Robert Ross is “the top chronicler of British comedy” (Howard Maxford, Film Review). Robert has written best-selling books such as the Monty Python Encyclopedia, Last of the Summer Wine the Finest Vintage and The Complete Goodies. As a consultant, researcher, writer and audio commentary moderator, Robert has worked on many dvd releases, recording with the likes of Jim Dale, Leslie Phillips, Norman Wisdom and June Whitfield. Robert has narrated documentaries for several Minder releases and was thrilled to re-live one of his childhood television memories when Fabulous Films dubbed the thirteen ‘lost’ episodes of Monkey! into English for the first time. He wrote the narration for the behind-the-scenes documentary Monkey Nuts and interviewed voice-over artistes including Andrew Sachs, Miriam Margolyes, David Collings and Burt Kwouk.
Robert has also written sleeve notes for several compact disc collections of comedy tunes and songs, worked on interactive dvd quiz releases and acted as consultant for various Carry On franchise releases, including the most recent Slowdazzle calendars and a collection of Royal Doulton Character Toby Jugs! He was also the consultant for the official 31st anniversary Slowdazzle Monty Python and the Holy Grail calendar of 2005.
Inaugurating the popular Carry On events at Pinewood Studios that reunited cast and crew alongside devoted fans of the series, Robert interviewed writer Norman Hudis, Liz Fraser, Patsy Rowlands and other stars of the series. Robert has also hosted sell-out events at the National Film Theatre, interviewing The Goodies and the League of Gentlemen on stage, as well as attending the Edinburgh Festival and interviewing classic comedy stars like Terry Jones and Melvyn Hayes.
Robert was a regular guest at the Cult TV conventions from 2000 until 2004, interviewing such heroes as Ray Galton and Alan Simpson, Jack Douglas, Bill Oddie, Don Estelle, Nicholas Courtney and Colin Baker. He is now proud to be involved with the Telly Nation charity festivals as well as the signing conventions run by Showmasters. He was a judge, in the Best Comedy category, for the 2004 British Animation Awards and sat on the committee for the first Best of British Comedy luncheon at B.A.F.T.A. in aide of The Cinema and Television Benevolent Fund. His passion for the best in British comedy also saw Robert contribute heavily to the best-selling part work The Classic Carry On Collection, as well as the part-work devoted to the popular situation comedy Dad’s Army.
Robert co-wrote the television documentary, What’s A Carry On? and the radio special, Thou Art Awful?, a celebration of bawdy British humour through the centuries. More recently he has turned his attention to drama, writing Doctor Who for Big Finish; his star casts including sixth Doctor, Colin Baker, Leslie Phillips, Roy Hudd, Doug Bradley and David Tennant who thrilled as the Doctor from 2005 to 2010.
He is a frequent guest on radio, taking part in hundreds of broadcasts and often being assigned a mammoth talkathon by the BBC during promotions for their latest dvd and cd releases. His many television credits include interviews for What’s A Carry On?, Top Ten: Comedy Records, Will the Real Basil Fawlty Please Stand Up?, Legends: Hattie Jacques, Legends: Terry-Thomas, What the Pythons Did Next, Richard & Judy and the BBC News. As an ‘actor’ he has made several appearances in perennial sitcom favourite, Last of the Summer Wine, playing a pub customer in ‘Last Post and Pigeon’ and a mourner at Compo’s funeral in ‘Just a Small Funeral’.
Read about Robert’s latest project “The Forgotten Heroes of Comedy”: http://unbound.co.uk/books/forgotten-heroes-of-comedy
Sara Shulman is the Founder and Editor of Comedy Blogedy, TEDxUCL speaker on ‘The Power of Funny’, former Head of Comedy at UCLU Rare FM and produces the Humour Me Comedy Podcast. Sara is also a Classics Undergraduate at UCL and occasionally gigs on the comedy circuit.