Commentary writing with Patrick Uden



  • Tue 20 July 09:30 - 10:20
  • Wed 21 July 09:30 - 10:20
  • Thurs 22 July 09:30 - 10:20
  • Fri 23 July 09:30 - 10:20

This is a 4 day course, please only apply if you can attend all 4 sessions.

Participants will have the opportunity to work closely with Patrick over the week, to get lots of advice and to ask many, many questions!

Over four sessions, this workshop will reveal ways to make commentary writing rewarding and enjoyable to do.

Who it's for

The course is aimed at edit producers and series producers and you must be able to commit to all four sessions in order to participate. 

What it covers

Patrick will start by offering examples of commentary – some good, some apparently good, but bad. And some very good. The week will end on an exercise that tests  editorial judgement...and usually triggers a lot of discussion. In between, the sessions cover the history of commentary, where it came from; who got it right, and who experimented with words over pictures in the early days. There will be discussion on how to write for pre-titles and how to copy good practice. You will also look at the things that interferes with understanding words on film and how other writing disciplines offer clues to getting it right. 

  • Chapter one (Tuesday): What commentary is for
  • Chapter two (Wednesday): Signal to noise
  • Chapter three (Thursday): A short history
    • Chapter four (Friday): Less is more, and truth. 


Patrick Uden is an expert in long-form documentary for television and operates as a for-hire executive producer. His subject speciality is science and technology. Patrick also lectures to professionals and students on commentary writing, interviewing technique, programme structure and documentary directing for television.  

This session is supported by the ScreenSkills Unscripted TV Skills Fund which invests in training for the unscripted workforce thanks to contributions from broadcasters, SVoDs and production companies.

It is part of a ScreenSkills programme to support freelancers to upskill and stay connected, helping keep the industry resilient in these difficult times.

This session will take place online via Zoom. Click ‘apply for ticket’ and follow the instructions to apply for your place: you must login or register before you are able to complete your application.

If you are no longer able to use your ticket, we ask you to please contact so that we can release your place. Our sessions are often oversubscribed, so we’d like to give other freelancers the opportunity to fill available spots. Thank you for your consideration. 



ScreenSkills develops skills and talent to support the UK's screen industries.

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