Come Dine with a Director

At the moment I’m busy finishing off two script writer for hire jobs (great projects) and in between I’m doing VFX and still shooting some scenes for my low budget horror feature debut as a director Markham (which will be released online in 2019.

The other day a friend and I were playing a little game– if you could invite a select few film directors to dinner.  Who would you invite?

Here is my guest list:

Stanley Kubrick – I doubt he would come – but he’s the top guy – twenty years after his death his films find new audiences and get richer with every passing year.

Stan – put the camera down and get your dinner

Kathryn Bigelow – great female filmmaker, who has done traditionally male genres better than most blokes recently…

Kathy come home

John Carpenter – needs no introduction, would be an irascible guest (have a look at this interview)

Sam Peckinpah – probably tell me to stuff my food up my ass and set fire to it, before walking off into the garden to sit in my hut while the rain falls – would need plenty of booze in the house – check any guns at the door

Walter Hill – no nonsense from Walter (if he couldn’t make it I’d invite Don Siegel)

Lucio Fulci – would probably make a film when he arrived (with a low budget, the film would get banned-  but 30 years later people would realise it was great fun)

Donald Cammell- For White of the Eye and Performance alone, he gets an invite. Good to discuss his mental health issues too

Orson Welles – would only be allowed to talk about his work doing VO’s for commercials and his performance in The Muppet Movie – everything else is off limits.  If we stick to those things he’d be an entertaining ‘Toast of London’ type guest.

Martin Scorsese – or – Robert Altman – Can only chat about Goodfellas or The Long Goodbye respectively.

John Landis – limited to discussions of American Werewolf and The Blues Brothers. I’d sit John with Terry Gilliam.

No food fights please Mr Landis

George Armitage – Two classics in the 90s (since not working much since the 70s) has gone quiet again now.  Discuss?

Russ Meyer and Sam Fuller – both can only talk about their military service (but both allowed to bring female guests…)

George Lucas – can come, but has to bring VHS copies of Original Trilogy (before he cleaned up the FXs – and I get to keep copies of them)

Alan Clarke and Antonia Bird – can make up the British contingent (both gone too soon) alongside Alex Cox (For Repo Man alone) and Bill Forsyth.

Jean Pierre Melville, Wim Wenders, Werner Herzog and Luc Besson can make up the European Contingent.

For the single films they directed I’d also invite Bruce Lee and Charles Laughton.

Doubt anyone would get a word in, I might just go down to the garden and sit in the hut with Sam, I own a couple of pretty decent air rifles – I’d get them out and we could do target practice while we drank – ‘us old boys shouldn’t be doing this to each other anymore…’ I’m sure he’d say that while shooting holes in my new fence (might be a long night this…)

Matthew Cooper has been a script writer for hire  and script doctor for over 20 years. He’s written for most of the UK soaps, including writing award winning episodes of Emmerdale, EastEnders, Hollyoaks and Family Affairs and has been BAFTA shortlisted and Royal Television Society nominated as a script writer. He’s also a leading UK script consultant. You can find some of his broadcast credits on the IMDb. You can get in touch with Matthew on or hire him on Peopleperhour

His directorial debut Markham will be released in 2019.