Doctor Who - Documentary s06e07 Episode Script

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(WHOOSHING) JAMES GOSS: It was Doctor Who's 40th anniversary, and we got together with Cosgrove Hall to make an animated series online starring Richard E Grant, Sophie Okonedo and Derek Jacobi.
JON DOYLE: Scream of the Shalka, I guess, gave us the opportunity to experiment a bit with the technique of animating, an enormous amount of animation in a relatively short space of time.
My first involvement with the Doctor Who project was with Scream of the Shalka, which was a completely new take on Doctor Who, and it was for online broadcast, and it had to stream to fit 60k modems, so there were a lot of restrictions on the amount of animation that we could do.
CLAIRE GREY: We were animating at 12 drawings per second, basically, which means your animation is more limited.
It's slightly more stilted.
So you have to be more clever in the way you do it, you know, 'cause you can't get smooth, full-on action.
But in Invasion, because that's running at 25 frames per second, which is the same as live action, so your action is smooth and more realistic.
DOYLE: This is Cosgrove Hall film studios in Chorlton in Manchester.
I guess we're famous for Danger Mouse and Duckula and shows like Chorlton and the Wheelies.
And more recently, shows like Fifi and the Flowertots and Postman Pat.
This is the place where we animated the missing episodes of Invasion.
Oh, the stupid thing! Oh! Cosgrove Hall was asked to work on this because we'd all worked together with BBCi on Scream of the Shalka and on Ghosts of Albion before that.
And the techniques we developed were just perfect for working together on Invasion.
The first thing we took delivery of was the reconstructed soundtrack Mark Ayres put together, which was great.
It's a little bit unusual in animation to be working with a soundtrack that already has all the effects and the background sound and the music and everything in it, 'cause normally we just work to a dialogue track.
It was an eight-part story and six parts remained.
But what happened to parts one and four? Bit of a mystery.
But the best that anyone could work out is that the BBC didn't keep any copies.
And BBC Enterprises, who were selling film prints abroad, didn't retain any copies either.
It was quite unusual to have such a locked-down soundtrack.
I mean, we were guided by that.
But in a way it really helped us because In fact, there were a few occasions where there'd be a sound effect, and we'd think ''What was that?'' And, of course, every 'Cause I remembered it being on the telly, although I was only four, everyone would ask me, ''What was that sound effect?'' And I'd say, ''It's probably a secret camera or something,'' and it would turn out to be an electric door.
(WHIRRING) Listening to the soundtrack, and we also got the original recording scripts from the live-action from the BBC archives, eventually.
But, initially, we didn't have that, so we started work with a script that had been created from the soundtrack.
But halfway through, we did get the original shooting script, and it was interesting that a lot of the stage directions that were in there matched what we'd done anyway.
So it was quite a pleasant surprise that they were obviously working with the story in the same way that we were.
What the designers and the set builders did with egg boxes and stuff like that, and the budget they had, it was brilliant.
It probably helped 'cause it was in black and white.
We wanted the fans to feel like that they were They weren't getting short-changed.
But we didn't want to be completely restricted creatively.
The one thing that was just a gift for us is that the episodes were in black and white.
Stylistically, it just lent so much to us doing this kind of graphic style of animation.
I mean, it's very obvious these are animated episodes inserted into the live-action and that's the way it is.
So we don't apologise for that.
We kind of try and creatively make the most of it.
It was nice to work in that style, actually, because they're very graphic setups, they're very moody, anyway.
So the way that the shots were actually staged helped your animation and helped give you a feel for the way the animation should be styled and the way the characters would move.
Usually, it was all quite secretive and furtive when they're running about.
So, yeah, it just gives you a good angle on what the characters are feeling.
Patrick's Doctor was very like Patrick in a way, very eccentric.
He was very quirky, humorous, twinkle in his eye, but I think his Doctor was believable.
We literally scribble out, rough out the characters in shot to the soundtrack, so we get an idea of where the Doctor is and what's happening in each shot.
And then, from there, I'd design the characters.
And then the animation process started, and that was pretty speedy once we got going.
But that's the basic process.
So it's from sound to board to animation, and then, finally, to composite and output.
I remember seeing this before.
Shush, Zoe.
That light on the Moon's surface.
Do you see it? Doctor! It's getting bigger! It's coming towards us.
My initial job is to make up the kits of the faces Well, the entire character, but the face is the most complicated.
