Monday 3 February 2014, 12:21
Radio 4 has a reputation for creating exciting and challenging drama, and we are not shying away from that, as audiences will discover later this month when they are treated to a brand new version of the cult classic The Exorcist.
The drama’s producer Gaynor McFarlane has described this programme as ‘one to listen to with the lights on; the story is scary, uneasy and deeply unsettling’. She is not wrong. It is a great production that tells the full Exorcist story the way it should be told. Ahe power of radio is that we create all the images in our mind, making this adaptation as haunting and as affecting a version as I have ever come across. That is why we decided to stay faithful to the novel - which as many of you will know from the 1973 film production is a challenging story - and create a special late night slot on Radio 4 - on Thursday 20th and Friday 21st February at 11pm-midnigh to air the drama.
However, in this version, adapted by Robert Forrest, the drama really tackles the battle between the demon and the priest; looking at it as one of wits, with the devil taunting the doubting priest. The production had an incredible integrity to it as well from only using sound effects in ‘3’s (the devils number) or backwards (like the demon), to working with the actress, Alexandra Mathie, who plays the demon, to learn how to speak backwards.
It is a meaty story to take on, and the casting reflects that, with Robert Glenister as Karras, Ian McDiarmid as Merrin and a wonderful performance from Alexandra Mathie as the demon. The Exorcist is a modern classic and I hope you all enjoy it, and I hope everyone in production is alive and well!
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Friday 31 January 2014, 17:50
Monday 3 February 2014, 16:03