Monday, May 31, 2010
The Real SAS
Since I'm writing a film about a fictional SAS trooper, research is very important, and as I've posted before I turned to all the books on the Australian SAS I could find. The best I've found has been two books by Keith Fennell, who wrote candidly about his time with the SAS.
In fact his books are quite inspiring, the way he looks at the world, and the determination in the way that he approaches everything is amazing. In Warrior Training he reveals the extremes the men go through as part of the selection course for one of the most professional military units in the world. In Warrior Brothers, Keith talks about the situations he ended up in as part of his duty, and it soon becomes obvious that he has been involved in the majority of the scenarios that reached the public view, the 90 minute firefight in East Timor in '99, on board the 'Tampa', frontline Afghanistan and then as a private contractor in Iraq.
So of course, me being me, I tracked him down and sent him an email about 'Redeemed' and asked him if I can call upon his expertise, as a consultant, or somehow get him to look at the script when it was ready. He was kind enough to take the time to reply. Keith is in high demand, being utilised by corporations for inspirational speaking, team building exercises, security appraisal, plus consulting with film and TV projects already.
So he's busy for the rest of the year, but he still took the time to send me several emails in reply to my requests, one of which is to use a poem he wrote about his SAS mates, it sums up the incredible bond they share, and is something I wish to capture in my film. This was the response -
Thanks for the great feedback, I'm stoked that you would like to use the poem. I don't have a problem with - to be honest I'm honoured mate - but I'll check with my publisher just to make sure there are no copyright issues.
His publisher Random House gave permission, and I will be using it in the film. An original poem, about the SAS, from an SAS operator. Go to the source and ask the question, that's the way I live. If you'd like to look at purchasing his books go here - http://www.randomhouse.com.au/books/Default.aspx?Page=Book&ID=9781741667943