The filming this week at locations in Wales attracted not only Outpost Gallifrey's eagle-eyed fans (see set reports yesterday) but also reports in the press. The South Wales Echo on September 28 said "The Doctor Who team have been spotted out and about filming one of the latest episodes for the sci-fi series. A desolate spot on the mountainside at Gelligaer Common, in between Bargoed and Merthyr, was where the stars and the film crew starting setting up from dawn yesterday. New Doctor Who star David Tenant and actress Billie Piper were reported to have been on site - and the famous Tardis could be seen in the distance. A carriage and horses were also seen from the road which was blocked off by two police officers while the cameras rolled. Traffic was stopped while action was being filmed about quarter of a mile from the narrow winding road leading to Bedlinog. Curious passersby were being discouraged from going near the film set. BBC Wales have constantly kept their filming locations a closely guarded secret as well as the plot. A BBC spokesman said: 'The film set is a closed set and we always turn down requests for interview and pictures to ensure the story line is kept secret.' A passerby at the scene, who did not wish to be named, said the director had told him they tried to keep filming locations within 45 miles of Cardiff. He also got the impression from the crew that Gelligaer Common was the perfect setting for a werewolf theme. Local firms were also being used on site as part of the filming scene." On September 29, the South Wales Evening Post discussed the other filming location. "It may be a long way from Gallafray [sic] to Gower, but that clearly hasn't put off one time-travelling tourist. Proving that the reputation of Worm's Head now reaches beyond the stars, the renowned inhabitant of the fictitious planet turned up in Rhossili. And as his famous blue police-box Tardis slowly materialised, Dr Who's latest adventure began to unravel in front of a BBC film crew and the bemused stares of bewildered sheep. Makers of the popular show revealed earlier this year that Gower would be used as one of the locations for an episode in the latest series, which has once-again been penned by Swansea-born writer Russell T Davies. But the specific location remained top-secret, so that filming wouldn't be held up by unintentional interruptions from over-enthusiastic fans. David Tennant, who plays the latest incarnation of the Timelord from Gallafray, was joined by Billie Piper, who plays companion Rose, on the cliff-tops overlooking the stunning sweep of Rhossili - to the delight of passers-by. One visitor, Viv Richards of Port Eynon, was there with her grandchildren. She said: "They are great fans of Dr Who, so they were delighted to be able to see the filming. 'It was fun for the children to see it being filmed here in Swansea. We stayed there a couple of hours watching them. They seemed really nice people.' It's not the first time that Dr Who has visited Swansea. Last year part of the marina was transformed into a scene that re-created a Dickensian Cardiff street. And thanks to Mr Davies' fondness for his home country, numerous sites across South Wales have been used for filming, including Cardiff Bay
An article at ic Sefton and West Lancs profiles a Dalek casings builder in Ainsdale. "Hidden away in an incongruous-looking shed are two of the universe's dreaded tinpot dictators - the Daleks. There's no need to worry. The long-standing Doctor Who baddies are in fact casings, lovingly fashioned by engineering whizz Andy Shaw. And it's not just the Daleks you'll find around Andy's garden. Robots based on the film Forbidden Planet and US sci-fi show Lost in Space are also dotted about the rockery. The machines reflect an interest in robots that Andy, 41, has had since childhood. ... One of his creations now stands at Spaceport, the space-age attraction at Seacombe Ferry in Wirral, and there has been interest in his work from the USA. ... Even before the successful Doctor Who revival on BBC One this spring, it was Andy's Daleks which attracted the most interest. They appear at conventions organised by Indelible, the Merseyside arm of the series' fan club, and fundraisers for the Foundation for the Study of Infant Deaths. Former Doctor Who Colin Baker, whose baby son Jack died suddenly, chaired the Foundation for eight years."
The Doctor Who Appreciation Society, the world's largest Doctor Who organization, has a new web address... or, rather, will have very shortly as it's about to open. www.dwasonline.co.uk is the new web address, according to the Society, and the site will relaunch soon for members. Also, all enquiries can now be sent email@example.com. (Thanks to Karen Davies)
In addition to our report yesterday, Outpost Gallifrey has received the cover illustration for the wide-release version of Singularity starring Peter Davison and Mark Strickson, due in November. The cover illustration, by Lee Binding, will be seen on the release distributed widely including through subscriptions; Tenth Planet has a special version of the cover, by Stuart Manning, that is limited to 800 copies for sale through their store (cover seen in yesterday's update). Click on the thumbnail for a larger version.
