Takin' Over The Asylum
Takin' Over The Asylum was first broadcast on BBC1 as a six-part series in September 1994. It is written by Donna Franceschild, directed by David Blair and stars Ken Stott and David Tennant in award winning debut performances, plus a cameo from Spike Milligan.
Stott stars as Eddie McKenna, a double-glazing salesman who moonlights as a DJ for hospital radio in a Scottish mental asylum. He nurtures close friendships with the patients there including Francine (Katy Murphy), a self-harmer, and Campbell (Tennant), a manic depressive, with whom he shares a dream to make it onto the commercial radio scene.
Campbell's inspired antics promise to bring the pair closer to their aim, but the pressures of life outside of the hospital begin to tell on Eddie. A vindictive colleague leads his small-minded boss to ban his activities and his eccentric grandmother returns suddenly to Lithuania leaving him penniless and alone.
Eddie finds himself drawn to the troubled Francine, but when the radio is threatened with closure he turns to Campbell for comfort. As Campbell regains control over his life and courts success, Eddie's goes into decline and he is finally forced to face his own illness - alcoholism.
Takin' Over The Asylum provided breakthrough acting roles for both Stott and Tennant. The black comedy went on to win several awards, including a BAFTA for best drama serial in 1995, as well as praise from mental-health groups.
First released: Monday 9th June 2008
- Audio commentary with David Tennant
- Never seen before footage: David Tennant's original audition tape for the role of Campbell
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