- Company Director
Oliver Morse served his apprenticeship in the BBC at a time when confidence was high, and free and creative thinking were encouraged. Whilst there, he devised and produced two highly distinctive and innovative programme formats: Doctors Dilemmas, which confronted working doctors with intractable ethical problems, and, together with Ian Duncan, Indelible Evidence, a series about true murder stories solved through forensic science. Combining high-end drama with the testimony of serving police officers and forensic scientists, the series was an outstanding creative, critical and ratings success. In both design and content this series has been recognized as being 20 years ahead of its time.
After forming Windfall with Ian and David, Oliver's interest focussed on the observational documentary. Having pinpointed failings in the conventional way of making films about people, he was determined to break down the barrier between camera and subject, and pioneered ways of doing so. He sliced up budgets differently, introduced single person camera teams, small cameras and longer production schedules to allow for relationships to build. He also gained access to areas of life normally considered too difficult to enter. Two of his series for Channel 4, The Decision, and, Fifteen, won the RTS Best Documentary Series Award in successive years.
He also took risks with very young people, giving first chances to a generation of today's most talented directors, including Daisy Asquith, Nichola Koratjitis and Robert Davis. Other notable films include Bullying, The Lion's Den, and Marrying a Stranger, a two part series on arranged marriages in the Asian Community. Oliver then moved on to explore with Ian Duncan ways of combining the beauty, economy and emotional power of drama with the raw present tense uncertainty that documentary has to offer.
Always interested in shining the spotlight on life's most difficult dilemmas. they devised a format which would allow a story's narrative to be shaped by the decisions taken by the real professionals appearing within it. With screenwriter Zinnie Harris and a group of leading actors, they set up stories drawn from life which would challenge the most confident decision-maker. In Born With Two Mothers, a top London fertility team have to think on their feet when it appears that a black embryo may have been mistakenly placed inside a white woman.
In March 2009, on reaching 60, Oliver took a step back from front line production. He remains on the Windfall Board.