Doctor Who - Documentary s02e05 Episode Script

Future Visions

(PULSING BUZZ) In those early days in 1960 when I first joined the corporation, I was in a group of 24 designers, which were brought in by Dick Levin.
The idea was to increase the corporation's design department for the opening of BBC2.
After about six months, we were given to various senior designers to look after.
Six of us were given away and the others carried on training, and I went to a lovely lady called Fanny Taylor.
She at that time had Barry Newbury and Raymond Cusick as part of her design team, and I joined that and was handed over to Ray to be an assistant to him, at the time when he was just completing the Daleks.
I assisted at the drawing board stage and wasn't in the studio.
I was drafted in to work with him because the amount of drawing he was having to do was getting excessive, added to the fact that he was being given another show - a light entertainment show.
He was a little bit - like we all were - none of us wanted to be completely plugged into one particular thing.
We were typecast as designers, and many of us tried to fight shy of this.
Ray was very happy that he was probably moving on to another show, leaving the Daleks with me.
Much to my surprise, because I was a very young designer at the time - I'd only done ''Z Cars'' and things like that under supervision - all of a sudden I was handed this strange thing called ''Daleks' Invasion of the Earth''! When you're producing something which is happening in the 21st or 22nd century, you're away from what your normal scope is, and your imagination has to be used much more in terms of fulfilling what you think might happen in the future, certainly with materials and other things that were going on.
I think, really, we kept up-to-date as much as we possibly could, with the movement that was going on with computers and other things, although, at that time, computers were large rolls of tape.
I think one had to concentrate more on the design side of it in terms of the mechanical side of it, which I hadn't had to do with other shows that I'd done.
The move which happened at the beginning of this episode from the studio where the children's shows were done at Lime Grove, which was quite a small studio, an upper floor studio We moved to Riverside Studios.
Riverside had just been refurbished, and it was quite a large studio, especially for a children's programme.
Most of the programmes had been shot in the old studios at Lime Grove, and to work to that larger studio was great.
It gave me a much better opportunity, and it produced a scale which we hadn't seen on Doctor Who before.
I wanted to get different levels so that we could look up at Daleks above us, or look down at Daleks going around and underneath us, just to give more of a spatial quality to it than normal, and it was being in Riverside Studios that gave me the height to do that.
It did mean a lot of extra work reinforcing things, but it was worth it because it gave a different dimension to the ship, which could have been very flat.
Also, I was able to get two floors in instead of one, so we didn't have to spread over the studio quite so much.
Richard had very strong ideas about particular bits.
The one thing he was very keen on was a cage which we put everybody into, a Dalek cage with rod things.
We made a model of that and worked from that.
He gave me I just designed the ship and he took that over, but there were certain pieces which he wanted to work.
He was very keen on the shape of the doors.
They were Richard's idea.
The other sets, the sets around London and other things, were entirely me.
He said, ''Give me a dirty old room,'' and I gave him a dirty old room.
We didn't go into it any further than that.
In those days, we were much more conscious of the cameras, of getting cameras to move from one set to another, and many of these sets were dictated by the size of the studio, and the relative ease of moving one camera across the floor of the studio to another, and what was available with an incredibly limited budget.
Most of the props that I got for all the London stuff was a load of old rubbish which we picked up at a wonderful place called ''Trading Post'' where we got these odd things from.
They circled nearly every set.
We just moved the same old jug and other things around.
We made them look different by moving them around.
Being in Riverside Studios gave us a much larger area to work on, and when it came to designing the spaceship, I was able to encroach on to nearly three-quarters of the studio space.
It was decided that we'd go with the continuity of the whole thing and build the ship as a unit, so that all the sections of the ship were part of the one unit.
Basically, it was cut down the side so we could look in through the side with a ramp going down to the floor for the Daleks to ramp up and down.
I ran out of money, as one always does on these things, and the extra Daleks were, in fact I reproduced about 20 Daleks which were all photo blow-ups on plywood, but in varying size to give a feeling of perspective, so that the ones at the back were further away.
I had to end up using an old cloth from Pinewood, actually, which was a street scene.
It was nothing to do with where it was, but we softened it with a few trees and things.
I think it worked quite successfully.
It had a feeling of scale.
We used the widest possible lenses that we could on the cameras, which at that time were the 48 degrees lens.
If we'd used 50 degrees in that studio, we'd have seen the lamps.
So we tried to get as wide a shot as we could.
Yes, it was in this sequence where, unfortunately, Bill Hartnell had an accident.
He was meant to be carried down this slope by a Roboman.
Before the sequence happened, an army of Robomen had to march out of the ship.
I and the floor manager told them not to step in unison.
This is the old army thing that when you go over a bridge you break step.
We only had about 15 people, I know, but you only need that number of people on a rigid construction like that to cause a rhythm that will break the thing, and sadly, not taking our advice, a rather large crack appeared in it, and it produced a slightly different shape to the ramp.
We blocked it up with blocks underneath so we could carry on shooting, and just after this happened, the Roboman had to carry out of the ship in his arms, Bill Hartnell.
