The Making of The Daleks' Master Plan
By Derek Handley & Dean Rose


Dean Rose Talks us Through the Making of...
Episode 9 - Golden Death






Golden Death came like a breath of fresh air. After a couple of episodes with little or no material, at last I had an episode with a surplus of photos. There are quite literally dozens of photos of the pyramid models used for Golden Death and Escape Switch. The problem was, although there are dozens of model photos, only a few of them are useful in a recon. Mustn't complain though, as well as the model shots there are also set photos of interiors and exteriors and even few rehearsal photos of Egyptians and Daleks - a real luxury. The interiors of the Egyptian hut proved invaluable in many of the scenes and worked very well as composite backgrounds behind photos or screen grabs of characters.

One thing that did strike me about this episode is that there are quite a few lengthy scenes that contain no dialogue. These are always a bit of nightmare in a reconstruction as it is important to keep the visuals interesting. There are scenes where the Doctor starts to explore the pyramid workings, other scenes where he follows the Monk, scenes of the Monk wandering around, long shots inside the tomb, etc. All of these are quite long scenes with no dialogue. These were heavily supplemented with composite images and captions to keep the viewer focused on what is going on.

One of the important scenes that we wanted to reconstruct well was the transfigurations of the Monk's TARDIS. There are various references and sources of information which state the forms adopted in this sequence but most of these are incorrect (including the BBC CD narrated audio). Production documentation and camera scripts state these variations but the most accurate source is the film shooting script which identifies the models that were used; a stone block, a motorcycle, a state coach, a western wagon, a tank and finally a Police box. Finding images of these items became a bit of a treasure hunt, but we eventually found material to cover each form. Although there were set photos for many of the Egyptian sets, there was not really anything suitable to use as a background for this sequence. Ideally a long shot of a set was required with enough room to insert the various forms of the Monk's TARDIS. To overcome this problem a composite set was constructed using bits and pieces of other sets. A long shot of the Monk's stone block was also built up from two flat panels that were sheared and distorted in Photoshop to give the correct perspective. The sequence was made up of a series of composite images each depicting the various forms of the ship and these were slowly cross-faded in time with the audio to achieve the transforming effect.

For the battle scene between the Egyptians and the Daleks, I didn't really want to use clips from episode 10, mainly because there are a variety of photos of the battle scenes which otherwise would not have been used in the recon. This sequence was edited to produce a rapid succession of images to emphasize the pace of the scene.

The end of the episode was the first opportunity I had to use actual episode footage. The beginning of Escape Switch obviously features a (refilmed) version of the end of Golden Death. This was edited in and synchronised to the soundtrack, with the clip of the bandaged hand emerging from the Sarcophagus being looped to extend it to make it long enough to use as a cliff-hanger and fade out for the credits.