Guests At 12th Keswick Film Festival
As a writer, she began working for Granada Television in the 1980s, writing for their hugely popular soap opera Coronation Street, the most watched programme on the ITV network. In 1989 Mellor also wrote seven episodes for the popular Channel 4 soap Brookside. She also wrote for the anthology drama series Dramarama , before in 1988 co-creating the long-running children's drama Children's Ward with her Coronation Street colleague Paul Abbott. She also created the soap opera Families, which aired from 1990 until 1993.
Since then she has written a host of highly-acclaimed and popular television drama serials, including Band of Gold (1995), Playing the Field (1998) for BBC One, Fat Friends (2000), Between the Sheets (2003) and Strictly Confidential (2006) for ITV. Outside of television, in 1999 she both wrote and directed the feature film Fanny and Elvis, starring Ray Winstone and has written plays as well as television A Passionate Woman started life as a play at the West Yorkshire playhouse before becoming a TV programme and now a film
Jack Gold (born on 28 June 1930) is a British film and television director. He was part of the British Realist Tradition that followed Free Cinema. After leaving University College London (UCL) he began his career as an editor on BBC's Tonight programme. Gold became a freelance documentary filmmaker, also making dramas as a platform for his social and political observations. He is well known for having directed films such as; The Visit (1959), The National Health (1973), The Naked Civil Servant (1975), Man Friday (1975), The Medusa Touch (1978), Charlie Muffin (1979) aka A Deadly Game (USA), The Chain (1985) and Escape From Sobibor (1987). His other works include the televised BBC/Lifetime version of The Merchant of Venice (1980) and Macbeth (1983) - the latter starring Nicol Williamson - as well as the rare but effective made-for-TV adaptation of Graham Greene's The Tenth Man (1988), starring Anthony Hopkins. He also directed the final episode of Inspector Morse: "The Remorseful Day".
A new name who has made a wonderful documentary about our very first guest, Jack Cardiff. McCall explains how he first came to meet Jack Cardiff in the early nineties. "He was directing a version of Vivaldi's Four Seasons for EMI and I was directing dance videos. I had a clockwork camera, a little 16 millimetre Bolex and he wanted to use it to get some shots in Venice where it had snowed and when he told me about all the little tricks that he wanted to do with this camera I was just taken by it all."
"I didn't know who he was; I didn't know all of his films. So I took a look at 'A Matter of Life and Death' and a couple of other films and that's how it all began but it took two or three years before I actually sat him down and did the first interview with him in 1997." It certainly turned out to be a long old haul mainly due to the difficulties involved in obtaining the rights to use excerpts from Cardiff's work in the documentary. "You enter a legal minefield. That's the real reason it took so long as you can't really make a film about a cinematographer without showing clips from his films. I was aware that I was entering a dark tunnel but it took longer than I thought to come out the other side."
The film-maker had clear ideas on how he wanted to tell the life of Jack Cardiff. The story unfolds through interview footage, shot by McCall, and the testimonies of those who knew the great man. The list of names lining up to pay homage to Jack Cardiff takes the film to another level and demonstrates the respect with which Cardiff was held within his profession. Among the venerable talking heads are the likes of Martin Scorsese, Charlton Heston, Sir John Mills and Kirk Douglas.
Jack Cardiff died in April 2009 but not before he saw a ninety minute cut of McCall's film. "He watched it with (director of 'The Vikings') Richard Fleischer which made me very happy. What Jack really found interesting is the way people laughed at his jokes. He was a very positive person, very inclusive and always trying to fill people with enthusiasm."