This is the 18th year of Landmark Films and the company has amassed a body of work which I'm intensely proud of – more than 100 hours of films now. I won’t drone on here but it’s good to see words like “heart-warming/completely fascinating and moving/inspiring/a dazzling series/an exquisite treat/mesmerising/a superb series/life affirming” cropping up so often in the national papers when they write about series like our BBC2 Brain Doctors, ITV1 Married to the Job, Sky Atlantic The Guest Wing. Perhaps even more satisfying is the reaction of the contributors to those films when they see themselves or the places they work portrayed on the screen. There was a quite extraordinary public and reviewer reaction to Brain Doctors in particular – you can see some of that reaction storify.com/nicholasodwyer/brain-doctors-final-episode and you can see public reaction to the excellent women detectives of Hertfordshire seen on ITV1’s Married to the Job storify.com/nicholasodwyer/married-to-the-job-twitter-comment?utm_source=t
I remember one employee of the Oxford hospital where the Brain Doctors series was filmed saying: “I’m so proud to be coming to work here today.” That meant a lot.
In addition to our blue-chip series for BBC2 and ITV1, we’ve also tended to make more comedic/knockabout single films around characters who exemplify issues people feel strongly about – like Hedge Wars, Fox Wars and Litter Wars for BBC1 10.45pm slots. They too get great press and I hope they afford their audiences and contributors a wry chuckle or two. It’s strange how everything in Telly Land has to be a “war” but I suppose it’s a TV shorthand for something people care deeply about. You can see more press comment on our films here.
We’ve always looked for people and places who are extraordinary and whose lives and work will fascinate, delight and inspire a large TV audience. Life’s too short to be miserabilist, dark, cruel or carpy – I’m often puzzled by TV’s thirst for gloom and horror. We continue to be proud of a record of treating the people who we work with as contributors – and who allow us to show something of their lives – and, indeed, our audience, with honesty, humanity and respect. Sounds a bit apple pie-ish, I know, but what’s the point in doing otherwise?
You find me at an interesting time. I've taken time out from programme-making to write some plays and be a luvvie - I'm currently a writer on attachment to the Oxford Playhouse. I’ve enjoyed that so I’m exploring how far that can be done within Landmark.
Onwards and upwards. If you’d like to get in touch then click on the contact button above. I'm always pleased to meet creative folk – especially those living in the Oxford area or people who don’t start emitting a high-pitched distress noise if life takes them beyond Zone 2. And I'm always interested to hear ideas and look at clips of film which are exciting, provocative and original.