Bad News

As a morning show goes into the 5 minute countdown before their live recording, the producers, political guests, cast and crew try to make the most of a freshly uncovered scandal.

Director’s Vision

Bad News came to light as a reaction to the chaotic mess that we all know as Brexit. Politicians suddenly seemed to be the media’s new favourite celebrities for the world to either love or hate.

When Theresa May stepped down from office, a little tear rolled down her face, and I couldn’t help but feel a little sorry for her. I forgot, amongst all of this, that these are just people trying their best to do a job that, for better or worse, won’t keep everyone happy.

I started my career in reality TV and later on in live broadcast television as a runner, and was absolutely fascinated in this world. The way journalists would be able to shift the information on the spot to give their broadcasts a popular agenda came as a shock to me. I realised then that journalism, in many cases, is based on collecting real live data to create a fictional narrative. It’s basically the equivalent to pro-wrestling. There is an actual skill to it, but that doesn’t make the fights real.

Combining these two revelations, I wanted to create a fast paced narrative with a vast cast of characters who all follow a different agenda, while seemingly playing for the same team. We decided to write the script with a one take film in mind, and started to look for locations that would make this possible. We wanted to trap the audience in the thrill of the rush of live television through the ever moving camera. We also chose this technique to give the performances a more grounded and spontaneous feel.

Due to budget and timing restrictions with the large cast, we dressed the location, rehearsed the shot and captured the whole film in a timeframe of 11 hours. There was a thrill and urgency by the entire cast and crew to absolutely nail each take, while also throwing in flourishes of improv. It was a delightful challenge and an exercise in teamwork unlike any I have experienced before.