'Run' is set in Brixton and the surrounding area and this is where it was filmed. I knew the settings to be authentic as growing up in this part of the capital I immediately recognised many of the locations used. Each of the four characters featured in the show in some way or another have to 'run' from whatever situation they were in. Carol (played by Olivia Colman) is a single mother having to deal with two layabout sons who bring tragic grief to her door, Ying (played by Katie Leung) is an illegal Chinese immigrant who to pay off debts owed finds herself on the street trying to sell black market dvd's, Richard (played by Lennie James) is a street bum with a drinking problem, also an ex crack addict to boot who is trying to re-connect with his daughter and finally we have Kasia (played by Katharina Schuttler), a Polish hospital cleaner involved with illegal marriages. On the face of it the impression given is one long depressing journey, however as I stated earlier, this is not the case. One minute you are witnessing a scene so distressing it makes you want to cry and then next moment you find yourself laughing at an absurd gesture or comment heard from one of the characters, not unlike real life.
The most interesting aspect from 'Run' is the fact it was created by two first time writers, brand new to the world of television. They are Daniel Fajemisin-Duncan and Marlon Smith. These two long time friends, both 32 years old, grew up in Brixton. After meeting in the local sixth form college, they got together and started making (in their own words 'crappy') short films. Obviously there was something to what they were doing because they kept at it over ten years, while dealing with the realities of life (paying bills etc.) and eventually got up enough money to film a pilot for 'Run' around the local Brixton area. This was so impressive that Channel 4 got involved and the guys saw their first TV script turned into a fully fledged major production. If there is an overall message I got from the show it would have to be, to survive in such a diverse melting pot of colours and cultures such as London, we all need to work at being a community looking out for each other, without losing our own individual idendities. For first timers, both Fajemisin-Duncan and Smith have shown immense promise for the future. I look forward to their next venture.
I have included a 4 minute video clip of Marlon Smith and Daniel Fajemisn-Duncan ( and others) giving a little insight into the making of 'Run':