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Friday, August 24, 2007

The interesting thing is....

Over at Andrew Collins's blog he's been bemoaning the superficiality of the BBC "British Film Forever" series. I caught fifteen minutes of their Stephen Fry 50th birthday film last night and felt much the same. Apart from the fact that it was the most blatant example of what our American cousins elegantly refer to us as the "circle jerk", it had been edited more for weight than light. The objective was to get as many well known faces as possible saying nice things about Stephen, regardless of whether they said anything interesting. Hugh Laurie, Emma Thompson, Ben Elton, Michael Sheen, Ronnie Corbett, Michael Parkinson, JK Rowling, the Prince Of Wales and numerous others each just about managed to get half a sentence out before the editor cut back to the clips. The heir to the throne percipiently pointed out that Stephen Fry did "lots of characters". Ronnie Corbett seemed on the point of saying something interesting about Fry's "way with hauteur" when he was cut off. I think this form of coitus interruptus is now endemic in clip show TV, exacerbated by the fact that they're using off-camera interviewers. Because we can never be allowed to hear their first question they never get to put the follow-up, which is always "in what way?"