In addition, Outpost Gallifrey has learned that the cast of next year's January release, "Pier Pressure" by Robert Ross, features a guest appearance by Roy Hudd, the British comedian and actor best known for his very long-running radio series "The News Huddlines," appearances in "Purely Belter," "The Roy Hudd Show," "Not So Much a Programme, More a Way of Life" and "Up Pompeii" and for his role as the undertaker Archie Shuttleworth in the popular ITV soap opera Coronation Street. Hudd recently reprised his role as Max Quordlepleen in the radio adaptation of the final book of "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy". Hudd plays the role of Max Miller, the legendary comedian enshrined by a statue in Brighton, where "Pier Pressure" is set in the early 20th century. (Thanks to Gary Russell)
The official website today confirmed our story from yesterday that Series One Volume Two would be released on the UMD disc format used by Sony in their Playstation console system. The disc will be released on 17 October, featuring "Aliens of London," "World War Three" and "Dalek". The site notes, however, that "Volumes One, Three and Four will follow in December, although a specific date has yet to be announced. Discs will cost 17.99 each." At right is the illustration for the cover of the UMD format release; click on it for a larger version.
At right is a scan of a forthcoming Harry Potter calendar which shows a photo of David Tennant as Barty Crouch Jnr. in the new film "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire". Click on the thumbnail for a larger version of the image (which was originally revealed on the MuggleNet website). (Thanks to James Bagnall)
According to Play.com, the first series of Doctor Who from this year is not only available on DVD, plus will also be released on the new UMD format for the Sony Playstation Portable (PSP). The release will occur in mid-October and it will start with the second disc, apparently, as there's no word on the first disc being made available. (Thanks to Sean Parnell)
Outpost Gallifrey has learned that Ronald Leigh-Hunt, who played Radnor in "The Seeds of Death" and Stevenson in "Revenge of the Cybermen," and was also CA One in the Blake's 7 episode "Children of Auron," died on 12 September at age 88, and Roger Brierley, who played Trevor in "The Daleks' Master Plan" and much later returned as Drathro in "The Trial of a Time Lord: The Mysterious Planet" died on 23 September at age 70. The obituary for Leigh-Hunt can be found at The Times and one for Brierley at The Stage Online. (Thanks to Andrew Green, Ben Jolly)
The following is a ratings chart for BBC Three Summer 2005 repeats, as known:
Sunday 17 July
Sunday 17 July
Confidential Cut Down 1
Friday 22 July
Friday 22 July
Confidential Cut Down 1
Sunday 24 July
The End of the World
Friday 29 July
The End of the World
Sunday 31 July
The Unquiet Dead
Friday 5 August
The Unquiet Dead
Sunday 7 August
Aliens of London
Friday 12 August
Aliens of London
Sunday 14 August
World War Three
Friday 19 August
World War Three
Sunday 21 August
Friday 26 August
Sunday 28 August
The Long Game
Friday 2 September
The Long Game
Sunday 4 September
Friday 9 September
Sunday 11 September
The Empty Child
Sunday 11 September
The Doctor Dances
Friday 16 September
The Empty Child
Sunday 18 September
Sunday 18 September
Friday 23 September
The Doctor Dances
Sunday 25 September
The Parting of the Ways
These figures continue to put the repeats outside the BBC Three top 10 for each week, but are probably high enough to keep Doctor Who in the channelÆs top 20. (BBC ThreeÆs Top 10, dominated by EastEnders, Little Britain and Nighty Night at the moment, is getting between 300,000 and 700,000 viewers.) No figures are available for the various Confidential repeats, aside from the first one. (Thanks to Steve Tribe)
While there is currently no official word from BBC Worldwide, the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) has cleared the six episodes of The Scream of the Shalka for DVD release, reportedly at some time in the spring of 2006. "Shalka," the animated webcast serial created for BBCi prior to the announcement of the new series, stars Richard E. Grant, Sophie Okonedo and Derek Jacobi and was written by Paul Cornell. We'll keep you posted on further developments.
The official Doctor Who website has made available the brief clips recovered after fans spotted them being broadcast several weeks ago on a BBC2 series called "Sunday Past times". The clips show a Dalek production line and Daleks outside a space capsule. The footage will reportedly be included on a DVD release next year.
Big Finish have made some announcements about future releases, including some long-term plans. Full story and cast details for James Swallow's Singularity starring Peter Davison and Mark Strickson, due in November, have been released and are on our releases page; also announced are two new audios due out next year, The Settling by Simon Guerrier, with Sylvester McCoy, Sophie Aldred and Philip Olivier, and The Cube by Trevor Baxendale, with Paul McGann, Conrad Westmaas and India Fisher. Meanwhile, Big Finish has created a new "micro-site" for their Cyberman limited audio serieshere.
As done last year with the release "Caerdroia," the Tenth Planet shop in Barking will have a special edition ofSingularity with a special cover on audios sold through the store. Click on the thumbnail at right for a larger version of the special cover (the regular cover has not yet been released.
