My Murder: Why this drama had to have a heart
Levi David Addai
Danny (Malachi Kirby), Samantha (Simona Zivkovska) and Shakilus (John Boyega)
I guess I needed assurance that the Beeb wasn't using Shakilus Townsend's death and his mother's anguish so that they could seem edgy - tick a box and get one up on their broadcast rivals.
Shakilus was 16 when he was beaten and stabbed to death in a planned attack by members of a gang in south London in 2008.
He'd been led into the ambush, widely reported as the 'honey trap murder', by Samantha Joseph - a girl Shakilus' mum said he was 'smitten' with.
Samantha was sentenced to at least 10 years for her part in his murder and six other teenagers including her ex-boyfriend Danny McLean were jailed for life.
I always made it clear that I didn't want the film to go into Crimewatch territory. Nor did I want it to seem like an 'urban drama' with a stereotypical knife crime story - and I was encouraged that Colin and the BBC felt the same.
The finished film is the opposite of that.
Of course there'll be many people that will see Shakilus, in his hoody, being loud with his friends and automatically make assumptions.
But for me the fact that Shak wasn't an angel makes his story richer and dare I say 'normal'.
Shakilus gets a warning
My approach was to chew over all the extensive material that the research team provided me.
I read through mountains of research and court evidence as I tried to visualise in my mind's eye the events of 2008.
I'd asked myself questions like why was Shakilus interested in Sam? Why was Shak so persistent?
What was Sam's interest in Shak? Why did she feel she couldn't let Danny know about Shak? Was she at fault for not 'declaring' Shak to Danny?
One thing that was very clear from the interviews and research was Shakilus' bubbly, charismatic character.
This was a guy who was so popular amongst his friends and family.
Also, he wasn't short on female friends and definitely wasn't scared to talk to girls. His charm, his wit and his boldness is what drew me to Shakilus.
Shakilus meets Samantha for the first time
You can't help but think what potential he had.
But on reflection I guess what drew me to the story is that I, in my adolescent years, and the teenage Shakilus were both driven by the most basic of human emotions - attraction.
I, like many billions of others, have been so blindly infatuated - calling it love - only to find you have been taken for a ride.
But I and so many others were lucky because the only consequence we suffered was a 'broken heart'.
Shakilus wasn't as fortunate.
Levi David Addai is the writer of My Murder.
Comments made by writers on the BBC TV blog are their own opinions and not necessarily those of the BBC.