Date set! Scafells film on BBC TV

BBC Four Life of a Mountain Scafell Pike Terry Abraham
60min abridged edit. Date set!

“…one of those plain and simple, knock ’em dead nature documentaries…a complete delight.”
Radio Times, Documentary of the Week

“A beautifully filmed documentary that is good for the soul.”

Daily Telegraph, TV Highlights

“With it’s sweeping cinematography and sonorous score, there’s a touch of the art-house classic Koyaanisqatsi about this enchanting documentary focusing on England’s highest mountain.”
The Guardian, Pick of the Day

2015 is here and it’s starting off with a bit of a bang for me. Next week will see the first transmission on BBC TV of my recent Lakeland film ‘Life of a Mountain: Scafell Pike’. 9pm Wednesday 14th January on BBC Four followed by iPlayer and no doubt several repeats too over the coming 3 years (which is the duration of the contract I signed and agreed to with ole Aunty).

It’s been tremendously hard work having to edit a succinct 60 minute abridged cut of the full film. Initially the BBC wished to screen the whole 2 hour edit, but due to their scheduling it was dropped to 90 minutes and then finally 60 minutes!

For much of November and December I had been busy working closely with one of the BBC’s editors, Tony Lazzerini learning all the ins and outs of getting a production ready for TV transmission. There’s quite a lot involved! Be it paperwork or sorting out video formats and audio – it wasn’t as easy as I imagined it would be shall we say. An intense learning curve.

Least of all, the documentary department were persistent in trying to cram as much of the full film’s story into 60 minutes! Consequently what will be revealed will be something more akin to an extended teaser trailer of the original full edit – something I found particularly difficult to deal with. Not quite the original vision I set out to achieve in December 2012.

Many special moments with the characters featured in the documentary have been cut, many of the mountain sequences I spent countless nights and months capturing are not in the TV edit and much more besides. however, once agreements and compromises had been made, I can honestly say I’m quietly happy with the TV version. It does feel like some extended Countryfile Special to me I have to admit. Alas, some of the press reviews creeping in seem to approve of the TV version so maybe I’m being picky.

Looking back on it all now I do feel immensely proud of the whole film. Something I dreamed about producing for many years. It was a gamble and then some for me – financially and emotionally with regards to my family. All the hard work has come good of course and I do feel extremely fortunate to have pulled it off. There were many times I didn’t think I’d get the film completed.

Of course, many of you here supported me financially in getting the film completed via Indiegogo and it’s something I will be eternally grateful for! The faith people have shown in me has been humbling. It was a gamble for them too when I think about it in the cold light of day, and for sponsors who contributed also!

I’ve learnt a great deal while producing the film in so many ways I cannot describe in words and it’s something that I will take with me as I set to begin on my next round of projects promoting the countryside – particularly the Lake District.

I had intended on working on the sequel right now, but other factors and influences have crept into my life which has lead me to put it off until next winter. That will be ‘Life of a Mountain: Blencathra’ by the way.

Before then I’m set to begin producing arguably my most technically ambitious outdoors film yet! I can’t reveal any more than that just yet but I will in the coming weeks and months ahead.

I’ll be producing another TV style DVD featuring David Powell-Thompson and Upper Eskdale, something I’m looking forward to working on too. During and in-between these projects I’ll be working on other things for clients to earn my bread and butter. So it doesn’t sound like a great deal lies ahead but the ‘big one’ as I’m calling it will require many hours and camps on the fells all over the Lake District National Park due for release October 2015.

Thankfully I’ll have some great support from Eric Robson and David Powell-Thompson. Two good friends who know a thing or two about TV and video production.

Anyway, I shall not waffle any further. Happy New Year and speak soon!


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