Monday, 14 December 2009

Dr. Who' writer Russell T Davies says it's time to move on

The writer best known for his unique take on "Doctor Who" thinks it's a fate-driven partnership. "It's literally the first thing I remember from when I was 3 years old," says the jovial Russell T Davies in a quiet tea room in a hotel here.

"I was born in 1963 so I can remember black-and-white images of 'Doctor Who' from that age. My mother used to sit and make me watch it, she loved it so. The whole of Britain watched 'Doctor Who.' Now it does again, fortunately. In those days every child watched it. There was just no question, no debate. It was a show that everyone watched so a lot of people grew up and became teenagers. I just stayed with it."

Davies, who's been writing the series for six years, is parting ways with his flashy hero. "I've loved it but it's time to move on. I wanted to get out while I still loved it before I got bored. I'm excited. I feel like I made the right decision and it's an achievement It's been the No.1 program in Britain. Not the No.1 drama - the No. 1 program."

The last two of his episodes, "The End of Time," air Dec. 26 and Jan. 2 on BBC America.

As fond as he is of the character, writing is another matter. "It's hard work," he shakes his head, "it's never enjoyable ... I like the end of it when something's made and I'm happy with it and I watch it. And I've watched things I've made many times, mostly because I can't believe the luck and the relief having gotten to the end of it.

"I'm building up to writing a script right now, and I'm not liking this process. It's nights of worry and torment. However, it's better than being a nurse or a teacher in an inner city school," he sighs with relief.

"Writing is like putting your brain on paper, which is not natural and not easy but in the end, it's the joy of it when it works, when it clicks. Then something magic happens."

The magic didn't happen at first. Davies grew up in South Wales and never entertained the idea of being a writer. He was good at drawing and scribbled cartoons for school papers.

"It wasn't until I was in my 20s that I looked on it as a possible job never thinking it was possible (for me). Then fortunately I met the right people and worked very hard to get the right contacts and opportunities. It took a long time to realize it was even an option," he says.

"I moved to Manchester and learned my trade there. Granada Television is based there which is a big, old television station dating back to the 1960s, a very prestigious company. I learned so much there. I just knocked on doors begging for jobs and writing things for nothing and standing in line and waiting - well everyone has to do that really.


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