A report in Saturday's The Sun says that "Doctor Who is to land in EastEnders -- and be served pints in the Queen Vic by Peggy Mitchell. The telly Timelord, played by David Tennant, will touch down his time-travelling Tardis in Albert Square in the new series of the BBC1 sci-fi hit. Landlady Peggy -- 68-year-old actress Barbara Windsor -- will pop up behind the bar, while other EastEnders stars could also appear. An insider said: 'The Doctor and his sidekick Rose (Billie Piper) have travelled galaxies far and wide and battled vile aliens, but they've never come up against Peggy Mitchell. ... The funniest thing is she'll be calling 'Time' to the original Timelord.' A source close to Babs said: 'She's thrilled. She's a very big fan of Doctor Who and feels very honoured.'" Of course, this isn't the first time that Doctor Who has crossed paths with EastEnders... that would be the charity special "Dimensions in Time" filmed in the early 1990's. No word as to whether or not this is part of the story, or yet another TV tie-in that may have something to do with a story element.
Friday's The Sun says that "Doctor Who will be joined by an ex-lover, a dancing paramedic and a Dickens thug in the new series. Stunning Nina Sosanya - David Tennant's lover in raunchy drama Casanova - has signed up for the BBC1 hit. She and Dr Who David are great pals in real life. Nina, 34, will appear in an episode set at the London 2012 Olympics. An insider said: 'She plays the mother of a key character.' Strictly Come Dancing hunkWill Thorp, 28, - paramedic Woody in Casualty - is in an episode called The Satan Pit. And Jamie Foreman, who played evil Bill Sykes in Oliver Twist, will be seen in an episode called The Idiot's Lantern - set during the Queen's Coronation in 1953." The casting of Thorp was previously noted on the official site and in a BBC press release.
There are also some reports that state that Eve Myles, now confirmed in the Doctor Who spinoff series "Torchwood" also starring John Barrowman, will replace Billie Piper during series three of the new series; the Daily Record and theMirror say that bosses have lined up the sexy new replacement for Billie Piper when she quits Doctor Who for a career in the movies. Rising star Eve Myles, 27, is being tipped as the new sidekick for the Timelord, played by Scots actor David Tennant. Welsh beauty Eve has already been picked to play Gwen Davies in the Doctor Who spin-off Torchwood, due to be screened later this year. She has also appeared in EastEnders and has a huge army of male fans who voted her one of the top 10 sexiest Welsh women." Of course, this is very likely only press happenstance and not reflective of the real story (which is Myles' casting in the spinoff series). (Thanks to Paul Engelberg, Chris Winwood, Ian O'Brien, Sean Connolly, Peter Weaver)
More on the recent news posted today at the Big Finish website, including further details of the releases for the latter half of 2006 (in more detail than the recent report in Doctor Who Magazine). "There will be seven new double-CD stories," says the site, "including two releases in September. Plus, as a bonus, anyone who purchases the plays by subscription direct from Big Finish, will receive an exclusive extra story. The single-CD, subscriber-only adventure is entitled Return of the Daleks and features a companion-less Seventh Doctor in a battle with his arch enemies. Nicholas Briggs, who is of course the voice of the Daleks in the new Doctor Who TV series, will be heard once again shouting 'Exterminate' at the Doctor. Briggs is also writing and directing Return of the Daleks which will be something of a cross-over with his earlier Dalek Empire audio series. Return of the Daleks will be available to subscribers only and will not be available to purchase separately before December 2007. Following on from the previously announced release schedule, Nicholas Briggs is also writing the July 2006 play. Entitled The Nowhere Place, the story finds the Sixth Doctor experiencing ghostly encounters. The ominously entitled Red, by Stewart Sheargold, is August's release and features the Seventh Doctor and an exploration in to the motivation behind murder. The Reaping is the first of Joseph Lidster's two plays to be released in September. The Sixth Doctor discovers that someone is making novel use of the recently dead. September's second release is The Gathering and the Fifth Doctor is reunited with an old friend who might not be that pleased to see him. The Eighth Doctor, Charley and C'rizz take a stroll down Memory Lane in October. Written by Eddie Robson, the travellers find themselves locked in a suburban Hell where there really is nothing at the end of the lane. Novermber's release is We are the Deadby Martin Day. The Seventh Doctor finds himself trapped in the trenches of the first World War, but the enemy maybe closer to home than Europe. Finally, in December, Paul Cornell and Mike Maddox tells four seasonal tales with the Fifth Doctor in Circular Time. The Doctor Who audio adventures continue in 2007."
Other news: Paul Darrow, long-time star of "Blake's 7" and multiple Doctor Who guest actor, will have an autobiography released in hardcover by Big Finish, entitled "You're Him, Aren't You?" The company confirms that their third Gallifrey audio series will be released from May to August 2007, with two releases in July. And further details of the cast list from this month's free giveaway CD on the cover of Doctor Who Magazine, The Veiled Leopardare noted; in addition to stars Nicola Bryant, Caroline Morris, Sophie Aldred and Philip Olivier, the cast includes Alan Ruscoe, who starred during the first season of the new series as a background artist in various roles including as a Slitheen, an Auton and one of the "What Not To Wear" androids, as well as actors Lizzie Hopley, Steven Wickham and Stephen Mansfield
The People says of "Kidulthood," Noel Clarke's new film, "I'm vexing, oh yes! Like a lot of smallscale features, Kidulthood has a pretty small, woolly storyline, and a pretty big cast - and most of them are first time actors. Essentially this is a look at the lives of a few lads and lasses, living in London and coping with sex, violence and bullying. It's hard not to feel you've seen something very similar before (say, Bullet Boy, which is quite a bit more accomplished). There are some nice bits though, and there's a fight at the end which looks as good as any I've ever seen in the cinema. Special mention to Noel Clarke, as the thuggish Sam, who seemed like a terrifying movie villain stuck in the middle of a long episode of Grange Hill. Kidulthood never quite gets you hooked, but I quite enjoyed it. Easy now, bruv, respect is due." Meanwhile, yesterday's Observer says that it's "a refreshing slice of urban life" and says, "Slicker and less worthy than last year's acclaimed Bullet Boy, Kidulthood has been described as London's City of God: it's not quite that, but it's a good sight closer to that kinetic portrait of street life than Love Actually. Kidulthood and its talented team of actors showcase what this country is really good at - anti-authoritarianism, music and lust. The fact that there's a mobile phone or two in there has led some (the Sun) to label Kidulthood the 'happy slapping movie' but, in fact, it examines every current teenage media cliche you'd care to name, from hoodies to unwanted pregnancy. ... Kidulthood has had some criticism, from those who accuse it of being unbelievably bleak or, weirdly, voyeuristic (as though we're only allowed to watch films that directly depict our own lives). But for Corrine, from Streatham, south London: 'The film definitely felt real to me. I mean, all that stuff wouldn't have happened in one day, they crammed it in. But the way everyone in that film is, that's how everyone I know is. And the talk is perfect, to be honest.' ... When I talk to Kidulthood's writer, Noel Clarke (Mickey in Doctor Who), who also plays Sam, the film's bullying bad guy, he agrees with Corrine. 'It seems like sex isn't a big deal these days. There's a weird hippy attitude, like all bodies are the same ... and everyone knows a girl like Becky, just dirty.' Clarke wrote the screenplay three years ago and based the trio of central male characters - Trife, Jay and Moony, played by Aml Ameen, Adam Deacon and Femi Oyeniran - on himself and his schoolfriends. He says that some of the film's action came from his own life (taxis refusing to stop for him, being falsely accused of shoplifting) and some from friends' experience or the media. ... It also captures another part of west London, the part the Japanese tourists have missed out on so far. 'Yeah, so far we've only seen one side of the road in films,' says Clarke. 'If you walk out of that nice house and cross that road, there's a council estate bang opposite.'" The film is released this Friday.
