sun 12/07/2020

theartsdesk Q&A: Writer/Director David Leland | reviews, news & interviews

theartsdesk Q&A: Writer/Director David Leland

theartsdesk Q&A: Writer/Director David Leland

The leading film-maker on a career made in Eighties Britain

David Leland: 'There was a lot of me in Trevor. I was getting rid of a lot of anger in my system about what I went through in terms of education - or lack of it'

David Leland (b 1947) has worked extensively both sides of the Atlantic but he is best known, both as a writer and a director, for his shrewd observations of ordinary people struggling against the constraints and hypocrisy of the accepted social mores of English life in films such as Mona Lisa (1986), Personal Services (1987) and Wish You Were Here (1987). However, it was Made in Britain (1982), a television play written by Leland for Channel 4 and directed by Alan Clarke, that first brought Leland widespread acclaim and the story of Trevor, a sociopathic skinhead, indisputedly destined for a life of incarceration, is assured of its place in television history.

If I had an axe to grind in any of the films then it would be the violence that adults assert against children

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