Russell T Davies biography

Russell T Davies during production of Doctor Who

Last updated: 11 August 2009

Russell T Davies OBE is one of Britain's foremost screenwriters, famous for the revival of cult classic Doctor Who and for television favourites such as Queer As Folk, Casanova and Torchwood.

Russell T Davies was born in 1963 in Sketty, Swansea. He studied at Worcester College, Oxford University and gained a degree in English Literature.

He initially worked in theatre but soon turned to the world of television. His early career work involved children's television, including producing BBC series Why Don't You?, writing the sci-fi adventure series Dark Season (starring a young Kate Winslet), and Century Falls.

Davies moved to Granada and enjoyed a successful spell on another children's favourite, hospital drama Children's Ward, for which he won a Bafta in 1996.

Soon after he made the transition from children's to adult drama. Writing credits include The House Of Windsor, Touching Evil, Coronation Street and The Grand, a drama set above and below stairs in a hotel after World War One.

In 1999 Davies' reputation grew with the release of the controversial but acclaimed series Queer as Folk, which he wrote and co-produced; the Channel 4 series about gay men living in Manchester became one the UK's most complained about TV shows for its scenes of explicit sex.

In 2001 he wrote comedy drama Bob & Rose, starring Alan Davies and Lesley Sharp, who would go on to star in a 2008 episode of Doctor Who, Midnight.

Sharp starred in another of Davies' creations in 2003, The Second Coming. Actor Christopher Ecclestone took the lead in the drama; the pair would collaborate again in 2005 as the actor was chosen to play the Doctor.

Other writing credits include Mine All Mine starring Griff Rhys Jones and Casanova, starring another future Doctor, David Tennant.

In 2005 he regenerated Doctor Who after a break of 16 years from the small screen, taking the role of lead writer and executive producer. After overseeing the creative direction of the show he is credited with breathing new life into the programme, which has enjoyed great acclaim and success since its re-introduction to the television schedules.

In May 2008 Davies announced that he was stepping down from his role of executive producer, to be replaced by Bafta award-winning writer Stephen Moffat. He was to remain in charge of the four Doctor Who specials to be broadcast throughout 2009.

In May 2009, Davies collected the Bafta Cymru award for best screenwriter for Doctor Who; the show collected three other awards on the night.


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