Canada's National Post says of the DVD release of the first season of the new series there that "The box set of the newest season of Doctor Who missed a great advertising opportunity: It could have been labelled 'Official purveyors of DVDs to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.' The story is that the first set of discs was ordered last summer by Her Royal Highness, a fan of the Doctor since the series premiered on the BBC in 1963. She thought her vacation at Balmoral in Scotland would be a good time to catch up with the Time Lord's latest adventures. The news appeared in Britain's Daily Mirror under the headline "Ext-EIIR-minate!", which is pretty funny if you're up on royal nomenclature as well as Doctor Who bad guys. In any case, every peasant and colonial can now enjoy the first new season of Doctor Who in 17 years; the five-disc set was released last week." The article then reviews the first season.
This past weekend's Daily Express said of Bonnie Langford, currently a finalist on ITV1's "Dancing on Ice", "For 30 years she has had to live down the legacy of her child star image and come to terms with the death of her best friend. Now Bonnie Langford is skating back to the big time as hot favourite in Dancing On Ice. Page-boy petite, eyes and teeth as bright as fog lamps, showbiz trouper Bonnie Langford gets her skates on tonight as hot favourite to win ITV1's Dancing On Ice. At 41, she is eerily reminiscent of the precocious child actress who, as lisping Violet Elizabeth Bott, used to shriek at poor Just William ... One source said: "Bonnie's every inch the professional. She was born to act, smile and dazzle. But this is all about her great comeback. She's had some terrible knocks. Bonnie may giggle and swoon like a schoolgirl and, even at 41, she still looks like one. But there's damage there – she's had more than her fair share of tough breaks." .. She may be a wee slip of a thing but in a catfight I'd back her over anybody, even Pete Burns." She has already seen off her Dancing On Ice arch rival Dame Kelly Holmes and Dr Who's John Barrowman. Olympic gold medallist Kelly, 35, was so incensed to lose to Bonnie that she stormed offstage without a word." The article discusses Langford's history in film and television including her role as Mel on Doctor Who during the 1980's.
Saturday's Financial Times - oddly - uses the fact that David Tennant's Doctor will not be wearing a scarf to introduce an article about scarves; more oddly, the article is headlined 'The scarf-clad Dr Who era dawns again'.
Nicola Bryant is interviewed at the Rainbow Network regarding her new role in the play "Taboo". Some of the questions regarding Doctor Who: "You're perhaps best known for your role in Doctor Who as Peri Brown, the companion of two Doctors (Colin Baker and Peter Davison). What do you think of the new series of the show? 'I love it.' ... So, Colin Baker or Peter Davison? 'As if I'd say!' ... Which of the Doctor's enemies would you secretly most like to have seen succeed? 'Probably the Rani. I loved Kate O'Mara in the role and I like the idea of a female adversary for the Doctor.' ... There's a rumour that in the new series of Doctor Who we'll get to meet one of the Doctor's past companions. Would you go back into the show if you were offered the chance? 'Just try and stop me.'"
Pauline Collins is featured in a mini-interview in this month's edition of BBCGood Food magazine. It states she's back in Doctor Who after nearly forty years (having appeared both in "The Faceless Ones" in the original series and as Queen Victoria in the forthcoming second season's "Tooth and Claw") and that, if she had a TARDIS, she'd travel forward 2000 years and have dinner with H G Wells, eating stardust sundaes.
UK supermarket chain Sainsbury's has started selling a Doctor Who celebration cake with soundchip. Priced at 7.99, it is a Genoese sponge coated with sugarpaste and filled with buttercream and strawberry jam. The cake is in the very rough shape of a Dalek and has a (presumably edible) image of a new-series Dalek on it. To the side of the cake, inside the box, is the (presumably inedible) soundchip. The box has the phrase "Exterminate" emblazoned across it, which may or may not be a clue as to what the soundchip emits. On the reverse of the box is a simple dice game a la ludo called Race To The Tardis and featuring counters depicting a Slitheen, the Moxx of Balhoon, Cassandra and a Dalek. It is unknown if Sainsbury's has the sole concession for the cake.
This months edition of the UK Model and Collectors Mart magazine features a full four-page feature on the new Doctor Who merchendise, as well as a full color cover dedicated to it, depicting several items from the range such as the foot tall David Tennant figure, and the Slitheen and Sycorax figures.
BBC Focus Magazine is offering a free copy of Paul Parsons' book "The Science of Doctor Who" to new subscribers; click here for details.
(Thanks to Paul Engelberg, John Bowman, Steve Tribe, Paul Armstrong, Peter Weaver, Chris Winwood)
"What is it that makes you a Doctor Who fan?" asks MEV Productions, which is currently seeking fans of Doctor Who to contribute their thoughts, experiences and stories "for a new feature length documentary about the weird, wacky and wonderful world of Doctor Who fandom. With the impact of the new series, it has never been a better time to embrace the affection the programme generates." Says their release, "This independent production is being produced by Director Marq English and Doctor Who historian David J Howe (Telos Publishing) and covers the vast spectrum of fandom such as conventions, fan fiction, fan films, artwork, merchandise, dressing up, organised fandom, the internet, meeting the stars and fans turned professional - plus a few surprises. If you would like to contribute to the documentary for interview, have video footage (conventions, fan groups etc.), or creative works (fan films, artwork, audios) that you would like to have included, please contact the producers by March 31st 2006 telling them a bit about yourself, where your from and why you're a Doctor Who fan." You can reach them via email. (Thanks to Marq English)
Now on the website of America's Sci-Fi Channel - on the front page, in fact - is the new trailer being shown on the network in anticipation of the March 17 launch date of the new series in the US. The video is available on the site via Flash animation (so you need to have the proper plug-in).
According to Play.com, release dates for the first two volumes of the second series batch of DVDs in the UK are now finalised. Volume One, featuring "The Christmas Invasion" and "New Earth," will apparently be released on May 1, and Volume Two, with "Tooth and Claw," "School Reunion" and "The Girl in the Fireplace," is reportedly due out June 5. Both are currently available for pre-order. (Thanks to Martin Hoscik atUNITNews)
Many websites are reporting on the casting of Eve Myles as Gwen Cooper in the new "Torchwood" spinoff series (reported yesterday); among the sites featuring stories about this are icWales, Brand Republic, WaveGuide,The Great Link. Also, the BBC Press Office has also posted the press release (with identical wording to what's on the official Doctor Who site)here.
Radio Times has put up a gallery of cover party shots that the magazine didn't have room for here, the first and last being Doctor Who related.
The latest issue of Forbidden Planet international home shopping (the quarterly mail order catelogue run by the large Forbidden Planet chain of UK Sci-fi shops) have a number of new Doctor Who products listed that we haven't previously mentioned, including a TARDIS Zipperobe (a wire frame wardrobe with cloth robe print of TARDIS to cover, making it appear that there is a TARDIS in the corner of your room, due out in August); aSonic screwdriver LED torch (replica model torch, release date TBA);Dalek-shaped moneybox; Whographs, an autograph book with 80 blank pages; aDalek shaped electronic alarm clock, a sculpted Dalek wall clock, a Dalek shaped webcam and a chrome wallclock with an image of the TARDIS in the vortex.
