Behind the Scenes of Fear Her - Part One

Excerpt from Jason Arnopp’s behind-the-scenes article from DWM #372

When DWM arrives on this chilly January morn, that lazybones David Tennant has already completed his one-and-only scheduled scene. The rest of today’s filming all features Rose Tyler.

Preparations are made for the scene in which Rose attacks Chloe’s bedroom door with a pickaxe.  It’s Fear Her’s homage to Stanley Kubrick’s classic 1980 fright-fest The Shining.

“How many doors do we have?” asks Billie, naturally nervous about the prospect of messing up this scene. Two, comes the answer. “Oh, I reckon we’ll be done in two,” she breezes, suddenly more confident.

Billie takes the pickaxe and steels herself.

“Just enjoy it,” winks Nina Sosanya, playing Trish in this scene. “I’ll cover you!”

“Yeah,” grins Billie, “Then you can do a drop-roll!”

Billie’s first take earns applause. She’s even more accurate on take two.

“How exciting was that?” says Nina.

“Very!” laughs Billie. “I loved it. I’m not going to play it down: it was great!”

[ List of all Doctor Who Behind the Scenes photosets ]


Congratulations to our favourite couple on the birth of their second son, Hal Auden Cumberbatch born on March 3 (although we are still waiting for an official confirmation!).

  • HALOriginally a medieval short form of Henry (home ruler: from the germanic Heimirich) , Harry and Harold. It is now also used as a first name. Famously used by Shakespeare in King Henry IV as the name of the king’s son, the future Henry V. but also the name of Hal 9000 ,the sentient computer which controls the systems of the Discovery One spacecraft in 2001: A space odissey by S. Kubrick on which Benedict wrote his dissertation.
  • AUDEN:  [pronunciation: AW-dən]   Auden is an english surname [ Old English: eald “old” and wine “friend”]. which is derived from the Germanic given name Aldwin (its Old English equivalent is Ealdwine). It shares the same etymological origin with Alden, As a surname Auden was probably formed during the time of the Norman French occupation of England, from the germanic name Audun, the modern form of Auðun. which derives from Old Norse auðr “fate, fortune” and vinr “friend”. Germanic names containing -al- usually became -au- in Norman French. The use of Auden as a given name probably started in the 20th century, in honour of the famous English poet W. H. Auden (1907-1973). 

S is for Stanley” is now available on Netflix U.S. and Canada. Winner of the 2016 David di Donatello award for Best Documentary Feature, the film chronicles thirty years of work and friendship between Stanley Kubrick and his right hand man, Emilio D’Alessandro. If you liked the story and want to know more, read the source book “Stanley Kubrick and Me: Thirty Years at His Side” (Arcade Publishing, 2016).

Stanley Kubrick was known for many things, but chillaxing sure wasn’t one of them. He would routinely force dozens of takes for insignificant scenes until the actors got them just right and/or the voices in his head subsided. As we’ve covered before, he was a particular butthole on the set of The Shining, traumatizing poor Shelley Duvall and making his secretary spend months typing up individual, unique pages of Jack’s manuscript. 

But Kubrick’s weaponized OCD didn’t stop there. Kubrick, it seems, thought the impact of the manuscript scene would be diminished if foreign viewers had to read a subtitle explaining what it says in all those pages (as opposed to, you know, reading the pages). On top of that, there’s the repetitive phrase itself: “All work and no play make Jack a dull boy.” While the words could certainly be translated into other languages, the saying itself only exists in English, so it would lose considerable context and meaning. But hey, who gives a shit about this one line of idiom in a two-and-a-half-hour film, right? Kubrick, of course.

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