INTERVIEW: Wolfblood Creator Debbie Moon

So with new children’s supernatural drama Wolfblood currently airing on CBBC we dragged showrunner and head writer Debbie Moon off into the woods to talk a little bit about the show.

GS: Where do you get your story ideas from, considering the show is told from the point of view of 14-year olds?

DM: In a way, writing from the point of view of 14-year-olds isn’t that different to writing adult characters. They’re interested in the same things – friends, family, status, identity, where they fit in the wider world – but they deal with them in a different way, in a different social environment. And it’s an environment we all remember very well: so much of who we are as adults is formed when we’re teenagers…

I tend to find ideas appear from all over the place – a photograph, a line of dialogue from a film that could mean something else in a different context… The idea for Wolfblood actually came to me in a charity shop, as I was looking through second-hand books, and my eyes skipped from half of one title to half of another and came up with with the word “Wolfblood”. That’s interesting, I thought – what’s a Wolfblood? And the whole story grew out of that question.

GS: Given that werewolves are in Twilight and other franchises (Teen Wolf, Becoming Human, etc), did you feel it was a risk pitching a show like ‘Wolfblood’ to BBC?

DM: The idea took about three years to reach the screen, so when I first took it to CBBC, Twilight was quite a new phenomena and the Teen Wolf TV series hadn’t been made. So I like to think everyone else has just caught up with me!

But seriously; there are ideas, characters and creatures that we keep coming back to and retelling in each generation, because they tell us something profound about what it means to be human. There’s always room for different interpretations for different audiences, and obviously a version of the werewolf myth for 8 – 12 year-olds is very different to those other versions…

GS: What would you think sets Wolfblood apart from other similar shows?

DM: It’s partly to do with our audience, of course; though the target audience is eight upwards, you always have to be aware there could be younger siblings watching too, so we have to consider the level of threat in each episode very carefully. And that shapes the way we deal with being a Wolfblood: it’s never presented as being a curse or a burden, but as something natural, wonderful, but which you have to be careful about sharing.

But also, underneath the supernatural elements, Wolfblood is very much about what it’s like to be a teenager – to feel different, weird, isolated, to worry about your relationship with your friends and your family, to be bombarded with images of what’s ‘normal’ and worry that you don’t match up to them.

The screenwriter and director John Rogers says that if you want to know what a series is really about, look at the final scene of the pilot episode: and for me, Wolfblood is about the moment in that final scene where Maddy tells Rhydian ‘you’re normal, this is all normal – for a Wolfblood’. What she’s saying, and what he’s understanding for the first time, is: it’s okay to be what you are. And that’s very much our take on the werewolf myth.

 

GS: Will we discover the origin of the ‘Wolfblood’ (being as they are not ‘bitten’)?

DM: I’m not sure there’s a lot to discover, really! Wolfbloods have always been there, a sort of parallel branch of human evolution. We’ve tried to keep our explanations as ‘scientific’ as we can, given the subject matter, but sometimes you have to go with what’s more dramatic – and again, we have to consider our audience. Since we can’t have naked teenagers running around CBBC, we’ll never quite resolve the awkward question of what happens to their clothes when they transform…

GS: Has there been any mention of the show being renewed for a second season?

DM: We’re waiting for a decision at the moment. Audience reaction seems to have been very positive, and we have lots of ideas for a second season, but we’ll have to wait and see…

GS: Tell us one good thing and one bad thing about working on the show?

Probably the best thing has been working with our fantastic team of writers and script editor. Writing for television is probably the most collaborative form of writing in existence, which is part of the fun; it’s about finding a team who will keep the characters true to themselves, but also find nuances and elements of each character that perhaps you might not have seen yourself. And everyone involved has really embraced the idea and the characters and taken them to new and exciting places.

For me, I’m not sure there’s been a bad thing, really. I’ve been really lucky to work with people who’ve really committed to the characters and the world, and the cast in particular are fantastic and bring so much authenticity to the show. Though I’m sure that if you asked the cast and crew this question, they’d probably say night shoots in the woods during the wettest, coldest February and March for decades. When they look freezing cold in those night scenes – that’s not just acting!

GS: Do you have anything else you working on that you can tell us about?

I have a couple of film projects in development, one sci-fi thriller and one a sort of Steven King style supernatural drama, and a television crime drama that I’m hoping to find a home for. And there’s always a pile of ideas waiting to be written!

Many thanks for your time Debbie!

