As we approach the 60th Anniversary of Doctor Who, revisit the story of Doctor Who, the occasional series written for the 50th Anniversary, explaining the origins of the programme.

Episode 5 - An Unearthly Series - The Origins of a TV Legend: First published 23 Nov 2012

Disney+ to become Doctor Who's international streaming platform for future seriesBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 25 October 2022 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Doctor Who Logo 2023 (Credit: BBC)

The BBC have announced a deal with Disney Branded Television to provide Doctor Who on its streaming platform Disney+ internationally, including a new (but familiar looking!) logo for the series.

Under a shared creative vision, the two organisations will deliver the series using Disney+ as the exclusive home for new seasons outside the UK and Ireland. The announcement was made by the next Doctor Ncuti Gatwa during an appearance on American breakfast show Live with Kelly and Ryan this morning.

The new episodes will premiere on the BBC and Disney+ beginning in late 2023 for fans all over the world.

 

The show is produced in Wales by Bad Wolf with BBC Studios Production. Showrunner Russell T Davies said

I love this show, and this is the best of both worlds – with the vision and joy of the BBC and Disney+ together we can launch the TARDIS all around the planet, reaching a new generation of fans while keeping our traditional home firmly on the BBC in the UK.

Charlotte Moore, BBC's Chief Content Officer said:

We are thrilled to announce this exciting global partnership with Disney who are the perfect partners to bring this very British show to the rest of the world.  Russell T Davies' vision for Doctor Who has always been out of this world and we are committed to ensuring that audiences across the globe get the opportunity to enjoy the Doctor's epic adventures with the scale and ambition that they deserve.  Joining forces with Disney will elevate the show to even greater heights and reach new audiences so it's an extremely exciting time for fans in the UK and across the world.

Alisa Bowen, President of Disney+ said:

We're excited by the opportunity to bring new seasons of this beloved franchise exclusively to Disney+ and introduce the show to the next generation of audiences in more than 150 markets around the world. The series is a perfect addition to our ever-growing catalog of global content that continues to make Disney+ the home for exceptional storytelling.

Ayo Davis, President of Disney Branded Television said:

Doctor Who has captivated the imaginations of families around the world for the past six decades. We are so excited about this collaboration with the BBC, and the opportunity to bring this iconic franchise – and Russell T Davies' brilliant vision – to life for a huge new global audience. Grab your sonic screwdrivers and prepare to travel through time and space!" 

Rebecca Glashow, CEO, Global Distribution, BBC Studios says:

We're delighted to join forces with a partner who shares our vision and ambition for one of the most iconic shows in British TV history. This is great news for everyone who loves Doctor Who, and for all the new fans we will reach through this powerful partnership.

Jane Tranter and Julie Gardner, Executive Producers and Co-founders, Bad Wolf, said:

For Doctor Who to have the backing of two of the most innovative and respected media organizations in the world is a testament to the unique drive and vision at the heart of this show.  Bad Wolf are beyond delighted to be once again working with the genius that is Russell T Davies and, with the exciting new partnership between the BBC and Disney, we can together reach to even greater heights, producing from Wolf Studios Wales ambitious stories through time and space for audiences across the globe.

 





FILTER: - Doctor Who - Broadcasting - International

Trailblazers - Delia DerbyshireBookmark and Share

Saturday, 29 May 2021 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Trailblazers: Delia Derbyshire: Doctor Who theme (Credit: BBC Teach)

As part of this month's learning resouces from the BBC, CBBC have broadcast a series on classic music for schools over the past week: Ten Pieces have focussed on a number of works based around a theme, and Friday's episode, Back in Time, included a section on the groundbreaking work of Delia Derbyshire in creating the Doctor Who theme, presented by currrent series composer Segun Akinola.

The feature can be viewed via the Ten Pieces Orchestral Films page, and the full programme is currently available to watch on the BBC iPlayer until 27th June, with the Doctor Who theme segment starting from about six minutes.

Supporting material is available from the BBC Teach site, which includes downloadable scores for music showcased within the programmes. For Derbyshire, the Doctor Who theme tune has been published for performance by schools, arranged by Iain Farrington, and features arrangements for beginners, intermediate and grade 4/5 musicians.

