Orbit - The Cast of Doctor WhoBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 30 November 2011 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Bluewater Comics have announced a new bio-comic, Orbit: The Cast of Doctor Who, which is to be published from January 2012.

The comic has been written by Paul Salamoff, with artwork from Jaime Martinez Rodriguez, Scott Boyce and DJ Burgess; covers have been created by DC Comics artist Joe Phillips.

There will be two versions of the comic which features all eleven television incarnations of the Doctor, a single issue form and a combined graphic novel which will also feature a bio on the movie Doctor as played by Peter Cushing.

Darren Davis, president of Bluewater Comics, said:
At Bluewater Comics we felt that a show like Doctor Who needed to have a bio-comic done. There were so many fine actors who played the role of the time traveler, we just wanted to highlight the careers of a handful of the actors.
Writer Paul Salamoff said:
I have been obsessed with Doctor Who for as long as I can remember. My office is literally filled with Doctor Who Toys, Books, DVD's and Daleks. Lots of Daleks! I find that the possibilities with the character are endless and the stories touch on every aspect of science fiction that I love.

The graphic novel is available to pre-order from our Amazon Shop.

FILTER: - Comics - Magazines

Visit Santa at the Doctor Who ExperienceBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 29 November 2011 - Reported by Chuck Foster
The Doctor Who Experience will be running a special 'Christmas Grotto' to celebrate the festive season. The attraction aims to "showcase a magical world of Doctor Who festivity in a bespoke new grotto which will take visitors on a time travelling journey through the television series’ spectacular Christmas specials."

Santa Claus will be on hand to meet visitors who explore the yuletide treasure trove of props and costumes, which includes the waitress outfit worn by Kylie Minogue in Voyage of the Damned and the Robot Santas seen in The Christmas Invasion and The Runaway Bride.

Access to the grotto is via a £5 supplementary charge (adults accompanying children are free), with children receiving a Doctor Who gift as part of their visit. Tickets can be booked alongside a regular Experience ticket via See Tickets or at the Doctor Who Experience shop.

The grotto is open on the following dates: 2nd-4th, 9th-11th, 16th–21st December.

FILTER: - Exhibitions

The Doctor, The Widow And The Wardrobe: Christmas Day from 7:00pm (UK)Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, 29 November 2011 - Reported by Chuck Foster
The BBC's official Doctor Who feed on Twitter has announced the broadcast of Doctor Who's festive adventure, The Doctor, The Widow And the Wardrobe, will be at 7:00pm on Christmas Day on BBC1/BBC1HD.

The hour-long special stars Matt Smith as the Doctor alongside Claire Skinner, Holly Earl, and Maurice Cole, with Alexander Armstrong, Bill Bailey and Arabella Weir.

The Radio Times has confirmed the episode's broadcast details, which will see it scheduled against All Star Family Fortunes on ITV1. The lead-up to Doctor Who will be The Gruffalo's Child, something its predecessor The Gruffalo successfully provided for The End of Time (pt1) back in 2009.

The full Christmas schedule will be in the festive double issue of the Radio Times, published this coming Saturday.

FILTER: - Specials - Radio Times

People Roundup - The DoctorsBookmark and Share

Sunday, 27 November 2011 - Reported by Chuck Foster

Tom Baker

Tom Baker appeared at the launch of Elisabeth Sladen’s autobiography which took place on Saturday at the Doctor Who Experience in London. Baker said that meeting Sladen changed the direction of his life as it made him so happy in the role of The Doctor that her realised he could play the character for the rest of his life and didn’t need to act any more. He spoke of how they adored each other and how he fondly remembered standing arm in arm with her inside the TARDIS, giggling while they waited for their cue.

Baker was joined at the launch by former Script Editor Terrance Dicks and by Sladen’s daughter Sadie Miller. Dicks remembered Sladen’s qualities of self possession, dignity and independence, qualities he drew on when writing scripts for the character of Sarah Jane, while Miller said the family were keen to have the autobiography published as a thank you to the fans of Elisabeth.


Colin Baker

Colin Baker is looking forward to being back in panto next month: "I absolutely love playing the bad guy - and they don’t get much worse than Fleshcreep. I feel as though if there’s one child in the audience crying, I’m doing ok. If they are all crying - perhaps I’ve gone too far!". He'll be appearing in Jack and the Beanstalk in the Mansfield's Palace Theatre. [Mansfield Chad, 26 Nov 2011]

Channel 4 have released a publicity photograph for Colin's forthcoming appearance in Celebrity Come Dine With Me that will be broadcast over Christmas, alongside other celebrities Linda Nolan, Bianca Gascoigne, Nick Bateman and Danny Young.


