People RoundupBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 17 January 2012 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Karen Gillan (seen here on the cover of the new Radio Times) commented on how she could have met Jean Shrimpton, who she plays in We'll Take Manhattan next week: "She runs a hotel in Penzance. Part of me was tempted to check in but I thought that might be a little weird. I read her modelling guide and her autobiography, though. The guide was written at the height of her fame, the autobiography later on in life, so she’s far more honest in that about how she feels. She hated the fame side of things." [Express, 12 Jan 2012]

The actress also commented on things that help unclutter her head: "Space! I went to the Royal Observatory the other day, and looked through the biggest telescope in the UK. I saw a star from 47 years in the past. Yep, space excites me. My dream is to go to space. And dreams – I find the meanings of dreams very interesting. And the brain. Did you know the brain has three layers, and when we're drunk, we revert to the bottom layer, which is only interested in eating, sleeping and 'meeting a partner'. And music connects to that layer, that bottom layer! Did you know that?" [Guardian, 14 Jan 2012]

Producer Caroline Skinner commented on her arrival into the world of Doctor Who with the Christmas Special: "That was an absolutely fantastic one to start on. And now, I'm thrilled and slightly daunted at the scale of what we're achieving in the next series. We're not too far away from starting shooting, and I think it's going to be the biggest series ever - 2013 is going to be the biggest year in the history of Doctor Who so far." [io9, 12 Jan 2012]

John Barrowman and Raquel Cassidy will be appearing in Hustle on Friday 3rd February as diet fraudsters Dr Dean Deville and his wife, Dana. The episode airs at 9pm on BBC One. [BBC Media Centre, 17 Jan 2012]

Bob Baker (writer/K9 co-creator) and his wife Marie have been helping students at Fareham College on literary and theatrical projects, sharing their experience in the industry and providing feedback on their work. The writer said: "The main thing is to start working on something and to keep sending it away. They should try to get their work on somewhere – whether on TV or a play – so they can hear it spoken because that’s important." [Western Wards Gazette, 13 Jan 2012]

In Memoriam

The actor Harry Fowler, who played Harry in Remembrance of the Daleks, has died at the age of 85. He had numerous TV and film credits and was possibly best known as Corporal "Flogger" Hoskins in the ITV sitcom The Army Game, in which he appeared with William Hartnell (as Sgt Major Percy Bullimore) during the show's fifth and final series, which ran from September 1960 to June 1961.

(newslinks: Telegraph, Guardian, Independent, Mirror, also with thanks to Chris Winwood)

Christmas Special enters productionBookmark and Share

Saturday, 17 September 2011 - Reported by Chuck Foster
This week saw the first public confirmation that production has begun on the forthcoming Christmas Special of Doctor Who, with cast and crew settling in at the Welsh town of Llanelli. Filming took place at the private residence of Stradey Castle over the last four days, with Matt Smith spotted at the production base during the course of the shoot.


It was not initially clear that this was indeed filming for Doctor Who, as signs seen in the vicinity were "NRG" - used previously for the production of Baker Boys that saw its wrap party a week previously. However, Matt Smith was eventually spotted at the production base, which confirmed that this was indeed the return of our Time Lord. Karen Gillan was also reported as being at the hotel where the cast and crew stayed, but she was not actually seen on location.

As noted above, filming took place at the private residence of Stradey Castle both during the day and into the evening; the secluded location meant that no photos of the production were forthcoming, though there had been reports of a large mechanical bear seen on the castle grounds.

Photo: Graham Harries (via YFrog)
Production signs in use for filming

Photo: Sophie Cook (via Tumblr)
A view of black-out screens at the house

Photo: Graham Harries (via Twitter)
Matt Smith leaving his trailer

(news with thanks to the Llanelli Twitter spotters Sophie Cook, Graham Harries,
Josh Nicholas Thomas, Meriel Williams, Cerys Perkins, and Ashley Taylor)

Some photos of Matt Smith were also published by the Western Mail, though the BBC clarified that the guest star pictured with the actor was not the name suggested by the paper.

Production is now believed to be in studio for the next few days.

In July, the BBC announced the new Executive Producer for Doctor Who, Caroline Skinner, who would be working on the Christmas Special alongside Steven Moffat and Piers Wenger. This weekend saw Moffat introduce her to Twitter followers, saying:
@CaroSkinner The new exec on Doctor Who. If you don't follow her, you'll miss EVERYTHING!

New Executive Producer AnnouncedBookmark and Share

Thursday, 21 July 2011 - Reported by Marcus
The BBC has announced that Caroline Skinner will join Steven Moffat as Executive Producer on Doctor Who.

Skinner has recently been working as producer on Five Days, a serial for BBC One. She has previously been script editor on productions such as House of Saddam, The Shadow in the North, The Ruby in the Smoke and Bleak House.

Skinner will start work on the series immediately, working alongside departing Executive Producer Piers Wenger on the 2011 Christmas special, before taking charge for the fourteen episodes which form the next series of the show, which leads up to the programme's 50th Anniversary.

Speaking about the appointment, Moffat told the official website:
The exec joining me on Doctor Who is Caroline Skinner - fresh from the wonderful Five Days, and still finishing up on a brand new show called The Fades (a fantasy horror series, written by Jack Thorne - I've seen episode 1, and it's BRILLIANT.) Somewhere between me laughing in a basement and choosing planets to invade, and Marcus Wilson raising armies, there has to be a Prime Minister actually running the whole thing. That's the job Piers Wenger and Beth Willis have been doing so wonderfully for the last few years. Now that Piers is off to movie land, that's the furnace Caroline will be walking into.