ben Elton Show (1998) Writer/Performer. Blessed (2005) Writer/Director. The Wright Way (2013) Writer/Co-director. Upstart Crow (2016/17) Writer. Ben also wrote Mr Bean’s “exam” episode.
STAND UP COMEDIAN
Ben has been one of the U.K.’s most successful live acts for almost thirty years. He last toured in 2005/6. In 1990 he cohosted the Nelson Mandela Celebration at Wembley Stadium. He hosted the Brits in 1997 and 1998 and The Royal Variety Performance in 2000. He writes all his own material.
STAGE WRITING PLAYS AND MUSICALS
The New Review (1985) With Richard Curtis. Gasping (1990) Silly Cow (1991) Popcorn (1997) Blast from the Past (1998). The Beautiful Game (2000) Book and Lyrics, music by Andrew Lloyd Webber. We Will Rock You (2002) Book, Music by Queen. Tonight’s The Night (2004) Book. Music by Rod Stewart and others. Love Never Dies (2010) co-wrote book. Music by Andrew Lloyd Webber.
Maybe Baby (2000) Writer/Director. Three Summers (2017) Writer/Director
Other directing work includes Silly Cow, The Thin Blue Line (with John Birkin), Blessed, The Wright Way (with Dewi Humphries), We Will Rock You, Tonight’s the Night and The Beautiful Game, reworked as The Boys in the Photograph.
Three BAFTA’s (best Comedy, The Young Ones and Blackadder).
Two Oliviers (Popcorn and We Will Rock You).
The Royal Television Society Writers Award (Man From Auntie).
British Comedy Award (The Thin Blue Line).
Public and Professional Jury Awards at Reims (Thin Blue Line).
Crime Writers Association Gold Dagger Award for Crime Fiction (Popcorn).
WH Smith’s People’s Choice Fiction Award (High Society).
Prix Polar International Crime Writer Award (Amitiès Mortelles (Past Mortem, French edition)).
Critics Circle Best Musical Award (The Beautiful Game).