Finally, posted at the Big Finish website is a list of future releases with working titles; these are stories that have been approved by the BBC for release over the next several years, which include the following stories:
Fifth Doctor Summer in the City by Joseph Lidster Circular Time by Paul Cornell and Mike Maddox Friends and Enemies by Adrian Rigelsford Son of the Dragon by Steve Lyons
Sixth Doctor The Nowhere Place by Nicholas Briggs Dead Men Walking by Joseph Lidster Year of the Pig by Matthew Sweet The Clutches of Kali by Manjit Singh Spiders by Alison Lawson
Seventh Doctor We are the Dead by Martin Day Alone Again by Marc Platt Deadman's Hand by John Ostrander
Eighth Doctor Memory Lane by Eddie Robson Best of All Possible Worlds by Alex Fitch and Kim Morgan Absolution by Scott Alan Woodard
Actress Sophia Myles has accepted a new role, according to her fan site sophiamyles.org: she'll be playing Madame Du Pompadour in a forthcoming episode of the second series, likely "The Girl in the Fireplace". At the moment we've received no official confirmation of the casting, but we expect this is correct. (Thanks to Maria at sophiamyles.org)
The first of two set reports today (after a conspicuous absence) from Outpost Gallifrey correspondent Ruth Gunstone features details of location work done in Rhossili, the western edge of the Gower Peninsula, over the weekend, including photographs which could be considered spoilers. The text is included in the spoiler tag; click on the images for larger versions.
Travelling to Swansea from Sheffield is a grueling 5-hour drive, so at the time of booking my place at "Regenerations 2005" I had decided to spend an extra day in Swansea so I could see something of the area.
Chatting to a fellow fan during Saturday's lunch-break, I mentioned that I was intending to do some sightseeing, and was recommended by the chap (so sorry, I didn't get his name), to visit the bay and headland of Rhossili, about one hour west of Swansea.
So, on Monday morning, after refuelling myself with a "Full English", I duly headed west, found Rhossili, parked my car, and walked out toward the "Worm's Head" - a spectacular outcrop of land joined to the headland by a causeway which can be walked at low-tide. Unfortunately, it wasn't low-tide, so after taking some photo's of the breathtaking scenery and fairly wild sea, I started back toward the car-park, intending to to get a quick cup of tea, and then drive on to somewhere else.
Walking around the cliff path, I noticed a group of people on the skyline, one of whom was holding a boom-mic. As I approached, I spoke to a lady who was sitting watching the proceedings. "What are they recording?" I asked, expecting something along the lines of a current affairs insert on the erosion of the coastline or somesuch. To my absolute astonishment, she replied "Doctor Who!", with a grin as wide as the Gower peninsular itself! I looked closer, and saw a lighting crew wrestling with a large fixture, and several other techy people wearing headsets and speaking into walkie-talkies. "Look" said my new acquaintance, pointing, "There's Billie - and there's David Tennant". "Haven't you seen the TARDIS?" she added, pointing back along the path. And there it was! Just on the horizon - I could make out the top half of the oh-so-familiar blue box!
"Give me a day like this!" I exclaimed, trying hard not to be too loud and disturb the shooting.
It was amazing! What were the chances of stumbling into this, the day after attending my first 'Who' convention? And even better - I had my new camera in my kit-bag, together with extra rechargeable batteries and a half-gig memory card. Bingo!!
I approached the filming area quietly, and managed to catch the eye of one of the crew. I mouthed and gestured a sort of "Am I o.k. to sit here?". He winked and smiled, so I took that as a "yes", sat down on the grass (being careful to avoid rabbit and sheep poo!), and got my camera ready.
The day was windy - /really/ windy, and Billie and David were having trouble with their costumes. Billie's hair was being blown about, as was David's long brown coat. The shot seemed to consist of the two of them lying on the ground (almost as if sunbathing!), and after some conversation, getting up, David putting on his coat, and the two of them walking off toward the TARDIS. David seemed to have real problems putting on his coat as the wind kept threatening to take it (and David!) over the cliff edge!
I was there for a good half-hour or so, and got some really good shots of Billie and David, as they rehearsed and recorded a scene.
A break for lunch was called. I took the opportunity to do the same, pausing on my way back to the car-park only to take a snap of the TARDIS, which looked surreal, sat there on this cliff-top.
After a very welcome pot of tea, and even more welcome steak-pie, peas and chips, I walked back along the cliff path. By this time, shooting had recommenced, but now the action was immediately outside the TARDIS, and involved a scene with Rose and the Doctor emerging from the TARDIS, and the Doctor telling Rose where and when they had landed.
*** Spoiler alert! *** As I mentioned earlier, it was a /very/ windy day (the sound guys were having problems with the noise), but I did manage to overhear something along the lines of "This is the year five billion and twenty-five, and it's the galaxy...".
The Doctor and Rose then laughed, and ran along the cliff-top, hair and clothes being pummeled by the wind.
The crew were obviously battling with the light - it was very overcast, and getting darker by the minute. The "Big Bertha" lantern was brought into play as they then set for another scene. This involved another actor, whom I didn't recognise. His make-up and costume were - "interesting"! Somehow I couldn't help but be reminded of Leo Sayer!
By this time, the weather was really starting to hamper the proceedings. The light was very low, and crew members dashed in with umbrellas and coats to try to protect the actors from the rain, which was now starting to fall. Electronic equipment was hurriedly covered in plastic sheets while the last few shots were recorded. Eventually a 'wrap' was called - much to the delight of one or two of the tech's who were starting to get thoroughly soaked!
