Behind the Britcom – Penelope Keith on the actor/writer relationship

From Behind the Britcom: From Script to Screen, coming to PBS stations nationwide in March 2011, we continue our look at the making of British comedy while celebrating those that pen the programs that make up one of the most intelligent television genre’s on the planet.

Over the course of producing the program, we talked with numerous actors and actresses that freely admit their good fortune of being a part of programs written by the likes of Bob Larbey (Good Life, As Time Goes By), Roy Clarke (Open All Hours, Keeping Up Appearances, Last of the Summer Wine), Richard Curtis (Mr. Bean, Blackadder, Vicar of Dibley), Carla Lane (Butterflies), Jeremy Lloyd (‘Allo ‘Allo, Are You Being Served) and Steven Moffat (Coupling, Doctor Who). It was interesting to note the differences not only in writing style, but also the differences between writers during the production process. Some were hands off after script was completed, some acted more like a director, being very involved in shaping the program right up until the Sunday night taping before a live studio audience.

Here, Penelope Keith (Good Life, To the Manor Born) talks about her experiences with Good Life writers, Bob Larbey and John Esmonde, and how observant both were during all phases of the production process to where they began to incorporate real-life events from rehearsals into the storyline of The Good Life.

Behind the Britcom: From Script to Screen premieres on PBS stations nationwide in March 2011. The program will premiere on KERA Channel 13 in North Texas, Saturday, March 5 at 9:00pm.

In: Actors/Actresses,Comedy