Sunday, February 25, 2007

Research For Real

In his Drama Keynote Speech at De Montfort University’s one day Television Scriptwriting Workshop, Tony Marchant illustrated his talk with clips of two new projects - Recovery, shown later this evening on BBC1, and the Iraq War drama Mark of Cain, which will be broadcast on Channel 4 in the near future – and couldn’t stress enough how much research helped inform his writing.

Starring David Tennant and Sarah Parrish, Recovery is about the unconditional love between a man and a woman after his whole personality changes in the wake of a road accident.

Preparing to write the drama, Mr Marchant worked extensively with the brain injury association Headway who introduced him to people who had suffered traumatic brain injuries and their families, who gave him insight into how they have coped. Prior to Mark of Cain, he managed to meet up with disenchanted soldiers back from Tours of Duty in the Gulf.

He explained that to write you have to get the facts right and know what you are talking about. You can’t get it wrong. You can’t simple wing it. You have to do your research. “You can’t beat the insights you will get,” he told the assembled audience. “Don’t be arrogant enough to think that you have the insights sitting alone at the computer.”

Research of course can be a costly and time-consuming business but Mr Marchant noted that everyone should be alive to the possibilities of research enhancing their work. Even though he now sometimes has a paid researcher written into his contracts, Mr Marchant still gets scared that he may be missing out on the slightest gesture or remark that will help bring the work to life.


At 5:43 pm, Blogger potdoll said...

I totally agree with him. Winging it is a betrayal.

At 7:12 pm, Blogger Good Dog said...

And I really love doing any kind of research., how utterly sad is that?!

At 10:30 pm, Blogger potdoll said...

yes. i hope you are suitably ashamed.

At 11:19 pm, Blogger Good Dog said...

Well Dolly, I guess you find your entertainment where you can.


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