Monday, September 10, 2007

A tribute to Clive Exton

Further to our round-up of obituaries for Clive Exton, Guild TV Committee Chair, Gail Rennard, has written this tribute:

Since Clive Exton died last month, I've read various obituaries, but I'd like to add a tribute from a Guild perspective. I didn't have the pleasure of knowing him, but from everything I've heard from fellow Guild members, I wish I had.

Aside from being an enviably talented writer, Clive Exton was joint Deputy Chair of the Guild (along with Michael Baker) from 1991-1993. Exton was also fundamental in getting the Guild's awards relaunched after a period of financial hardship...sound familiar?

Former Guild Chair and Treasurer Mike Sharland had known Clive since they were young writers at Associated London Scripts, when they used to have offices opposite each other (alongside Eric Sykes, Spike Milligan, and Galton and Simpson.) Sharland explained that Exton was "one of a few staunch members who brought back the Guild awards... even offering to cover any financial losses himself." You can't say fairer than that.

This November the Guild will once again be re-instating our awards and let's hope this time it's permanent. But what better time to thank Clive Exton and all the hard-working members who came before us? Without them, our awards or even our Guild wouldn't exist today. Goodness knows there's still lots of work to be done and other equally dedicated members are doing it, but it's made all the easier because we're standing on giants' shoulders.

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