Timeshift: How to be Sherlock HolmesBookmark and Share

Monday, 6 January 2014 - Reported by Chuck Foster
As the current series of Sherlock draws to a close, BBC4 is to broadcast an edition of Timeshift, focusing on the fictional detective and the people who have portrayed him on screen.

How to be Sherlock Holmes: The Many Faces of a Master Detective
Sunday 12th January, 10:00pm

For over 100 years, more than 80 actors have put a varying face to the world's greatest consulting detective - Sherlock Holmes. And many of them incorporated details - such as the curved pipe and the immortal line 'Elementary, my dear Watson' - that never featured in Conan Doyle's original stories. In charting the evolution of Sherlock on screen, from early silent movies to the latest film and television versions, Timeshift shows how our notion of Holmes today is as much a creation of these various screen portrayals as of the stories themselves.

Narrated by Peter Wyngarde, with contributions from Sherlocks past and present including Benedict Cumberbatch, Christopher Lee, Tim Pigott-Smith and Mark Gatiss.

Timeshift: How to be Sherlock Holmes: Benedict Cumberbatch (Credit: BBC/Matthew Thomas) Timeshift: How to be Sherlock Holmes: Christopher Lee (Credit: BBC/Matthew Thomas) Timeshift: How to be Sherlock Holmes: Mark Gatiss (Credit: BBC/Matthew Thomas)




Sherlock Series 3: Publicity ImagesBookmark and Share

Friday, 27 December 2013 - Reported by Chuck Foster
A selection of publicity images are available to promote the forthcoming return of Sherlock to our screens on New Years Day.

Martin Freeman as John Watson. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyLouise Brealey as Molly. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyAmanda Abbington as Mary Morstan. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyUna Stubbs as Mrs Hudson. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyBenedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyBenedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyBenedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock with Martin Freeman as John Watson. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyMartin Freeman as John Watson. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyRupert Graves as Lestrade. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyBenedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyAmanda Abbington as Mary Morstan. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyMartin Freeman as John Watson. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyBenedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyBenedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyLouise Brealey as Molly with Ed Birch as Tom. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyBenedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock with Martin Freeman as John Watson. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyRupert Graves as Lestrade. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyUna Stubbs as Mrs Hudson. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyLouise Brealey as Molly. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyBenedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyMartin Freeman as John Watson. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyMark Gatiss as Mycroft. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyBenedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock with Martin Freeman as John Watson. Image: BBC/Robert ViglaskyBenedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock with Martin Freeman as John Watson. Image: BBC/Robert Viglasky




The legacy of Buffy The Vampire Slayer is examinedBookmark and Share

Thursday, 26 December 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
The legacy of cult TV series Buffy The Vampire Slayer is being examined today by the BBC Radio 4 arts strand Front Row - ten years after the supernatural drama finished in the UK.

The American-made show, which spanned 144 episodes over seven series, aired on BBC2 between 30th December 1998 and 18th December 2003, starring Sarah Michelle Gellar as the eponymous heroine, with Anthony Head as her Watcher, Rupert Giles, and aided by her "Scooby Gang" of friends. It won three Emmys, spawned the spin-off TV series Angel, and proved to be hugely influential on TV plotting and scripting.

Author and novelist Naomi Alderman has made the radio special to examine its impact and, as she puts it, "why there are so few 'daughters of Buffy': strong and complex fictional creations, who aren't simply the sole female lead in a predominantly male cast."

Interviewed for the half-hour programme, which goes out at 7.15pm, are the show's creator Joss Whedon, along with Anthony Head, writers Neil Gaiman and Rhianna Pratchett, TV executives Jane Root and Susanne Daniels, and fans Blake Harrison and Bim Adewunmi.

The show will be available to listen to live worldwide via the BBC Radio 4 site and afterwards via the specific programme site.





New presenter announced for The Sky At NightBookmark and Share

Thursday, 12 December 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
Space scientist Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock is to join the presenting team on The Sky At Night, it was announced today.

She will join existing presenter astrophysicist Dr Chris Lintott when the series returns in its new half-hour slot on BBC Four in February.

Dr Aderin-Pocock is a research fellow at the University College London Department of Science and Technology Studies and an honorary research associate in the Physics and Astronomy Department. Her TV career includes presenting BBC Two's Do We Really Need The Moon? and Do We Really Need Satellites? as well as regular appearances on BBC One's The One Show.

