The Fourth Doctor Box Set
Behind the Scenes
Robert Banks-Stewart 1931-2016
Robert Banks-Stewart, who originally scripted The Foe From the Future, passed away on Thursday January 14th 2016. John Dorney, who adaptated Robert's script for this release, wrote in tribute:
'Four years ago I was interviewed for Doctor Who magazine about my upcoming script “The Foe from the Future”. Here's how that interview ended:
“It feels like a collaboration to me, although it's slightly odd collaborating with someone you've never had any contact with. This story feels as though it's 50% Robert Banks Stewart and 50% me. If the story is a success, I owe all that to him, because the material is so good. Robert is the person I most want to impress with this, and I can't wait to see what he thinks."
'I've always loved Robert Banks Stewart's Doctor Who stories. They manage to be both unlike any other story and uniquely Doctor Who in feel. They're skilfully written, with characterisation and dialogue to die for. Seeds of Doom, I particularly adore - I think Harrison Chase is very probably my favourite villain ever in Doctor Who.
'So it was a complete honour to be asked to take his unused storyline for Foe and develop it into a full script for Tom Baker and Louise Jameson. I really wanted to capture the flavour of his two classics, so watched them repeatedly. I used them as a guide - making the villains ruthless, the victims tragic and heartbreaking, the good guys fun and amusing. And the deaths. Oh, the deaths. Brutal and beautifully apt. Everyone seemed very happy with the script, and the recordings went incredibly well. I was as happy as I thought I could be.
'So it was somewhat surprised when I received, out of the blue, an email from Robert himself telling me how much he'd enjoyed it, and thanking me for the nice things I'd said about him in the interview. That email meant the world to me and it was a lovely, generous one to send. I'll always treasure it.
'I sent him an email back thanking him for providing me with excellent source material, and telling him that I'd said nice things because it's easy to speak the truth. Oh, and mentioned my love for Harrison Chase. Because why not?
'It goes without saying that Doctor Who was only a fraction of Robert Banks Stewart's rather glorious television career. His name appearing anywhere was always an indicator of quality. He was a writer of immense talent, and we should be grateful he dipped his toes in our pond. He will be much missed.'