Was it all Bill Shakespeare's fault?

I would like to request any communications between any employees of the BBC and any employees of the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) during the period from 28 September 2006 to 11 September 2007.

This Freedom of Information request looks somewhat random until you look at the detail and find that what the person is really interested in is communications with the RSC from Russell T Davies, Phil Collinson, Julie Gardner, Jane Tranter and Peter Fincham, and that the subject is "David Tennant going off to act at the RSC".

The enquirer doesn't really give much in the way of comment, but when it was announced that David would be playing Hamlet, it was misreported at the time that Doctor Who would be rested because of it, when in reality the show was taking a break anyway for production (and some say budgetary) reasons and Tennant was decided to take the part in the gap.

Or in other words, "Why isn't there a full series of Doctor Who in 2009, and was it all Bill Shakespeare's fault? I want answers."

Here is the response: "We have checked the records of the contracts team and the individuals you name, with the exception of Russell T Davies, who is not a BBC employee. However, our search would have retrieved any information held by the BBC which included communication to or from Russell T Davies. No communication was found that involved Peter Fincham, Jane Tranter, Phil Collinson or Russell T Davies. "

My italics. That's presumably because he's a freelancer like the other writers and that explains how that works, at least to me.

You can read the emails in this .pdf file.

There isn't an awful lot there, other than two people touching base over whether David will be able to attend the RSC's press launch last year, and much of the conversation took place over the phone, which is probably not the loaded gun person who made the information original information request was looking for. But you definitely get the feeling that everything went mental and dates were moved up because the Daily Mail got the story out before anybody really wanted them to.

Still, though they're not particular interesting right now, these four emails are precisely the kind of thing some future Andrew Pixley (Doctor Who historical researcher) might me interested in reading, especially with the fear that with much of this correspondence happening via ephemeral email, that archives such as this one recently released by the BBC won't be available for scrutiny.

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