Paul McGann

Paul McGann explores the rumour that Adolf Hitler spent time in Liverpool before the First World War in an item to feature on the BBC's regional programme Inside Out (North West) on Monday 28th November, 7:30pm.

Paul talks to author Mike Unger, who has written the book The Hitlers of Liverpool based on the memoirs of Hitler's sister-in-law wherein it is reported that the future German leader fled to England to avoid national service in Austria, staying with his half brother and her in late 1912.

The programme will be available to viewers in the UK on the BBC iPlayer after broadcast for seven days.


Christopher Eccleston

Christopher Eccleston is starring as Pod in The Borrowers this coming Christmas, and talks about taking on the role:
As the book was such an important part of my childhood, I was very familiar with the character of Pod. Ian Holm, who I’ve worked with, is one of my heroes, as is Jim Broadbent – both fantastic actors, so it was nice to think that I’d play a role that those two great actors have played. I also thought it was interesting, because I’m obviously a very different type to Jim and Ian and I like the fact that Pod can adapt like that. Pod borrows his clothes from an action figure of the 80s, perhaps loosely based on a character from Raiders Of The Lost Ark. I think that appeals to Pod’s image… he’s quite an adrenaline junkie, he likes risk and adventure. Pod is also a lovely dad, and a hero. I’ve played lots of troubled men and ‘anti-heroes’, but Pod’s a straight hero. There’s a great sense of humour to him, and a gentleness. That’s what attracted me to the role.
You can read more of Chris's interview and about the programme via the BBC's Media Centre.

Chris's current project is a new thriller for the BBC, The Fuse, which started filming this month.
Dervla Kirwan (Injustice, The Silence) and Ewen Bremner (Page Eight, Perfect Sense) join Christopher Eccleston in this original four-part drama for BBC One, written by Bill Gallagher (Lark Rise To Candleford, The Prisoner) and produced by Red Production Company (Exile, Single Father).

The Fuse follows Daniel Demoys (Eccleston), a stranger in his own life. Over the years he has gone from being an idealistic young man with a burning desire to make the world a better place, to a disillusioned and corrupt council official. His alcoholism has driven a wedge between him and wife, Alex (Kirwan), and their three children. The fallout from his alcohol-fuelled actions prove agonising for all around him.

Christopher Eccleston says: "Bill Gallagher has written a fantastic four episode drama about obsession, addiction and redemption. I'm very excited about the role of Daniel Demoys and to be working with Red Production Company and BBC One".
You can read more about The Fuse via the BBC's Media Centre.


Matt Smith

The BBC have released some more information on Matt Smith's project Bert and Dickie, which he filmed over the summer.
Written by William Ivory and starring Matt Smith, Bert And Dickie is the uplifting story of how two young men defied all the odds and achieved gold in the double sculls.

Thrown together just five weeks before the final of the 1948 London Olympics, Bert Bushnell and Dickie Burnell not only pushed physical and emotional limits, but also rose above distinctions of birth and class to become Olympic gold medallists.

Bert and Dickie’s personal battle reflects a much greater struggle as London prepares to host the Olympic Games. In 1948, just three years after the end of the Second World War, London is half-destroyed. But, determined not to “let the Games die”, the British Olympic Committee convinces Prime Minister Attlee that the Olympics could help bring the country back together – and the Austerity Olympics are born.

While London again prepares to host the 2012 Olympics in a difficult economic climate, this film will remind viewers what the Games are really about – heroic personal endeavour, courage, determination… and a little bit of luck!

Matt Smith is Bert Bushnell, Sam Hoare is Dickie Burnell, James Frain is Jack Beresford, Douglas Hodge is John Bushnell and Geoffrey Palmer is Charles Burnell.
The film will form part of the BBC's Cultural Olympiad 2012.


The Three Doctors

Steven Moffat celebrated his birthday in style with a party last Saturday (19th November) that saw three Doctors alongside the show's lead writer! Speaking on Monday's BBC Breakfast, Matt Smith said:
I saw David (Tennant) on Saturday; it was Steven Moffat's birthday party. I was like, "It's Doctor Who!" I saw Peter Davison as well who was at the same party. Steven was very excited that there was more than one Doctor there, and I can't help but go "Oh my God. It's Doctor Who!"

But then I realise I'm the Doctor!

