"An ambitious, dark and thrilling trilogy of interlinking films adapted by Tony Grisoni (Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Brothers of the Head) from David Peace's cult noir novels.
1974, Yorkshire – a time of paranoia, mistrust and institutionalised police corruption. Rookie journalist Eddie Dunford (Andrew Garfield) is determined to search for the truth in an increasingly complex maze of lies and deceit that characterises a police investigation into a child abduction case.
Head of Channel 4 Drama, Liza Marshall said: “I am thrilled to be able to bring a project with such outstanding acting, writing and directing talent to Channel 4. The three films are bold and ambitious and together will form an epic television event.” "
Tony Grisoni interviews:
“We spend time trying to avoid sadness, trying to avoid dark thoughts and dark intentions,” he says. “We try and suppress that. I think I probably use this job to enjoy exploring the parts of myself that I’m scared of.”
Screen Rant (part 1):
"I noticed from watching that each films appears to be police versus journalists, then police versus police and then police versus people. Is that something you planned or was it in the original books?
First of all it wasn’t like writing an original piece where you, for example, if I was setting it in the boxing community I would go and visit a load of boxers where boxers hang out and talk to them. This is adaptation - I trusted those books and I trusted David’s writing and so I treated those as the truth. What was there I took and then you had to work it into a screenplay. What happens in 1974, is absolutely that. It’s a little more complex in ‘74 for instance. You’re with a journalist, a young journalist and it’s not quite like journalists against cops. It’s a particular journalist. He’s a young guy. He’s a typical film noir hero - he’s libidinous, he’s lazy, he’s selfish, a self obsessed young man. What happens with him, he starts off by just being out for himself, but then he’s got this thing in that he has to know what happened, he needs to know truth and so he goes further and further down that path and eventually it gets to a point where he needs to know the truth more than anything - more than his own safety or anything. So, he kind of changes as it goes along. Absolutely, he’s up against the police.
The second one is very much the police investigates their own. Peter Hunter is on a Home Office investigation which he has to keep covert and he is investigating corrupt police and as it said in that clip “How deep does the rot go?”
The third one isn’t really that, the film is a two-hander. You’ve got two main characters. You’ve got Jobson, Morris Jobson, a policeman, who has gone along with corruption all the way through and has finally reached a point where he is going to do what he should have done a long time ago, like nine years before, so it’s redemptive in many ways the final one. Then you’ve got John Piggot. I really like his character, he’s wonderfully disgusting. He’s a damaged man. A lousy solicitor, but again, he wants to know what really happened. And again he doesn’t feel quite up to being a champion that’s what he becomes. It’s a long answer to your question.
The thing about David’s fiction and these films we made is that they are quite complex pieces. There isn’t a good and bad. It is more like what it is like out there. It’s all these different levels of good and bad, it’s not like they are not comic book heroes. They are fractured people. They are a more bit like you and me. I hope."
Screen Rant (part 2)
"Fortunately, because I got a main character leading the first one, a main character leading the second one and then two characters, what’s great is that you tell the story from their perspective so you only know what they know. You cannot know anything outside and that gave me a really solid framework. So you only stay with them. That was like the sheet anchor that helped me stay on course. Then I just waded in and started writing a very long first draft of it that I then pared down. The main difficulty was that."
Screen Rant (part 3):
"How do you balance writing so many things at one time?
I don’t do anything else - I don’t have a life or anything. I just write. I think what happens is one is usually in the forefront and your’e keeping the other one ticking over until you’ve got to a particular stage with one. Either people are reading it or you let it sit there for a bit and get on with the other one.
It’s not real writing. Novelists - that’s real writing. What I do is what you do when you’re a kid - its just make believe. That’s why it’s such fun for me. You only need a vocabulary of about fifty anyway, anymore than that and no one’s going to read it."
Channel 4, 9:00pm
for three weeks.