I saw Billie dash for cover (with a good-humered scream!), and the crew started to dismantle the equipment. To my amazement, the roof of the TARDIS was carried to the truck, and I got a great view of its internal lighting arrangements!
As I walked away, back up the cliff-path, I looked back and saw the TARDIS lying horizontal on the ground, its roof absent. Now there's something you don't see very often!
Set Report and Photos 2: Gelligaer Common
General TV Series News
September 29, 2005 • Posted By Shaun Lyon
The second of our set reports is from location work done at Gelligaer Common, about an hour north of Cardiff in central Wales, courtesy our correspondent Steve Gerrard; the photos were taken during the filming of the second episode. Also included is a brief spoiler about episode one, "New Earth"; both are included in the spoiler tags. Click on each image for a larger version.
OUT ON THE WINDING WINDY MOOR . . . Blimey, I had a day yesterday. First of all I was late for my job centre appointment and then, after having it re-booked I was told to wait an extra half hour after I should have been seen. Anyway, not in the best of moods, I went home and heard a rumour that the new series of Doctor Who MAY be filming just five miles away from me. Not one to shirk responsibility, I put on my anorak - come on, we all have one - and went, along with my dad and the dog, to Gelligaer Common, approximately five miles from the Welsh town of Merthyr Tydfil, and about one mile from where the old Doctor Who series, The Green Death was filmed. You know, THE ONE WITH THE GIANT MAGGOTS....
Well, we parked the car and walked up to where we thought the Beeb may be filming. Couldn't mistake it really, not with those bloomin' great vans everywhere. We walked right up to where the cameras were, taking our time and care not to slip over any of the copious amounts of electrical leads strewn around the site. And there it was... The one constant thing about the entire programme... Standing proud, but dejected, atop one of the most bleak places in Wales - and let's be fair, Wales is pretty bleak at the best of times - the TARDIS! FANTABULOSA!!! There it was... In the flesh... Not quite in the flesh, but you get my drift. Any road out, I asked a production chappie if I could stand and watch, and as the site is a public area he said it should be okay. But I WASN'T TO STAND IN FRONT OF THE CAMERAS!!!! As if... Ahem, anyway... So, for the next ten minutes I saw a part of Series Two being made. What happened....? If you want to know the bits about the Doctor, skip the next few paragraphs as I ramble on and on about the minutae of what happened on that fateful day... Don't worry, I'll let you know in plenty of time... Oh, to hell with it - hoist up your skirts and let's go...
First of all, there was a black carriage - originally my dad thought it was a hearse - with some horses reined to it. There were some officious, and rather gallant looking foot soldiers with rifles pointing them at the Doctor and Rose. The sargeant atop the lead horse asked the Doctor who he was and this is what was said:
Soldier: (Thick Scottish accent) Who are you? And who is that half-naked strumpet? (At least that's what it sounded like to me) Doctor: (Thick Scottish Mockney accent) I am Doctor Jamie McCrimmon. I studied under Doctor Bell. (The Doctor shows him his psychic paper)
As the wind was really blowing, I couldn't quite make out what they said next. Rose looked cold. Then all of a sudden there was a booming voice saying "Cut! Lunch!" and they were gone. I do remember an assistant saying "All the soldiers go in the van!"
So there I was, with the TARDIS. Of course, I had photos taken. Sad, but strangely wonderful. Then, thinking that the day was over, we took the dog for a walk around where they filmed THE ONE WITH THE GIANT MAGGOTS. Well, flap me sideways... The production crew were there, along with the extras, scoffing their faces outside the food van. I saw Ms Piper and, being brave, I asked her if I could have a photo, it "Being a fan thing...". Wow! She obliged, and it looks lovely. Thank you Ms Piper!
Anyway, I thought that was enough for the day, and so went home, only to be told by my mum that she wanted to see David Tennant, as she's a big fan of his other work. So, off we traipsed again...
Basically, we saw the same set up, only this time a lot more filming seemed to take place. This time there were more soldiers, given directions to look as if they "meant business", and they all stood pointing their guns at the Doctor and Rose. Those two intrepid travellers walk up to the coach and a coachman opened the door. Blow me down with a feather!! Inside was Queen Victoria. Again the Doctor shows his psychic paper. Queen Victoria leans forward and takes it from him and says:
Queen Vic (not the pub in EastEnders): I see, Doctor. But you failed to mention that it says that you are to be my protector. The Doctor: Mumbles something I couldn't quite make out Queen Vic: Very well, Doctor... You shall accompany me... Drive on.
