The Rabbit

The Rabbit: From Rubber Duck to Rub-a-Duck

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To celebrate the fifth anniversary of my first SX:TV project, Rub-a-Duck, I thought it only appropriate to share this insight into how the film went from script to screen!

This article was originally published in the 2010-2011 academic year.

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The Rabbit: Well, Isn’t That Just Wizard!

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This article was originally published in the 2011-2012 academic year.

With seven books, eight films, and millions of fans across the globe, Harry Potter has undoubtedly become an entertainment phenomenon over the past fifteen years. It’s a franchise that has captivated the minds of many with its tales of the young boy wizard and his magical friends, and as a result it has turned one woman into a multi-millionaire… or billionaire… or perhaps even a zillionaire. The point is, it’s made J.K. Rowling one very wealthy author and she’s probably rolling around in a massive pile of money as we speak, simply because she can.

Anyway, just when you think the udders of the Harry Potter cash cow have been milked as dry as they possibly can be (without managing to stoop to the all-time low that would be an eighth novel – Harry Potter and the Unnecessary Sequel), Warner Bros. have opened up the doors to The Making of Harry Potter, a tour of the film studios that brought the fantastical stories to life. But after a theme park in America and whatever the hell Pottermore is supposed to be, is this yet another cheap cash-in or is it a worthwhile celebration of the series that left children everywhere with lightning bolts drawn on their foreheads (not to mention bumps from running headfirst at the barrier in between Platforms 9 and 10 at King’s Cross station)? As a budding screenwriter and film maker myself, I was lucky enough to head up to the studios to check it out.

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The Rabbit: They Don’t Remake ‘Em Like They Used To

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This article was originally published in the 2011-2012 academic year.

Allow me to set the scene – I am a huge fan of British comedy, in particular our timeless sitcoms (or Britcoms, as they seem to be referred to these days). Whether it’s Rowan Atkinson’s sharp wit in Blackadder or John Cleese’s bumbling antics in Fawlty Towers, our fair country has undeniably produced some classics in its time. So, imagine the excitement I must have felt when I recently heard that US telly producers intend to bring back the most famous Britcom of all, Only Fools and Horses, for an American audience.

Oh, I’m sorry, did I say excitement? I meant disappointment. Or outrage. Or despair. Take your pick, they’re all true.

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The Rabbit: Learn To Speak Proper, Innit!

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This article was originally published in the 2011-2012 academic year.

A couple of weeks ago, I happened to stumble upon a news story that I simply had to write this feature on. It made me laugh, it made me cry, and it made me question modern society like never before. What was it about, I hear you ask? Well, if I were to describe it as being like someone trying to remake My Fair Lady for the present day and setting it in Essex, that wouldn’t be far off.

The story told of how a primary school in Basildon (where else, eh?) has started to give its pupils elocution lessons – yes, you read that right, elocution lessons – in order to help them learn how to speak ‘properly’ rather than using their Essex accents. Frankly, I don’t quite know where to begin with this, but as an Essex boy myself (and one that’s studying Linguistics, at that), I can’t resist sinking my teeth into the debate that this story will no doubt cause. It raises so many questions about the state of the English language and, more specifically, our contemporary perceptions of it.

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The Rabbit: How Unoriginality Stole Christmas

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This article was originally published in the 2011-2012 academic year.

Now, a couple of issues back I stated that one of these days I ought to write an article about how irritating I find the Call of Duty videogame franchise, and with the recent release of Modern Warfare 3, I think it’s about time for me to fulfil that promise. However, before I get bombarded by angry letters telling me how wrong I am and that Call of Duty is the most awesome thing to have graced the planet since cheese and ham toasties, I should make myself clear. When I say I find the franchise irritating, I am being controversial for the sake of being controversial. My issue does not lie with the games themselves (indeed, on the occasions I have played them, they’ve been reasonably fun) – instead it’s something that extends to pretty much everything at this time of year.

Yes, it may not be December yet, but it’s time to unwrap the Christmas articles. But this isn’t going to be your traditional article about the commercialisation of Christmas (which, ironically, is anything but traditional) – rather, this is an observation of how predictable and downright boring the cavalcade of gift ideas always is. To refer back to Call of Duty, it’s a given that every single November there’ll be a new game in the series and that it’ll sell by the bucket load and that it’ll be voted Game of the Year by an endless wave of opinion polls. This annual release tactic also applies to more or less every sports game franchise in existence – again, I’m not doubting their quality, and in these cases it’s actually a tad understandable to have numerous updated instalments so as to keep up with the most current teams – but it cannot be denied that, at the end of the day, it’s a big money spinner meant to make you splash out more of your hard-earned cash year upon year. Heck, some people were so desperate to play Modern Warfare 3 that they paid $1725 for it on Ebay just to get it a measly couple of days early.

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The Rabbit: 3D or Not 3D? That is the Question

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This article was originally published in the 2011-2012 academic year.

It’s mind blowing! It’s eye popping! It’s spectacular! It’s every positive, hyperbolic adjective you could possibly think of, and it’s being shoved right in your face – both literally and figuratively! I speak of course of that gloriously overused marvel of  technology known as 3D, which has single-handedly been both one of the most successful and one of the most pointless features introduced into the world of media in recent times. With Christmas just around the corner, is it worth embracing all of the new 3D-based products that are hitting the market and putting them on your list?

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The Rabbit: Blast From The Past

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This article was originally published in the 2011-2012 academic year.

The month of November is upon us and, Guy Fawke’s Night (or Fireworks Night for the less traditional of you) aside, it might not sound like it’s going to be anything too special. From a gamer’s perspective, however, there’s a fair bit to be excited about. Surprisingly though, this article is not going to focus on the absolutely gargantuan number of titles that are about to flood store shelves in time for the Christmas rush, nor will it be a rant on how annoying I find the Call of Duty franchise (though I really must write about that sometime). Instead, the headline act for me this month is just one particular game, Sonic Generations – a joyous celebration of 20 years of Sonic the Hedgehog – but more specifically, how nostalgia plays such a big role in today’s society.

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The Rabbit: Wonders of the Whoniverse

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This article was originally published in the 2011-2012 academic year.

And so, Saturday 1st October was the day that marked the end of the latest series of Britain’s best loved science fiction programme, Doctor Who (and the day I was left wondering what on earth I’m going to watch on telly now!?). While the quality of the most recent episodes is up for debate – something I’ll get into later – it’s impossible to deny the success that the programme has seen throughout its nearly fifty year run. From its rise in 1963 and fall in 1989 to its second coming in 2005 (not forgetting the failed attempt to bring it back in 1996 with a television movie), over the years it’s been a huge part of British culture as well as one of the BBC’s flagship shows. With it now appealing to people all across the globe on a scale that would have been unimaginable when it first started off, the question to ask is – what has kept it going all this time whilst other shows have crashed and burned in a season or two?

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The Rabbit: It’s a Pun-derful Life

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This article was originally published in the 2011-2012 academic year.

It’s that part of the year again when Valentine’s Day is upon us and everyone starts getting all mushy about everything, so I think it’s time I wrote an article about my one true love in life – puns (or paronomasia, if you want to sound all clever). I warn you now: this feature will not be for the faint of heart, as I will be subjecting you to a number of cringeworthy, perhaps even painful examples of wordplay throughout. But it’s all for a good cause, I promise. Y’see, as much as you might not want to accept it, puns are an important part of what makes the world go round. I guess you could say they’re pun-damental to our existence. Oh ho.

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