Anjli Mohindra and Laura Fraser to guest star in Doctor WhoBookmark and Share

Saturday, 14 December 2019 - Reported by Marcus
Laura FraserAnjli MohindraThe BBC has announced that television stars Anjli Mohindra and Laura Fraser are set to guest star in upcoming episodes of Doctor Who.

Previously starring as Rani Chandra in the CBBC Doctor Who spin-off The Sarah Jane Adventures, Anjli is no stranger to the Whoniverse but as she takes on a new character, it’s safe to say she’ll be worlds away from her usual appearance…

Starring in a separate episode, Laura has previously starred in various dramas including the hit BBC show, The Missing and more recently Better Call Saul.

On appearing in Doctor Who, Anjli Mohindra says:
As a huge fan of the last series, it’s a bit of a dream come true getting to work opposite Jodie, Mandip, Tosin and of course after all these years, to work with Bradley again! There’s something undeniably special about Jodie’s Doctor, and to be bringing some terror to the joint was rather fun indeed.
Laura Fraser adds:
I love this episode and couldn’t resist playing such an intense character. I watched Doctor Who every week as a child, so it was a massive thrill to be asked to take part in such an iconic show.
Matt Strevens, Executive Producer, says:
It was a real joy to welcome Anjli and Laura to the show. We’ve wanted to work with them since we started and have found the perfect characters for them to show off their talent and range - both formidable in very different ways.
Doctor Who will return to BBC One on New Year’s Day at 6.55pm. The new series will begin with a two-parter entitled Spyfall, with part two airing on Sunday 5 January.




Katy Manning Named Gay IconBookmark and Share

Sunday, 8 December 2019 - Reported by Marcus
Katy Manning (Credit: The Sisterhood of Karn)The Sisterhood of Karn, the Long-running social group for LGBT Doctor Who fans, has named Katy Manning a true gay Icon of Doctor Who.

On Saturday the group, founded in 1994, held a special celebratory gathering to mark 25 years celebrating Doctor Who.

They were joined by actress Katy Manning, who played companion Jo Grant opposite Jon Pertwee’s Doctor in the 1970s, and were thrilled to present her with an award recognising her status as ‘A TRUE GAY ICON OF DOCTOR WHO’.

Organiser Richard Unwin said:
Katy has been a staunch supporter of LGBT people for decades, and we are honoured to be joined by her for an evening - and to recognise her as a fabulous ally of the community. This is the first award of its kind that we have given out, but hopefully, it won’t be the last.
The Sisterhood of Karn hold regular meet-ups on the third Thursday of every month, in the upstairs bar of The Kings Arms pub in Soho, London. Newcomers are always welcome. For more information and event listings, follow them on Facebook and Twitter




William Russell to star in Brazilian movie with his son Alfred EnochBookmark and Share

Saturday, 27 April 2019 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Thais Aux Pavão from Doctor Who Brasil reports:
Actor William Russell, who lived the 1st Doctor companion Ian Chesterton, is in Brazil to participate on the film Medida Provisória (Provisional Measure) with his son Alfred Enoch (Harry Potter, How To Get Away With Murder) as part of the cast.

The movie is directed by Lazaro Ramos, a renowned actor from Bahia, Brazil who found fame in soap operas and movies. This is his first work as a Director.

In the cast is also Seu Jorge, Brazilian singer/actor who worked with Wes Anderson in The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou and recorded its soundtrack, The Life Aquatic Studio Sessions, covering David Bowie songs.

We also have Renata Sorrah, one of the top Brazilian actresses of her time (who also happens to be the face of the "Confused Math Lady" meme).

Shooting of the film is taking place in Rio de Janeiro and Alfred also brought his mother Etheline Enoch, who is Brazilian born, to location.

Lazaro said he couldn't pass on the possibility of inviting Russell over to the movie since this is the first time father and son will work together.

Alfred Enoch said this "has always been my dream. My father is my great reference since always. He was my first teacher. When I told Lazaro we never worked together, that I always wanted it but it never happened, and now that he's 94, I thought I wouldn't have this opportunity. And suddenly he was in and it was beautiful".

William said: "My experience working on this big film which is being made here, people are so nice and kind and very very generous. It makes me feel very happy to be there and to be us, to do anything with them and for them. I hope some of it comes out". He also said his first movie was in the 1950s.

