Well, they told me it was a stupid idea to come up with a company name that had an apostrophe in it. And they were right; I’ve never, ever seen it written properly. But there you go. Hamster’s Wheel is a production company I set up mostly to work as a sort of umbrella under which I could gather all the people I respect and like working with. We’re a very modern team in that we are entirely flexible and fleet of foot. If we are working on a lightweight, low-budget internet production, then we hot-desk about the place getting the job done with pretty much no overheads. If it’s a longer, heavier-weight job, we can dig in, take offices and buy a coffee machine. We have made, in conjunction with September Films, 52 episodes of the very successful Blast Lab science series for kids which is broadcast on CBBC, ABC3 TV Australia, TVB Hong Kong and TVNZ New Zealand. Other credits as co-producer include two series of Engineering Connections for BBC2 and National Geographic.
In 2010, Hamster’s Wheel produced Hammond Meets Moss for BBC 4, a really rather grown up and fascinating documentary programme in which Stirling Moss and I talk frankly about his racing career, his legendary status and the way in which his life was affected by the head injuries sustained in his career-ending crash in 1962. Again, we were able to pull together people who have worked together on Blast Lab, Brainiac, Engineering Connections and Top Gear and the quality of their work, height of their aspirations and degree of application is clearly visible in the final production. We were all rather proud of it as a team and the show soon migrated for two outings on BBC2.
For the future, Hamster’s Wheel has several high-profile series in development and pilots for large co-productions commissioned and is about to become involved in cutting-edge internet-based broadcasting. So it’s all going rather jolly well and will hopefully allow our rag-tag team of talented TV professionals to come together yet again on an exciting and – excuse my blushes if I am a little immodest here – groundbreaking production.