ITV is producing a new crime drama named Walter which will star Line of Duty’s Adrian Dunbar and The Iron Lady’s Alexandra Roache. The drama is being written by ITV executive Kevin Lygo under a pseudonym, aka Ruby Solomon. The pilot for the new series Walter will premiere on Friday 8 August.
In a move reminiscent of JK Rowling’s penning of crime stories under the pen name Robert Galbraith, Lygo submitted the script for Walter under the name Ruby Solomon.
Although the drama about world-weary DI Walter Gambon is made by ITV Studios so was sent by Lygo to the corporation, BBC director of television Danny Cohen, comedy commissioning controller Shane Allen and BBC1 controller Charlotte Moore had no idea when they said they wanted to go ahead with the show that it had been written and created by the ITV executive.
Lygo said they simply liked the fact that it was slightly different from other police dramas and was “modern yet had something nostalgic about it”.
However, the BBC executives “howled with laughter” when he eventually revealed he was in fact Solomon.
Lygo said he pitched Walter to the BBC as he thought it was slightly more suited to BBC1 than ITV but also to avoid any conflicts of interest as he is managing director of ITV Studios: “I thought it was cleaner. It’s a bit close to home here.”
He also said the nature of the drama and writing it under a pseudonym appealed, “partly because I’m naturally a bit mischievous” but also wanted an honest response from people in the industry.
Lygo added: “When I started writing it it became quite an amusing thing. I played that up. That was partly what the BBC liked.”
He wrote it at the weekends and “ended up with something somewhere between New Tricks and Minder. It’s not laugh out loud comedy. It’s amusing and at times absurd but in a realistic setting.”
Walter also stars The Iron Lady’s Alexandra Roache and Lygo’s daughter Madison, who appears in Terry Gilliam’s film Zero Theorem.
Finish this article here: http://www.theguardian.com/media/2014/jul/30/itv-studios-kevin-lygo-bbc-drama-walter
Walter, ITV’s next crime/police drama, will premier on Friday 8 August. It promises a bit of a different format and character than previous ITV police dramas and promises to be more entertaining. Lygo’s goal at ITV is to keep programming “fresh and relevant.” Let’s see if this holds true with the new series, Walter.