Caroline Catz takes viewers behind the scenes of Doc Martin to discover the secrets of the ITV drama’s huge success in a special documentary, Farewell Doc Martin.
The documentary reveals how Doc Martin began, in 2004, following the film Saving Grace in which Martin Clunes starred as a GP, Dr Martin Bamford, but a very different character to the grumpy medic in the popular television series.
Footage from Saving Grace, and from the archives of the ten series of Doc Martin illustrate the journey of one of Britain’s most popular dramas. Martin Clunes and the regular cast reminisce about the making of the drama, recalling their favourite memories
Producer Philippa Braithwaite explains how in test screenings of Saving Grace the character most people liked was the doctor. But ITV wanted the lead character to be different.
Martin explains how they made his character different from the doctor in Saving Grace: “We just struck with the thing of being wrong at every point. It’s wrong to wear a suit in the sea.”It’s wrong to drive a car that big in Cornwall.”
The show’s production designers show how they transform the picturesque village of Port Isaac, in North Cornwall, into the world renowned fictional hamlet of Portwenn, and create the various scenes which challenge the Doc, with an array of stunts and special effects.
Doc Martin has millions of fans world wide. Some of them have formed fan clubs which thrive on social media, including the Clunatics and the Bert Large Lovers Group. The dedicated organisers of the fan clubs arrange events during filming for the fans who have travelled from all over the world to catch a glimpse of the stars.
The documentary is produced by Evie Bergson-Korn, the executive producers are Philippa Braithwaite and Mark Crowdy, and the director is Stuart Orme.
Airs Thursday 29th December on ITV1.