There were numerous takes of this scene - first of all was the rehearsals, then the filmed rehearsals and finally the filming itself. Most ran very smoothly apart from when one of the horses decided he'd had enough and almost fell asleep, causing the carriage to judder violently, and shaking ol' Queen Vic and the camera crew up considerably. There were multiple takes of close-ups, medium close-ups, wide shots, etc. The actor playing the Sargeant had to walk behind the camera crew and then step up a ladder so that his voice - offscreen - could be heard, to give the other actors a reaction to act against. All through this set up, the extras stood around, looking rather stoical, including earlier some as Buddhist monks looking rather cold with their shaven heads nicely catching the suns rays. Mr Tennant and Ms Piper also stood around in the cold, but were immediately given warm anoraks - see, we all have them - to wear. Poor Ms Piper, her outfit as you can see was not practical for time travel in bleakest Wales, and I did feel sorry for her. A break was called and me and my mum had our photos taken with Mr Tennant - see photo.
When with Mr Tennant, I asked him two questions, his answers are as follows:
Me: Mr Tennant, are you enjoying yourself, playing the Doctor? Mr T: I'm having A WHALE OF A TIME!!!
Me: Aren't you cold? Mr T: My ears are freezing... I've never experienced anything like this before!
And then time was called, and he had to return to the shoot. As you can see, the photos also show various set ups including Queen Victoria's carriage, and if you look carefully enough, Her Maj 'erself.
All in all, it was an absolutely fantastic experience. I thoroughly enjoyed watching a bunch of old pros at work, and above all else, I thought that Mr Tennant and Ms Piper were kind and considerate enough to take time from their busy schedule to talk to a sad anorak like me. Thanks.
EPISODE ONE "New Earth" SPOILERS
Contrary to popular belief, the Catwomen are in Episode One and are 'Nuns' - The Matron, the Sister and the Novice, in charge of a 'Plague Farm' where humans are experimented on, several of whom break out. The Duke of Manhattan is an obese character similar to Fat Bastard in the Austin Powers movies, or perhaps Baron Harkennon from Dune.
General TV Series News
September 29, 2005 • Posted By Shaun Lyon
Filming has occurred recently at Tredegar House in Newport... says an Outpost Gallifrey Forum correspondent, "My brother in law visited Tredegar House in Newport yesterday. This is a large house open to the public and only a short distance from the Newport studio. He says BBC Wales were building the Tardis in the basement but no one was allowed to see it." According to BBC Wales Southeast, "Ancestral home of the Morgan family and later the Lord Tredegars, this seventeenth century house is nestled just off the M4 near Newport. The Victorians re-modelled the original seventeenth century house so that they wouldn't have to receive guests straight into the Great Hall. They abandoned the main entrance, and turned the house on its side, building this new entrance in around 1850." Also, filming at the hotel building of the Headlands School in Penarth has taken place on September 29/30, with service vehicles located at the barrage car park ("Apparently, we will hear blank shots being fired!" says another of our Forum correspondents).
Getting caught up on some of the press clippings to have appeared in the past two weeks while I was on vacation...
The Stage has a short piece about John Barrowman's concurrent theatre appearances in December. "West End star John Barrowman looks as if he is going to be a busy boy this Christmas.... After all, the Simply Musical star made a recent TV appearance as time-travelling Captain Jack Harness in the new series of Doctor Who and it seems that he will be employing some sort of Tardis-like device (perhaps draped in tinsel?) to travel between Wimbledon and the West End on a daily basis for the beginning part of the festive period. Either that, or some unfortunate punters are going to be watching an understudy somewhere along the line. But no, that would never happen. I refuse to believe it."
Sylvester McCoy is profiled in an article at The Western Mail which discusses his new role at the Grand Theatre in Swansea. "The man who played the seventh Doctorr Who - he of the panama hat, question mark umbrella, pullover and braces - takes the part of Inspector Rough in Gaslight which opens tomorrow. At 62, McCoy is a veteran of the stage but he's still best known for his stint as the Doctor from 1987-89. And while in Swansea he popped into a Doctor Who convention at the weekend, in the city's Marriott Hotel, to meet fans of the series. ... 'Most of us Doctors will always be remembered best for the role,' he admits. 'But we've all had very busy careers after it. It's a great part to have played and I look back at it very positively.'"
Colin Baker turned up for an autograph signing this past Saturday in Darwen after his car got a flat, according to This Is Lancashire. "Fans were eagerly awaiting Colin Baker who played the cult BBC1 character between 1984 and 1986 at Darwen Library Theatre where he was due to speak at Doctor Who Day 2 organised by super fan Graham Groom. But the atmosphere amongst the conference visitors became even more tense than an episode involving the Daleks when his arrival time came and went. Graham 40 of Meadow Street Darwen paced nervously by the door waiting for his star guest to arrive. He said more than 100 tickets had been sold for the event -- the second Doctor Who convention he has held in his hometown -- and that people had travelled from all over the country. But just as panic started to set in his mobile phone rang -- it was the sixth incarnation of the Doctor to tell him his tyre had blown but he was on his way. Good job too...the Cybermen were getting restless. By the time he finally made his entrance Mr Baker recieved a rapturous welcome from the excited crowd. Colin who grew up in Rochdale said: 'I always feel at home coming up here and seeing the Pennines. We used to cycle to Blackpool and would go through places like Ramsbottom and Haslingden on the way.'"
