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Alan Pattillo (1929 - 2020)
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Allard
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 11:30 am    Post subject: Alan Pattillo (1929 - 2020) Reply with quote

Best know for Thunderbirds and other Gerry Anderson series writer and director Alan Pattillo has died on the 16th on January.
He also wrote the Emma Peel episode The Bird Who Knew Too Much.
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Andrew Pixley
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 10, 2022 1:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just going through some notes that I found (which looking for something else) I'd made some years back from Alan Pattillo's paperwork at the BFI... and having forgotten about them I thought I'd better post the info here in case it was of interest to anyone before it vanishes back into my files for another few years...

These are just some very quick notes I made when looking at the papers a few years back, not quotes.

Sun 26/6/66
Thu - visit to Elstree to see Dennis Spooner + Terry Nation - Dennis has new series - Also meeting THE AVENGERS - Brian Clemens

Tue 5/7/66
Tony Barwick visits - told parrot ides for AVENGERS

Wed 10/7/66
Signed comm on THE AVENGERS - parrot story

Fri 13/8/66
Changed plot of A LITTLE BIRD TOLD ME - murder now photographer and not exhibition secretary

Wed 19/10/66
Mon - saw Dennis at ABPC re: THE CHAMPIONS

Mon 31/10/66
No news from Dennis on 2 storylines for THE CHAMPIONS

Thu 3/11/66
Rang Dennis - good storylines - one too like story for SAINT and other too expensive

Mon 7/11/66
Yesterday - another idea for THE CHAMPIONS

Sun 13/11/66
New story too like one Dennis Spooner has written for series

Mon 20/2/67
Last week phoned Brian Clemens - not happy with changes to script - had been problems with director removed during shoot

... so, there we go, just some odds and ends which may or may not be of interest. That's all I have, but the paperwork's at the BFI if anyone wants to investigate further.

All the best

Andrew
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Frankymole
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 10, 2022 2:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Excellent stuff! Thanks, Andrew. I suppose with such a prolific series, and with lots of other productions going on around Elstree and Borehamwood, the danger of storylines being close to something someone else was doing were great. The headaches of a script/story editor's job!

I didn't know the BFI had a written archive like that, were the writers' notes a bequest?
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mousemeat
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 10, 2022 8:17 am    Post subject: Re: Alan Pattillo (1929 - 2020) Reply with quote

Allard wrote:
Best know for Thunderbirds and other Gerry Anderson series writer and director Alan Pattillo has died on the 16th on January.
He also wrote the Emma Peel episode The Bird Who Knew Too Much.


was a huge Thunderbirds fan ...back in the day....also liked that Peel episode as well...great career !
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dissolute
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 10, 2022 5:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Andrew Pixley wrote:

Tue 5/7/66
Tony Barwick visits - told parrot ides for AVENGERS

Wed 10/7/66
Signed comm on THE AVENGERS - parrot story

Fri 13/8/66
Changed plot of A LITTLE BIRD TOLD ME - murder now photographer and not exhibition secretary

Mon 20/2/67
Last week phoned Brian Clemens - not happy with changes to script - had been problems with director removed during shoot


Thanks Andrew, this is great stuff. In the final version of The Bird Who Knew Too Much, the mastermind is the exhibition secretary and the photographer is the red herring.

Do you think 20/2/67 means Alan was displeased with his changes being reverted?
I've also not heard of the director being replaced on this episode, although I have a vague memory about Rossotti not being considered very good by Clemens. The only episode I can think of with two directors (except all those where Johnny Hough did ALL the work, despite being AD) is The Winged Avenger.
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Andrew Pixley
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 10, 2022 8:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Frankymole wrote:
I didn't know the BFI had a written archive like that, were the writers' notes a bequest?


There's all manner of collections of paperwork from people who worked in the industry with all manner of random stuff - writers, directors, cameramen, continuity supervisors, etc. And also quite a lot of paperwork from some of the ITV production companies.