The Evening Standard has some feedback on the new film "Kidulthood" written by series star Noel Clarke. "Kidulthood is designed to lure a youthful audience. There's a soundtrack by cool British artists, and a young and attractive cast whose performances have the tang of authenticity. It shows how city teenagers today divide along issues of power - sexual, physical and economic - rather than of ethnicity, and how they are united in pursuit of kicks and 'respect'. There have already been calls for Kidulthood to be banned. Others have dismissed it as mere voyeurism. Director Menhaj Huda and the film's screenwriter-star, Noel Clarke, say Kidulthood is 'on the pulse' and 'real'. But is it? And if it is, doesn't putting such subject matter on screen automatically glamorise it?" Reactions include the wife of slain headmaster Philip Lawrence, who was killed by one of his pupils in west London: "I think I was expected to dislike this film, to be shocked at the violence, the sex, the 'bad language'. I think I was expected to protest that it should not be shown to young people because they might emulate the (undoubtedly) atrocious actions. Perhaps I would even call for it to be banned. But I didn't dislike it. I'm not shocked by it (I should as soon be shocked by scenes in EastEnders or Coronation Street). I'm not protesting at it. And rather than calling for its censure, I'm more inclined to think it should be compulsory viewing. I don't imagine that Noel Clarke, the writer and lead actor, was attempting to say that all young people live like this. He was showing us what it is like for some young people at a particular time, in a particular place. The subject matter may be unpalatable but there are moments of supreme tenderness. If there is a message, then it is a moral one; what goes around, comes around. The bullies become the losers. Even the vicious drug baron is shown as a vacuous, pathetic bully whose life has no semblance of warmth or happiness. It does not justify, and is no more likely to promote, a life of impersonal sex and drugs and happy-slapping than, for instance, Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. Indeed the ending, perhaps unconsciously, parallels that play. A young boy lies dying, having discovered for a few sweet moments that love is what matters. In the pleas of his pregnant girlfriend it is impossible not to also hear the cries of other young people who wake every morning to a dark and brutal dawn. Who can pretend that these things don't happen? If we turn away, aren't we are as bad as the oh-so-liberal mother who calls through her daughter's bedroom door, 'Use a condom, sweetheart' -- oblivious to the fact that her daughter is not making love but is being abused. It's about time a film like this was made. As Clarke says: 'You can wear all the blue wristbands you like, but unless we bring it to people's attention, right in their faces, I don't think enough is gonna get done.'"
Also, MTV.co.uk is giving away tickets for the film.
Tom Baker was on this afternoon's BBC Radio 1 Colin and Edith Show, and the interview can now be heard again from this page.
The official Doctor Who website notes that "the Cardiff Doctor Who Exhibition stays open. Originally due to close at the end of February, the Doctor Who Exhibition in Cardiff's Red Dragon Centre will now be extended through March at least. The Exhibition, which is currently free, will start charging from 1 March 2006. It'll stay open as long as the demand is there. 1 March will also see a new exhibit on display, the Sycorax Leader from The Christmas Invasion. More new exhibits are promised after the 2006 series starts airing."
IGN has a review of the First Series Boxed Set release for Canada.
(Thanks to Paul Engelberg, Steve Tribe, Peter Weaver, William Gallagher, Chris Carabott, Dan McGrath)
The magazine section of the BBC News website has a Doctor Who-related rarity - Jon Pertwee's appearance in the Splink road safety public information film, which aired on TV. It is one of a series of shorts being shown to mark the 60th anniversary of the Central Office of Information. You can reach the Splink feature at the BBC News website where there is also the opportunity to watch the 30-second film. The site says: "It's got everything you could want from a public information film - a slogan, dated costumes, a bit of nostalgia - but is also unintentionally amusing. It's an attempt at improving road safety for children, and came a year after Dave Prowse (later Darth Vader) had first played the Green Cross Man. The film dates from 1976 and stars the late Jon Pertwee, then just two years after having left the role of Doctor Who. He is essentially playing the same part, though - a curious uncle figure who is explaining the world to his young charges. Unfortunately the message of this film seems so complicated one almost needs the Tardis's translation software to understand what he's going on about. Where the Green Cross Man's approach was simple ("look and listen all the way across"), it must have been decided that children needed the rules of safe crossing spelling out for them more precisely. Which is where the problems start." Accompanied by screen grabs, the site features a transcript of Pertwee's spot and continues, "In fact, of course, what people were more likely to remember was the last second of this film, when Pertwee shouts Splink. It's a remarkable shot, not least for his outfit. But his expression is absolutely bizarre, presumably by design. It is very funny. Well, it would be funny, if the subject wasn't so serious. The Green Cross Code was introduced in 1971, with 'splink' as a supposedly handy mnemonic. But surprise, surprise children found it too complicated. The Times of 10 July, 1974 (before this Pertwee film was released) reported that in a survey of 595 children aged between seven and 15, precisely none could remember the drill in full. Furthermore, only 18% of children chose the safest place to cross the road." More general information and statistics then follow. Dave Prowse also played the Minotaur in the 1972 Jon Pertwee story The Time Monster. (Thanks to John Bowman, Andrew Holmes, Chris Winwood)
New! Magazine (issue 151) has a two-page article (mostly pictures) of "Billie and David's TARDIS trip to the 50s!" The article reads, "Billie Piper and David Tennant get to rock around the TARDIS in the next series of Doctor Who! Our snaps were snatched on the set of the popular BBC1 drama in a street in Cardiff, Wales, last week, where the pair were in the midst of filming David's first series in the lead role. Billie looked a lot more excited by her retro costume than her co-star, but we don't blame her - she looked fantastic! She'd swapped her 21st century daywear for a fantastic flared pink skirt, matching heels and quirky pink shades, while David was wearing The Doctor's usual suit, jazzed up with a funky rockabilly quiff and sideburns. Still, David got to swap the time-travelling TARDIS for a zippy blue Vespa, which explains why he was recently spotted taking motorbike lessons. Billie, 23, seemed to enjoy riding on the back as much as David, 34, enjoyed driving, and she recently revealed, "Screen kisses? I love them. Especially with David." No wonder the actress, who recently received a breakthrough gong at the prestigious South Bank ShowAwards, insists on three takes to get their on-screeen snogs right. The pair were filming an episode in which their TARDIS lands in the 1950s, where they battle aliens who travel thoughTV airwaves. Filming took place in a residential street bedecked with bunting, retro adverts and lined with vintagcars, while diversions were in place to stop modern-day cars beign caught on film. The new series is expected to air in April. We can't wait!"
Actress Michelle Ryan mentioned the series in a brief interview in theMetro magazine. "There are rumours you're going to be Dr Who's new assistant. Are they true?" asks the paper, to which she replied, "Everyone's been rumoured to be up for that. The media speculate as to who they'd like to see in the role but as far as I know, no offers have been made. I'd consider it if it came up, though."
The Sun on 16 February asked "Who's my Valentine?" "Shirley Valentine starPauline Collins gets her teeth into the role of Queen Victoria in Doctor Who - before being bitten by a werewolf! Actress Pauline, 61, below, stars in an episode called Tooth and Claw in which the Queen meets the Time Lord (David Tennant) and his sidekick Rose Tyler (Billie Piper) in the Scottish Highlands. The trio spend the night with a Royal pal - who turns into a beast when night falls. Pauline - who first appeared in the sci-fi show in 1967 - said: 'It's really a tale of good against evil.'"
Series two guest star Maureen Lipman was on "Wogan Now and Then" on UKTV Gold on 14 Septemberr. She talked briefly about her episode in the new series, couple of minor spoilers about how it is set before the Coronation in 1953, that she is an alien, that she filmed her part separately from the main cast at Alexandria Palace studios, and scenes like "15 seconds having all the energy sucked out of (her)".
