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Graeme MacDonald

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RealWorld
Graeme MacDonald
Graeme MacDonald
Other names: Graeme McDonald
Graham McDonald
Birth date: 30 July 1930
Death date: 30 September 1997
In the DWU
Main roles: BBC Head of Serials 1977-1981
Career highlights

Graeme MacDonald was the BBC Head of Serials from 1977 until 1981, when he became Head of Drama.

During his time as Head of Serials, MacDonald had an impact upon Doctor Who. It was ultimately up to him to approve a script and he inspected each of them for elements the BBC did not approve of. An instance was the suicide of Maximillian Stael in Image of the Fendahl, which MacDonald insisted had to take place off screen.[1]

Along with producer Graham Williams, MacDonald was responsible for convincing director Michael Hayes to work on Doctor Who.[2]

MacDonald was unhappy with The Androids of Tara's parody of The Prisoner of Zenda and asked for it to be toned down, with specific references to the book removed.[3]

MacDonald wanted to see a reduction in the slapstick present in Doctor Who. As a result of this, Anthony Read asked Robert Holmes to dampen the humour for his script, The Power of Kroll.[4] After watching this serial, MacDonald was so unimpressed by the set design, that he ordered that designer Don Giles was never to work on Doctor Who again.

In 1977, it was MacDonald who asked Williams not to produce The Vampire Mutation as it would coincide with the BBC's adaptation of Count Dracula. This script would resurface in 1980, becoming State of Decay.[5]

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