Dan Clark answers your questions about How Not To Live Your Life
From @munson11 on Twitter: Dan, do you gain inspiration for HNTLYL from real life situations that you have experienced and is music helpful in creating ideas?
If I said that any of HNTLYL was based on real experiences in my life I think people would worry about me. However, occasionally I have observed something that inspires a story idea. For example, I once gave money to a female beggar. When she walked off I thought "she was actually kind of attractive". I was stunned and a little perturbed by my own thoughts, but then immediately realised it was a perfect opportunity for a Don storyline. So where as I might have spotted it and moved on, Don actually acts upon it.
As for music - yes, I often write to music. I was listening to Bon Iver's For Emma Forever Ago album throughout the writing of series 2. It's a very emotional album about heartbreak but it kind of helped with the fact that Don was pining after Abby.
I can't deny that I have some similarities with Don. We look the same. Actually, I often see Don as the bad Dan. The version of me that let's his selfishness, narcissism and stupidity take control of his emotions. I would never say or do the things Don does. But I've occasionally secretly thought some of things.
From Lo Troy on Facebook: How did you get into screenwriting? :)
I grew up wanted to be an actor. Writing was originally just a way of generating my own work, rather than waiting for the phone to ring. I never had any connections with the theatre or TV world, so had no short cut. When I was 19 I co-wrote a play with my friend, which we also acted in, and we took it to the Edinburgh Festival.
From @Andr3wmarshall on Twitter: Dan, do you feel pressure to make the program better as the programme grows in popularity?
Yes. I'm my own worst critic. So I always see room for improvement. I don't see any point in doing another series unless it's either better or, at the very least, as good as the previous series. I've tried to develop HNTLYL and keep it fresh. I like the idea that each series has a slightly different flavour. Not in an obvious way.
Ha! That's a question I get asked a lot, for some reason. People love the dressing gown. Men and women. The truth is we bought it from a charity shop when we made the pilot episode. So it's a very valuable item of clothing. We have no duplicates! The storage centre where we keep all the costumes and sets flooded between series one and two. Everything was damaged except, bizarrely, the dressing gown. It was as if the gods protected it.
From VixyHavok on the blog: Hiya Dan, I'm a really big fan :) I'm kinda starstruck just asking a question. In The Mighty Boosh you played Jonny Two hats and in your new series of How Not To Live Your Life Noel appears. How did you come to appear in The Mighty Boosh and are you guys friends?
I've known Noel and Julian since 1999. We met during the Edinburgh Festival and have remained friends since. They're kind of my oldest and closest friends from the comedy community. Bar a couple of other people. When they did the first series they said they had this tiny part they wanted me to do called Johnny Two Hats. I said "what does he do?" they said "he wears two hats". Silly question, silly answer.
Back in the summer I asked Noel if he'd do a little bit in my show and he said he'd only do it if he could play something totally different to himself. Hence why we cast him against type as Marcus Blade.
That's a hard question to answer. I suppose I'd love to be a professional musician. Either in a multi-million selling rock band or even a classical musician in an orchestra. Anything really. I love playing music and love playing with other musicians but don't get the opportunity to it very often. And I'm not good enough to be professional. I'm self taught.
From lewisjwright on the blog: I love this programme and can never stop laughing when I'm watching it and I really want to learn your songs. Every last one of them. How long have you been playing guitar for? And have you ever thought of doing an album? If not, fancy making one purely for me?
Well, we did put out an album featuring music from series one and two which is called 'How Not To Live Your Life' and is available to download now. Ben Parker, who's an amazing musician friend of mine, does all the music for HNTLYL including the theme tune. He and I are planning on working on an album of all my comedy songs soon.
From @GudBadAnFozzy on Twitter: Will Abby be ever making another appearance again, even a one off special?
I'm always surprised by how many people ask if she'll come back. I think it might be fun to see her again. Who knows? If I could find a good reason to have her back and if Sinead was available, then maybe.
From NC on the blog: Love the series. Are there any particular comic influences in your life?
Lots: Early influences were Rik and Ade, The Young Ones, the films of John Landis - Trading Places, American Werewolf. Then in my teens I discovered a different type of comedy, things like Monty Python, Fry and Laurie, The Fast Show, Vic and Bob . Then in my early twenties it was different again. Steve Coogan, Armando Iannucci, Chris Morris. The films of Woody Allen. And Gene Wilder always been a big influence. I also really like American sitcom like Friends, Fraser, Larry Sanders, 30 Rock, Curb Your Enthusiasm.
We all get on great. David Armand (who plays Eddie) and I have known each other for quite a few years through the comedy world, and we have a very silly relationship on set. We talk utter nonsense right up until the moment we hear "action" and then we have the most slick and professional on camera relationship. It's odd really. But I love doing scenes with him as he's the actor/character I've done the most with across the three seasons so far. Daniel, who plays Jason, is fun to work with but we always corpse (laugh so much we can't carry on), which is frustrating for all the crew. And the girls, Leila (Treacher) and Laura (Sam), are lovely. We all have a good time. I'm often too busy to have as much fun as them, being in every scene and all.
From @Thesonic83 on Twitter: Funny ep last night Dan, when's the box set out? And you doing any stand up shows?
There will be a series 3 box set along with the new release of series 3. Not sure when though. Series 3 will be available to download as of 6th December. I'm doing a stand-up tour next spring. You can see all the dates on my website.
From Danny Allingham on Facebook: Your show's amazing, keep it up. And why don't you bring a movie out? With your TV shows that good the movie has got to be AMAZING!?
I'd love to do a film of HNTLYL. But it's hard to make a movie out of a TV series. Very few shows that try it succeed. A film just has a very different structure. Try to sustain proper laugh out loud moments for 90 mins is tricky.
From chris on the blog: Loving the show from day one it all ways makes LOL! Will there be another season and will we be able to get more episodes in the season? And remember Dan think with your balls! lol :P
Ha, ha! Good advice Chris. I'm not sure if there'll be another series at the moment. I need to be sure I think I could sustain quality. Having said that, I have had a lot of ideas for new episodes and they are quite exciting. So who knows? Watch this space.
Dan Clark stars as Don Danbury in How Not To Live Your Life on Mondays at 10.30pm.