The South Wales Evening Post notes that "Swansea Valley's landmark Craig y Nos has been transformed from a 19th Century gothic pile into a dark and dour Scottish castle for the latest Dr Who sci-fi adventure set in Victorian times. A caravan of 30 BBC trucks descended on the castle to film the new series of adventures featuring the time travelling Doctor, in the shape of David Tennant, and his feisty companion, played by Billie Piper. Most of the filming was done over three days in the outer courtyard of the castle. The appearance of the castle facade needed changing to give it a bleak, period feel and security lights and other modern fittings had to be camouflaged. Martin Gover, managing director of Selclene, the domestic cleaning agency which now owns the castle, said: "The highlight of one of our overnight hotel guest's stay turned out to be the moment Billie Piper accidentally trod on her dog's tail between scenes." Mr Gover, who has put 1.2 million of his own money into renovating Craig y Nos, said: "The storyline concerns someone with a werewolf in their cellar. "Aside from that, we know as little about the plot as anyone else. All the shots of the castle were of the front entrance and the atrium block. We had all the windows painted black to give the castle a mediaeval look." The Dr Who cavalcade arrived during the worst of the autumn rain. "It bucketed down with rain," said Mr Gover. "We asked what they were going to do about the remaining daylight scenes as it got dark. One of the technicians said 'You haven't seen our sun, mate'. A huge crane arrived and hoisted an immense lighting array some 70ft above the castle, bathing the hamlet of Craig y Nos in bright 'sunshine'. The rain, however, continued sheeting down. 'Not even the BBC could control the weather," he added.
The South Wales Evening Post notes that "a child actor from Swansea is to grace the big screen with two very different types of Doctor. Parklands Primary School pupil Lara Philippart, aged eight, will appear on television this weekend with a role in BBC's Casualty. But she is also due this week to star filming the latest series of Dr Who, which is underway in Cardiff. Lara, who attends Centrestage Drama School in Sandfields, is following in the footsteps of big sister Millie, aged 13, who recently returned from travelling Europe filming Crusade in Jeans, a children's film about time travel set for general cinema release later this year. Dad Kneath Philippart, from Sketty, said: "They just seem to get picked for these roles. But credit really has to go to the staff at Centrestage for all the work they do." Lara will be appearing in Casualty on Saturday."
A 16 February article in the Daily Star says that "Doctor Who bosses have gone monster mad after a script for the new series was left on a park bench. The top secret document was abandoned by someone who works on the BBC hit, which stars David Tennant, 34, and Billie Piper, 23. And the script for a forthcoming episode called The Idiot's Lantern could already have been read by passers-by and even posted on the internet. TV chiefs were left fuming when a member of the public rang the Beeb to say the weather-beaten script had been found in a central London park. Producers are said to be furious that someone working on the programme could have been so careless as to leave the script lying on a bench. A BBC source said: "They were stunned that anyone could just leave a secret script just lying around for all the world to see. These things are sacred because so few are given out and the ones which are often have the names of the cast or crew member printed on the top. The last thing we want is leaks on the internet. It can ruin the story and surprises for fans before the programme even goes on air. As yet we have no idea who left it there and so far no-one has owned up to us that they've lost their script. But everyone's been given a talking to about security issues." The Idiot's Lantern - said to be one of the spookiest-ever episodes - will feature in the new series which begins in April. It was written by League of Gentlemen star Mark Gatiss, 39. Only scant details are known about the plotline but we can reveal that the Doctor and Rose land back on Earth in the 1950s, only to find the planet being invaded by ghosts who travel through soundwaves in TV sets. The show is set to include guest appearances by comedy actress Maureen Lipman, 59, and telly psychic Derek Acorah, 55."
More articles about Trisha Goddard being a guest star in series two can be found at Sky.com, the Mirror (updated article) and Ananova. We should note that it appears that "I'm In Love With a Ghost" is actually the episode of the celeb's talk show within the Doctor Who episode...
Noel Clarke's Kidulthood
RWDMag interviews Noel Clarke about his forthcoming film "Kidulthood" coming out in March. "Basically it all started with a case of sitting down in front of the computer and writing it," says Clarke. "The reason I started was, I feel in terms of a lot of things that are happening today in society (with young people) - I didn’t think things were being told right. I wanted the film to be something that people haven’t seen before. The fact that a certain newspaper was trying to attack it, is just a testament to… people don’t like it when situations are told the way they really are. ... Young people do have sex; I mean this country has one of the highest youngest pregnancy rates in Europe. Young people do take drugs. The film doesn’t highlight, promote or justify any of this – I’m not a drug taker and never have been – BUT, it’s happening. You need to bring circumstances like this to people’s attention. The bullying in the schools and the workplaces needs to be brought to people’s attention. You can bring out all the blue bands you want, kids just wear them as a fashion accessory and children get bullied anyway. ... We tackle bullying, teenage suicide, drug taking and other major issues, what I want is the Government to figure out ways that young people can address these issues; with workshops and more money spent on these things that youth culture go through. I’m not saying I know the answers but if we shine light on the actual situation, kids relate to the characters and then someone (in power) can see what’s going on and deal with it. ... In terms if the writing, I mostly scripted it. Even though I’m a bit older I still know what’s goin on. I still go to the same barbers in Ladbrook Grove. Certain words never change. The actors helped a great deal, so they used some updated/ ad-libbed words. ... Basically the three main characters, Jay, Trife and Mooney are based on people, me and two of my friends from college. I was there for the casting and the Director [Menhaj Huda ‘Huds’] chose an excellent bunch. With the main characters everyone can relate to them. Working with all the cast was great and we had loads of joke on set. ... My character [Sam] is based on bullies I saw around the neighbourhoods. In school they’re all big but now when you see them on road they’re all silent. They only have the power with a weapon or with their crew around them. Once I knew I was playing that part (I didn’t know at the start); I had to make sure he was intimidating enough. ... The reactions have been 96% positive, which is alright ya know. I didn’t write/ make the film for people to like it. I made/ was involved because it was real and if you do things for OTHER people’s approval all the time, that’s the wrong reason. Go watch the film and you’ll see how things go down."
The 19 February edition of the Independent says that the film "shows what children really get up to when mum and dad aren't looking. ... It promises to be the most controversial British film of the year. The Sun has already called for it to be banned and The Times has accused it of pandering to middle-class voyeurism in its portrayal of crime, bullying and sexual abuse. Set among a group of white and black teenagers in west London, from working-class and middle-class families, and based entirely on true stories, Kidulthood claims to be the first feature film to accurately reflect what life is like for urban kids. There are graphic scenes of drug-taking, violence, casual sex and organised crime. The characters are all 15. The film opens with a middle-class schoolgirl being horrifically bullied in a classroom. When her preoccupied businessman father picks up her from school, he fails to spot the bruises. Ten minutes later, she has hanged herself. In another sequence two girls trade sexual favours with older men for pocket money to spend at Topshop. A young black boy cuts a man's throat to impress his drug-dealer uncle. Running parallel, however, are story- lines about coping with bad skin and how to choose your friends wisely. Not surprising then that the film, out in two weeks, has divided critics. But is it an unflinching portrayal of teenage life, or a manipulative assault on the paranoid anxieties of Middle England? For one thing is sure - this film is certain to put the fear of God into parents everywhere. ... Noel Clarke, who wrote the screenplay, insists it is the essential truth of his work that makes the film so controversial. 'It touches a raw nerve,' he says. 'It's on the pulse of what's happening in society right now. Kids these days are growing up too fast.' Clarke, 30, best known for playing Billie Piper's boyfriend in Dr Who, is sure of his material. He grew up in the Ladbroke Grove and Harrow Road area of London where the film is set. His childhood bedroom is used in one scene. For a year he collected newspaper articles about teenagers in trouble, then condensed them into a 90-minute storyline, seen from their point of view. With a cast that includes Clarke, Jamie Winstone - the teenage daughter of Ray Winstone - and Rafe Spall, son of Timothy Spall, and a "hip-hop and grime" soundtrack by Dizzee Rascal, The Streets and Lady Sovereign, Kidulthood is seriously hip. It also looks fantastic: the director of photography, Brian Tufano, shot Trainspotting and Quadrophenia. Some are predicting it will join the ranks of cult films such as City of God and La Haine. But the film-makers are adamant that style shouldn't get in the way of substance. 'You have a bullying storyline, young people coming up against issues of sex for the first time, taking drugs, dealing with teenage pregnancy,' says Hannah Jolliffe of the youth website www.TheSite.org, which gives advice to young people on everything from drugs to sexual health. 'What is impressive is it doesn't try to moralise.' The highly multicultural film shows that in the new Britain, all kids face the same temptations." More at the website.