And breaking down the bodies into component parts so they can The top of the arm, mid-arm, hands, all the expressions on the face, and we set those up in a kit, so we've always got those to refer to.
And then as the character progresses through the episode, we put in specific pieces of animation to suit the dialogue.
Patrick Troughton was my first Doctor, and I think he was He has such a great face on screen.
How nice to see you again, Doctor.
It's Colonel Lethbridge-Stewart! Ah, Brigadier now.
I've gone up in the world.
DOYLE: It is a very graphic face.
And those great eyebrows.
And I used to love his face as it came through the title sequence into the beginning of Doctor Who.
It's, like, ''Wow, this guy's amazing.
'' And I think, considering that the previous Doctor had been quite like a grandfather, a slightly more distant figure, this bloke was like a mad uncle.
He was great.
He was in your lounge.
I hate computers and refuse to be bullied by them.
GREY: What we've got here is a set of the Patrick Troughton heads that we've used in all the episode.
We picked specific poses for The best poses which we think are going to suit for most scenes, and we actually kit up each head.
So, for example, this one, which is a favourite pose of mine, we The two main areas of expression are the mouth and the eyes.
So, for example, the mouth is actually split off onto a separate level from everything else.
And we have a separate lip-sync position for each phonetic sound of the speech.
So if I just run through these, this is all your basic lip-sync positions.
So at any one time when the character is speaking, we can just set the mouth into any of these positions.
I'm not joking, Jamie.
Underneath all that charm there was something odd.
Almost inhuman.
The eyes are actually completely separate from the rest of the head.
And they're made into a kit.
So you've got Hopefully, most things that you'd need throughout the show, are covered in this kit.
Frowns, surprise, look left, look right, up and down.
We had to hook up with everything that was in the live-action episodes, and we had to make the Tardis look like the Tardis.
I mean, everybody knows what All the fans know what this is.
We can't make mistakes with this.
So we spent a lot of time trawling through the early episodes and the episodes around with Patrick Troughton in, to get reference for the interior of the Tardis, to get reference for the buildings that were used.
I mean, most of the buildings that appear in the live-action also appear in the animation.
So we had to make sure that Vaughn's office looks exactly like it does.
So we spent a lot of time grabbing still images of the real stuff, the real sets, that were built at the time.
I think we did a pretty good job of reproducing them, so they should be recognisable from the animation to the live-action.
One technique we use There was a degree of rotoscoping.
And I do take the credit as being a Patrick Troughton stunt-double.
For some of the sections where we really wanted to capture the Doctor running through a shot or sneaking down corridors, we either referred to other shows from around the same time as Invasion, other episodes from other shows to try and find footage of Patrick Troughton sneaking about and running around, or we got Jon Doyle, who was the executive producer, to wear a big, baggy jacket and dress up as the Doctor, and scamper across the studio while we filmed him with a digital camera.
And that worked, as well.
And then we used We took that into the animation programme and we used that as reference for the animators to draw from.
And Jon made a very good Patrick Troughton.
(BEEPING) STEVE MAHER: Well, the disappointing thing with the episodes that we had to replace was there weren't any Cybermen in them, apart from right at the very end of Episode Four.
So although we really, really wanted to animate the Cybermen, we didn't really get a chance.
But when we did the initial test for the project to show it could be done and what it would look like, I did a reproduced version of the Cybermen on the steps of St Paul's.
So I did get to animate the Cybermen a little bit, and then we just got that one shot at the end.
But, I mean, they were great.
They're a gift.
Cybermen, Daleks, they're the things you dream of being able to animate.
DOYLE: I still have trouble standing on manhole covers because, when I was a kid, they were the things that came off when the Cybermen came out.
And it's only just occurred to me now that they probably stank, really, if they'd been in the sewers for that long, but sort of scary and smelly.
The project was just an extraordinary thing to be asked to do.
To be asked to do black-and-white animation, 1 960s style, very realistic, a Doctor Who, Cybermen.
No, it was great.
GREY: Because the Doctor Who fans are so specific in their knowledge, we were really keen to make sure we got everything right.
Otherwise, you know, somebody somewhere is going to pick it up.
And it's an important part of the project.
So, yeah, yeah.
I would like to do it again.
I'm amazed at how well reanimating The Invasion has turned out.
There's about 100 episodes still out there missing, and it would be lovely if the BBC decided to do more.
It's just fantastic to be involved in Doctor Who in any way.
I mean, as a fan for years, it just made sense to me working in animation.
We should animate Doctor Who.
It's just brilliant.