director and writer

LATEST NEWS: John McKay commissioned as writer/director of new BBC single drama ELIZABETH OF GLAMIS...




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John McKay is to write the screenplay of a major new ROBERT BURNS biopic for Lionsgate UK via Gerard Butler and Alan Seigel’s G-BASE and Vadim Jean’s The Mob companies… A rollicking and scandalous tale of the poet’s time in the scottish capital Edinburgh at the height of the Age of Reason, the movie seems ideal for a handsome scots star in his prime…

Ordinary Lies Rocks the Ratings!









Michelle Keegan grabbed the nation’s attention in a breakout serious drama performance as Tracy, a young party girl out of her depth – putting on half a million viewers from week one, and prompting The Independent to say: “Keegan holds your attention for every single moment of this episode. Ordinary Lies is one of those rare shows where you really don’t know what to expect – this drama will definitely keep you on your toes.”

ORDINARY LIES starts tonight BBC1 9pm

624Award-winning writer Danny Brocklehurst’s latest portrait of very human failings and evasions debuts tonight on the UK’s biggest channel for drama.

The stellar ensemble cast, including  Jason Manford, Michelle Keegan, Max Beesley, Jo Joyner, Sally Lindsey and McKenzie Crook worked with director John McKay to present the daily lives and loves of a used car showroom in the North. Like a used car, our lives may be shiny on the surface, but what lies beneath?

Opening episode sees troubled salesman MARTY (Jason Manford) impulsively tell a lie to avoid dismissal. He expects terrible and immediate consequences. But the thing is, his life actually starts to get better, and he begins to enjoy the benefits his big lie has brought him…




photoShooting wraps on the premiere episodes of ORDINARY LIES, an intriguing new 9pm drama from Red productions for BBC1, written by Danny Brocklehurst and starring Michelle Keeghan, Jason Manford and McKenzie Crook – with a host of others.


John McKay and STICK selected for EIFF New Talent

Screen Shot 2014-05-27 at 12.34.42John McKay extends his work as a writer-producer, bringing his US-set horror-thriller script to EIFF as part of the New Talent Lab 2014, which taps up-and-comers for pairing with experienced partners and mentors on promising feature projects.

For more info and other participants see here

Victory for Scotland!

Screen Shot 2014-05-22 at 11.31.56Powerhouse 2-part BBC documentary The Quest for Bannockburn is previewing now ahead of its UK tx on 2nd and 9th of June – with epic battle scenes directed by John McKay and amazing post-FX from Glasgow coders Once Were Farmers. Catch a sneak preview of the action below:


NAHE lights up CIFF!

No photos please! Director John Mckay gambols with festival director Marcie Goodman and board president Mark Smith as Not Another Happy Ending makes its US debut in front of 2000 delighted festival goers in Cleveland

Not Another Happy Ending Opens CIFF

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Not Another Happy Ending has the honour of opening the Cleveland International Film Festival this Wednesday 19th March – see you there!




SHETLAND rocks the ratings!


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After a pilot story last year, brooding crime thriller Shetland returns to BBC1, with director John McKay drafted in to supercharge the bleak Scandi look and feel of the show ready for its first series run. Something worked, because the most remote archipelago of the UK grabbed the lion’s share of the nation’s viewers when it premiered on March 11th.

“A gripping police drama. And beautiful to look at.” said Sam Wollaston in The Guardian

Where to see NAHE from October 11th in the UK

Screen Shot 2013-10-02 at 22.26.45For details of where to see fabulous wee scots romcom Not Another Happy Ending from next weekend, click here – and bring a gaggle of friends!