All the best

Andrew
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Andrew Pixley
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 10, 2022 8:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Piers Smile

dissolute wrote:

Do you think 20/2/67 means Alan was displeased with his changes being reverted?


No idea. These are all notes that I made about six or seven years ago when I was down at the BFI. I'd gone down to research "Man in a Suitcase", "The Gold Robbers" and some bits on "Strange Report". The bits on "Strange Report" turned out to be part of the Alan Pattillo collection which also included piles of journals. At the end of the day I had a few minutes spare so I flicked quickly through Alan's paperwork and just jotted down odd things that caught my eye (and some of the notes I can't even read now and I've now idea what they mean - frankly, I struggled with the above).

Wish I could be of more help... but there's never really been cause/opportunity for me to return to make a more detailed study.

All the best

Andrew
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Frankymole
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 11, 2022 7:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dissolute wrote:

I've also not heard of the director being replaced on this episode, although I have a vague memory about Rossotti not being considered very good by Clemens. The only episode I can think of with two directors (except all those where Johnny Hough did ALL the work, despite being AD) is The Winged Avenger.


Roy Rossotti? Who was clearly an unpopular director. He was the original director on the The Prisoner episode 'A Change of Mind', but was sacked on his first day on the job. Patrick McGoohan then directed the episode himself. I recall someone said he saw RR sobbing in the car park...
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 11, 2022 9:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Frankymole wrote:
dissolute wrote:

I've also not heard of the director being replaced on this episode, although I have a vague memory about Rossotti not being considered very good by Clemens. The only episode I can think of with two directors (except all those where Johnny Hough did ALL the work, despite being AD) is The Winged Avenger.


Roy Rossotti? Who was clearly an unpopular director. He was the original director on the The Prisoner episode 'A Change of Mind', but was sacked on his first day on the job. Patrick McGoohan then directed the episode himself. I recall someone said he saw RR sobbing in the car park...


I remember reading about that sacking..eons ago...any reason why he was sacked ? McGoohan, wasn't the easiest actor to work with..and at times, could darn near pain in the arse...
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Frankymole
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 11, 2022 1:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The reasons are lost in the mists of time. Most likely he either wasn't getting through shots at the pace required by McGoohan, or McGoohan was just itching to take over and direct it himself (he'd already directed a couple of his own scripts in the series, and uncredited studio work on one of Don Chaffey's episodes). This was also around the time he "lost it" with Mark Eden and gave Annette Andre a bad time, so was probably at his most antisocial about then. Probably a bit method!
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 11, 2022 8:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Frankymole wrote:
The reasons are lost in the mists of time. Most likely he either wasn't getting through shots at the pace required by McGoohan, or McGoohan was just itching to take over and direct it himself (he'd already directed a couple of his own scripts in the series, and uncredited studio work on one of Don Chaffey's episodes). This was also around the time he "lost it" with Mark Eden and gave Annette Andre a bad time, so was probably at his most antisocial about then. Probably a bit method!


true..also McGoohan went on to star in 'Ice Station Zebra'...1968
and prior to 1962, he turned the role of 007, over moral concerns
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Frankymole
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 12, 2022 2:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes he seems a lot more relaxed in Ice Station Zebra, probably glad that someone else was taking directing/producing/financial responsibility for a change!
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dissolute
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 12, 2022 4:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Perhaps Roy Rossotti was the director Brian Tesler disliked so much:

http://avengersfanforum.s2.bizhat.com/viewtopic.php?t=4109

Quote:

'THE AVENGERS'
I think Brian Clemens' script for "THE
HOUSE THAT JACK BUILT" is absolutely first class, and should
make for a magnificent episode (unless, of course, it's directed
by you-know-who!).

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Frankymole
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 12, 2022 7:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Awww, poor Roy!!! He definitely had a sensitive side, how could everyone pick on him so meanly Smile
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mousemeat
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 12, 2022 7:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Frankymole wrote:
Yes he seems a lot more relaxed in Ice Station Zebra, probably glad that someone else was taking directing/producing/financial responsibility for a change!


true, and he was a pretty good actor..when the acting gig, appeal to him..but he could be a real pain in the rump...I remember listening to some of the commentaries on the 'prisoner' remake 6 episodes..and when the producers asked Patrick if he would like a small part in the reboot, he replied..only if he could be Number 2....