David Tennant can be heard reading the book "Mac B" by Neil Arksey on BBC Radio 7's Big Toe show; click here for details.
BBC News has a few photos from the Regenerations convention in Swansea last weekend. The convention was also covered briefly at IcWales.
Bruno Langley (Adam) is starring in "Right Up Your Street," a cabaret evening, along with his former colleagues from Coronation Street at the Oldham Coliseum on Friday 7 October in aid of North West health charities, according to thiswebsite. Langley was also said to be appearing in the play Night Sky (by Rachel Wagstaff) to be shown at the Old Vic on Sunday 30 October (one night only) in aid of Index on Censorship (along with Simon Russell-Beale and Saffron Burrows) according to Index Online; however, according to a later report from Index of Censorship, "Due to a series of unfortunate events, we shall be postponing the performance of Night Sky that was due to take place on the 30th October."
September 22's edition of "The Sentinel" noted that "Pupils invited a special time traveller - an actor who has appeared in BBC 1's Doctor Who - to see their school's Tardis. Year six children from Belgrave Primary, in Longton, were treated to a drama workshop with Alan Ruscoe, who played a mannequin-like Auton in the last series of the cult BBC TV show. Alan has also appeared in two of the Star Wars films. John Collier, an advanced skills teacher at Belgrave Primary, contacted many past and present stars, inviting them to see the school's time machine. He said: 'I wrote to Alan originally because of his connection with the programme. I was surprised to learn that he actually comes from Longton. When he offered to spend a day in school, I couldn't believe it. It was a dream come true, for me as well as the children.' Belgrave's Tardis - which comes complete with a Dalek and computer equipment - is aimed at helping to inspire learning."
"How ITV changed the BBC" is an article on BBC News; there's a brief mention of Doctor Who.
The Daily Mail quotes Russell T Davies on "Scream of the Shalka" actor Richard E. Grant on September 21: "Despite being an early favourite to play Dr Who, Richard E Grant never really had a chance -- writer-producer Russell T Davies loathes the Withnail And I star. He says: 'I'm not a fan. He was never on our list to play the Doctor. Never.'"
The September 21 edition of "Third Sector" says that "Robert Cork, a 49-year-old man with chronic lymphatic leukaemia, has built a replica Dalek in just eight weeks in an attempt to raise money for the Bournemouth Leukeamia Fund. Cork, who spent up to eight hours a day building his version of the legendary Doctor Who race, has already raised pounds 400 for the cancer charity. He is set to make more by displaying it at local events, where people will be able to have their photo taken with the 'Charity Dalek'. The machine will also patrol local shopping centres, where donations can be put into a bucket attached to the remote-controlled, life-size robot."
Tom Baker's quest to become a voice over legend continues as he narrates the UK version of the forthcoming "Wallace and Gromit" film trailer, "The Curse of the Were-Rabbit". Baker's voice over trailer can be found on MSN and follows successful voiceovers on "Little Britain", numerous TV adverts and the forthcoming "Magic Roundabout" film.
Channel 5 broadcast "The Most Shameful TV Moments Ever" on September 19, "a veritable feast of the most tacky, twee, and tasteless shows to have graced, or disgraced, or our screens" according to the DWAS. Amongst the many gems was an examination of Doctor Who's entry, The Happiness Patrol, and included the views of the Doctor Who Appreciation Society's Antony Wainer.
September 17's Express and Star discussed the release of new Dalek toys. "Midlands parents should brace themselves for the latest must-have toy - an ageing, all exterminating villain which is still standing the test of time. Daleks have been Doctor Who's arch-enemies for four decades now but the infernal pepperpots from the planet Skaro are showing no signs of giving up on their evil plans for world domination. Remote controlled versions of the metal meanies are flying off the shelves in Kidderminster's Classic Collectables shop in the Horsefair and staff there predict it will soon be the same story across the region. Toy specialists are predicting that the evil creatures will be the number one selling gift this Christmas and, if Kidderminster is anything to go by, they could be right."
(Thanks to Paul Engelberg, Steve Tribe, Scott Matthewman, Darren Pickles, Peter Weaver, Faiz Rehman, Derek Hall)
Greetings from your editor... BBC Radio listeners (if you're so inclined) can tune into the following radio programs over the next two days to hear about the Back to the Vortex book, my unofficial and unauthorized guide to the first season of the new Doctor Who series, as I'll be doing interviews with local BBC Radio stations for the next two days on the book from the London studios. The schedule is as follows (all times are half-hours and the interviews will appear at some point during the period):
Monday, 19 September
10.30-11am: BBC Radio Bristol, with Richard Lewis
11.30am-12pm: BBC Radio Oxford, with Danny Cox
12pm-12.30pm: BBC Radio Hereford and Worcester
Tuesday, 20 September
9:30-10am: The Tony and Julie Show, BBC Radio Leicester
10am-10:30am: BBC Radio Northampton, with Bernie Keith
11am-11.30am: BBC Radio Kent, with Julie Maddocks
2.10-2.30pm: BBC Radio Swindon/Wiltshire with Mark Seaman
Shockeye's Kitchen has launched its 16th Course, a 36-page fanzine available online as a free downloadable PDF (in high, medium or low resolution) from their website. The issue is billed as "a high-calorie celebration of Series One, with a meaty analysis of the series as a whole and a buffet comprising reviews of every episode." The editors add that "Shockeye would love to have you for dinner." (Thanks to Simon Kinnear)
SFX Magazine ran a competition last year for fans to redesign the Daleks "and were deluged with retooled pepperpots." Says the magazine's official website, "We're not above recycling an old idea that worked, so we've decided to do the same for the returning villains of Who season two: the Cybermen. What do you reckon the silver giants from Telos should look like when they stride across our screens once more? We reckon you'll want to bin the moon boots and cricket gloves, but how far would you go? Should they have fleshy bits showing? Must they retain those ear-like helmet handles? Where do you stand on the whole "shiny chrome or matt effect?" question?" Instructions on how to submit a design are at the website.
