Things I learned today

It’s the Vision Forum at the Beeb this week: lots of tasty sessions with super-famous creatives and actors, discussing their work and generally adding to an atmosphere of grooviness. I went to three sessions today, on Being Human, The Cut and Psychoville. Among the things I learned:

  1. Being Human was originally conceived as a drama about university graduates living together. One was an agoraphobic, one was compulsively anti-social with rage issues, and one was a recovering sex addict. The monsters were added later: ghost trapped in house, werewolf, and guilty vampire. Neat, no?
  2. The Cut is written in five minute chunks to create a 25-minute TV broadcast once a week. It’s really good. What I learned from this one is how creative production crews are being when it comes to shooting stuff on low budgets. The Cut is all filmed within five minutes of the offices of BBC Switch, the assistant director is also a writer, and the script supervisor also works on the Switch website. Also, the teenage stars looked embarrassed and blushingly young all the way through the presentation, until the moment the microphone was passed to them and they switched, immediately, until professional mode. It was amazing and rather charming.
  3. When Steve Pemberton and Reece Shearsmith started Psychoville, they had no idea when it would end. Also, while they were pushing to get it commissioned, they arranged an open readthrough/performance at Notting Hill which attracted an audience in three figures and which showed that the material was funny (the audience laughed) as well as horrific. And Psychoville is what they call Royston Vasey in Japan. Fact.

I would like to explain the gratuitous picture of Lenora Crichlow, who is beautiful in Being Human but mesmerising in the flesh. Not really a lesson, but interesting nonetheless.

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