I found it also interesting that during the danger man run, he used several accents for John Drake, as the series went on
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Andrew Pixley
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2022 3:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dissolute wrote:

I've also not heard of the director being replaced on this episode, although I have a vague memory about Rossotti not being considered very good by Clemens.


... and just now I was browsing through Marcus Hearn's beautiful "A Celebration" book and there's a photo of Peter Graham Scott on set directing the later scenes of the episode. Looks like he took over...

All the best

Andrew
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dissolute
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2022 12:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Andrew Pixley wrote:
dissolute wrote:

I've also not heard of the director being replaced on this episode, although I have a vague memory about Rossotti not being considered very good by Clemens.


... and just now I was browsing through Marcus Hearn's beautiful "A Celebration" book and there's a photo of Peter Graham Scott on set directing the later scenes of the episode. Looks like he took over...

All the best

Andrew


Thanks Andrew, it's great to get visual confirmation and the identity of the replacement director.
The photo (The Avengers: A Celebration, Hearn, Marcus, Titan Books October 2010 first edition, p. 113) also suggests that Peter brought Alan Hume in to replace Wilkie Cooper as director of photography.
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2022 2:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

dissolute wrote:
Andrew Pixley wrote:
dissolute wrote:

I've also not heard of the director being replaced on this episode, although I have a vague memory about Rossotti not being considered very good by Clemens.


... and just now I was browsing through Marcus Hearn's beautiful "A Celebration" book and there's a photo of Peter Graham Scott on set directing the later scenes of the episode. Looks like he took over...

All the best

Andrew


Thanks Andrew, it's great to get visual confirmation and the identity of the replacement director.

The photo (The Avengers: A Celebration, Hearn, Marcus, Titan Books October 2010 first edition, p. 113) also suggests that Peter brought Alan Hume in to replace Wilkie Cooper as director of photography.



Sounds like a victim of studio politics (?)
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dissolute
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2022 7:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, maybe, but as Scott had no other credited directing assignments for series 5 I don't think so.

It was Wilkie Cooper's last appearance though, so perhaps there's something in that. He did the first 5 episodes of series and after that Alan Hume alternated with Ernest Steward. Alan was credited for 10 episode of series 4, 8 of series 5 and 8 of series 6 so they obviously liked his camerawork.
Perhaps Wilkie was burnt out after five episodes back to back in two months, or quit in solidarity when Roy was let go.

Peter was a producer as well as director and had been rushed in to save The Town of No Return after Beth was sacked so he must have had a reputation for getting things over the line. They must have called him in to save this one too after they fired Rossotti.

He famously directed and produced The Children of the Stones, and was producer as well as director for The Onedin Line, The Troubleshooter, Tales of Mystery, and Into the Labyrinth among other shows.
https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0779670/?ref_=fn_al_nm_1

Interestingly, Mike Richardson suggests in his book that Rossotti replaced Scott, rather than the other way round (Bowler Hats & Kinky Boots, p.197).
So perhaps Scott was fired, and Roy, who had been filming the tag scenes down at Beaulieu was brought in quickly to fill in.

Mike then mentions on p. 203 that Jack Greenwood brought in Peter Duffell to replace Gordon Flemyng and there being political fallout for that, effectively closing the door to Duffell being used again.

On p. 206 he talks about the Avengers new A & B crew rotation to enable them to get through the episode churn rate better, and Hume and Steward replaced Cooper, so the evidence for Scott replacing Rossotti seems strong there, to tie in with Hume coming on board again.
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dissolute
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2022 9:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Another factor that supports Peter replacing Roy is that he wasn't credited for completing "The Town of No Return" either, I guess it depends how much had been filmed when the director changed.

Also, if Rossotti has been fired from other production, he has a bit of a track record for it.
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