Although he was asked not to run down the thing, I think he wanted to show how expert an actor he was and how strong he was, and he carried Bill Hartnell quite quickly down the ramp to the extent that he misjudged the ramp and kept running, and he couldn't stop himself with the weight of Bill in front of him, and he hit the studio wall and dropped Bill Hartnell on his back, which caused him considerable pain.
We had to go an episode without Bill while he was helping himself.
It was a sad occurrence, but there was no blame to anybody.
It was one of those accidents that can happen in a studio when you're working on these things.
Bill was a nice fellow but not the easiest of gentlemen to get on to.
A very professional man who, if you like, didn't take fools gladly.
That's probably the best way to explain Bill.
Part of the filming in the London sewers we did in the tank at Ealing.
It was the first time we'd ever used a tank.
Coming from the theatre, you don't have tanks.
I was confronted with building this tank and filling it with water.
We had little baby crocodiles which were brought in by I believe Holmes was his first name.
He looked after them.
One was about 600 millimetres long and the other was about 200, maybe 150.
I was the only one who would go down and shove them around to get them in shot, and the baby one did nip me at one stage.
I suppose it was something to talk about.
''I've been shooting with alligators!'' One of the first locations occurred at the opening of the story with a Roboman falling into the river and a Dalek appearing in the river.
It was actually shot at Hammersmith near the bridge there.
It came to a point where I had to redesign or at least redesign the look of location of the original bridge.
Hammersmith Bridge was too complicated for that, so I suggested moving the sequence up to the railway bridge at Kew, which is a much easier bridge to work - to reproduce in the studio.
It was a simpler bridge than Hammersmith.
The reason we were at Hammersmith was because in those days the Thames was a very filthy river, and it was essential that if anybody went in it such as the stuntmen going in, that they could be rushed to the hospital, and Hammersmith Hospital was next door.
That was one reason why we were at Hammersmith.
(IAN) HELLO! Pretty deserted! It's probably Sunday.
(CHAPMAN) The only difficulty of having a lot of locations and matching them in the studio, was one of cost more than anything else.
We probably had more sets in those six episodes than they'd done previously.
It was a joy for me because it was fun to have different sets and to have a chance to design them, but the only problem for me on that one was the fact that I didn't have enough money to do what I wanted to do.
I've always been an over killer.
I was often accused of over designing these sets, but if you give me a studio, I'll fill it.
I've done that all my life.
I did the various signs that appeared.
''It's forbidden to dump bodies in the river'' was certainly one of mine.
I designed the bomb and I designed the bomb carrier.
I designed most of that sequence, even the slope going down to the although it was built for me by the special effects department.
That was one of the few special effects of that style that I actually worked on.
The spaceships and saucers flying through the air was solely the province of the special effects design department.
The other locations, some of them were happenstance.
In fact, the location of the underground was immediately opposite the new buildings at White City.
We were able to use that.
In London, certainly in Trafalgar Square, it was very intriguing.
We only had a certain amount of time to finish what we were shooting, and after getting the hippies that were around out of the pools The early sixties were very much a time when one went for a rave somewhere.
Time was taken up considerably by that sequence there.
One of the exciting things which I think was most interesting Shawcraft, who made the Daleks, brought them all in a large lorry, and it took a long time to assemble them and get the actors into them.
For this particular part of the filming, I'd reproduced a small cycling unit inside so that we could move them faster down the road.
When it came to us moving between locations, because of the time it would take to move them back into the lorry, and the fact that the police had given us a certain time to shoot, we decided that they would pedal down Whitehall, and it was wonderful to see them in rows, stopping at traffic lights.
That was quite fun.
As well as the tricycle which we used entirely for the filming, there were other little modifications I made.
We were aware of a cartoon that was knocking about with a Dalek saying, ''We can't invade the Earth.
There's too many steps!'' So I produced a larger skirt on them which At that time, the hovercraft was the big thing, so we assumed that they had a hovercraft facility which got them up stairs, and I altered the sides of them, the shank pieces around the top.
I got rid of the gauze and put panels of aluminium in.
And the other thing was, I put a dish on their backs because this was the best way of communicating with their mother ship when they were in Earth's atmosphere.
We repainted them and, although we were black and white, we produced the different colours of Daleks.
Although you never saw them, we had silver ones and grey ones, and the black one who was the king Dalek.
That was a move away from the original ones.
We decided that the Daleks would put their mark on various parts of the kingdom, and it seemed obvious that if we could go on to something which everybody knew about, like one of the lions in Trafalgar Square, if we could put the Dalek mark on it, that would add a little bit to the production.
I produced an ordinary stencil with a stencil paper, and we used some Meltonian blanco polish which was used for plimsolls then, and I went around and put bits and pieces of that on some of the monuments.
It was when I was putting it on a plinth of one of the Landseer lions that I was approached by a policeman who decided that I was defacing a public building, and I was to go away.
I got really chastised about that - ''You can't do that here, son!'' It was supposed to rub off, and, in fact, I did spend a few hours before I went home, cleaning it off, but it came off reasonably successfully!