 

(The site also features an item on Richard Wagner's Ride of the Valkyries, introduced by Christopher Eccleston)

 

The Arena docudrama, Delia Derbyshire: The Myths and the Legendary Tapes, remains available to watch on the BBC iPlayer for the next eleven months. Its director, Caroline Catz, can be heard discussing Derbyshire on Stuart Maconie's Freak Zone from BBC Radio 6, and her BBC Radio 4 Great Lives programme on the composer ifrom January is still available to listen to on BBC Sounds. 

 


 

Also launched recently is a new film, Sisters with Transistors, described as "the remarkable untold story of electronic music’s female pioneers, composers who embraced machines and their liberating technologies to utterly transform how we produce and listen to music today." The documentary looks at the careers of notable visionaries, including Delia Derbyshire and one of the founding figures of the BBC’s Radiophonic Workshop, Daphne Oram.

The film was disussed on BBC Radio 4's Woman's Hour in April, and works from both composers can still be heard in the recentl repeat of the 2018 BBC Prom Pioneers of Sound.

Sisters with Transistors - Trailer





FILTER: - Broadcasting - Music - BBC

Revolution - Overnight Viewing FiguresBookmark and Share

Saturday, 2 January 2021 - Reported by Marcus
Revolution of the Daleks (Credit: BBC Studios)

Doctor Who - Revolution of the Daleks had an overnight viewing audience of 4.69 million viewers.

The figure made Doctor Who the most-watched programme on BBC One for New Year's Day. Doctor Who had a 21.1% share of the total TV audience.

Top overall was ITV's Evening News with 5.5 million viewers while Coronation Street came second with 5.0 million watching. Against The Doctor, Emmerdale had 4.6 million watching.

On BBC One Eastenders had 3.3 million while the comedy Mrs Brown's Boys had 3.7 million viewers. 

Final official figures should be available next week.

 





FILTER: - Ratings - UK - Broadcasting

New Year Special to be offered in 4K HDRBookmark and Share

Friday, 1 January 2021 - Reported by Marcus
Revolution of the Daleks (Credit: BBC Studios/Ben Blackall)

With this year's New Year special making its debut later today, viewers in the UK will be able to watch the programme in 4K resolution and high dynamic range (HDR) colour via iPlayer.

When Revolution of the Daleks is broadcast, viewers will be prompted to switch to the higher quality streamed version by pressing the red button.

To take advantage of the facility, households will need a compatible TV and a relatively fast internet connection. The BBC recommends a minimum of 24 megabits per second (Mbps) connection.

By contrast, regular 1080p high definition (HD) programmes require a 6.3Mbps connection and standard definition (SD) content 1.1Mbps.

Ultra-High Definition (UHD) - the other name given to 4K on TVs - delivers four times as many pixels as HD video. The benefits are that images can appear sharper and more detailed, although this is not always apparent if the screen is not large enough or viewers are sitting too far away.

HDR produces pictures that typically appear to be more vivid and colourful. It takes advantage of the fact screens can go brighter and/or darker than they used to be able to, providing a greater dynamic range.

As a result, the shadows of an image can be made less murky while the highlights - including sparks from special effects - can have more impact.

The BBC first publicly tested 4K HDR on iPlayer in 2016 when it offered four minutes from its Planet Earth II series. It has subsequently offered a limited range of full-length programmes including Dynasties; His Dark Materials; and Dracula, as well as sport including Wimbledon and Fifa World Cup 2018 matches.

Doctor Who has been broadcast in many different formats during its 57-year history.  The first episode being broadcast in the 405-line monochrome analogue format. The definition improved in 1967 when the 625 line format was used to record The Enemy of the World. Colour arrived in 1970 with Spearhead from Space.

By the time the series returned in 2005 the series was recorded digitally rather than on analogue tape.  The programme was first made available on iPlayer in 2007 with the Christmas special Voyage of the Damned. The first episode available in HD was Planet of the Dead, the 2009 Easter special.