FILTER: - People - Tom Baker - Matt Smith - Christopher Eccleston - Paul McGann - Colin Baker

Forthcoming DVD features updateBookmark and Share

Saturday, 26 November 2011 - Reported by Chuck Foster
The BBFC have classified several features for forthcoming DVDs in the Doctor Who range.

January's release of the UNIT Boxed set has been reported before, but the feature lengths have now been confirmed as follows. The Android Invasion (classified 11th November): The Village That Came To Life (30m56s), Life After Who - Philip Hinchcliffe (29m35s), Weetabix advert (31s), Photo Gallery (4m51s), Easter Egg (7m48s). Invasion of the Dinosaurs (classified 9th November): People, Power and Puppetry - Remembering Invasion of the Dinosaurs (32m41s), Now and Then (13m40s), Billy Smart's Circus (1m41s), Doctor Who Stories - Elisabeth Sladen (13m58s), Deleted Scenes - Episode One (44s), Deleted Scenes - Episode Three (3m59s), John Levene Commentary - Part Five (10m13s), Photo Gallery (6m10s), Easter Egg (26s)

The Sensorites is believed to be released in February, and its features were classified on 9th November as: Secret Voices of the Sensorites (2m3s), Vision On (7m2s), Looking for Peter (21m17s), Photo Gallery (4m35s)

March is the expected date for the next Revisitations boxed set, which contains the following three stories. The Robots of Death (classified 23rd/25th November): The Sandmine Murders (32m22s), Robophobia (11m47s), Studio Sound (1m1s), Model Shots (7m38s), Continuity (42s), and Photo Gallery (5m35s). The Three Doctors (classified 23rd November): Happy Birthday To Who (23m10s), Girls, Girls, Girls - the 1970s (21m15s), and Was Doctor Who Rubbish? (13m59s). No features have been classified for Tomb of the Cybermen at this time, though two audio commentaries were passed for the story on the 25th November.

Finally in this round of classifications comes The Face of Evil, which on 25th November saw the following features passed: Into The Wild - The Making of The Face of Evil (25m9s), From The Cutting Room Floor (9m2s), Multi-Coloured Swap Shop (4m26s), Doctor Who Stories - Louise Jameson (17m19s), Denys Fisher Toys advert (30m11s), Tomorrow's Times - The Fourth Doctor (14m4s), Photo Gallery (5m40s)

(with thanks to Gavin Salkeld)

The latest issue of Doctor Who Magazine provides more detail on the features, and also confirms the commentaries: The Sensorites features William Russell (Ian), Carole Ann Ford (Susan), Joe Grieg (Second Sensorite), Martyn Huntley (First Human), Giles Phipps (Second Human), Frank Cox (director), Raymond Cusick (director), Sonia Markham (makeup); The Tomb of the Cybermen's new commentary features Deborah Watling (Victoria), Frazer Hines (Jamie), Bernard Holley (Haydon), Shirley Cooklin (Kaftan), Reg Whitehead (Cyberman), Victor Pemberton (script editor); The Robots of Death also features a new commentary with Tom Baker (The Doctor), Louise Jameson (Leela), Pamela Salem (Toos), and Michael E. Briant (director).

Some other DVD tidbits that have been mentioned on Twitter over the last couple of months include:
  • People interviewed for The Face of Evil documentary Into The Wild include producer Philip Hinchcliffe, designer Austin Ruddy and visual effects designer Mat Irvine.
  • The Shada documentary has been renamed from Death Comes to Time to Taken Out of Time
  • Other forthcoming feature titles include The Military Mind, Battle for Mars Probe 7.
  • Nicholas Briggs has provided Dalek voices for a forthcoming feature.
  • There are no current plans for a CGI Skarasen for Terror of the Zygons

FILTER: - Classic Series - Blu-ray/DVD

Radio Times Doctor Who Cover (Christmas 2011)Bookmark and Share

Saturday, 26 November 2011 - Reported by Chuck Foster
As predicted on Tuesday, the new Radio Times for 3rd-9th December 2011 published today features the latest in the now traditional covers for our festive adventure with the Doctor! Here we present the cover in both publication and clean versions, courtesy of the Radio Times:

This issue features an article on specials we can look forward to over Christmas told by the stars themselves; two pages are devoted to Doctor Who, with Matt Smith saying:
There's a Narnia-esque shape and feel to the telling of this story. Whereas last year felt more like a Christmas romp, there's a slow-burning, ethereal magic to this.
Guest star and long-term fan Bill Bailey said of appearing in Doctor Who:
It's the equivalent of a knighthood. I've watched Doctor Who for as long as I can remember. My earliest memory of watching TV is hiding behind the sofa from the Cybermen. I had an irrational fear of leaving doors open for years after that.
You can read the full interviews with Matt Smith, Bill Bailey, and also with co-stars Alexander Armstrong and Arabella Weir in the issue, available in shops from 26th November. The next issue is published on 1st December, with the 'legendary double issue' of the Radio Times for the Christmas period following on 3rd December.


