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Robert Llewellyn was born in 1956, went to school just outside Northampton and in the small market town of Witney, West Oxfordshire. After being thrown out of Henry Box school age 15, due to a misunderstanding over general discipline and hair length, he became a hippy leather worker. Aged 18 became an apprentice shoemaker with James Taylor and Son, bespoke shoemakers in Marylebone, London. He then bought a 5 ton furniture truck, converted it into a house and spent 2 years 'on the road,' working on film locations as a runner, a model for painters, a geodesic dome builder and part time tree surgeon.
He eventually set up a company in London with fellow shoemakers, during the late 70's early 80's many city gentlemen and Wall Street brokers would order their brogues and tassel loafers from The Bermondsey Bootmakers Company.
During this time Robert helped organise a few amateur cabaret evenings in a riverside warehouse over looking Tower Bridge in London. The shows were a great success and he eventually helped form an alternative comedy theatre group called The Joeys. Within six months he had stopped making shoes and started performing professionally.
For the following five years he toured Britain and Europe with the Joeys, performing an average of 250 shows a year. The content of the performances was very strongly linked with the male response to feminism, to 'anti sexism' and 'anti racism.' The Joeys made numerous television appearances and ran sell out shows at Edinburgh Festival for three years.
In 1985-86 Robert co-wrote and co-starred in a Channel 4 sit com called The Cornerhouse. It was broadcast in 1987. It was not a critical success but a very deep learning experience. Robert went to America shortly after it's broadcast where he met a screen-writer who encouraged him to write more. On his return to Britain, apart from working in Rep theatre, Robert performed mainly as a stand up comic for a year and then wrote and produced a comic play titled Mammon, Robot Born of Woman. Premiered in the 1988 Edinburgh festival, it won many awards. The following year Robert co wrote and performed a play about pornography called Onan. The play was a sell out at the 1989 Edinburgh festival. That year also saw the start of Robert's involvement with the BBC comedy series, Red Dwarf.
Apart from numerous writing projects, in 1991 Robert wrote a comedy lecture, The Reconstructed Heart, charting the male response to feminism from 1970 until 1990. First presented in Alice Springs Australia, later in Melbourne, London, Brighton and Edinburgh, it won wide acclaim. It was made into a Channel 4 comedy lecture special, first was broadcast in February 1992 and then repeated for 3 years on Valentines night. This was followed by a comedy book version published by Simon and Schuster January '92 saw Robert making a pilot for an American version of Red Dwarf in Hollywood. The project, made by Universal television for NBC was eventually 'not picked up. Roberts son, Louis, was born in 1993. Along with another series of Red Dwarf, Roberts first involvement in animation film was broadcast on Christmas eve '93 on Channel 4. 'Prince Cinders has since won a European critics award for best animated feature. He went on to write the screenplay adaptation for Charles Dickens Christmas Carol, which was released over Christmas 2001.
'The Man in The Rubber Mask' a biographical account of his time appearing in Red Dwarf, was published by Penguin books in '94. That year Robert wrote and presented a six part series titled I-Camcorder, for Channel 4, a comic but information packed series which attempted to show you 'how to stop boring your friends and family with your home videos. While spending 6 months living in Australia Robert then wrote a biography of his misspent youth, Thin He Was And Filthy Haired and Therapy and How To Avoid It co-written with Nigel Planer, both, published in September 96. The same month also saw the arrival of Roberts daughter, Holly Matilda.
Robert started presenting Scrapheap Challenge for Channel 4 in 1998, an extraordinary engineering game show, now in its 5th series, where two teams compete to build a machine between sunrise and sunset in a scrapyard. The show has been a huge success both in the UK and the US, where it is shown under the title Junkyard Wars Roberts first novel, The Man on Platform 5 was published in September 1998. The film rights were optioned up by Newline Cinema. The film is finally due to go into production in 2003 and will be shot in London.
His second novel, Punchbag, was published July 1999. The film rights for this book were bought by the BBC and is presently going through endless re-writes. In 1999 Robert wrote a screenplay, Blind Love For the BBC as well as presenting a series of science documentaries for the BBC Open University about Quantum Mechanics. His 3rd novel, Sudden Wealth, was published July 2000.
Roberts 4th novel, Brother Nature, was published October 2001. Apart from further series of Scrapheap Challenge Robert also fronted a BBC series titled Hollywood Science where famous Hollywood stunts are put to scientific test.
role as the square headed mechanoid Kryten is about to be reprised as
Red Dwarf: The Movie is due to go into production March 2003 Robert
is currently working on his 5th.novel and a new screenplay, written
as always in a shed on the side of a hill in the Cotswolds, a picturesque
rural area 100 miles from London. He lives with novelist Judy Pascoe,
and their 2 children, 4 chickens, a puppy and a hamster. He has a very
extensive vegetable patch.