…which sounds vaguely pompous as I do refer to myself in the third person! Ahem…in my defence it was written by by management company.
Mark Tonderai was born in London but was raised in Zimbabwe, Africa, which is where his surname name comes from. Tonderai is SHONA for ‘remembrance.’ After graduating from Kingston University and UNC Charlotte with a degree in Architecture, Tonderai started his career in radio, as the writer/producer/presenter of the “Mark Tonderai Show”, on BBC Radio 1, the first national radio show that broke hip-hop and R&B to the British public. In his time there Tonderai was responsible for getting many urban tracks on the play list. He then moved into producing comedy for Light Entertainment radio. His credits there include ‘Alan Parker Urban Warrior’ for BBC Radio 1, and for BBC Radio 4, ‘The Rainbow Nation’ and the topical sketch show ‘Weekending’ where he supervised a writing staff of 30.
After a short stint hosting the weekend breakfast show on London’s Kiss 100, he then moved on and began writing and directing for television, his credits include “Homie and Away” for Channel 4 and “The Beginner’s Guide 1 & 2” for BBC2 and he also worked as a writer, director and editor on ITV’s “Ian Wright Show” and Sky One’s “Prickly Heat.” All of this culminated in 1998 when Tonderai wrote, directed and starred in his own sketch show which was aired on BBC 2 ‘Uncut Funk.’
The next natural step of Tonderai was film and in 1999, he co-wrote and starred in “Dog Eat Dog” financed by Film 4. In 2002 feeling a need to control his work, he founded Shona Films with partner Zoe Stewart. Shona P acquired slate funding from the UK Film Council Development and Tonderai developed the urban vampire script ’10 Hours from Light’ as well as selling the screenplay ‘PowerMike’ to Company Pictures. PowerMike is now a major graphic novel. Tonderai was also a reader for Robert Jones of the Premier Fund.
In 2008 came his debut as a writer/director, the psychological thriller “Hush.” Distributed by Pathe International/Studio Canal, “Hush” travelled to multiple international film festivals garnering numerous audience prizes for most popular and well liked film, as well as being nominated for a British Independent Film Award and selling at AFM to over 25 territories. This garnered the attention of Hollywood and led to him getting an offer from FilmNation to rewrite and direct his US debut, “House at the End of the Street.” The film stars Jennifer Lawrence, Max Theriot and Elizabeth Shue, and is slated for release in the first quarter of 2012.