News-wise, It’s been a busy couple of weeks for Christopher Eccleston. Last week he opened up about his experiences on Doctor Who.
This week Showmasters announced he’ll appear at London’s Film and Comic Con in July. This will mark Eccleston’s first ever convention appearance. The actor will be appearing at the convention event on Sunday, July 29.
He won’t be the only Doctor Who actor in attendance either, fans will also get the chance to meet Peter Capaldi, Pearl Mackie, Sylvester McCoy, Colin Baker, Bonnie Langford and David Bradley.
Full details about all guests, prices and timings can be found on London Film and Comic Con’s website.
After the success of the outstanding first series, Big Finish have announced that Alex Kingston will return as River Song in 2017, for four new adventures with two different Doctors.
The time travelling archaeologist will return on audio in 2017 – and this time she will be stepping into the past life of the Doctor, encountering two of his incarnations at once. Alex Kingston returns in The Diary of River Song: Series 2 alongside Colin Baker and Sylvester McCoy.
From the space exploration vessel Saturnius – which is heading to a destination that never gets any closer – to a doomed planet Earth and beyond, River’s journey will bring her closer to a new foe… and an encounter with both the Sixth and Seventh Doctors.
Producer David Richardson said:
“We’re thrilled to have both Colin Baker and Sylvester McCoy appearing alongside Alex in this box set. I can promise that River and the Doctor might not necessarily be working to the same agenda. In fact, the two Doctors might not be working to the same agenda either…”
The four hour-long adventures are; The Unknown by Guy Adams, Five Twenty Nine by John Dorney, World Enough and Time by James Goss and Eye of the Storm by Matt Fitton.
The impressive guest cast includes Anna Maxwell Martin (Midwinter of the Spirit, And Then There Were None, The Bletchley Circle), Jessie Buckley (War and Peace), Ann Bell (Tenko, Wallander), Robert Pugh (Game of Thrones, Mr Selfridge, Doctor Foster), Dan Starkey (Doctor Who, Wizards vs Aliens) and Barnaby Edwards (Doctor Who).
Most of our readers will be aware that over the Christmas period, we teamed up with the lovely guys over at Geeksynsicate to help a very ill Doctor Who fan have a truly great Christmas.
For those of you unaware, Daniel is a very ill 14-year old, who also happens to be massive Doctor Who fan.
He suffers from Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS) and Postural tachycardia syndrome (POTS) he is totally bed bound and is fed via IV. He was admitted to a London hospital in November 2015 and is still there, as of February 2016. He’s also facing the minimum of another 3 month stay.
We had a tremendous start to the campaign, but we have started to stall now. We’ve hit a total brick wall with David Tennant and Matt Smith, both of whom Daniel would love to meet.
The Twitter hashtag #drwhodaniel is still running and we would appreciate it if you could spread the word.
As you will all be aware, along with Geeksyndicate we’ve been trying to help a very poorly Doctor Who fan have the best Christmas a fan could wish for.
Along with some other lovely fans, we’ve been spreading the word via the hashtag #DrWhoDaniel.
Over the past two weeks Daniel has been receiving gifts, cards, a visit from Frances Barber, a shed load of merch from Titan Comics, sketches by professional artists, a video message from Steven Moffat and even a visit from the twelfth Doctor himself, Peter Capaldi.
Today Daniel received a video message from the seventh Doctor, Sylvester McCoy.
Thank you to everyone who has been helping to brighten Daniel’s time in hospital. Peter Capaldi visiting didn’t just help Daniel, it helped bring morale to the entire Children’s ward.
As every Doctor Who fan knows, it’s 52 years ago today that two concerned teachers followed a student into 76 Totters Lane. The rest as they say, is history.
As we all know that the show celebrated its 50th anniversary two years ago. But, what we didn’t know is just how close we came to getting a 50th anniversary episode, that didn’t feature ANY Doctor’s!
Speaking to the Radio Times, current show runner Steven Moffat revealed that as Matt Smith’s contract expired with Name of the Doctor, he was forced to write a plot, in which none of the Doctors featured. The only person still under contract was Jenna Coleman.
“We had to work out what else to do. At that point neither David nor Matt were under contract either. I had Jenna [Coleman]. And I did come up with a plotline that was just Jenna. It was a nightmare. We’re weeks from filming. A production team is assembled, people are doing storyboards and I don’t even know if anyone who has ever played the Doctor is going to be in it”.
In the interview Moffat also reveals just how close we came to seeing Christopher Eccleston return as the ninth Doctor.
“The first version was David [Tennant], Matt [Smith] and Chris [Eccleston] together. With whatever involvement we could contrive for the other Doctors, but – being brutal – it had to be Doctors that still looked like their Doctors. I know I’m a bastard but hey, I think Peter [Davison], Colin [Baker] and Sylvester [McCoy] were better deployed in The Five-ish Doctors [a spoof short film] than they could ever be elsewhere. But I knew that Chris was almost certainly going to say no. I met him a couple of times and he was absolutely lovely. He met with me because he didn’t want to say no through his agent or a phone call or email. He wanted to do it personally. And I three-quarters talked him into it”.
