I recently binged on the British series Loch Ness, a crime drama based in Scotland. The show is currently being streamed on Acorn TV in the United States. I have never been to Scotland but I constantly hear from many friends how amazing the scenery is. Given that the last few months I haven’t been traveling, I needed a virtual travel fix. Loch Ness was off to a slow start but after a few episodes we were hooked and taken by the surprise ending. I had the opportunity to interview Tim Haines, the Emmy-winner producer of the show. This is what he had to say about how location influenced the series:
Interview with Tim Haines, Producer of Loch Ness
Was there any piece of scenery that you absolutely wanted to include in the series?
Loch Ness was the iconic centerpiece of the series. We were keen to capture it in different lights (sunny and still, wild and windy) as it represented the dark soul of the show. Also, I managed to sneak Glen Coe (a landmark in the Scottish Highlands) in.
How easily did the scenery lend itself to the storyline/script?
In many ways, the story was built around the scenery. Every drama is deeply influenced by its environment and this was no different. The brooding presence of the Loch, the wild openness of the moors. The story would not exist without them.
How important was it to choose a fictional village for the story?
The Loch is such a mythic place, it fitted in well with the dramatized version of reality which the show represents. We felt only a fictional town would fit in with this.
The stunning scenic shots serve as great advertisements for Scotland as a tourist destination, did that aspect play a role in your mind when producing this miniseries ?
We were hugely assisted by Creative Scotland but I have to say no, we wanted to make the show anyway. We wanted to set it in a modern but slightly mythic version of Scotland. If that is good for tourism, then so be it.
Given its climate, Scotland can have some very dreary days, yet the series feels very ‘bright’, despite the storyline. Was that a conscious decision?
Yes. As I mentioned, we are presenting a slightly exaggerated version of the Highlands. Having said that, the landscape is very rich in color and there is a ‘big’ sky.
How did weather impact shooting?
We had a poor summer even by Scottish standards. In some scenes, the actors had to have their hoods up. However, that is all part of the place and although it really slowed us up at times I am glad we captured it.
About Loch Ness
Acorn TV Original Series LOCH NESS. Released on June 19th, this six-part series stars Laura Fraser (Breaking Bad, The Missing) and Siobhan Finneran (Downton Abbey, Happy Valley) in the hunt for a serial killer. Watch the trailer here. An Emmy and BAFTA winner, Tim Haines has a diverse portfolio of work.