The South Wales Evening Post today reported that the BBC Wales film crew will descend on the Gower coast in Swansea this weekend for new series filming. It is also said that the filming will be for episode 1 of the new series, although it is not confirmed if David Tennant or Billie Piper will be present, they also say that the actual location is a secret and do not want this info to get out to the general public.
Sylvester McCoy will be appearing at the Hollywood Cinema on 2nd October for an interview, which will then be followed by showings of Battlefield and Remembrance of the Daleks, all as part of the Yarmouth Film Festival; more details atEDP24.
Annette Badland, better known to Season One fans as Margaret Blaine, is currently appearing in Radio Four's "The Archers" as the ever-so-slightly machiavellian Hazel Woolley. A long-running but irregular character (played in past appearances by Hilary Armstrong, Jan Cox and Hilary Newcombe), Hazel seems set to feature for some time, as she vies against her increasingly senile father's wife for control over his businesses. Nno incidents yet of suspicious farting or oddly placed zips, though, so Ambridge may yet prove safe.
John Barrowman and Richard Wilson will be appearing in Cinderella over Christmas at the New Wimbledon Theatre from 9th December; they're currently doing auditions for it for children, details at IC South London (and theatre info at The Ambassadors).
Paul Abbott, recently revealed to have been the fifth potential writer for the first season of "Doctor Who" this past year, is quoted by The Guardian and The Times as saying that "too much television drama is under-ambitious, predictable and needlessly boring" but that producer Russell T Davies' series "Second Coming" was "a television masterpiece. It grappled with the most colossal subject matter in the return of a Messiah to earth. Not in a Robert Powell way. Modern earth. Manchester, actually. And mainly the scruffy end."
In a feature on the Brighton Pier Doctor Who exhibition in the latest DWM, it is said that there is uncertainty about the exhibition's future after its seasonal closure in November. Vicki Whitmore of Brighton Pier says that there will be other exhibitions in the dome but if there were another Who exhibition available, "we would obviously consider taking it back on". Lorne Martin, of Experience Design, says that they are "looking at other ventures in other areas, whereby the exhibitions can grow [...] The fact that the show is already signed up for Series Three [means that] we can go and talk to more venues about making an even more thrilling experience."
(Thanks to Steve Tribe, Chuck Foster, Paul Engelberg, Matt Kimpton, Paul Hayes and "facethemusic")
Some additional news about the next series in this month's issue of Doctor Who Magazine. On Zoe Wanamaker's return as Cassandra, DWM notes that next year's appearance differs from The End of the World in that the actress has actually been on-set this time to voice her lines and "react spontaneously with David and Billie". Also in Episode 1, there will be "a new race of villains to contend with at the same time [as Cassandra]". An interview with the producers of Doctor Who Confidential reveals that the second series has extra filming days that allow "filming five backstage days an episode this year", which should enable more behind-the-scenes coverage than in the first series. Production on Confidential has also "started earlier this year [...] This time we've been [in Cardiff] since the start", including footage of David Tennant on Blue Peter for the monster competition, which may be reflected in a Confidential episode examining "the close relationship Doctor Who and Blue Peter have shared over the years".
Additionally, regarding the three new books announced for next year (see yesterday's story), range consultant/editor Justin Richards explains that the selection of authors was determined by "the [same] reasons as last time around û we're people with a track record of writing to spec and to schedule for the right market, and who have been signed off for all the confidential material." He also states that "we're still waiting for all sorts of decisions from all sorts of people" on the future of the past Doctors range of novels. "The Past Doctor books have a future, I'm sure, but exactly what we'll be doing, and when, I don't know. We're taking the time to make sure we get it right." In a separate interview elsewhere in the magazine, Richards also mentions that "we'll give [the Ninth Doctor] as rest in 2006, and by 2007 we'll have a better idea of whether he fits into the past Doctor range, or whether we do a new range of books which are branded as 'new series', but which are about an old Doctor." (The comments about the Ninth Doctor 'fitting in' seem to be referring to considerations of marketing and general readership perceptions and reception, rather than artistic/fan considerations.)