Wolfblood airs every Mondays and Tuesdays at 5.15pm on CBBC

Reporters: Sliverfox/Nuge

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38 comments

  1. Jess /

    Will there be a DVD out when the episodes are all done?

  2. I asked your question to Debbie Moon, the writer/creator of Wolfblood. This was her response:-
    @DebbieBMoon: @Dion_Scrolls There will be a DVD release, but I don’t really have any details on that at the moment. Will keep you updated #wolfblood

  3. I posed your question to Debbie directly. This was her response:-
    @DebbieBMoon: @Dion_Scrolls There will be a DVD release, but I don’t really have any details on that at the moment. Will keep you updated #wolfblood

  4. neil /

    will the theam song be released it is awsom?

    • Hi there, I asked Debbie and this was her reply:
      “The music bods are aware how popular it is, so I would imagine it will be released at some point.”
      If any of you wish to interact directly with Debbie you can catch her on Twitter as @DebbieBMoon where she is happy to take questions.

  5. Lou /

    will there be a second series of Wolfblood?

    • She can’t say a definitive yes (television being the fickle business it is) until the order actually comes in from the Beeb – but Debs said that responses have been positive all round, so there is a very strong chance.

      • Lou /

        Thank you, and I think I speak for every one who has seen wolfblood that we would love a second series so i hope they do decide to order another series, and again thank you.

  6. simmi /

    hi there I want to know, if Debbie gets the permission for the second series, will she keep the characters same? as they are all amazing and shown they are sutiable for their role

    • Here’s what Debs has to say about this on Twitter – ‘If it does (go to a second series): same place, same characters. Assuming our talented cast haven’t been swept off to Hollywood, of course! :)’

      • simmi /

        first of all sorry for such a late reply been busy with studies
        thank you soooo much 🙂
        I heard there will be a second series coming as Bobby, Amiee said on CBBC after the last epsiode finished therefore, is it possible for a little romance bewteen Maddy and Rhydian? could you ask her this question please?
        thanks once again 🙂

  7. Ollie /

    If there is a season 2 will Rhydian be in it? As he was awesome!

    • Hi Ollie, check my reply to Simmi. It looks like that’s the plan. You don’t mess with a great cast.

  8. Just in case anyone missed the news yesterday, Debbie confirmed yesterday that Wolfblood HAS been renewed for a second season. Arrooooo!

    • simmi /

      do you know when it is going to start or will CBBC confirm that as well as Debbie?

    • Lou /

      YAY! More Wolfblood 🙂 and thank you so much 🙂

  9. Lisa /

    will there be a dvd coming out, i really hope so, im also dying for the second series i love woofblood to bits i feel like i really connect with it, and if there is a second series please keep the same cast they are amazing!, such talented actors x

    • simmi /

      I agree feel lik am connected to it too want it back on really quick it may come around Next year in Feb 2013 as it will take time to shoot etc…

    • There will be a DVD. We don’t know when, though.

  10. will there be another episode of wolfblood

    • Another series has been commissioned. More news about it when we hear from the creators.

      • Shannon Louise /

        when will the next series be out and is booby lockwood going to be in it.

  11. simmi /

    Thanks Dion for the reply 🙂

  12. Shannon Louise /

    Hi will there be a second series of wolfblood and when will it be on air.

  13. Debbie /

    V.good

  14. Hi when will the second series of wolfblood be out. It says the 4th of jan but it is not. Can you help.

  15. Jasim /

    I love wolf blood or what I just wanted to ask a question why does the writer in wolfblood want maddie and rhydian to be couples

  16. wolfie /

    i am going to watch wolfblood everyday and nothng will stop me

  17. Poppi /

    I Live in Australia for me the last episode will be on the 11/4/13. I was hoping for a long one. When is it come out on DVD in Australia? I will be sad,

  18. wofy /

    I hope season 2 comes out soon coz am dying here I wana c more of Rhydian and maddy

  19. is there going to be a season 3 ?

  20. Alanna /

    I would also like to know if wolfblood is coming to Australia cause ive just started watching it and im dying to buy it and anything wolfblood 😀

  21. It’s lovely to see that the Wolfblood love is still thriving out there in the wide world.
    I’ve not heard any news about international distribution, unfortunately. I suspect you would need to contact the BBC for that kind of information.
    What did you all make of Season Three? How did you cope without Maddy? Are you hungry for more, or do you feel the story has come to a satisfactory close?

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