Previous episodes have been made available in 4K on Blu--ray but Revolution of the Daleks is the first to be made available in this format on the iPlayer on the day of transmission,





FILTER: - Broadcasting - Specials

The Thirteenth Doctor on Turkish televisionBookmark and Share

Saturday, 23 May 2020 - Reported by Chuck Foster
The Doctor, as played by Jodie Whittaker (Credit: BBC)BBC Studios have announced the launch of their high definition channel BBC Prime in Turkey via Türk Telekom’s Tivibu platform from 27th May, with Doctor Who featuring prominently on the new service:

BBC First will be the exclusive home of all-new series of Doctor Who in Turkey, launching with the 11th and 12th seasons starring Jodie Whittaker as the Thirteenth Doctor and premiering future series closer to UK TX than ever before. This will be especially appreciated by Turkish Whovians who are among world’s most loyal fans ranking #6 in the world on the Doctor Who Facebook page and #9 for YouTube views on Doctor Who official channel, with 1.7m video views in the last 12 months.

Natasha Hussain, Senior Vice President for MENA at BBC Studios, said:
As the World’s spotlight shines bright on British drama, I’m thrilled to be expanding our offering in Turkey with the truly unmissable BBC First channel. The BBC has a strong reputation for its original storytelling and high production values in this genre, and I can’t wait for audiences in Turkey to be introduced to the raft of unique stories and unforgettable characters on BBC First.
Türk Telekom TV/OTT Content and Product Director, Ziyad Varol, stated:
We are very much happy with our years of cooperation with BBC, a household name for broadcast and media worldwide. Five years ago, Tivibu was the first platform to launch BBC’s documentary channel BBC Earth in Turkey, introducing one of the most important documentary producers of the world to Turkish audiences. And now, with BBC First, we are again excited to provide Tivibu audience with the newest and most popular series content of BBC. We hope to add new firsts into our list with BBC and to provide further value to Tivibu viewers by presenting them premium contents before everyone else in Turkey.

Doctor Who kicks off on the channel with a complete run of Peter Capaldi's last series during the afternoon/evening, leading up to the premiere of The Woman Who Fell To Earth. The channel then continues to show Series 11 alongside the rest of the Doctor's high definition adventures over the following weeks (which includes the upscaled special The Next Doctor). You can catch up on the BBC First schedule via This Week in Doctor Who.

Doctor Who has been available in Turkey in standard definition for a number of years via BBC Entertainment Europe (currently broadcasting Series 10).





FILTER: - Broadcasting - Doctor Who - International Broadcasting - Jodie Whittaker - series 11/37 - Turkey

#DoctorWhoLockdown: The Doctor's WifeBookmark and Share

Saturday, 11 April 2020 - Reported by Chuck Foster
DoctorWhoLockdown: Bigger on the Inside (Credit: DoctorWhoLockdown/Emily Cook)The next shared Doctor Who viewing organised by Doctor Who Magazine's Emily Cook takes place this evening (UK):

To join in, simply pop in your DVD or Bluray disc of The Doctor's Wife, or access a streaming service such as BBC iPlayer, Amazon Video, iTunes, Google Play or Netflix, and then hit play at 8:00pm BST / 3:00pm EDT / 5:00am AEST / 7:00am NZST and share your viewing experience!



As with previous discussions, author Neil Gaiman will be giving insights on his episode, this time joined by director Richard Clark and the voice of House, Michael Sheen.

Neil Gaiman also hinted on Twitter:
Also there is an amazing secret Thing we haven't announced yet.




Don't forget that there is another shared viewing of Silver Nemesis with Sophie Aldred at 6:00pm BST as part of online Time Space Visualiser convention taking place this afternoon on YouTube.






FILTER: - Broadcasting - International Broadcasting - Series 6/32 - Special Events

#DoctorWhoLockdown: In The NewsBookmark and Share

Saturday, 4 April 2020 - Reported by Chuck Foster
The recent global DoctorWhoLockdown initiative organised by Doctor Who Magazine's Emily Cook was reported by BBC News in the lead-up to last night's The Eleventh Hour - you can watch the report via the DoctorWhoLockdown YouTube channel.

This is the second time the initiative has been reported on, with entertainment correspondent Lizo Mzimba reporting on the simulcast viewing of Rose back on its anniversary on the 26th March (online version).



The next planned DoctorWhoLockdown is for The Doctor's Wife on Saturday 11th April from 8:00pm BST.