Doctor Who at Christmas

Radio Times Cover, 5-11 Dec 2010

You can find all covers featuring Doctor Who in the Radio Times Gallery, and latest information in their Doctor Who section.

FILTER: - Radio Times

Universal Control DaleksBookmark and Share

Friday, 25 November 2011 - Reported by Chuck Foster
The BBC Research and Development Department have been studying how future television communications can be utilised to assist in functions within the viewing environment:
In short, the technology allows an internet-connected device, whether that’s a smartphone, a pair of headphones (or in our case, a toy Dalek) to pick up Wi-Fi signals synchronised to the TV programme, to allow that device to perform a specific function at a specific time. We call this technology Universal Control.
The Dalek mentioned above was a prototype developed by Andrew Bonney to demonstrate how such technology could work, in this case having the toy react upon scenes broadcast that involved its television counterpart.

Andrew Bonney with Dalek
Photo: Rory Cellan-Jones via Twitter
Andrew's deft modification of an off-the-shelf Dalek toy achieved everything we wanted from the project. We gained valuable insights into the challenges of developing Universal Control clients for an embedded platform with just 32kB of RAM, while demonstrating their feasibility in a very striking way. It's also an entirely new take on the concept of "dual screen", demonstrating that the things you can synchronise to a TV programme go way beyond smartphone and tablet applications.

Developing toys is not part of BBC R&D's remit! But the Dalek helps us with a part of our mission that is far more important: helping BBC programme makers understand how changes in technology could affect their work. As computing power continues to become cheaper and as more and more devices gain wireless connections to each other and to the Internet, we expect to see an increasing number of everyday things gaining these capabilities.

However, several media sites reporting on the demonstration that took place at the R&D Lab in MediaCity last week implied the technology was just around the corner, leading the department to clarify otherwise:
Of course, this is the world of R&D. Today's televisions and set-top boxes don't support the Universal Control API, or anything like it, so you won't see WiFi-enabled Daleks taking over your living room this Christmas. But we firmly believe that the experiments broadcasters are currently performing with Dual Screen experiences are just the tip of the iceberg, and that tomorrow's television programmes won't always be confined to a screen in the corner of the living room.

The practical application of such technology can lead to the development of devices such as those that can provide 'single-switch' remote control interfaces for severely disabled people, or speech-operated controls for those whose vision has been impaired.

(newslink: BBC R&D Blog)

Watch the Universal Control Dalek demonstration, courtesy of RegHardware

Universal Control Dalek, courtesy RegHardware, via YouTube


People RoundupBookmark and Share

Friday, 25 November 2011 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Karen Gillan spoke about Jean Shrimpton, who she plays in BBC Four's forthcoming We'll Take Manhattan: "She left a lovely message saying she really enjoyed it. David Bailey loved it too. And they're really honest people so that means something to me. I find her really, really intriguing." [Evening Standard, 23 Nov 2011]

John Barrowman helped tackle a thief at the Glasgow hotel he was staying at during his stage tour: "We heard this woman scream and shout, 'Stop him, stop him.' We saw this young boy running down the hallway. ... I grabbed the kid's ankles, yanked him to the ground and then pulled him out into the hallway. I pinned him down." The actor responded, however: "I'd like to find out the boy's story and give him a second chance. Maybe he could work in the pantomime over Christmas to give him a sense of responsibility." [Scottish Daily Record, 25 Nov 2011]

Bill Bailey is under strict instructions not to talk about his role in the Christmas Special: "I will be just about to tell you what happens and then a tranquilliser dart will thud and the phone will go dead. They’ll [the Beeb] be all over me like a rash if I divulge any of the secrets, but yes just to say I have a cameo in it and great fun it is too. It’s fulfilled a lifetime's ambition for me, being a Doctor Who fan." [East Anglian Daily Times, 19 Nov 2011]

Eve Myles comments on Torchwood fandom: "I used to think Torchwood fans were a bit scary. I was petrified – these people know that I've got 57 freckles on my face, they know everything. And being such a fiercely private person, I started to feel like I was having to cocoon myself. ... I started doing signings and meeting fans, and it proved me wrong. These people were completely energised and generous and excited, and loved what we did. Why else make a programme? If people aren’t energised about it, if people don’t want to watch it, blog about it, meet up in groups about it, why am I in front of this camera?" [Western Mail, 19 Nov 2011]

