Brand New Series - Throwback Thursdays - “Humbugged”

Welcome to the second instalment of our new film article series, Throwback Thursdays!


This is a weekly article over the month of February, where film-maker Paul Darroch re-visits a selection of short films held within Oak Tree Productions’ dusty vaults from years gone by.



After the very positive response from my short silent comedy “Master Class Twits” in the summer of 2005, I set about making plans to produce a sequel featuring a revenge match between ‘The Master’ and ‘The Contender’ played by Gerry Darroch (my father) and Eric Jackson, respectively.


Before long however, I felt there was a danger of merely replicating the storyline of the original film rather then bringing anything new to the table. Therefore, I decided to put the project on hold.


Following a conversation later in the year with my father on the subject of his favourite novelist, Charles Dickens, the idea soon dawned on me about producing a modern spin of arguably Dickens’ most famous work, the novella “A Christmas Carol” from 1843.


Of course a contemporary adaptation had already been attempted (to limited success) with “Scrooged” in 1988. But what if we were to explore what happened after Ebenezer Scrooge had learned to become a better man? Did he end up married and becoming a father in the twilight of his years? If so, could he have descendants to this day?


And so the basic plot was born.


After producing a short screenplay, both actors from “Master Class Twits” were more than happy to come back on board, with Gerry Darroch playing a modern descendent of Scrooge and Eric Jackson stepping into the shoes of Jacob Marley (still wandering between both worlds 200 years on).


Filming took place over one evening in the autumn of 2005, with actors Angus King and Siobhan Auld providing their voice over talents as Scrooge’s nephew and grandniece.


An original score was composed and performed by Paul Greenhill, who had previously scored the music for “Master Class Twits” (and would go on to compose a further three soundtracks for Oak Tree Productions).


On completion, a small but timely film premiere was held on Christmas Eve of the same year.


Although I am the first to admit the film’s flaws in terms of its limited production values, the opportunity given to work on another light-hearted comedy with my late father and Eric Jackson (as well as composer Paul Greenhill), is something that I will forever hold dear.



We hope you enjoyed reading the second of our Throwback Thursdays series.


Watch this space next week for the third instalment!


Title: Humbugged (2005)

Plot line: A modern descendant of Ebenezer Scrooge is visited by the ghost of Jacob Marley.

Running Time: 7 min 30 sec

Starring: Gerry Darroch as Ebenezer Scrooge Jnr., Eric Jackson as Jacob Marley, Angus King as The Nephew, Siobhan Auld as The Grandniece

Music Composed & Performed by Paul Greenhill

Written, Produced, Directed & Edited by Paul Darroch

Copyright Oak Tree Productions All Rights Reserved