Directed and produced by BAFTA winner Liz Tucker for Verve Productions, this film is a unique filmic record revealing the devastating reality of motor neurone disease, as it has never been seen before. (Transmission details to be confirmed on Wednesday 25th February)
Four and half years in the making, using an innovative approach to capture scenes that would otherwise have been impossible to film. This deeply personal and emotional documentary charts the story of one remarkable man, Steve Isaac, from the moment he received the heart-breaking news, he had motor neurone disease (otherwise known as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or Lou Gehrig’s disease). A fatal condition that would change his and his family’s life for ever.
Liz Tucker, Executive Producer/Director said: “As soon as I met Steve and his family, I was incredibly moved by their story. Seeing a home video that his son Fraser had filmed, made me realise there was an opportunity here to tell this story in a way that had never been attempted before in a documentary”.
Liz wanted to make a film about Steve and his family in which nothing would be contrived or reconstructed. The viewer would experience the action exactly as it happened. So she hired 22 year old Fraser, Steve’s son, to work on the film and planned that he would stay in the family home and be there 24/7 to shoot crises and emergencies as they happened. While Liz would come down to film the rest of the documentary on a day-to day basis.
Fraser Isaac commented: “Some may think it is weird to film your dying Dad, but I want people to really understand what it feels like. Sometimes it’s really tough, but, and this may sound crazy, there’s loads of times when we still really laugh together”.
Capturing every critical event in the story, the moment it happened, has resulted in a remarkably intimate and honest documentary of a family experiencing the most brutal of times.
Liz Tucker, Executive Producer/Director: “Steve and his family put an extraordinary amount of trust in my hands. Editing their story, without sugar coating it, so that all sides of the story are shown fairly and truthfully is one of the hardest tasks I have ever had to wrestle with. And I am very grateful that Channel 5 had the guts and vision to commit to such complex and long running project”.
During the film, we see Steve’s illness progress and his story take a turn no one could have imagined, leading to some devastating decisions.
Liz Tucker, Executive Producer/Director: “The most powerful films I believe are those that take the audience away from its own reality into the lives and minds of others, making them rethink their world. So I hope that viewers will watch this documentary and think, “what would I do?”
Emma Westcott, Channel 5’s Commissioning Editor – Factual, comments: “Viewers will be deeply moved by this emotional and thought provoking journey as we chart the story of this brave and remarkable family from the beginning of Steve’s diagnosis and the years which follow.”
About Channel 5:
Channel 5 launched as Britain’s fifth public service broadcaster in March 1997 and reaches 4 in 5 of the UK viewing public each month with a broad mix of popular content, including quality factual programmes, entertainment, reality, sport, acquired and original drama and pre-school children’s programming through its award winning Milkshake strand. Sister channels 5* and 5USA compliment Channel 5 with a mix of must see entertainment and US drama, while Demand 5 is a free service to catch up with the latest programmes on Channel 5, 5USA and 5* available across platforms and devices including You View, Sky On Demand, Virgin Media, BT Vision, Xbox1, iOS, Android, Freesat, PS4 and Roku. For all the latest about Channel 5, follow us on twitter.com @channel5press and @channel5_tv.