Paul Darrow live on

Paul took part in a web chat on on 29th November 1999. Here are some edited extracts, reproduced with permission, the full text is available at

John Tolbert asks: "I've heard that the 4th season finale, "Blake", was not supposed to be the end of the series. What was planned for the next season?" Paul Darrow: "Nothing! It was the end of the season - it was fairly final, everyone got shot except me! I guess I might have been kept alive in the hope of another season, but nothing materialised."
Tim: "Did Terry N. approve of the final episode "Blake"?" Paul Darrow: "As I understand it, not really. In fact the answer is no, he didn't. But it was the savagery, if you like, of the conclusion of his series that inspired him to think of an idea for a future series which we have to realise for him."
Maureen Marrs asks: "I believe you recently starred in a pilot for a series based on the stories of H P Lovecraft. Any idea when it will will be shown?" Paul Darrow: "The pilot, yes has been filmed. It's going to be pitched to a distributor in January. Other than that, I've seen another script, and sooner would be better than later - but nothing firm yet!"
Julie Horner asks: "What does "pitched" mean in this context?" Paul Darrow: "Pitched means that the producer goes with a product to a distribution co, like BBC, Carlton etc and literally pitches the idea. If the pitch is good, it gets done. A pitch contains many elements, such as storyline, script outline, director, lead actors, some budget and the basic appeal - which market it might attract. B7 already has many of these attributes, and could be said to have a ready made market."
Maureen Marrs asks: "Paul, I know you have already published two novels, have you any plans for a third ?" Paul Darrow: "Yes, I started one, got distracted by one of the characters, who didn't fit in, then started another. I've started several, so there will be a plethora of books!"
Orac: "I believe there are plans for getting Blakes Seven off the ground again, and you are partly responsible for this. Are the BBC keen?" Paul Darrow: "I am partly responsible, in that I'm told I'll be an Associate Producer. Andrew Mark Sewell, the Boss, tells me that is a good job, but not quite as good as his! So we're putting it together. It's too early to know about BBC interest."
Andrew Williams asks: "Is it definite Paul will be the only returning character, or is it possible we might see some other cast members return?" Paul Darrow: "It's a little bit difficult to return to anything if you're dead so the chances of anyone who was killed returning would be slim. But it's up to the writers, and the script is being written as we speak. The obvious person to replace me as Avon would be Brad Pitt... George Clooney as the older Avon!!"
Andrew Williams asks: "Can you please involve Chris Boucher. After Terry Nation, he knows the most about B7 and has the best feel for it." Paul Darrow: "Well, we already have a writer, who is Bev Doyle. He has an extraordinary knowledge of Blake's 7 and a new vision, a vision suitable for a new millennium version."
Sandra Douglas asks: "How far away is the filming of the B7 telemovie from becoming a reality?" Paul Darrow: "We guess, about autumn next year."
Andrew Williams asks: "Will Orac be in the new movie? Even if the Federation had captured it, it would be a strategic goal for Avon to obtain." Paul Darrow: "That's quite a good idea actually! Possibly, I think is the answer... but it is a good idea...."
Julie: "Will the new movie continue the tradition of having Blake's Seven in the title even when there is no Blake?" Paul Darrow: "Possibly. After all, Julius Caesar gets killed off half way through Shakespeare's play so there's no real need to change titles. I would suggest that the title is part of the mythology that is Blakes 7."
Diane Gies asks: "Apart from just 'The B7 Movie' do you have a working title for it yet?" Paul Darrow: "No, not really, still arguing! No, correction, "debating"..."
bobby: "How will you avoid the pitfalls of bringing back a more mature series, I'm thinking of the criticisms levelled at The Phantom Menace when everyone loved Star Wars?" Paul Darrow: "A lot depends on the writer...that's really his job, but there will be no JarJar Binks!"
Tim: "are there any plans for futher B7 radio plays?" Paul Darrow: "Yes, but I don't know when."
Judith Proctor asks: "Can you tell us anything about The Strangerers?" Paul Darrow: "I am allowed to tell you about my character, who is called Seedy. This man is a complete loser and to an extent, the villain of the piece, but quite incompetent! The Strangerers is a comedy, by the way..."
Ridgy: "Do you know yet if The Dreamers will be made into a series?" Paul Darrow: "No, but we are hopeful...."
David B asks: "Is, or was, there anything of Avon in you?" Paul Darrow: "Yes, quite a lot of Avon was me, because Terry gave me carte blanche to develop him as a character so I think Avon is Terry, Me, and Chris Boucher. I am now going to eat a chocolate biscuit!"
Trinity: "So which character aspects did you enjoy developing most in Avon?" Paul Darrow: "His honesty, his self-interest, his ruthlessness, his singlemindedness, his ability to survive in a hostile environment."
Tim: "were there any guests on B7 who were more difficult tthan others or not really fit in?" Paul Darrow: "No. Everybody enjoyed being a guest on B7. In fact, actors were queuing up for guest roles and we had a lot of fun with them. That was the great joy of the show. It was a great joy to be in..."