TV and Film:Terry Pratchett: Back in Black

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Terry Pratchett Back In Black
Title Screen
ASIN [1]
IMDB 6468114
First Broadcast 11 February 2017
Broadcast Channel BBC TWO
Director(s) Charlie Russell
Producer(s) Charlie Russell
Starring Paul Kaye, Andrew Ryan
Duration 50 minutes
Episodes 1
Series TV and Film
Annotations Annotations for TV and Film:Terry Pratchett: Back in Black
Preceded by Terry Pratchett Facing Extinction
Followed by '
All data relates to the UK home release.


When writer Sir Terry Pratchett died in 2015 he was working on one last story: his own. But Terry’s Alzheimer’s meant he never got to finish it. This poignant and humorous documentary finally tells the remarkable tale of this hugely popular author, the creator of the Discworld series of fantasy novels, whose books have sold over 85 million copies worldwide.

Starring Paul Kaye as Terry, the film is told in his own words with assistance from Neil Gaiman, Val McDermid and his long serving assistant, and now business manager, Rob Wilkins.

Back in Black reveals that Terry's road to success was not always easy, from his troubled schooldays to being dismissed by literary critics, to his battle with Alzheimer's. But knighted by the Queen, adored by millions of fans and with a legacy of 41 much loved novels - Terry Pratchett is still having the last laugh.


Paul Kaye as Terry Pratchett

The programme begins with the announcement of Terry Pratchett's death on the BBC News before moving to a funeral parlour where Terry Pratchett, played by Paul Kaye, introduces the documentary. Rob Wilkins is interviewed discussing Terry's absence and some clips from his memorial are played with excerpts from speeches by Rob, Tony Robinson and Neil Gaiman. Terry then discusses his career at the Buck's Free Press and the inspiration for his first novel The Carpet People; this leads into an interview with Colin Smythe who talks about the beginning of their partnership.

Neil Gaiman speaks about his first meeting with Terry and how their friendship and later Good Omens began. Stephen Briggs shows the original notes that he created in compiling The Discworld Companion and remembers calling Terry up to ask permission to perform Wyrd Sisters as a stage-play. The next interview is Rhianna Pratchett who discusses her relationship with her father and Equal Rites her favourite Discworld book and Esk the character based on her. Terry visits the village of Forty Green where he grew up and talks about his childhood and the library. Conventions are then discussed next and a selection of fans are interviewed, Terry muses on how he met Arthur C. Clark in a toilet at a science fiction convention.

Paul Kidby discusses working on the covers for the Discworld novels and understanding the characters. Terry then talks about Death his most popular character the reaction this creation has garnered from fans. In Wincanton Bernard Pearson talks about the Discworld Emporium and how it grew. Terry then talks about his school days and how he was told he would not amount to much. Then two clips from review shows are shown discussing Terry's works and how the reaction to them has changed over time. Author Val McDermid talks about Night Watch and Terry mentions his knighthood.

The documentary then begins to talk about Alzheimer's, with Terry describing it as being like a very slow motion crash and Rob relates how Terry used his anger at the disease to fuel his writing. The documentary then rounds off with emotional remembrances from Neil, Rhianna and some fans before Terry signs off saying 'Don't bugger it up.' and the credits roll over Eric Idle singing at Terry's memorial service.

External Links

BBC TWO Trailer

Behind the scenes

Extended Scene