FILTER: - BBC - Broadcasting

Time Space Visualiser: Missing EpisodesBookmark and Share

Saturday, 4 April 2020 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Time Space Visualiser: Missing Episodes, by Fantom Events (2020) (Credit: Fantom Events)After the success of their first online convention last weekened, Fantom Events will be presenting another this afternoon (Saturday 3rd April), this time focusing on the missing episodes of Doctor Who.

Running from 2pm to 5pm, Time Space Visualiser will include a mixture of new interviews archive material and some specially recorded features for the afternoon, with each hour following a theme:
  • The first hour looks back at the making of The Savages, with a 2013 stage interview with Andrew Lodge (First Assistant) and Peter Thomas (Captain Edal) together with an interview recorded this week with Kay Patrick (Flower).
  • The second hour looks at family connections with a specially recorded interview with David Troughton, and an archive interview with Carole Ann Ford and Jessica Carney looking at the parallels of being and playing the Doctor’s Granddaughter.
  • The final hour sees Andy Futter talking to Peter Purves in a brand new interview shot for this event, followed by an archive stage panel with William Russell and Anneke Wills from 2013.
You can watch the event live from the Fantoms Events YouTube channel, where you can also find the complete event from last weekend, plus individual interviews including its own "missing" recording with Nicola Bryant!

Credit: BBC WorldwideTime Space Visualiser will be followed in the evening by what's becoming a regular pasttime for Doctor Who fans, a planned worldwide simulcast viewing of a story to tweet along to; tonight's will be the most recently recovered complete story, The Enemy of the World, which will also includes tweets from Philip Morris, the discoverer of the long-lost Patrick Troughton adventure in Nigeria.

To join in, simply pop in your DVD of The Enemy of the World, or access a streaming service such as iTunes or Britbox, and then hit play at 6:00pm BST / 1:00pm EDT / 3:00am AEST / 5:00am NZST and share your viewing experience!



To tie in with the 'watchathon', Fantom have also made the first episode of their alternative commentary for the story available for free to listen to this weekend via YouTube.





FILTER: - Broadcasting - Conventions - Fantom - International Broadcasting - Patrick Troughton - Special Events - William Hartnell

#RTWatch: Q&A with John Barrowman and Naoko MoriBookmark and Share

Friday, 3 April 2020 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Yesterday evening saw the Radio Times present its own "tweetalong", this time for the Torchwood episode Captain Jack Harkness; this was followed by a live Q&A with its stars John Barrowman and Naoko Mori, and is available to watch via their YouTube channel:





FILTER: - Broadcasting - International Broadcasting - John Barrowman - Special Events - Torchwood

#DoctorWhoLockdown: The Eleventh HourBookmark and Share

Thursday, 2 April 2020 - Reported by Chuck Foster
#FishCustard The Eleventh Hour watchathon 3 Apr 2020 (Credit: DoctorWhoLockdown/Emily Cook)The next in the Doctor Who Lockdown global 'watchathon' events will be in celebration of the tenth anniversary of the Eleventh Doctor to our screens this coming Friday 3rd April!

To join in, simply pop in your DVD or Bluray disc of The Eleventh Hour, or access a streaming service such as BBC iPlayer, Amazon Video, iTunes, Google Play or Netflix, and then hit play at 7:00pm BST / 2:00pm EDT / 5:00am AEDT / 7:00am NZDT and share your viewing experience!



Once again the episode's writer Steven Moffat will be contributing to the Twitter discussion during this episode; speaking on his Instagram account, he also hinted:
There was a scene I cut I really liked. I’m trying to find it. Cliffhanger.
Update: Matt Smith, Karen Gillan, Arthur Darvill and director Adam Smith will also be participating to the Twitter discussion.

Beforehand, at 5pm BST there will also be a Q&A session, with organiser Emily Cook tweeting:
At 5pm on Friday #DoctorWho costume designer Ray Holman will be revealing the secrets and processes behind the Eleventh Doctor's outfit! Join him on Twitter for a live Q&A and celebration of the Doctor's tweed! (Did you know? 3 April is also National Tweed Day!)





You can also support the creative industry behind our entertainment at this time through JustGiving as detailed below:





FILTER: - Broadcasting - Doctor Who - International Broadcasting - Karen Gillan - Matt Smith - Series 5/31 - Special Events