Etheline Enoch also spoke about the film: "As parents, we are very happy that he had this opportunity. And as for me, I'm even happier, since it is in my country. He himself said that he met the cast in January when he was here and he was very excited. That's why he accepted this project and rejected other in America and in Europe".

You can follow the production for this film on the official Instagram account.

A report from filming featuring William, Alfred and Etheline can be viewed (in Portuguese) via the Hugo Gloss Instagram account.

With thanks to: Doctor Who Brasil




Michael Pickwoad 1945-2018Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, 28 August 2018 - Reported by Marcus
Michael PickwoadMichael Pickwoad, the man behind the look of Doctor Who for the last seven years, has died at the age of 73

As Production Designer Michael Pickwoad oversaw the look of the series from Matt Smith's first Christmas story, A Christmas Carol, until the end of the Peter Capaldi era in Twice Upon A Time. He worked on 71 episodes of the series, designing a new TARDIS interior for the Eleventh and Twelfth Doctor's, as well as several episodes of the spin off series Class.

Born in 1945, Michael Pickwoad was the son of the actor William Mervyn, who appeared in the Doctor Who story The War Machines, and the theatre designer Anne Margaret Payne Cooke. He studied Civil Engineering at Southampton University.

He began his career as an Art Director in the early 1970's, working for the Children's Film & Television Foundation on short films such as Wreck Raisers. In the 1980's he moved onto Production Designer, taking responsibility for the overall visual look of a production. One of the first films he worked on was the cult classic Withnail & I, starring Paul McGann

His work on TV included Rules of Engagement, Kavanagh QC and Murder Most Horrid, the Dawn French comedy, part of which was co-written by Steven Moffat. He worked with Moffat on his series Coupling and again on his 2007 drama Jekyll.

In 2010 he took over as Doctor Who's Production Designer, only the second person to hold the position since the series returned in 2005. His tenure saw him create sets that ranged from Victorian London to the Wild West, from the badlands of Skaro to the wilds of Sherwood Forest, from a Cold War Submarine to the Orient Express in space.

Tom Spilsbury, Editor of Doctor Who Magazine throughout his tenure, paid tribute.
We often hear about ‘unsung heroes’, and while it would be misleading to say Michael Pickwoad’s genius was completely unsung, his brilliant contributions were a massive part of Doctor Who’s success over the past eight years. His sets were simply extraordinary. A wonderful man.
Former Doctor Who Showrunner Steven Moffat added
The only downside of great men, is that they make terrible losses, and we've lost Michael far too soon. He was a genius and a gentleman and we will all miss him.
Michael Pickwoad died on Monday 27th August.

Michael Pickwoad told BBC News where he got his inspiration for the new look TARDIS




Roger Delgado - BiographyBookmark and Share

Friday, 22 December 2017 - Reported by Marcus
Fantom Publishing has announced it is to publish I Am Usually Referred To As The Master, the first-ever biography of Roger Delgado, best known to millions as the original Master in Doctor Who.

Before joining Doctor Who, Delgado was a hugely in-demand character actor, appearing in shows such as The Saint, The Avengers and Quatermass II amongst many others, and making an appearance in the Hammer Horror film franchise. He died aged only 55, but left a legacy of work for fans to continue enjoying.

Author Marcus K Harmes explains
I think he was long overdue a biography. March 2018 will be the centenary of his birth and it is time for his full life story to be told. It has been 45 years since his death and it is important to have got on record the views of his contemporaries. What attracted me at first was the brilliance of his performance as the Master, then as I saw more and more of his early career it was the breath-taking range of his acting, and then when talking to people who knew him, it was the warmth and attractiveness of his personality.
Notoriously private, very little has been written about Delgado’s life over the years, and Harmes has researched extensively to look into his home life and formative years.
I’ve been able to access a wealth of previously unseen records which shed a lot of light on Delgado’s life before Doctor Who. From the Ministry of Defence I obtained his complete war record (the legendary and very detailed form B199A), the school he attended is still going strong and gave me materials from the 1930s about his education, the London School of Economics provided me with his student file. While we might know a lot about Doctor Who, there were decades before then that I had to reconstruct from paper trails in archives all over the place.
With previously unseen photographic material, and brand new interviews with his colleagues and friends, I Am Usually Referred To As The Master, is a warm and affection look at the life of a much-loved star.
I was privileged to speak to many people who knew Delgado and very quickly a theme emerged: there is just not a single bad word to say about him. But what struck me was that no one was talking about him using platitudes, it was just over 40 years later people still have such vivid memories of him as the most charming, intelligent and decent man they knew.
Roger Delgado’s biography is now available in Hardback priced £19.99 exclusively from Fantom Publishing until it’s trade publication in 2018.