Read the full interview here.
We are the Daleks kicks off a band new era for Big Finish, after 200 releases they’ve decided to draw a line in the sand and provide a fresh jumping on point for new listeners.
Each Doctor will be heading up a new trilogy of stories, first up is the Seventh Doctor and Mel.
The year is 1987, and Britain is divided. In Bradford, strikers are picketing and clashing with the police. In the City of London, stockbrokers are drinking champagne and politicians are courting the super-rich. The mysterious media mogul Alek Zenos, head of the Zenos Corporation, is offering Britain an economic miracle. His partners wish to invest – and their terms are too good to refuse.
While the Doctor investigates Warfleet, a new computer game craze that is sweeping the nation, Mel goes undercover to find out the truth about Zenos’s partners.
The Daleks have a new paradigm. They intend to conquer the universe using economic power. The power of the free market!
This is a great place to jump on. It’s an old school Dalek story that works on multiple levels – it feels familiar, yet new. It pays homage to previous Dalek stories of that era. It also takes a satirical look at Thatcherism and the “greed is good” campaign.
McCoy shines in this, he’s my favourite classic era Doctor-he’s my Doctor. His final speech to the Daleks is chilling, it’s is up there with Matt Smith’s speech in the Pandorica Opens/Big Bang.
What’s also great about Big Finish is that they’ve managed to give characters a second chance. Bonnie Langford was extremely underserved on the TV series. Producer JNT wanted her to play Mel as Violet Elizabeth Bot. Big Finish have unlocked the potential of Mel Bush, they’ve turned her into the companion she should have been on TV.
This is a multi-layered story about ambition, greed and the exclusion of all that’s decent. There’s also a dig at Michael Fish. This is a great start to the new era of Big Finish.
Paul McGann as Durian in The Minister of Chance
The crowdfunded series The Minister of Chance makes its cinematic premiere as a ten-minute pilot film. It follows a successful series of six episodes for audio. As noted in my writeup last year, the story concerns nations brandishing an odd mix of cavalry and rocketry at each other, vying for control of this strange world’s future.
We get the first crucial turn of events in this short, which features Paul McGann as an ambassador to Tanto, an island nation. Tanto’s king is played by Tim McInnerny, last seen by Doctor Who fans in charge of ‘The Planet of the Ood.’ Neither of these Englishmen is wasted in the space given; it’s the second time this winter McGann has shone in short form cinema, having hiked up his profile last November in ‘Night of the Doctor.’
In this visual format, the series is finally allowed to wordlessly express its appealing mix of ‘period’ and futuristic. Writer/director Dan Freeman’s visual language is also a worthy addition to the franchise; the leads are surrounded by non-speaking activity that says much about the unfolding events.
Most importantly, this begins a tale with some bite, which justifies its existence beyond its ability to get funded. I was was pleased nonetheless to see some familiar names in the grateful roll of donors that concludes the short. The release of the micropilot is slated to follow an extended ‘preview period’ of access by donation at MinisterOfChance.com.
I, along with many other Who fans have been disappointed with the lack of Classic Doctor Who episodes being shown in the 50th anniversary year. With BBC America airing them as well as broadcasters in New Zealand and Australia doing the same, it seemed that BBC Worldwide were only concerned with fleecing the UK fan-base.
But, could the absence of classic who be financial? Christopher Biggins once stated in an interview that every time the BBC repeated an episode of Porridge, he, along with the other actors in the episode were paid £1,000. But, if UK gold played it, or it aired overseas they didn’t get a penny. I guess paying every actor involved in a classic story £1,000 per episode, just isn’t a viable option for them.
What do you think? Is the lack of Classic Who, down to the BBC’s financial constraints or, are BBC worldwide just interested in fleecing the fans?
Here is the trailer for Episode 4 of The minister of chance. The series stars Julian Wadham, Jed Brophy, Jenny Agutter, Lauren Crace, Paul Darrow, Beth Goddard, Philip Glenister, Tamsin Greig, Peter Guinness, Sylvester McCoy & Paul McGann.
Minister of Chance will be attending its first convention in March – Brit Sci Fi on the weekend of 9 and 10 March 2013 at the Space Centre in Leicester, UK
Paul McGann, Paul Darrow, Julian Wadham, Lauren Crace and Sophie Aldred from the cast, with Dan Freeman (writer/director/producer), Clare Eden (Exec Producer) & Lee Sullivan (illustrator)
The Bad Wilf posse gather outside a pub to discuss the final ‘classic’ serial, ‘Survival.’ Gerrod has watched the first episode, Martyn has a cold and with guest appearances from members of the Who’s He, Nights at the round table and Pharos Project podcasts, what can possibly go wrong?
Trust me Midge, trust me.
Nights at theroundtable: http://nightsattheroundtable.net/
The Pharos Project: http://thepharosproject.libsyn.com
Who’s He? Podcast: http://www.whos-he.co.uk
Ash and Paul also host the excellent Hammered Horror.
The show can be accessed via different places, including Miro, Stiticher, Blubrry and Itunes.
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