“Make small things well to get your name out there and don’t try and do big-budget ideas when you start out, unless you have the money.”David J. Keogh

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Photo by: Brandon Bishop
Photo by: Brandon Bishop

I’m a multiple award-winning, produced screenwriter and I specialise in drama, comedy and dramedy for both television, film and stage.  I tend to write about the darker side of life.  I like to put my characters in testing situations and push them to their limits – they don’t always do as I expect, but that’s part of the fun of the writing.  I don’t always believe in happy endings either.  I like writing collaboratively or alone.  I have been produced previously, with the films Destination Dewsbury and Clouds and am going into pre-production on Touch Gloves, Kill Me and two top secret TV Pilots for a mainstream production company! 2020 should be a good year for my writing!”

Exclusive interview with David J. Keogh- Actor & Screenwriter

NY Glam: What projects are you currently working on?

I am currently working on a number of music videos for a fantastic country artist, a drama/comedy TV series and a drama series for a mainstream TV producer,  a speculative TV series called Monster Therapy and I am writing a screenplay based on a play about Churchill and Roosevelt called The Big Sleepover.  I also have three screenplays in my head currently, one collaboration and two original works.  I have a LOT of work in my head that needs to be typed up!

NY Glam: What makes a film great for you? Are there certain qualities that make a film better for you?

A complete story, with realistic dialogue, good character development and great acting.  But then there’s the music, the directing, the producing, the artwork, the costumes… the sound, the editing, the SFX… honestly, it takes a lot of things to go right for a film to be perfect.  Watch Braveheart, Planes Trains and Automobiles, Aliens, The Godfather Trilogy, Harry Brown, Young Guns, Philadelphia… these are all as close to perfect as you can get.  Writing is just one of the elements. Even good writing can be ruined by all of the above and bad writing can be improved!  Films must have heart and soul.  

NY Glam: As a screenwriter, what is the most important aspect of building a character?

Characters must be real and people we can identify with.  Human beings are wonderfully complex – they make mistakes, are vulnerable, are persistent, they hurt, they win, they lose… just tell their stories.  They must make real decisions.  I often get stuck when writing because my characters take on a life of their own and they don’t always act and react as they need to for the plot to progress, so I let that happen and things take their own course.  When I write a screenplay, the characters spend months in my head talking to me so they become very real.  I love all my characters, even the nasty ones!  Lastly… put your characters through hell and see how they respond.  

NY Glam: Top 3 favorite projects that you have been involved in?

That’s hard as writing is so enjoyable.  I would say Destination Dewsbury, as it was my first film as an actor and co-screenwriter… but writing my two current TV pilots has been a great learning experience for me, writing and performing my play, Past Tents, with my colleague Seth Jones was an utter joy and finishing the screenplay Touch Gloves with my co-filmmaker, Velton J Lishke was a lot of fun too.  I guess that’s four.  Never try and limit a writer to three! Ha ha ha.

NY Glam: Do you express yourself creatively in any other ways?

I am also an actor – I love acting as I love writing and doing both is living the dream.  I spent 20 years in the banking industry having every last bit of creative juice squeezed from me… so I make the most of every day now.

NY Glam: What advice would you give to someone who wants to have a career in filmmaking?

Learn!  Watch a lot of film and TV, listen a lot to the best people and do whatever you have to do, to work with creative people in your chosen field.  Be nice and be reliable – this industry is full of unreliable people and ‘filmmakers’ who don’t know what they are doing.  Make small things well to get your name out there and don’t try and do big-budget ideas when you start out, unless you have the money.  For directors… don’t direct the scene… direct the actors.

NY Glam: What can we expect from you in 2020?

Big things.  Some top secret, some not so… just keep watching. 

NY Glam: Where can everyone keep up with you to learn more? …social media…website

www.imdb.com/name/nm6680060/

www.davidjkeogh.co.uk/

@foreverkeogh (Twitter, Instagram and Facebook)

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