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Chester Dent

Chester Dent is a top producer/director from the UK with prime-time credits for the BBC, Channel 4 and DCI.

A superb self-shooter and a sharp editorial mind with casting, structuring and writing skills, Chester's core strength is finding intimate character-led stories and following through those narratives in post.

With his wide experience in drama, actuality and authored docs, Chester is familiar with working with teams, large and small, bringing clear well thought-out leadership built on solid experience and expertise.

Selected Factual

2015 TLC 9pm Too Ugly for Love?
Glossy returning series for Discovery - raising the veil on the trials of dating with a hidden medical condition.
Exec Ian Carr, Comm Ed. Mark Procter (Sarah Thornton)
6 x 60 mins Self-Shot Canon C300, Sony PMW200

2015 Channel4 9pm Britain's Benefit Tenants Series 1, Episode 3
Observational documentary series about the UK social housing crisis.
Nominated 2016 RTS Scotland Award, Best Documentary and Specialist Factual
IWC, Execs Elspeth O'Hare, Comm Ed. Anna Miralis
1 x 60 mins Self-Shot Sony PMW300

2014 BBC3 9pm Don't Tell the Bride Season 8, Episode 9
The BBC3 flagship ob doc-style factual entertainment series where the groom organizes the wedding. Sensitive subject. West Indian groom and Sikh bride disowned by her family.
Renegade Pictures, Execs Sarah May, Rebecca Byatti, Comm Ed. James Hayes
1 x 60 mins Self-Shot Canon C300

2014 Channel4 9pm The Complainers Season 1, Episode 3
Ob doc about some of Britain's most awkward customers. I was brought in to replace another director on the ailing series.
Dragonfly Pictures, Execs Simon Dickson, Mark Raphael, Comm Ed. Nick Mirsky
1 x 60 mins Self-Shot Canon C300

2013 BBC3 9pm Barely Legal Drivers Series 2, Episode 1
Two young drivers are secretly watched by their mums, dads and a former traffic cop with the chance to get a car or go back to driving school. Asked to bring an ob doc element.
Renegade Pictures, Exec Harry Lansdown, Comm Ed. Sam Bickley
1 x 60 mins Self-Shot Canon C300

2007-13 Based in Australia where I directed factual series for ABC1 and SBS.

2009 AIDC Masterclass - Casting Characters for Documentary
A talk given at the invitation of the Adelaide International Documentary Conference including video clips from various of Chester's documentaries. You can see complete episodes and the full-length BBC documentaries here.

2007 BBC3 9pm Honey We're Killing the Kids - The Bainbridges
Intimate ob doc access for the life-changing BBC family format.
BBC Manchester, Exec Helen Nightingale
1 x 60 mins, self-shot DSR570

2006 TCL The Monastery
Critically-acclaimed observational documentary following five non-believers as they spend 40 days and 40 nights in a Benedictine monastery in New Mexico. US version of the BBC2 hit series.More...
Tiger Aspect, Exec Charles Brand, Comm. Ed. Mark Finklelpearl
5 x 60mins, Self-shot

Watch now...

"I've never seen a TV show explore spiritual issues in such compelling fashion." Andrew Wallenstein - NPR

2005 Channel4 9pm Demolition - Housing
C4 series hosted by presenters Kevin McCloud and Janet Street-Porter about Britain’s most unpopular buildings.
Oxford TV, Exec Nick Kent
1 x 60mins, Self-shot

2005 BBC2 9.50pm Trouble at the Top: Hey Jo.
Authored observational-documentary for the prime-time BBC2 strand following bumptious millionaire Dave West on his quest for love and happiness. More...
1 x 39mins, Self-shot

“Witty, and very stylish…. the most enjoyable thing I’ve seen in a long while” Robert Thirkell

2004 BBC2 9.50pm Trouble at the Top: Terry & Liz
Highly regarded, documentary classic about shoe designer Terry de Havilland’s big comeback: his surprise return to the world of high fashion decades after most people thought he was dead. More...
1 x 39mins, Self-shot

"A touching documentary with much to say about the contentious interface of art and commerce..." The Sunday Times

"Bitter-sweet and full of humanity writ small" The Scotsman

Selected Drama

Revolver - Liam Neeson 1991 Writer/Director REVOLVER
Short Film with Liam Neeson,
Winner of a dozen awards, including Critics' Week Cannes, Aix, Chicago, Tokyo, Brest, Munich and the Kino award in Melbourne. Shown at more than 40 festivals world-wide, sold in 15 territories. (NFTS, 35mm Panavision)

1990 Series Director "Magic"
Shot in English and set in Hamburg, $6 million dollar mini-series “Magic” for NDR International told the backstage stories of the cast of a fictional musical, loosely based on the German production of Andrew Lloyd-Webber's 'Cats'. The musical 'show-within-the-show' was shot on one of Germany's largest sound stages and was composed, designed, constructed, choreographed, and staged in parallel with pre-production and the first weeks of location filming. Principle photography on the series was completed in just 75 shooting days with a full 35mm crew. All episodes were directed by Chester Dent. Script by television veteran Paul Wheeler.
Represented by William Morris in London and Los Angeles.
NDR International (6 x 52mins, 35mm Arriflex)

1988-1992 Commercials Director
Numerous commercials for agencies, among others Bates Dorland, Saatchi and Saatchi including Clio Award winning Starlight Express commercial.


National Film & TV School, Beaconsfield, UK
Direction Graduate
Mentors: Stephen Frears, Mike Leigh, Mike Newell.

University College London
BA Hons. English Literature
Tutors: Dan Jacobson, Karl Miller, John Sutherland

Northgate Grammar School, Ipswich, UK

Technical Training

2001 Open University
Interface Design (HCI) and Relational Databases

as part of MSc. in Computing for Commerce and Industry

1995 Apple Developer University, San José, California
Multimedia Development with QuickTime VR

Technical Skills

Canon C300, Sony PMW300
Panasonic HDX900, Sony F800
Canon 5D, JVC GY-HM700, Canon XF305

Working knowledge:
Final Cut Pro, Avid Interplay, FORscene,

Health & Safety Accreditation

BBC Safe Management of Productions Part 1
BBC Safe Management of Productions Part 2
BBC Safe Manual Handling Techniques for Camera and Sound Operators
BBC Interactive Health & Safety Training
BBC Safeguarding Trust


Directors UK

Working Visas


USA (I-Visa)


Peter Abbot
Executive Producer
+61 2 8514 5400

Bill Grist
Executive Producer
BBC Popular Features & Business
+44 -7843 - 435 100

Sara Woodford
Series Producer
Tiger Aspect
+44-7932 – 972 624