The Telegraph also says of the film that "There's a new kids' film on the block. Hardly a scoop - barely a week goes by without the release of another movie featuring some plucky youngster battling good and evil with their pals. Kidulthood, out in a fortnight, is no exception: it follows 15-year-old Trife and his schoolfriends getting up to all sorts of adventures one day in December. But Harry Potter it ain't. Not for these teenagers tutorials in wizardry and bashful blushes across the Quidditch field. The only time we see a blackboard is when a girl gets her face smashed against it by a classmate. The only time we see a science lab is when Trife uses the equipment to customise his gun. And the only time we see someone pick up a pen is to write a suicide note. Playing fields are for sex, mobile phones are for videoing fights, coke is for snorting, cabbies for fleecing, babies for getting rid of in case they make you look fat. Parents barely figure - they're dimly liberal at best, at worst completely absent. The real authority figures are an ageing drug-dealer, who trades pills for sexual favours, and Trife's gangster uncle, who gets his nephew high on heroin, then forces him to maim a business associate he is torturing in the cellar. It's a shocker all right, and intentionally so. The more adults who tut, the more teenagers who will buy tickets. With a soundtrack featuring cutting-edge home-grown talent, such as The Streets and Dizzee Rascal, Kidulthood is a film of formidable grit that aims to expose the tough-nut centre of chocolate-box London. It is set on the council estates bordering Ladbroke Grove, a landscape of grim towers and graffiti-scrawled underpasses rarely visited by film crews, despite being cheek by jowl with some of the most expensive postcodes in town."
More about the film can be found on its official website.
David Tennant Items
icWales notes that "IT MAY not be an issue at the forefront of people's minds as they are sizing up their favourite celebrities, but the owners of the sexiest pair of famous ears have been named. The RNID, the charity for deaf and hard of hearing people, today picked singer Charlotte Church, also a former winner of Rear of the Year, and Doctor Who actor David Tennantas having the best set of lugs. Others shortlisted for the female prize were actress Keira Knightley, singer Jamelia and TV presenter Lorraine Kelly, while the men who just missed out on the prize included presenter Jonathan Ross and singer Robbie Williams. The RNID has now launched a search for the nation's sexiest pair of ears, with members of the public invited to send in a picture to be judged by the charity." Also reported at theBelfast Telegraph, Edinburgh News, GM.TV, Daily Record.
Tennant appears as the Doctor on the front cover of the 'Equity Review of the Year 2005' (the annual report of the British actors' trade union). There's no reference to him or the series inside, however.
Stuff.co.nz reviewed "Casanova" starring Tennant, saying it "was an engaging romp, in the tradition of Vanity Fair, Barrie Lyndon and Moll Flanders -- only updated, into a sort of Minder in costume. ...It was initially disappointing that a rather scrawny and average-looking actor, David Tennant, was the chosen young Casanova. He didn't look remotely like our modern idea of an Italian dreamboat. He was barrow-boy common, and when seen in bed, had those nasty spaghetti arms which we're so unaccustomed to seeing on TV since the advent of Les Mills. But he imbued the role with enough grating charm, impishness and gallows self-deprecation, that in the end he seemed acceptable. Tennant has a nice, Everyman face and surplus eye-twinkle, and will doubtless become as ubiquitous as Robson Green in time. But for my money, he was outshone comedy-wise by his manservant Rocco, played with stoical, eye-rolling sullenness by Shaun Parks."
Tenannt is also said to be backing a fundraising drive for a cash-strapped Scots hospice in his home town of Paisley according to the Daily Record of 14 February. "The ACCORD Hospice have just six weeks to buy their buildings from Argyll and Clyde Health Board. Tennant has stepped in to give the buy-a-brick campaign celebrity backing. David said: 'Coming from Paisley, I'm very proud of the ACCORD Hospice and the care they provide.'"
The official website asks, "If you've ever wondered what going on a date with David Tennant would be like, and let's face it, who hasn't, the BBC Film Network has the answer. They've just published romantic comedy Nine and a Half Minutes on their site. Made back in 2002, it stars the Tenth Doctor actor alongside Zoe Telford. They play Charlie and Heather, a couple who meet on a blind date and then go on to imagine a whole relationship in just under ten minutes. Warning - the film does contain some very strong language, alongside images of David Tennant pretending to be a crocodile wrestler."
John Barrowman is listed to appear on Loose Women Friday 3 March, ITV1 1.30-2.30 (along with one of the Dancing on Ice judges Jason Gardiner) (according to DigiGuide).
BBC News reports that "Actors Joanna Lumley and Tom Baker own the UK's best voices, according to a Radio Times poll of nearly 5000 people. Users of the magazine's website were asked to choose the nicest and the most grating tones from 50 of the most distinctive voices in TV and radio. Julian Clary and Janet Street-Porter topped the worst voices list. Lorraine Kelly and Jeremy Clarkson made both the best and worst line-ups. Other favourite voices included Des Lynam, Davina McCall and Mariella Frostrup. ... 'His voice is so fruity and dark,' [Dead Ringers star Jan Ravens] said of Tom Baker, who is currently the voice of BT's talking text message service. 'But I think it would be hard work to carry his voice round with you all day.'" Also reported at Brand Republic.
The 18 February Birmingham Post featured their "Saturday Interview" with Tom Baker. "You can't deny it's a neat idea. For the next three months, whenever you send a text to a landline number, thanks to computer technology and a mammoth stint in a recording studio, the recipient will hear former Doctor Who Tom Baker reading out your message. "I think I'm a good choice," chuckles the 72-year-old actor, "because here's the voice of Little Britain, now the voice of BT." Holed up in a hotel suite in London's Fitzrovia, Tom is in top form and seems genuinely amused by his latest project. "It took about 60-odd hours over 11 days to record every sound and combination in the language they need to make the service work," he says. "In many ways it could have been a very boring job, because a lot of the stuff I was saying was phonetic. They were looking for sounds and not the sense. Despite the fact it was all nonsensical, I had to read it with aplomb. "I said to the engineer, 'I don't know how I can do this', to which he replied, 'Well, I just heard you talking a load of rubbish in the entrance. It was fantastic, just do that'. I thought, 'Gosh, that's a sharp observation'. "It was a nice job because most of the messages that are going to go out being read by me will be rather pleasant. I'm looking forward to people in the street saying, 'I had a call from you last night!'."
Tom Baker has made a lot of money for BT -- over 500,000 pounds in less than three weeks! "The actor, 72, has been the voice of BT Text since the start of February," says the Daily Star on 19 February. "The service allows mobile phone users to send an SMS to a landline, with the words then being converted into a spoken message by Baker. And already millions of Brits have been plagued by cheeky messages left on their answering machines by the narrator of the hit comedy. Little Britain catchphrases including "I want that one", "bitty" and "I'm a laydee" have been booming out in homes across the UK. The actor, who played Dr Who between 1974 and 1981, earned himself new-found cult status after being signed up to narrate Little Britain. And he has proved so popular that BT, which has cashed in on the 10p-atime service since the start of the month, is now ready to extend his three-month contract. A BT spokesman said: "Within the first week, the number of people using the text-to-landline service soared. There was a 71% increase as people jumped at the chance to play pranks on their friends and have a bit of fun." Prankster Ryan Sloan, 27, said: "I'm a great fan of Dr Who and Little Britain, so getting Tom Baker on my answering machine is always funny."
Baker will be heard on the Colin and Edith Show on Radio 1 on Friday 24 February from 1-4pm according to the officialwebsite.