Writer Sacked from DWMBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 1 November 2017 - Reported by Marcus

Actor and writer Nicholas Pegg has been dismissed from Doctor Who Magazine after he concealed a crude message in the last issue of the magazine.

Pegg was the writer behind The Watcher feature. The last issue contained a coded message, containing an obscenity aimed at his employers BBC Worldwide and Panini, who publish the magazine. The last sentence included the clue, "If you look hard enough there is always something hidden in plain sight."

BBC Worldwide told The Daily Mirror
The matter was raised with the publisher who have dismissed the writer.
As well as writing for the magazine, Pegg has been one of the main Dalek operators since Doctor Who returned in 2005, performing in 14 episodes of Doctor Who. He has also written extensively on Doctor Who as well as penning stories for Big Finish.




Trevor Baxter 1932-2017Bookmark and Share

Monday, 17 July 2017 - Reported by Chuck Foster
The actor and playwright Trevor Baxter has died, aged 84.

Graduating from RADA in 1961, Baxter appeared in a variety of shows since his debut in the 1950s, chalking up credits in a number of well-known series such as Adam Adamant Lives!, Z Cars, Thriller, The New Avengers, George and Mildred, Rumpole of the Bailey, and in later years roles such as Lanyon in Jack The Ripper, Gordon Naylor in The Politician's Wife, and Dr Albrigtsen in Maelstrom. On the big screen, he appeared in films including Nutcracker, Parting Shots, Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow and Van Wilder: The Rise of Taj.

However, for Doctor Who fans it is the pairing up with Christopher Benjamin to play Professor George Litefoot alongside Henry Gordon Jago that he will be remembered for. Created for the 1977 fourth Doctor tale The Talons of Weng-Chiang, the partnership proved popular and memorable, and though rumours of a spin-off television series never came to fruition at the time, the duo found new life through Big Finish with their own series of audio adventures. (You can read the Big Finish tribute here).

Louise Jameson played Leela alongside Baxter in The Talons of Weng-Chiang and today paid tribute to the actor.
Unbelievably sad to learn that marvellous TrevorBaxter has left the building.He has been in my life since 1976.Witty and vibrant to the end.
Off-screen, Baxter appeared with the Royal Shakespeare Company, and was also an accomplished playwright, with plays such as Edith Grove, The Undertaking, Ripping Them Off and Through A Glass Darkly. In 2003 he adapted Oscar Wilde's A Portrait of Dorian Gray for the stage, and in 2005 Wilde's short story Lord Arthur Savile's Crime.

Trevor Baxter, 18 Nov 1932 - 16 Jul 2017




Doctor Who Actors Honoured by QueenBookmark and Share

Saturday, 17 June 2017 - Reported by Marcus
Several Doctor Who alumni have been mentioned in the Queen's Birthday Honours list.


Veteran actress and comedienne June Whitfield has been made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire.

June Whitfield played Minnie Hooper, active member of the Sliver Cloak, in the 2010 Doctor Who story The End of Time.

She is one of the UK's best loved actresses having first come to the attention of the public in the 1950's in a succession of Radio comedys. In 1968, June Whitfield and Terry Scott began their long television partnership which peaked with roles as husband and wife in Happy Ever After followed by Terry and June . Since 1992, Whitfield has appeared in Jennifer Saunders's sitcom Absolutely Fabulous playing Edina Monsoon's mother. In recent years she has played a regular character in Last of the Summer Wine as well as a recurring character in The Green Green Grass.

The actress Sarah Lancashire has been made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire or OBE.

Sarah Lancashire appeared in the 2008 story Partners in Crime where she played Miss Foster,, employed by the Adiposian First Family to breed a new generation after their breeding planet was lost.

Lancashire first came to public attention appearing in the long running soap Coronation Street. Other roles include parts in costume dramas such as Oliver Twist, Lark Rise to Candleford and the BBC1 crime thriller Happy Valley, for which she recieved the 2017 British Academy Television Award for Best Actress.

Actor David Walliams has been made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire.

David Walliams played Gibbis in the 2011 story The God Complex.

