He was born in Alvechurch, Worcestershire, was educated at King Edward VI Five Ways and served in the Royal Air Force before becoming an actor in repertory theatre. He joined the BBC as a television production assistant and trained to be a director at the corporation. Maloney first worked on Doctor Who as a production assistant on the 1965 serial The Rescue. He directed 8 Doctor Who serials between 1968 and 1977. He also worked as a producer on Blake's 7 (1978–80), overseeing the first three seasons of the BBC science-fiction series, and directed 3 episodes himself.
Later, he produced the BBC's adaptation of The Day of the Triffids (1981), from the John Wyndham novel, and the last series of When the Boat Comes In (1981). In addition, Maloney directed several episodes of Juliet Bravo and Strike It Rich!
Subsequent to his work in television drama, Maloney moved to factual programme-making and travelled the world making various documentaries for the ITV contractor Central. Towards the end of his life, Maloney himself appeared on-screen in a number of TV and DVD documentaries about his work on Doctor Who. He also provided DVD commentaries for three of the serials he directed, The Mind Robber, Genesis of the Daleks and The Talons of Weng-Chiang.
Maloney died on 18 July 2006. He is survived by his three children; his wife Edwina (née King) predeceased him.
- (director only)
As well as producing the first three seasons of Blake's 7, Maloney also directed the following three episodes:
- Deliverance (with Michael E. Briant) (Episode 12 of Season 1)
- Star One (Episode 13 of Season 2)
- Powerplay (Episode 2 of Season 3)
- Anthony Hayward (10 August 2006). "David Maloney: Director of 'Doctor Who' chillers". Independent News and Media Limited. Retrieved 5 February 2010.
- Nick McCarty (7 October 2006). "David Maloney: TV director best known for Dr Who and Blake's 7". Guardian News and Media Limited. Retrieved 5 February 2010.