Landscapers producers explain love story behind true crime ‘Emotional punches’

Landscapers: Olivia Colman stars in HBO trailer

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Starring Olivia Colman and Daniel Thewlis as Susan and Christopher Edwards, the off-beat Sky and HBO drama is told through the eyes of the couple rather than the police force investigating the crime. Explaining this decision to and other media, producers said the story demonstrates the “power of love”.

Co-writer and executive producer Ed Sinclair described the potential for a love story he saw in the real-life case.

Explaining the fantasy world Susan and Chris seem to live in, Ed commented: “It’s basically the world that Susan and Chris have created in the story they’ve told about that night.

“And it’s the story they’ve told each other over 15 years, and in real life gave them a real degree of comfort when they were going to hand themselves in.

“But what happens, of course, when you have been together and you’re in love and telling each other stories in a bubble like that –  it’s from the outside and with police case, things changed.

“It was actually developed as an answer to a practical problem because once we get into the interrogation rooms, we knew early on, we didn’t want it to be a police procedural.

“And also Chris and Susan were separated by the end of the first half.

“I hope by the first episode people are quite invested in their love story and want to see  how that plays out.”

Director and co-writer Will Sharpe also talked about how Landscapers differs from most true crime dramas.

He explained: “As I started writing and developing the scripts with Ed, it was clear that we both saw this principally as a love story between Susan and Chris – a strange one, but a love story nonetheless.

“Yes, we were inviting the audience to enjoy the thrilling aspects of the mystery, but we were keen to lean on the human aspect more than the nitty-gritty of the crime.

“I’ve always thought of Landscapers as a kind of romantic psychodrama and the procedural stuff is all for free.

“We also both wanted this show to be funny, as well as to deliver its emotional punches, to find ways to balance humour with the darker aspects.

“A lot of this came from the peculiarities in the relationship between Susan and Chris, but we also found ways to mine comedy from the supporting characters in the police and to have fun with the procedural as well.”

Susan and Chris shot dead William and Patricia Wycherley – Susan’s parents, at their Nottinghamshire home in 1998.

They managed to keep their crime a secret for 15 years until they eventually gave themselves up to the police.

After killing the elderly couple and burying them in a shallow grave in their garden, Susan and Christopher then proceeded to steal more than £245,000,

In telling their story, the Sky drama explores the reasons they killed Susan’s abusive parents, ad the love between the couple.

Landscapers is available to watch on Sky Atlantic and NOW in the UK.

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