The official Doctor Who website confirmed the story today, which we reported yesterday from the pages of the new issue of Doctor Who Magazine, that Janet Fielding would at last reprise the role of Tegan Jovanka for an audio story to be released next year by Big Finish. "In fact, I'd all but given up asking," Big Finish producer Gary Russell is quoted as saying, with regard to his recent attempts to convince the actress to return to the role. "Then over a lovely dinner a few weeks back she volunteered. 'One,' she said. 'Just the one,' with a steely gaze that told me that it will, indeed, be just the one." Says producer Jason Haigh-Ellery, "I know Peter [Davison] is going to enjoy renewing their sparring partnership, and I hope the fans will get a kick out of hearing this older Tegan getting to say one or two things she probably wanted to get out of her system at the end of Resurrection of the Daleks," indicating that Peter Davison would join her for this audio and that it will take place after the character left the series' continuity. Not noted on the official website was the news that the Tegan story will have character/story links to "Dead Men Walking," an audio starring Colin Baker and Nicola Bryant as the Sixth Doctor and Peri, written by Joseph Lidster (who has also written the Tegan serial, "Summer in the City"); the story features the Cybermen and is due next year. The connection, along with "one or two characters", is Cybertechnology, with the Cybermen returning in Lidster's story, set in Baltimore in 1986, at the home of Peri's parents, "where the Doctor uncovers a sinister plot to reanimate cadavers at a funeral home". The report also notes that Mark Strickson returns for the November audio "Singularity" by James Swallow -- Strickson has not been in an audio for some time -- and that subscribers will receive an additional Sixth Doctor and Peri special CD called "Cryptobiosis" by year's end; the new single-disc story "came from the open-submissions pile" [in 2003], and is written by Elliot Thorpe.
We've received several reports about additional extras for the Series One Boxed Set, due out this November containing all 13 episodes from series one of the new TV series starring Christopher Eccleston. According to the British Board of Film Classification, the "Doctor Who Confidential Cut Down" specials -- the BBC3 documentaries shortened by removing all references to the original series and focusing solely on the new -- will be included, though the BBFC only reports the first seven have been cleared; however, it was reported earlier that all thirteen plus one additional special, that of the "extra" Confidnetial episode being specially produced for the DVD, would be on the discs. Amazon.co.uk, meanwhile, is reporting additional extras including commentaries, "Billie PiperÆs Video Diary," "Making Doctor Who with Russell T Davies," "Waking The Dead (Mark Gatiss' video diary)," "Exclusive featurettes: Destroying the Lair; Mike TuckerÆs Mocks of Balloons; Designing Doctor Who,; Laying Ghosts û The Origins of The Unquiet Dead; Deconstructing Big Ben, The Adventures of Captain Jack"; "BBC Breakfast Interview with Christopher Eccleston" plus the Confidential specials, 5.1 surround sound, a collectors' booklet and subtitles. Additionally, the boxed set will feature a variety of pre- and post-broadcast trailers including the "Time Is Up" teasers, the "Saturdays at 7pm" series of trailers, the trailers aired in conjunction with "Strictly Come Dancing" and the "Countdown" trailer. Outpost Gallifrey has been told that there will be an official press release on the set's final contents later this month. (Thanks to Scott Handcock, Daniel Hirsch, Steve Tribe, Martin Hoscik, "TimNNell")
Issue 361 of Doctor Who Magazine, now on sale, confirms some TV series-related information:
Director Euros Lyn will work on two additional episodes, bringing his second series total up to four episodes, as the director of Block Four.
Zoe Wanamaker is indeed reprising her role as Cassandra in the first episode, still rumored to be titled "New Earth". She is joined by Michael Fitzgerald as Duke, Lucy Robinson as Clovis, Dona Croll as the Matron, Adjoa Andoh as the Sister, Anna Hope as the Novice, and Sean Gallagher as Chip. Additional casting updates: "The Christmas Invasion" will star Penelope Wilton as Harriet Jones, Adam Garcia as Alex Klein, Daniel Evans as Danny Llewellyn, Anita Briem as Sally, Chu Omambala as Major Blake, and Sean Glider. "School Reunion" features Elisabeth Sladen as Sarah Jane Smith, John Leeson as K9, Anthony Stewart Head as Mr. Finch, Eugene Washington as Mr Wagner, Joe Pickley as Kenny, Lucinda Dryzek as Melissa, Heather Cameron as Nina, Benjamin Smith as Luke, Clem Tibber Milo, Rod Arthur and Caroline Berry.
The issue confirms that Head will not play the Master, which Outpost Gallifrey reported some time ago (and contrary to reports on some other websites.)
Three new Doctor Who books will be released in the spring of 2006 featuring the Tenth Doctor as played by David Tennant. The novels include "The Genesis Casket" by Justin Richards, "The Ultimate Prophet" by Jacqueline Rayner and "Feast of the Drowned" by Stephen Cole. (Thanks to Nathan Baron and DWM)