David Haig Collum Ward, MBE (born 20 September 1955) is a British actor and screenwriter who has performed in film, on stage, and on television for multiple decades. Born on 20 September 1955 in the community of Aldershot in Hampshire, England, Haig's long career earned him an appointment as a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) during the 2013 Birthday Honours.
In terms of television, he's appeared on serials such as The Moon Stallion (in 1978), Doctor Who (in 1980), Portrait of a Marriage (in 1990), Solider Solider (in 1991), The Thin Blue Line (from 1995 to 1996), The Thick of It (in 2009), and Yes, Minister (in 2013). In terms of film, he's appeared in movies such as Four Weddings and a Funeral (in 1994) and Florence Foster Jenkins (in 2016).
Tropes associated with Haig's work include:
- Based on a True Story: Portrait of a Marriage is based on the book of the same name, which was, in turn, inspired by the real-life friendship and following lesbian love affair between noted writers Vita Sackville-West and Violet Keppel (plus the concurring strength of Vita's marriage to the homosexual diplomat Harold Nicolson).
- Black and White Morality: The Moon Stallion has the official BBC Tag Line of: "The struggle between good and evil, represented by a blind girl and a stallion warlock".
- Blatant Lies: Florence Foster Jenkins is heavily built off of this, with Haig's character (vocal coach Carlo Edwards) and several others pretending that Jenkins' awful singing is actually brilliant.
- Brotherhood of Funny Hats: Parodied on The Thin Blue Line as Haig's character of Det. Insp. Derek Grim is initiated into the "The Secret Most Noble Medieval Order of the Masonic Lodge Todgers" by the "Chief Todger", the group being complete with secret handshakes and the like.
- Disability Superpower: The plot of The Moon Stallion features a young girl, named Diana, who has a blindness that's apparently related with a mystical 'sight' ability to sense certain things.
- Dreadful Musician: Florence Foster Jenkins is essentially Dreadful Musician: The Movie.
- Hyper-Competent Sidekick: Det. Sarg. Kray (series one) and Boyle (series two) are this to Haig's often hapless The Thin Blue Line character.
- Mixed Metaphor: Haig used them quite a bit on The Thin Blue Line. For example, the episode "Night Shift" features the Det. Insp. informing everyone about a dangerous criminal "fat cat, spinning his web with his tentacles in every pie."
- Narm Charm: In-Universe, as in Real Life, Florence Foster Jenkins' vocal work proves popular because she has such a lack of talent. Audience members frequently find themselves admiring her very tenacity and/or enjoying her singing as a satire of high-society operatic music.