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03 December 2008 @ 07:46 am
Info about series three of 'Secret Diary of a Call Girl'  
My google alerts on Billie paid off. I just got a hit with an interview with the producer of SDoaCG and series three is definitely a go. Yay! I can't wait. Pre-production begins in February with the show returning August 2009.

Series producer Rebecca de Souza tells us what's in store for Billie Piper's alter ego in the new series.

Where are you at with series three right now?
"We haven't started pre-production officially. Official pre-production begins when you've hired your director, and that will happen at the end of February. But we have five scripts now and we'll commission another three soon, so right now we're really working on the scripts and the stories."

The recommission for a third series came before series two had even aired. Did you expect such an early pickup?
"No, and it's very, very nice to be in that position because it means you can get ahead of time."

In terms of storylines, did it allow you to sow seeds in series two that will come in to play in series three?
"No, it didn't especially do that. The big advantage it's given us is time to plan the scripts, as opposed to doing it in a kick-bollock-scramble way, which is how we normally work. You always get there in the end with kick-bollock-scramble, but it's exhausting and you tend to spend too much money. It's quite a small budget show, so to be in advance means we can make our money go further."

How many series have you planned for?
"We're only planning for this series, but we've always got our eye on the next series. So, for example, we won't be killing anybody off. We don't know yet if we're having a fourth series - we would hope to - but we have to make sure we have an eye on our richest characters to carry us through. So obviously that's Belle, but there's also Bambi (Ashley Madekwe), who is a significant character in series two and will be in three. And Ben (Iddo Goldberg) and Belle's family."

Will Alex (Callum Blue) be back?
"Alex is not coming back. That really was a love affair that ended and there's no future for them. But Bambi is back and so is Ben and Stephanie (Cherie Lunghi), but we're also introducing another major character who is Belle's editor. One of the major stories in this next series is that Belle is writing a second book. At the end of the last series we flashed forward to her having written a book and becoming quite successful, which is the true life story of the real Belle, so in this series we're exploring her trying to write a second book. Within that she has a relationship - a professional relationship - with her editor, but it also becomes quite a complicated romantic relationship."

Is she still doing escorting as well?
"Absolutely right!"

What else can we expect from series three?
"The main thing is that she's trying to be a writer and that's affecting her escorting work a lot, because she's trying to get bigger and better experiences in the bedroom in order to be able to write about it. So you get the comic effect of that, because she knows she's going to have to write about the experience. You can also expect Bambi to meet an extraordinary client, who she falls in love with, and Ben to decide that he's got to grow up and take his life in a whole new direction."

Belle's family didn't feature too prominently in the first two series. Are there any plans to make more use of them?
"Her sister has a lot to do in this next series. Her sister's going to have a marital crisis and come to Belle for help, and Belle's going to give her own style of help. There will be a finale with the family too."

The tone of series two was slightly different from the first - it seemed more comedic. What was the thinking behind that?
"I don't know how conscious the thinking was. I don't think we ever sat down to say 'let's make it funnier', but I think as we became more confident about the characters it became quite natural. And it's very natural for the third series too. We were very certain in series two that we wanted to dig deeper with the characterisation and to make it more complicated and more thoughtful. All of that sounds like it doesn't necessarily equal comedy, but by going deeper, that's somehow what came out of it."

What challenges did Billie's pregnancy present for filming of series two?
"For Billie herself, the challenge was feeling uncomfortable and tired and needing to go to the loo quite a bit. For us it was about hiding the bump - so we had to use a body double. We obviously had to have sex scenes and Billie couldn't do that. That put a bit of a pressure on the filming schedule because you often had to film a scene twice - first with Billie, then with the stand-in. It was also a really big job for the costume department, because by the time we came to shoot, her size had invariably changed. You can't predict how quickly a bump will change!"

Secret Diary Of A Call Girl returns to ITV2 in Autumn 2009.

