Lez Cooke
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The hostile waters of British television in a deregulated age
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Since Edge of Darkness, Troy Kennedy Martin has had relatively little work produced. In the twenty years since that award-winning serial, he has been credited for just four screenplays, two of which were scripts where he helped out with re-writing or made a minor contribution, and one was an adaptation. In this new broadcasting environment, the contribution of the writer is devalued. Television executives now set the agenda for the type of drama produced and power has shifted from the writer and the producer to channel controllers. In this new deregulated environment original, authored drama gradually disappeared from the schedules and the opportunities for writers, whether new or established, to get original, non-generic drama commissioned declined. The other significant factor in this period, as far as Kennedy Martin's work is concerned, is that screenplays for feature films and television films far outnumber the drama serials he has worked on since Edge of Darkness.

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