Alongside my work as a novelist, I have written scripts and worked as a script editor or consultant on a number of critically acclaimed and sometimes prize-winning projects by renowned artists.
This page lists my script credits, with testimonials received from artists I’ve worked with, as well as links to further information about each. These projects include film, interactive digital, and sound works.
Tony White’s wealth of experience and skills with language made him the perfect person to be the script editor and story consultant on Karen, Blast Theory’s interactive app about a life coach and how your interaction changes the course of your experience. He always brings an enquiry to our work which is fitting for the form, expansive of the language and sensitive to our sensibilities as artists. We also worked in collaboration with Tony for ivy4evr, an interactive SMS drama for mobile phones commissioned by Channel 4 Education. His understanding of who a work is aimed at, what the voice of the work is, plot and character development and language specificity is second to none. He is always thoughtful and generous to work with, a complete joy and asset to any project. As well as script consultant and collaborator, Tony has worked with us making bespoke workshops for us to explore specific ideas outside of projects, looking at narrative generation, uses of complex language and plot development. We try to work with Tony as much as possible, he expands what we think we can do and always makes the work so much richer.
In 2016 Tony was the script consultant for my artist web series Revisiting Genesis, which went on to win the Jarman film award in 2017. Tony was instrumental in pulling the script together, particularly as it was the first time I’d worked with a film script for a group of performers. Tony was sensitive and open, never pushy or imposing, incredibly reliable and professional, and a pleasure to work with. He talked through concepts, flow and structure with me as well as implementing more direct amends to prepare the script in-line with industry standards for accessibility, consistency and ease of use for the performers. I strongly recommend Tony as a script consultant.
JANE AND LOUISE WILSON:
Tony White is a hugely generous creative writer, thinker and performer, and his contribution to the script for The Toxic Camera provided so much in terms of a valuable insight and integrity. He was able to instinctively connect and embody the emotional and contested experiences of the Chernobyl veteran’s testimonies. We worked with Forma Arts and Film London to develop our film The Toxic Camera and were fortunate enough to collaborate with Tony to develop a script based on interviews we’d made in Kiev with Chernobyl ‘veterans’ (nuclear plant workers, physicists, helicopter pilots) and with Vladimir Shevchenko’s surviving film crew, 25 years after the incident. We need stories that explore the increasingly ambiguous space of our current climate emergency to open up spaces of awareness, dialogue and togetherness. Our collaboration with Tony revealed an array of rich ideas and thinking that were both aesthetically and politically challenging. It felt such a privilege for us to work with Tony to foster these important collective and individual approaches based on respect, solidarity and support.
FRENCH & MOTTERSHEAD:
Tony White gave us exactly the kind of focused script editorial support our Afterlife series needed. Not only did he offer knowledgeable, insightful advice about what was working and what wasn’t, he became genuinely invested in our work to make it the best it could possibly be. His notes on genres and patterns at play in our writing were a revelation, and his honesty and editorial rigour all helped us find a way to develop and complete our project with confidence.
Script editor: Afterlife series, by French & Mottershead (2016–present). Touring internationally. Afterlife is a series of four 20-minute (approx.) immersive digital artworks by UK artist duo French & Mottershead that transport the listener to places which paradoxically none of us will ever know: connecting us with stories of the body’s decomposition after death, offering listeners an intimate, visceral and poetic glimpse of their own mortality. These site-based works chart in forensic detail the course of a human body’s decay and the influence of different environments on its transformation. In a woodland, a visitor rots into the leaf litter, left out in the elements, eventually turning to stone. In a museum, a visitor dries out and becomes a conserved sculpture. In water, a body is transported by currents and tides as it is slowly transformed to sand. At home, as the body decomposes, social ties disintegrate and other life takes root. Read more…
Script consultant: Revisiting Genesis, by Oreet Ashery (2016). PRIZES: Winner of the 10th Film London Jarman Award, 2017. Revisiting Genesis takes the form of a web-series in twelve episodes and a feature length experimental film. Written and directed by Oreet Ashery, Revisiting Genesis mixes fictional dialogues and real life interviews with people who have life limiting conditions. The work explores digital and emerging technologies of dying, social networks, care and feminist reincarnations of women artists. Read more…
Script editor and story consultant: Karen, by Blast Theory (2015). Prizes: Nam June Paik Art Center Prize, South Korea, Winner, 2016 | Data Category, Best of British Digital, British Interactive Media Association, Winner, 2015 | Innovation Award, Festival du nouveau cinéma, Winner, 2015 | Experimental & Innovation, The Lovie Awards, Bronze Winner, 2015. Karen is a life coach and she is friendly. Too friendly. You interact with Karen through an app. When you begin, she asks you some questions about your outlook on the world to get an understanding of you. In fact, her questions are drawn from psychological profiling questionnaires. She – and the software – are profiling you and she gives you advice based on your answers. Karen by Blast Theory, developed in partnership with National Theatre Wales. Read more…
Adapted from a short story by Tony White: Include Me Out of the Partisans Manifesto, by Alan Phelan (2012). Permanent Collection, Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA), Dublin. A suburban couple are battling through the apparent obliteration of their shared experience. As their DVD collection is painstakingly broken up and recycled, the male character works through inner torment interspersed with his dreams of what could have been. Starring Joanna Crawford and Brendan McCormack, the film adopts several cinematic tropes to address the cyclical nature of ideas and how process implicates content. Alan Phelan’s script is adapted from White’s short story ‘Include Me Out’ (2009), which – in turn – was commissioned by the Irish Museum of Modern Art and Chapter, Cardiff, as a fictional representation of Phelan’s art practice for publication in the catalogue accompanying the Alan Phelan exhibition Fragile Absolutes (2009). Watch the film…
Scriptwriter: The Toxic Camera, by Jane and Louise Wilson (2012). The Toxic Camera is a short film by British artists and Turner Prize nominees Jane and Louise Wilson that reflects on the 1986 Chernobyl disaster. Inspired by the story of filmmaker Vladimir Shevchenko, who died a few months after making Chernobyl: A Chronicle of Difficult Weeks, and his highly radioactive camera, The Toxic Camera interconnects the stories of survivors, 25 years later, to explore the vulnerable nature of the landscape and the human body. The Toxic Camera was created by Jane and Louise Wilson in 2012. Commissioned by FLAMIN Productions. Co-produced by Forma and FLAMIN Productions. Supported through Film London Artists’ Moving Image Network and Arts Council England. Read more…
Writer: ivy4evr, by Blast Theory (2010). Shortlisted: Arts Category, Best of British Digital, British Interactive Media Association, 2011. Ivy4Evr uses SMS to go places that other dramas can’t go – onto your phone and into your pocket. Ivy wriggles into your life, sending you messages on the way to school, college or last thing at night. Ivy’s life is parallel to yours: she sends boozy updates late on Saturday night and sarcastic chat on a boring Sunday afternoon. And if you send her messages she will chat with you about sex, music and everything else that really matters to a teenager growing up in Britain today. Ivy4Evr is an SMS drama for teenagers created by Blast Theory, written by Tony White, and commissioned by Channel 4 Education. Read more…
Tony White would like to acknowledge the support of Arts Council England through the Arts Council Emergency Response Fund: for individuals.