Walliams is best known for his partnership with Matt Lucas on the BBC One sketch show Little Britain. Since 2012 he has been a judge on the ITV talent show Britain's Got Talent. Walliams is also a writer of children's books. To date he has sold more than 12.5 million copies and his books have been translated into 46 languages.

Walliams, who has raised a considerable ammount of money fnor Sport's Relief, recieved the award for services to charity and the Arts.

Actress Gugu Mbatha-Raw has been made a Member of the Order of the British Empire or MBE.

Gugu Mbatha-Raw plated Tish Jones, sister of Martha, in Series Three of Doctor Who.

Mbatha-Raw played a supporting role in the Tom Hanks comedy Larry Crowne, and had starring roles on the short-lived television series Undercovers and Touch. She appeared in the British period drama Belle and the romantic drama Beyond the Lights.

In 2015 she played the title role in Jessica Swale's play Nell Gwynn, winning a nomination for an Evening Standard Theatre Award for Best Actress.
The awards are presented by HM Queen Elizabeth on the recomendation of the British Prime Minister Theresa May.




Neil Fingleton 1980-2017Bookmark and Share

Sunday, 26 February 2017 - Reported by Marcus

The actor Neil Fingleton has died at the age of 36

Neil Fingleton played the Fisher King in the 2015 Doctor Who stories Under the Lake and Before The Flood

In 2007 Fingleton was awarded the Guinness World Record as the tallest British-born man and the tallest man in the European Union, standing at 7 ft 6in or 2.33m.

Neil Fingleton was born in Durham in 1980. An outstanding basketball player, he spent 8 years in education in the United States, winning a sporting scholarship and studying at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and later at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts.

In 2004 he made his professional debut as a basketball player for the now defunct Boston Frenzy. He later played professionally in China, Italy, Greece, England and for the spanish teams Club Baloncesto Ilarcuris and Ciudad Real.

In 2007 injury forced him to abandon his sporting career and he took up acting. He appeared in the film 47 Ronin alongside Keanu Reeves, and played the giant Mag the Mighty in the TV series Game of Thrones. He appeared in the 2015 film Jupiter Ascending, the Fox Studios film X-Men: First Class and in the Marvel Entertainment film Avengers: Age of Ultron.

Neil Fingleton died on Saturday after suffering a heart attack.




Delia Derbyshire DayBookmark and Share

Friday, 10 February 2017 - Reported by Marcus
A project to mark the 80th Anniversary year of Doctor Who legend and Electronic Music pioneer Delia Derbyshire, has won support from The Heritage Lottery Fund.

Delia Derbyshire Day has been awarded £42,600 ($53,000) to help organise a programme of activities and events to celebrate 80 years since the birth of the woman who realised the original Doctor Who Theme music, composed by Ron Grainer.

Highlights planned for the year include
  • 5 May 2017
  • Derbyshire's 80th Birthday – launch of a new website, short film about the Delia Derbyshire Archive and “Deliaphonic Soundbank” (an interactive web platform) public engagement activity
  • 10 June 2017
  • A Delia Derbyshire Day 2017 MCR at Band on the Wall – electronic music-making workshops for families and evening music/arts event, archive sharing, expert panel discussion/Q&A with special guests, live music/visual art performances.
  • 5 Aug 2017
  • DD Day touring event at Full Of Noises (FON) Festival in Barrow-in-Furness – participatory workshops for families and evening cultural heritage event with archive sharing, panel discussion/Q&A, live music/visual art performances.
  • Sept-Nov 2017
  • 8 week education project in 2 primary schools in Manchester including production of a short film about the Delia Derbyshire Archive by the young participants.
  • 5 Dec 2017
  • Delia Derbyshire Day and Digital Women’s Archive North (DWAN) symposium event at Anthony Burgess Foundation 6-9pm (time TBC) – with guest speakers, archive sharing and open forum discussion.
Project partners include the Delia Derbyshire Estate, John Rylands Library, University of Manchester, One Education Music, Full of Noises Festival, Digital Women’s Archive North and Band on the Wall.

Nathan Lee, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund North West said
We’re delighted to support this project to shine a light, not only the pioneering impact of Delia Derbyshire’s work, but also on this significant and fascinating part of John Rylands Library. Thanks to National Lottery players, Delia Derbyshire Day can share the musical roots of electronic music to a new generation.
You can follow Delia Derbyshire Day on their website or on twitter.