Thursday 8 December 2016

Sally Wainwright admits regret at killing off Kate in Last Tango In Halifax

Published 25/08/2016 | 16:51

Sally Wainwright killed off the new wife of Sarah Lancashire's character Caroline
Sally Wainwright killed off the new wife of Sarah Lancashire's character Caroline

Last Tango In Halifax creator Sally Wainwright has admitted the great regret she feels at killing off lesbian newlywed Kate in her popular drama.

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Wainwright, who is also responsible for hit show Happy Valley, said she was shocked by the backlash she experienced after she killed off the new wife of Sarah Lancashire's character Caroline.

In a frank conversation with fellow screenwriter Russell T Davies at the Edinburgh international TV festival, Wainwright said she struggled with the public reaction to the storyline.

She told Davies: "I t was a shock, I didn't realise how attached the audience had become to that relationship and those characters. I found it hard and I regretted it.

"I wished I had found a better story."

When Davies told her he could have predicted the anger of fans, Wainwright said she wished he had said something, adding: "I was on the cusp and wasn't sure if it was the right thing to do. You worry afterwards if you could have worked harder or if it was a lazy choice because those were the criticisms."

Wainwright revealed she has just finished writing the Christmas special of the BBC One show, but admitted it would be a while before audiences get to see a highly anticipated third series of Happy Valley.

She said: "It will happen but it will be a little white. I've got some good ideas."

Wainwright, who confirmed she is working on a TV musical, also said she would be open to bringing back her hit show At Home With The Braithwaites, her sitcom about a woman who wins the lottery but hides it from her family, which ran from 2000 to 2003.

Asked if she would bring it back she said: "Yeah okay. It might be quite interesting but it's probably a mistake."

She also spoke frankly about how accusations of plagiarism over her show Bonkers in 2007 affected her and her work.

She told Davies: "It was weird, it was very strange. I didn't really believe it. I didn't believe it would progress and it didn't because it was completely unfounded, this woman was strange and bonkers herself.

"But even at the time I went into quite a dark place and, looking back, it was a bit of a new period in my writing, it affected me very deeply.

"Finding yourself in the legal system, thinking about what could have happened, was ridiculous."

She said her show Unforgiven, starring Suranne Jones as a woman recently released from prison, came out of what she went through.

She said: "It never went to court but it made my work darker. Prior to that happening I was chiefly a comedy writer."

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