Beautiful People - the Eurovision episode
His excuse is - wait for it - "I broke my internet!" Purlease! Anyway, it means that you get the musings of the Exec Producer of Beautiful People, me. Before you ask, the answer to the question "what does an Executive Producer do exactly?" is "turn up at the location for lunch and laugh". Both of those things were easy on this show because we had fantastic catering from caterers who were very funny.
Anyway, on to the episode in which we got to recreate the Eurovision Song Contest of 1998 which was held in Birmingham and hosted by Terry Wogan and Ulrika Jonson. Now I realise that the first broadcast of this episode is on Children in Need night so there may be quite a lot of Woganphobes in our audience, desperately trying to escape newspeople using charity as an excuse to do other peoples' jobs, badly.
Panic not - he only appears for a second near the end but it is quite an important second because at the songfest in question, the winner was Israeli man-become-woman Dana International and on that night in 1998 there was a big gap between the announcement of her winning and her appearance to reprise the winning song- (Viva La Diva, if you care). Jonathan (I broke my internet) Harvey has imagined what was going on backstage. Obviously it was to do with Simon and Kylie who had locked themselves in the disabled toilet backstage just as Ms International wanted to change frock. Obviously.
By the magic of brilliant Location Manager and a persistent Producer we recreated the Birmingham concert in an empty Wembley Arena with the real Dana International flown in from Israel for the shoot and not looking a day older. Empty Wembley was just plain spooky because the normal TV circus you need to shoot the show looked tiny in vastness of the Arena - the Arena that we kept being reminded has a swimming pool underneath, which made it feel spooky and slightly dangerous. Needless to say the ghosts of Cher and Springsteen and Jon Bon Jovi and their audiences were kind and we got out unscathed and dry.
One of the other joys of this episode for me are the gay neighbours - or "gaybours" as Debbie would have them - played by Tom Paine and Rory Kinear. We were fantastically lucky to get them. Rory especially is one of the busiest and best actors on the planet who is going to play Hamlet next year at the National Theatre. If his portrayal of 'Ross Kemp' for us is anything to go by, the Dane will be magnificent. He and Tom just make brilliant choices about what they do with characters and with lines. Watch Rory trying to pick up Andy and see what he does with 'Sleepy Bunny'!
Thank you for reading, watching and being fabulous!
More Beautiful People
- Browse our behind-the-scenes gallery on Flickr
- Watch the making of the Doonan's Eurovision song on Comedy Extra
Jon Plowman is Executive Producer of Beautiful People, which continues tonight at 9.30pm on BBC Two.