William Nicholson

William Nicholson - Screenwriter

WILLIAM NICHOLSON (Screenwriter) Sussex and Gloucestershire. He was educated at Downside School and Christ's College, Cambridge, and then joined BBC Television, where he worked as a documentary filmmaker. There his ambition to write, directed first into novels, was channeled into television drama. His plays for television include Shadowlands and Life Story, both of which won the BAFTA Best Television Drama award in their year; other award-winners were Sweet As You Are and The March. In 1988 he received the Royal Television Society's Writer's Award. His first play, an adaptation of Shadowlands for the stage, was Evening Standard Best Play of 1990, and went on to a Tony Award winning run on Broadway. He was nominated for an Oscar® for the screenplay of the film version, which was directed by Richard Attenborough and starred Anthony Hopkins and Debra Winger.

He has written and directed his own film, Firelight; and four further stage plays, Map of the Heart; Katherine Howard; and The Retreat from Moscow, which ran for five months on Broadway and received three Tony Award nominations, and Crash. William's novel for older children, The Wind Singer, won the Smarties Prize Gold Award on publication in 2000, and the Blue Peter Book of the Year Award in 2001.

Its sequel, Slaves of the Mastery, was published in 2001, and the final volume in the trilogy, Firesong. The trilogy has been sold in every major foreign market, from the US to China. His second sequence of fantasy novels is called The Noble Warriors, which includes Seeker; Jango, and Noman. His novels for adults are The Society of Others; The Trial of True Love; The Secret Intensity of Everyday Life; All the Hopeful Lovers, and The Golden Hour. His love-and-sex novel for teens, Rich and Mad, was published in 2010.

Nicholson's screenplays include Les Miserables directed by Tom Hooper, Elizabeth: The Golden Age (Cate Blanchett, Clive Owen), Gladiator as co-writer, Dreamworks/Universal, directed by Ridley Scott, starring Russell Crowe, an Academy Award® nomination for best screenplay 2000, Grey Owl, directed by Richard Attenborough, starring Pierce Brosnan, Firelight, written and directed by Nicholson, starring Sophie Marceau and Stephen Dillane Special Jury Prize / Youth Prize / Best Cinematography, San Sebastian Festival, First Knight, starring Sean Connery and Richard Gere, Nell, starring Jodie Foster and Liam Neeson, Shadowlands, starring Anthony Hopkins and Debra Winger, Academy Award Nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay in 1993, A Private Matter (TV film, HBO 1992) starring Sissy Spacek and Aidan Quinn, Screenplay nominated for Emmy, Ace awards, Sarafina!, starring Whoopi Goldberg, The March (TV film, BBC tv 1990), starring Juliet Stevenson, Italia Prize 1990: Special Mention, The Vision(TV film, BBC TV 1988) starring Dirk Bogarde, Lee Remick, Helena Bonham-Carter, Sweet As You Are, (TV film, BBC TV 1988) starring Miranda Richardson and Liam Neeson Banff Festival: Best Drama 1988 RTS Best Actress Award: Miranda Richardson, 1988 ACE award: Best International Drama 1990, Royal Television Society's Writer’s Award, 1987/8, and Life Story, starring Jeff Goldblum.

William's multiple awards include Best Television Film, New York Film Festival 1987 BAFTA Best Television Drama 1987 ACE Award, Best Picture, 1988, Crime of the Century (TV film, HBO 1996) starring Stephen Rea and Isabella Rossellini Screenplay nominated for Golden Globe, Emmy, Ace awards, New World (TV film, BBC TV 1986) starring James Fox and Bernard Hill, 
Disney Channel Shadowlands (TV Film) (TV film, BBC TV 1985) starring Claire Bloom and Joss Acklan, BAFTA Best Television Play of 1985, International Emmy 1986, Martin Luther (TV film, BBC TV 1983) starring Jonathan Pryce.