Director James Hawes says he "wants to be reincarnated as a Timelord," according to an interview in Broadcast. Says Hawes to several questions: "What's the cruellest thing you've ever done? Use an air rifle to shoot holes in my sister's David Soul album. ... What's the worst rejection you've ever had? Esther Rantzen turned me down as a director for That's Life. ... Who would you like to play you in a movie? Ronnie Corbett. ... If you could be reincarnated who or what would you be? A Timelord."
The Eastern Daily Press says that Colin Baker will appear at "a Midsummer Invasion at Holt on June 25. It will feature more than 100 daleks and cybermen, and guests also include Terry Molloy, who played Davros, the evil creator of the daleks. Organiser Nigel Pearce said people from across the country were interested in attending, which was good news for the town. Fun events, including parades, and other visiting sci-fi characters from Star Wars and action comics, will be in the town on the Sunday. There is a meet and greet session involving the actors the previous evening. More than 350 people attended a recent event launch, and there would be another "incident" with a red dalek at Budgens super-market at 9am on Friday." Yahoo News notes that Tracy-Ann Oberman, who appears in the final episodes of series two, "has landed her first major TV role since leaving EastEnders in 2005. The actress, who played murderous former Queen Victoria landlady Chrissie Watts in the serial, will appear in the BBC's new comedy drama Sorted. Written by Daniel Brocklehurst, it follows the lives and loves of six Manchester postmen. Tracy-Ann stars as Amy, who is dating Dex, played by Shameless star Dean Lennox Kelly. The couple are living together and he has become a father to her kids, but they are unsure whether they are ready to take the next step and tie the knot. She's not the only soap veteran in the cast. The show also features Will Mellor, who first found fame on Hollyoaks before going on to serve a two-year stint on Casualty. Eva Pope, who played scheming Tanya Pooley in Coronation Street, will also appear as one of the posties' wives. Other cast members include Hugo Speer, Mark Womack, Cal Macaninch and Neil Dudgeon. The six-part series is currently being filmed, and is due to be screened on BBC One before the end of the year."
The 23 February edition of the Wembley and Kingsbury Times mentionsNicola Bryant's new play "Taboos". "Sally and Harriet, a lesbian couple in San Francisco, each have a child using sperm from their partner's brother, while one of the brothers uses an egg from his sister's partner to help his wife get pregnant. Sounds like a Jerry Springer biological special, but, in fact, it's the latest play by Carl Djerassi, the scientist turned dramatist who invented the contraceptive pill. During the past 15 years he has turned to fiction and the theatre, with a series of science-in-fiction novels and plays, An Immaculate Misconception, Oxygen, Three on a Couch, Calculus and last year's Phallacy. In Taboos, Djerassi returns to what he describes as 'the impending separation of sex and reproduction' to explore the ethical complications of parenthood in an era where social and legal structures lag behind scientific advancement. Djerassi said: "Assumptions that marriage must be heterosexual and that a child cannot have two parents of the same sex were never even considered assumptions, because they were beyond questioning. Some would blame in vitro fertilisation technology during the past three decades for these developments, but major social and cultural changes, primarily in the USA and Europe, were even more responsible for the monumental shift that's caused so much fear and antagonism. So why not write a play about a situation where 'family' and 'parent' have assumed disturbingly fuzzy meanings?" Sally, Notting Hill's Nicola Bryant, best known for her role as Dr Who assistant Peri Brown, and Harriet believe they can invent a family with the necessary biological ingredients, but find it proves a more emotionally involving process than expected."
Doctor Who is currently on the cover of the Sci-Fi Channel magazine (website here) which it says has "a sneak peak at David Tennant, the latest incarnation of the immortal Doctor Who." Also, the channel's website has areview of the Radio Controlled Dalek.
Issue #343 of the American genre TV magazine Starlog features a four-page article about the show which notes the February 14 Canada release date.
Scifi.com says that "Classic SF franchises such as Doctor Who, Space: 1999 and Lost in Space are still very much alive in 2006, with new collectible lines based on the classic shows debuting at the American International Toy Fair in New York this week. Product Enterprise, Ltd., a British-based toy manufacturer specializing in cult TV and films, showed off an expansive line of new products coming to stores this year. Company designer Graham Humphreys told SCI FI Wire that the company will offer a 12-inch talking Doctor Who, based on actor Tom Baker's 1974–81 version of the immortal character, as well as a Talking Cyberman from the 1975 story "Revenge of the Cybermen." "We've had the classic license for six years, and there's always been a huge market for [Doctor Who]," Humphreys said. "The new items are coming out in October. We also have Micro-action Daleks, radio-control Daleks and the inflatable Daleks available now.""
The Scotsman says that "a Dalek built by a Penicuik paramedic has raised almost 300 pounds for the Sick Kids Friends Foundation's appeal which aims to open a family support centre. The cash was raised when the "life-size" creature, which was built by Jeff Dunn, 40, appeared at the Cameron Toll Shopping Centre in Edinburgh last weekend. The Evening News-backed Drop-in Centre appeal aims to raise £100,000 to establish a centre near the Sick Kids Hospital for the parents of ill children. If you want to raise funds for the appeal, call 0131-668 4949."
icWales says that "fans will be spending more time getting up close and personal with Doctor Who. The Time Lord exhibition in Cardiff Bay has proved so popular that it will now be open to the public for longer than its planned two-month run. More than 80,000 visitors have already come face-to-face with Daleks at the Red Dragon Centre's free behind-the-scenes show, Doctor Who Up Close. Now fans will be able to see the props and costumes for at least another month, but they will have to pay a fee after February 26, when it was due to close. Martin Wilkie, spokesman for organisers Experience Design and Management, said: "We will keep the admission charge at a modest rate to enable us to welcome as many visitors to the exhibition as possible. We are very happy for school groups to come on an organised basis free of charge. We have been overwhelmed by the response to the exhibition so far." New displays featuring props, costumes and monsters from the forthcoming series starring new doctor David Tennant are set to be featured. Last month exhibits from the Christmas special, including evil Santas and the killer Christmas tree, were introduced. Emma Sandrey, 18, a Cardiff University film and media student, from Llanedeyrn, said: "I think it's fantastic that they're keeping it open. I've been there a few times and really enjoyed it. I don't think paying will put people off going and I'd go again." Doctor Who Up Close is open throughout half-term week from 11am until 8pm, and admission will still be free."
Biz.Yahoo.com on 21 February notes that Nuance Communications' RealSpeak technology has been used to develop the voice for BT's new Voice Text Service, including that of Tom Baker;
This Is Hertfordshire covers a Labour Party leaflet which "shows a Dalek chasing Councillor Brian Salinger. Hendon MP Andrew Dismore is refusing to apologise after labelling the borough's Conservatives as far right extremists' in a Labour Party leaflet delivered to hundreds of homes in the borough. The A4 leaflet, which has been posted to residents in Hale and West Hendon wards, pokes fun at the internal fighting among Tory councillors. It reads: 'There's nothing worse than seeing old friends fall out unless it's the Conservative far right extremists.' The text is accompanied by a mock picture of a Dalek chasing council leader Brian Salinger, with the headline EX-TORY-MATE! EX-TORY-MATE!' Hale Conservative councillor Brian Gordon said the comment was offensive and provocative."
The Brentwood Gazette notes that "One of television's best-loved characters will be making an appearance at Billericay's Mayflower High School next week. K9, Doctor Who's robot dog, will accompany owner Mat Irvine, former judge and advisor on TV programme Robot Wars, who will be judging the school's family learning day. Children and parents will work together on several science projects, including a chance to build robots together to enter into a Robot Wars-style arena competition. K9, who accompanied Tom Baker's Doctor Who during the 1970s, will be making a reapperance when the show returns later in the year."
