Frank Cottrell Boyce was born in Liverpool and studied English at Oxford University.
He first worked as a television critic for Living Marxism magazine, and wrote episodes for Coronation Street and Brookside. He then collaborated with director Michael Winterbottom on the film Forget About Me, in 1990, and this was followed by further screenplays written for the same director: Butterfly Kiss in 1995; Welcome to Sarajevo in 1997; The Claim in 2000, originally based on Hardy's The Mayor of Casterbridge; 24 Hour Party People in 2002; Code 46 in 2003; and A Cock and Bull Story in 2005.
He also worked with other directors, including writing the screenplays for the films Revenger's Tragedy, in 2002, an adaptation of Thomas Middleton's 17th-century play; Hilary and Jackie; Millions; and Grow Your Own in 2007.
In 2004, he wrote a book for children based on his own screenplay - Millions - and this book won the 2004 Carnegie Medal. It was published as a play in 2010. His second children's novel, Framed, was shortlisted for both the 2005 Carnegie Medal and the Whitbread Children's Book of the Year Award.
Frank Cottrell Boyce has won several awards for his screenplays, and lives in Liverpool with his family. His third novel, Cosmic, was published in 2008, and was shortlisted for the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize and the Roald Dahl Funny Prize in the same year. Recent books include The Unforgotten Coat (2011), shortlisted for the Costa Children's Book Award; Chitty Chitty Bang Bang Flies Again (2011); Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and the Race against Time (2013); Chitty Chitty Bang Bang Over the Moon (2013); The Astounding Broccoli Boy (2015) and Sputnik's Guide to Life on Earth (2016), which was shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal.