Planet Earth III

Ella Langley: Interview with Luke Rollason

"When you feel alone the easiest thing is to re-join the majority. And I’ve done it many times."

I am an ugly laugher, but I have rarely cackled as outrageously as I did throughout Luke Rollason’s Planet Earth III at last year’s Edinburgh Fringe. Luke tells me he never anticipated himself working on a piece for so long, but the show is going strong and about to enjoy a run at London’s Soho Theatre from April 3rd – 6th 2019. Set in the very future we are all trying to avoid, ecological collapse has led to the extinction of thousands of creatures, including the BBC. Right on programming schedule, however, Rollason, a determined intern, is making the third series of Planet Earth anyway - using a few remaining office materials, almost no words and a lot of imagination. I spoke to him about the development of the show’s environmental conscience.

Spark: I love the idea of the show, where did the Planet Earth III office supply format come from?

I had just got back from a clown course in a forest in Wales, and I had to do something for a gig. I had an eight year old's tracksuit and I wrote this really complicated number about being a runner. I was like "fuck I can’t do that, but I do have this office lamp. So, I’ll just put that on my head and turn it on and off and make funny noises". That was all I had. Then these David Attenborough voiceovers about Angler fish.