BlogCritics discusses the arrival next month of the first season of the new Doctor Who series on SCI-FI in America, giving a synopsis of the show and then noting, "Based on what I have provided here, I hope everyone tunes in to Doctor Who mid-March. In many respects, it is the best space opera show out there. And yes, I believe it even surpasses the new Galactica in cliffhanger endings and complexity of storylines. In fact, the entire first season is one gigantic story that is highly reminiscent of the Tom Baker "Keys to Time" and the Colin Baker "Trial of a Time Lord" expansive serials on the classic show. Let's show SCI FI that intelligent viewers like us desire Who for a long time to come. So tune in after Galactica ends, and plan to be surprised! Oh, I forgot to mention the Doctor's name. It's...I forget now. You just have to check out the show yourself to get that question answered. Be seeing you in March." Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Times mentioned the series in answer to a question about whether or not the show would ever make it to the US.
(Thanks to Paul Engelberg, Steve Tribe, Chuck Foster, Elaine Shanks, Chris Megson, John Bowman, Peter Weaver, Ryan Piekenbrock)
Issues 72 and 73 of Time Space Visualiser (TSV), the fanzine of the New Zealand Doctor Who fanclub, kick off 2006. In TSV72 (February 2006), Adam McGechan talks to John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Noel Clarke (Mickey Smith), Corey Johnson (Henry van Statten), and Dalek voicemaster Nick Briggs in a set of exclusive new series interviews; Chris Skerrow begins his retrospective look at the BBC Past Doctor Adventures; Paul Scoones examines deleted scenes from the 2005 series; David Ronayne weaves a Ninth Doctor tale with Night of the Butterfly; as well as the latest news on series two and reviews of the latest toys, audios, DVDs, book and magazines. All packed into 100 pages, TSV72 is available now. In TSV73 (March 2006), Andrew Pixley examines missing moments from The Invasion; Jon Preddle uncovers new information on the censorship of Doctor Who on New Zealand television; David Lawrence starts his reassessment of the BBC's Eighth Doctor Adventures; Zoltan Dery analyses classic series title structure and comes up with his own random title generator; and we present The Complete Ninth Doctor Dictionary, an A-Z encyclopedia of the 2005 series of Doctor Who; plus the latest news and reviews. An action-packed 100 pages, TSV73 will be available next month. Visit nzdwfc.tetrap.com/order.htmlfor ordering information.
Below is a new set report from last week from the production of The Idiot's Lantern as reported by fan Timothy Farr; click on the spoiler link to read the details.
The Idiot's Lantern is a euphemism for television. This episode is written by Mark Gatiss and directed by Euros Lynn... It is set during the coronation in 1953 and features the Doctor and Rose travelling around on a contemporary form of transport.
I received a number of texts on Thursday, 16th February telling me that pick up shots for The Idiot's Lantern were being filmed at the end of Florentia Street in Cathays. David Tennant and Billie Piper had apparently been and gone. I had a good hour to spare when I got back to my house elsewhere in Cathays before I had to be on a train to Pontypridd for a TIMELESS meeting, so I thought I would have a quick look around. It was dark, but not so cold as the previous week's shoot for the same episode. The presence of a large crane light shining down into the street alongside the supermarket gave away the exact location.
In many of the earlier Florentia Street location photographs there can be seen a large board with a pale blue background depicting a textless illustration of children playing in bright colours. It's an advertisement for Spangles, a popular confection last century. This wall is part of a street that forms a T junction with the southern end of Florentia Street. This was where the day's filming was taking place. The Spangles ad had been removed. The camera was near the back wall of the western arm of the T-junction, pointing east. A large dark green period lorry with words something like B D Casey & Sons was parked at an angle across most of the eastern arm of the junction, obscuring from camera view some twenty-first century cars and the traffic roaring back and fore along the busy Crwys Road further off. The road markings were covered with straw. An abandoned wooden handcart containg tall metal milk churns and other period produce containers stood to one side. This street is mostly anonymous brick walls, although there is an anonymous metal gated yard along the wall of the western arm of the T-junction. This yard had been lit from within, light spilling into camera view.
When I arrived at about 6.40pm, there were very few bystanders. A couple with a few small children and there was an old man who mumbled occasionally in a barely intelligible manner. David Tennant was stood on his own just a few meters away and had I had something appropriate to hand, I could have got an autograph quite easily. With so few onlookers present and no still cameras in evidence, the crew were very relaxed. When they were ready to resume recording, a very simple shot was rehearsed and then recorded. Not far from the handcart, a member of the crew held the dark blue Vespa scooter steady from behind. David Tennant in the tenth Doctor's pin stripe suit and wearing a pale crash helmet sat astride the scooter and the engine was started. The crew member pushed the scooter forward and moved quickly out of camera view. The scooter glided slowly towards the camera and Tennant stopped it only a very few feet from the camera lens. Although his stand-in was also present in a matching costume, it had to be the man himself for this shot as it plainly ends on a close up of his face.
I left at 7.00pm between the first and second takes of this shot.
Issue 367 of Doctor Who Magazine will be out on 2 March and the press release and cover are below; click on the thumbnail for a larger version. (Thanks to Tom Spilsbury/DWM)
Meet the Doctor's latest travelling companion in the new issue of Doctor Who Magazine!
Actor Noel Clarke drops by the DWM offices for an exclusive photoshoot, and chats about some of the changes in store for Mickey Smith...
"Mickey has a lot more to do this year, besides being the new companion. I can only say to the fans, 'You just wait and see what's going to happen!' Mickey gets sexy in this series! I'm not in every episode, but there's so much for me to do as an actor, there's so much for the character to do, and I really think the fans are going to like it. By the last time you see him in this series, he's a completely different person from the Mickey that got stuck to the wheelie bin in Episode 1..."
Also this issue, there's a complete new Doctor Who audio adventure on a free CD, starring Sophie Aldred, Nicola Bryant, Philip Olivier and Caroline Morris. Plus there's a beginner's guide to the world of Doctor Who on audio, in a special 9-page feature all about Big Finish Productions!
Meanwhile, in an exclusive interview, writer Toby Whithouse chats about bringing back Sarah Jane Smith and K9, in the eagerly anticipated School Reunion; there's a look at the reasons for the massive success of the return of the series in a special article, Scheduled for Success; and the Doctor and Rose reach the climax of their latest exciting comic strip adventure, The Betrothal of Sontar.
Plus, of course, there's all the latest casting news from the new series in Gallifrey Guardian; website producer James Goss tells the magazine about some special new projects for the Doctor Who website in Production Notes; and Sorvad returns to answer all those unanswerable questions that readers have been putting to him.
Along with all your other favourite regular features, Doctor Who Magazine 367 goes on sale on Thursday 2 March 2006, priced 3.99.
The latest edition of Radio Times reports on its annual Covers Party (an event we mentioned early this month on Outpost Gallifrey) with a strong contingent of Doctor Who stars in evidence thanks to the show's three RT covers last year. In attendance were David Tennant, Billie Piper, Russell T Davies and a Dalek, as well as Anna Maxwell-Martin, writer Stephen Fry and Auton favourite Graham Norton. Actress Helen Mirren is pictured with Tennant, Piper and the Dalek ("I just had to be photographed with it"). The report includes a brief interview with Billie Piper, in which she mentions that she'd "like to do" Series 3, "but it's a huge commitment [...] hopefully it will all work out." Piper is quoted as saying on the subject of Doctor Who: "I honestly don't think my career will get any more exciting. It's done the most amazing things for me both personally and professionally." She says of co-star David Tennant: "He is just the most straight-down-the-line bloke you could wish to meet. He's your best friend, your brother and your boyfriend kind of rolled into one" And on being in series three, she says: "I'd like to do it, but it's a huge commitment. After this finishes I'll be working on another BBC drama [a dramatisation of Phillip Pullman's "The Ruby in the Smoke"] and then I'll look at things. But hopefully it will all work out" RTD and Tennant are also in a separate photograph with RT covers for both Doctor Who (cover for the Episode "Dalek") and Casanova. (Thanks to Steve Tribe, Andrew Ford)
The latest issue of Doctor Who Magazine, due out officially next week, carries a new free CD, The Veiled Leopard. The audio stars Nicola Bryant (Peri), Caroline Morris (Erimem), Philip Olivier (Hex) and Sophie Aldred (Ace). Says the blurb: "Monte Carlo, 1966: Four time travellers. Two missions. One costumed ball. The Doctor has sent Peri and Erimem to prevent the fabulous Veiled Leopard diamond from being stolen. Which is odd, seeing at the Doctor has sent Ace and Hex to steal the diamond. How will the two teams cope with this contradictory task? Will Peri's asp slip? Why does Ace have to pretend to be a French maid? How will Erimem cope with Pharaoh Rammalamadingdong? And can Hex really 'do posh'?"
