Tuesday, 20 November 2012

First day of filming

We've just spent the last 12 hours holed up in a darkened studio within the BBC building at Middlesborough. 

I've not been to Middlesborough before. It's a fairly depressing-looking place which reminds me of a more industrial version of some of the less desirable towns in East Northamptonshire. 

We approached the place via a sort of gyratory, which offered 360-degree views of disused factory chimneys, rusty train carriages, strange blue bridges and grimy concrete housing blocks, shivering under a seemingly endless dark grey sky. 

We've been filming the 100 Faces project all day. It's been lovely to work again with cameraman, Keith Blackburn, who shot the Metro film. 

The film we're making will probably be screened in black and white, so I'm watching everything through a colourless monitor, which makes everyone look so much more alluring. 

The premise of 100 Faces is that everyone involved says just one sentence about what made 2012 stand out for them, and today we met a set of people with the most awe-inspiring tales from Olympic gold medalists to a young lad who learnt to walk again this year after a having his leg amputated at the knee. 

There was a woman whose house had burnt down, a man who'd spent a year doing new things in honour of his still-born child and a girl who'd overcome childhood leukaemia to gain first class honours for her degree. 

There were also some wonderful characters, my favourite of whom was an 86-year old called Audrey with an utterly infectious lust for life; "still loving life!" she shouted at the camera, and I believed every word. 

350 years ago, Pepys spent a day out and about garnering favours and plotting various pieces of legal business. He returned home to find his wife had made a fine job of moving furniture around their newly extended house. And that's all really. 

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