Nicola Bryant will be performing in the SoundPower Orchestra's Christmas concert at the National Trust's Gibside Chapel on Saturday 3rd December at 2pm; the orchestra will be playing a piece with words and music by the actress herself. [Nicola Bryant website]

Billie Piper has been asked to be a spokesperson for the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals after she expressed regret at her behaviour towards animals in her youth: "Peta is very happy to hear that Ms Piper regrets the casual cruelty that she perpetrated against animals when she was a child - that's the difference between a person with the real potential to be kind and someone who denies wrongdoing, takes pleasure in it and escalates the damaging behaviour. ... We will be asking Ms Piper to be a spokesperson for our campaign to sensitise children, parents and teachers to the need to develop compassion in childhood through humane-education training in schools and at home." [Contact Music, 21 Nov 2011; Guardian, 18 Nov 2011]

FILTER: - People - Karen Gillan - Billie Piper - John Barrowman

Consider Yourself One Of UsBookmark and Share

Friday, 25 November 2011 - Reported by Chuck Foster
The BBC have released their BBC One festive trailer for 2011, featuring a number of well known celebrities appearing on the channel including David Jason, Graham Norton, Sir Bruce Forsyth, the BBC Breakfast crew, and the kids from Outnumbered; Doctor Who is represented by Matt Smith, Karen Gillan and a Cyberman!

You can watch the full trailer below:

"Consider Yourself One Of Us", BBC, via YouTube

FILTER: - Online - BBC

Series 6 CD Track ListBookmark and Share

Friday, 25 November 2011 - Reported by Marcus
Silva Screen have released the tracklisting for the soundtrack to Series Six of Doctor Who, due for release in the UK on 19th December, 2011.

The two-disc set includes music from throughout the series, composed by Murray Gold and played by the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, conducted by Ben Foster. The CD is available to pre-order on Amazon.
    The Impossible Astronaut / Day of the Moon
  1. I Am The Doctor In Utah
  2. 1969
  3. The Impossible Astronaut
  4. Trust Me
  5. Help Is On Its Way
  6. Another Perfect Prison
  7. Greystark Hall
  8. Apollo 11
  9. Day Of The Moon
  10. I See You Silence
  11. The Curse of the Black Spot
  12. You’re A Dead Man
  13. Deadly Siren
  14. Perfect Reflection
  15. All For One
  16. The Curse Of The Black Spot
  17. The Doctor’s Wife
  18. I’ve Got Mail
  19. My TARDIS
  20. Run, Sexy
  21. Locked On

  22. Rebel Flesh / The Almost People
  23. The Chemical Castle
  24. Which One Is The Flesh?
  25. Scanning Me
  26. Ransacked
  27. Always With The Rory
  28. Double Doctor
  29. Tell Me The Truth
  30. Loving Isn’t Knowing (The Almost People Suite)
  31. A Good Man Goes to War
  32. River’s Waltz
  33. Pop
  34. Tell Me Who You Are
  35. Melody Pond
    Let’s Kill Hitler
  1. Growing Up Fast
  2. The Blush Of Love
  3. Terror Of The Reich
  4. The British Are Coming
  5. A Very Unusual Melody
  6. When A River Forms
  7. Pay Attention Grown Ups
  8. The Enigma Of River Song
  9. Night Terrors
  10. Bedtime For George
  11. Tick Tock Round The Clock
  12. A Malevolent Estate
  13. Night Terrors
  14. The Girl Who Waited
  15. Apalapucia
  16. 36 Years
  17. Lost In The Wrong Stream
  18. The God Complex
  19. The Hotel Prison
  20. Room Of Your Dreams
  21. Fear Enough
  22. What’s Left To Be Scared Of?
  23. Rita Praises
  24. Closing Time
  25. Stormageddon, Dark Lord Of All
  26. Definitely Going
  27. Over Your Shoulder
  28. Ladieswear
  29. Fragrance
  30. My Time Is Running Out
  31. The Wedding of River Song
  32. Tick Tock (Vocal Track)
  33. 5:02 PM
  34. The Head Of An Enemy
  35. My Silence
  36. Brigadier Lethbridge – Stewart
  37. Forgiven
  38. Time Is Moving
  39. The Wedding Of River Song
  40. Day of the Moon
  41. The Majestic Tale (Of A Madman In A Box)

FILTER: - Murray Gold - Audio - Series 6/32