The new issue of DWM has details of Big Finish's plans for the second half of 2006. The monthly Doctor Who releases continue with The Nowhere Placeby Nicholas Briggs (Sixth Doctor, July), followed by Red by Stewart Sheargold (Seventh Doctor, August); The Reaping (Sixth Doctor, September, formerly "Dead Man Walking"), which features a trip to Baltimore to meet Peri's mother, and The Gathering (Fifth Doctor, September), both by Joseph Lidster; Memory Lane by Eddie Robson (Eighth Doctor, October); We Are the Dead by Martin Day (Seventh Doctor, November); andCircular Time, featuring four "seasonal tales" by Paul Cornell and Mike Maddox (Fifth Doctor, December). There will also be a subscribers-only single-CD release at the end of the year, Return of the Daleks by Nicholas Briggs, which will be "a crossover of sorts" with Briggs's earlier Dalek Empire series.
A few notes also came up at the recent Gallifrey 2006 convention about the year's earlier items: The Kingmaker by Nev Fountain is "a comedy".Something Inside was altered to use that title instead of the original "The Cube" because Trevor Baxendale decided he didn't want to have any associations with the cult film "Cube," which he hadn't heard of when he wrote the story. The next series of Gallifrey will be the last one, for creative reasons (producer Gary Russell says it will have reached its logical conclusion). Down the road, there will be eventually a story set in the trenches of WW1, a story based around the assassination of Lincoln and a pseudo-historical set around the British occupation of India.
Big Finish has just recorded two Bernice Summerfield audios. There are eight Benny Summerfield audios planned for release this year. Series star Lisa Bowerman will be directing an installment of Big Finish's other series, "The Tomorrow People".
A press releases from the BBC Press Office discusses a host of new Doctor Who releases from BBC Books and BBC Audio this year:
Confirmed for 18 May are the latest batch of novels, The Resurrection Casket by Justin Richards, The Feast of the Drowned by Stephen Cole and The Stone Rose by Jacqueline Rayner as well as Justin Richards' second large-format book Aliens and Enemies. Previously announced on Outpost Gallifrey, the covers for "Aliens and Enemies" and "The Stone Rose" can now be found below (click on each for a larger version) courtesy the official Doctor Who website and the Amazon.co.uk site, respectively. Also noted in the press release: the Quick Reads book I Am A Dalek by Gareth Roberts.
All three of the novels will be released in audio format, as we previously reported: "Fresh from his Christmas regeneration, the tenth Doctor himself David Tennant narrates three new Doctor Who novels for BBC Audiobooks. These abridged readings feature the escapades of the Doctor and Rose as they take the TARDIS on adventures not seen on TV. In a special ‘bonus' feature, the Doctor reveals all in an exclusive question and answer session with his fans. The Resurrection Casket, The Stone Rose, and The Feast of the Drowned are released on 3 July 2006."
BBC Audio has confirmed the release on 1 May of The Dalek Conquests, reported on Outpost Gallifrey on 29 January and listed on Amazon. According to the official Doctor Who website, "The Dalek Conquests covers every encounter the Doctor has had with his hate-filled nemeses. Through extracts from their many TV appearances, and linking narration by Nick [Briggs], The Dalek Conquests finds out where the Daleks come from, who was behind their original creation, and just why they are so bent on universal domination."
On the classic series front, The Tomb of the Cybermen will be released on audio on 1 May. "Patrick Troughton stars in this digitally remastered soundtrack of a classic TV story , in which the dreaded Cybermen are released from their ice tombs on the planet Telos. The Doctor, Jamie and Victoria encounter a party of Earth archaeologists who are intent on uncovering the mythical 'Tomb of the Cybermen'. Only the Doctor seems aware of the folly of this venture, but suddenly it's too late - the tomb is open, and the Cybermen are coming back to life... Trapped in a confined place with the Cyber Controller and his acolytes, can the humans avoid being turned into Cyber fodder? What's more, can the Cyber menace be made dormant before it spreads out to the galaxy once again? The Cybermen return to Doctor Who in the latest TV series." This is interestingly an audio release of a story that exists on video and DVD.
Also noted are groups of toys including Five-inch Action figures ("See the characters come to life with the new range of 5" action figures. The Doctor is dressed in his new signature outfit with long overcoat and Sonic Screwdriver accessory, while Rose Tyler is teamed with canine hero, K-9. Evil intergalactic warlord, the Sycorax Warrior comes complete with two imposing weapons. The Cassandra action figure shows Lady Cassandra O'Brien, the last human, stretched out on her moving frame. Blue-skinned Moxx of Balhoon is featured on his travelling base while Slitheen stands tall with full joint articulation and extendable claws"); Twelve-inch Action figures ("The twelve-inch action figure range features the new, more deadly breed of Cybermen, as well as the Doctor himself, suited exactly as seen on the screen. Every detail in his pinstripe suit, plimsolls and overcoat has been incorporated into the figure to reflect, down to the very last pinstripe, the Doctor's classic look"); Radio Controlled Toys ("The new 5" radio controlled Dalek is set to be just as popular as the 12" debut model launched last year . Like its predecessor, it features 360-degree travel, flashing lights and utters the words: "Seek, locate, exterminate!" The 5" Doctor Who action figure appears again in a double pack that comprises radio controlled K-9 with authentic speech and sound effects. On command, K-9 can turn a full 360 degrees, his eyes light up and he also has a button-activated gun"); Cyberman novelty range ("The Cyberman Voice Changer Helmet is a must for anyone daring to deceive the Cybermen as they carry out their mission to convert humanity to their own deadly kind. It will change your voice into true Cyberman speak, leaving your real identity undetected. For added protection, the Cyberman Room Guard will help you ward off intruders attempting to trespass on forbidden territory"); and Playsets and games ("The TARDIS Electronic Playset features authentic light and sound effects and its console is a faithful reproduction of the one seen on screen. Its motorised 'time column' rises and falls (with lights) when the TARDIS is in 'flight' and it has 'lift out' access panels in the floor to reveal the mechanisms and circuitry hidden in the floor. The LCD Game has a smart stylised Dalek case front and comes with an LCD game display, authentic sounds and two levels of play that allows players to hunt out and fire at the Doctor's most feared adversary. The new additions join the existing Doctor Who toy range which includes the Talking TARDIS Money Box and Sonic Screwdriver. The TARDIS Money Box, a replica of the Doctor's Time Capsule, has an opening front door which reveals the Doctor, Rose and a money slot. As each coin is delivered, the Money Box plays phrases including, "Did I mention it travels in time?" A replica of one of the Doctor's most essential tool, the Sonic Screwdriver is an invisible writing pen featuring button activated lights and sounds.")
Finally, below we have three additional visual items, all fromamazon.co.uk: the revised final cover of Paul Parsons' book The Science of Doctor Who, and two TV tie-in books, the Intergalactic Activity Book (second volume) and the Regeneration Sticker Guide. Click on each for a larger version.