7th February 2005 at 8:24 am #506merligoMemberHi Stuart & Bill,
In answer to Stuart's query about Onedin Line finishing (and yes
Bill, you're right I do have an answer), a couple of magazine
articles/interviews I've got say it was a joint decision between
Peter Gilmore and the BBC. Peter was getting tired of playing James
(not surprising after ten years), the scriptwriters were struggling
to come up with new stories, and production costs were soaring
(notably hiring the ships).
Costs were increasing not just for Onedin, the cost of making all
programmes was shooting up, though Onedin was a particularly
expensive programme to produce, and it was a time when the BBC were
struggling financially and inflation was rife in the UK.
So it was agreed, I believe even before series eight started filming,
that this would be the final series. The articles do also imply that
the rest of the cast (notably Jessica Benton and Howard Lang) would
have been happy to continue and one of the reasons Peter carried on
for so long was that he enjoyed working with the others.
I think UK ratings remained fairly steady for the later series and
other countries were still eager to buy the episodes, so I don't
think falling ratings had any influence on the decision but I'm not
positive about this.
Regarding the name Onedin, the BBC weren't happy with the name Cyril
Abraham originally came up with for the series (I think it was
something like The Shipowner … doesn't have quite the same ring as
The Onedin Line, does it?) and he was asked to think of something
else. He found a reference to Ondine (a mythical sea creature and
incidentally the title of a ballet Frederick Ashton created for
Margot Fonteyn) and, playing around with the word, came up with
I have an interview with Cyril from Woman magazine which provides
some background to the creation of the series and describes his first
meeting with some of the cast. Although this isn't directly about
Anne Stallybrass or Peter, because it is such an interesting piece I
want to add it to their site (http://www.gilmore-stallybrass.com) and
hopefully this will be uploaded soon. The article also includes a
rare photo from the pilot showing Sheila Allen as Anne.
Diana7th February 2005 at 4:14 pm #507liamegan2000MemberI believe there might also have been some inspiration for James Onedin from
the real life character Duncan Gibb,
I think, but I can't be sure now, he was mentioned by Cyril Abraham in the
radio interview I previously referred to. My mother was a big fan of the
story, and I had taped the radio interview for her, the cassette was
knocking about for a long time but I don't know where it is now. A pity
because it would be really interesting to hear it again.
Bill.13th February 2005 at 1:08 pm #508ivaradiKeymasterIIRC he may have been based a little on a real life shipowner called
James Baines (hence the splittng of hte name between Willaim Baines
and James O. ) Baines was from a small shopkeepers family like JO,
but I dont know that mcuh about his career, excpet that I think he
may have become bankrupt although he had been very suceessful for a
time. IIR he was a mroe flamboyant character than James, liking ot
party and spend his money freely…
> I believe there might also have been some inspiration for James
> the real life character Duncan Gibb,
> I think, but I can't be sure now, he was mentioned by Cyril Abraham
> radio interview I previously referred to. My mother was a big fan
> story, and I had taped the radio interview for her, the cassette was
> knocking about for a long time but I don't know where it is now. A
> because it would be really interesting to hear it again.
> —– Original Message —–
> From: "Diana" <moonroll@n…>
> To: <email@example.com>
> Sent: Monday, February 07, 2005 7:24 AM
> Subject: [shiponedingroup] End of Onedin Line & Name
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