I still wish we'd gotten the first book publishing this series instead of that flash-forward, but it looks like we'll still get to see a bit of the struggle that I'd hoped for as I wrote about in my write-up about the series two finale:
"The next chapter." And it just, it didn't work for me on an emotional level. It was too rushed, too much and for the first time ever, Billie's casting in the role didn't work because wig or shades, there is NO way you are not going to recognize Billie Piper as Billie Piper. That jawline speaks for itself. But more than that -- a superficial thing that is easily ignored in the lovely world of willing suspension of disbelief -- was the jump ahead. I was quite, quite looking forward to next series being about Belle juggling the emotional fallout of her broken heart, her escorting, and her writing. Now, well, we've skipped over all of that. Judging by the last line, delivery and smile, Belle's past the rough stages.

I realized what would have made it work for me perfectly. I think it should have ended when Belle typed/voice-overed "The first thing you should know about me is that I'm a whore." And then end there on that blinking period on the computer screen. It would have wrapped up the emotional arc of this season (tying into the Alex-whore convo from the bed scene last week), and opening the chapter for the next series with the writing aspect of Belle.

Ah well.

At least we WILL still be dealing with Belle struggling a bit, and I have no doubt the show will be as amazing as the first two series were. And it also sounds like we'll be in for some comedic and dramatic stuff all-around -- and I'm glad we're going to see more of the family. I can't wait!!
Giorgia: sdoacgbillietazza_di_jo on December 3rd, 2008 01:58 pm (UTC)
Alex is not coming back
;_; Boooo.

Oh, well, it sounds wonderful anyway. Can't wait!
Arabian: Billie Piper_01arabian on December 3rd, 2008 10:32 pm (UTC)
I dunno, I think I would have been disappointed had Alex come back (not that I don't love Callum Blue), but I think they did such a wonderful job with the closure on the Alex/Hannah relationship, so ...

Hey, maybe they can cast Chris or David as her editor?!?!?!
Giorgia: tennantsexylooktazza_di_jo on December 3rd, 2008 10:51 pm (UTC)
Heh, we can dream, can't we? :D
Carolyn: billie looking upfemaelstrom27 on December 3rd, 2008 02:42 pm (UTC)
Oh, thanks for sharing this! I was so hoping they'd do another season. I mean, the finale of S2 seemed so "definitive," you know? I was afraid they'd stop there. But yay, we get at least another 8 episodes of Billie being adorable and sexy and occasionally naked -- and this time we might not need an obvious body double!
Arabian: Billie Piper_04arabian on December 3rd, 2008 10:34 pm (UTC)
You're welcome.

Yeah, that's why I was so excited to read this because of how S2 ended, I was worried that we weren't getting a third series because of some waffling some had heard here and there. So yay!!! (About the Billie being adorable and sexy, LOL! I personally don't care much about the occasionally naked, but I AM glad that we won't be with the ridiculously obvious body doubles!)
Marina: pink flowerjavabreeze on December 3rd, 2008 06:06 pm (UTC)
I just hope series 3 is much more like series 2. I loved series 2 and loved the element it was a lot more comedic than expected. And all the while I read this, I couldn't help but think there goes my dash of hope for a Rose/Ten2 special. :|
Arabian: Rose_smilearabian on December 3rd, 2008 10:31 pm (UTC)
I don't see why we couldn't still get the TenII/Rose special. I'm sure they can fit around her schedule to do one DW special if all participants are willing.
gwynevere1 on December 3rd, 2008 06:27 pm (UTC)
Hi. Here from billie_love.
This is really good news. I had read in some trashy tabloid or another that Billie wasn't going to work for a year after giving birth. I'm glad that's not true!
Arabian: Billie Piper_05arabian on December 3rd, 2008 10:34 pm (UTC)
Hello ::waves::

Yeah, I had heard waffling here and there and stuff about Billie potentially not working too, so I was so happy to read the definitive nature of this post. YAY!

(Ooh, is that Sarah Brightman in your icon?)
gwynevere1 on December 3rd, 2008 11:52 pm (UTC)
Ooh, is that Sarah Brightman in your icon?

Yes! I adore her so much, she's my default icon! ;)
Juliafairnymph on January 2nd, 2009 04:18 pm (UTC)
I have been wanting to check this out...