Jeff Pope, along with his family beared the brunt of COVID-19, and overcoming it had been the primary motive. Once that was done, the Oscar nominated writer decided to turn it into what he does best- stories. Pope said that while depicting what happened in every family was not possible, he was able to make stories on what was in front of him.
Thus came Isolation Stories. Each story was 15 minutes long and showed how each family consisting of different people performed under isolation. One was about a pregnant woman who was abandoned by her married lover, the second was about a son looking after his sick father, the third was about a hypochondriac undergoing counseling, and the fourth was about a family man with a deteriorating marriage.
Preparations for the show began in late March and Pope gathered a set of writers, directors, and actors who would be able to contribute to the show within a short span.
Pope said that the idea was to release the show while the lockdown was still going on and wanted to see it while they were experiencing it themselves. That way, it’s authenticity would improve considerably.
They faced their set of challenges while making it, like filming without breaking the social distancing barrier, and making it look like a film rather than a home video. The actors’ own family members played supporting roles, like when Eddie Marsan, who played the family man had his own sons play his on-screen children and Sheridan Smith, who played the pregnant lady had her partner take the role of the cameraman.
The project has proved to be a valuable experience in the end. It’s currently streaming on BritBox.