It was feared the long-running astronomy series - which began in April 1957 - would be axed after the death of its host Sir Patrick Moore last December, but it was reprieved after a massive campaign.

Commenting on her new role, she said:
The opportunity to present The Sky At Night is like completing a circle and fulfilling a lifelong dream. Above all, it's a huge honour to follow in the footsteps of Patrick Moore, a passionate advocate of the wonders of the night sky.

As a child I would beg my parents to allow me to stay up late and watch the programme. It even inspired me to go to night school at a young age to make my own telescope mirror, which I lovingly crafted and gave me my first glimpse of the breathtaking spectacle above us.

This enthusiasm eventually led to a degree in physics and a PhD in mechanical engineering and then working on the wonderful 8m Gemini telescope in Chile. I'm so looking forward to being a part of this cherished and much-loved institution.
The Sky At Night became the longest-running programme with the same presenter in television history.

Over the past year, it has been fronted by a team of regular reporter/presenters, who will continue to appear in the future.

Executive producer Jonathan Renouf said:
Maggie is a fantastic addition to this series. She is a renowned space scientist and science communicator who will bring tremendous enthusiasm and excitement to the programme. Alongside other BBC series such as Stargazing Live, I hope The Sky At Night will continue to share the wonders of the night sky with a new generation of viewers.
Cassian Harrison, the editor of BBC Four, said:
As The Sky At Night makes a new home on BBC Four I'm delighted to welcome Maggie to its roster of terrific talent. Maggie is a true evangelist of the wonders of the night sky and a passionate science communicator. She'll be an exciting presence on the team.




Episodes gets a fourth seriesBookmark and Share

Thursday, 12 December 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
A fourth series of the BBC Two comedy Episodes has been given the green light - with the third one yet to air.

Starring Tamsin Greig as Beverly Lincoln, Stephen Mangan as Sean Lincoln, and Matt LeBlanc as a stylised version of himself, the co-production between the BBC and Showtime - an American TV company - will start shooting next year. As with the second and third series, it will comprise a run of nine episodes.

The show is about British husband-and-wife comedy-writing duo Sean and Beverly who travel to Hollywood to remake their successful British TV series, with disastrous results.

Series three - which sees the couple back together following Beverly's fling with Matt - will begin in the USA on Sunday 12th January. A date for its start on BBC Two is yet to be announced. The second series aired in the UK between 11th May and 6th July 2012.




The Sky At Night wins reprieveBookmark and Share

Thursday, 31 October 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
Record-setting astronomy TV series The Sky At Night is to continue following a campaign to save the BBC show.

However, it will lose its 20-minute slot on BBC One and will move to BBC Four, where it is currently repeated in a 30-minute format.

Following the death last year of presenter Sir Patrick Moore, it was feared that the programme - which was first broadcast on 24th April 1957 - would be axed when last month the BBC said its future was being reviewed. That sparked a massive protest, with an online petition garnering more than 52,000 signatures.

Now the BBC has announced that the monthly programme will first air on BBC Four in a half-hour slot from February 2014, with repeats on BBC Two.

Kim Shillinglaw, the head of commissioning for BBC Science and Natural History, said:
Sir Patrick Moore inspired generations of astronomers and I hope that alongside the BBC's other astronomy content, such as BBC Two's Stargazing Live, The Sky at Night will enthuse further generations about the wonder of the night sky.
Cassian Harrison, BBC Four's editor, commented:
I'm delighted that we are continuing with such a treasured BBC brand, and look forward to welcoming the programme to its new home on BBC Four, where it will join a rich mix of other science content.
Moore presented the show from its start to his death and only missed one edition in July 2004 - because of food poisoning - making it the longest-running programme with the same presenter in TV history. The series has been fronted by a team of presenters since Moore's death, including Jon Culshaw, Dr Chris Lintott, Dr Lucie Green, Dr Chris North, Dr Paul Abel, and Pete Lawrence. It is yet to be decided who will present it when it comes back.

Following the announcement of its reprieve, Culshaw tweeted:
Grand news, The Sky at Night is saved and will stay. Huge thanks to @Saveskyatnight and to everybody who signed and spoke up so passionately
The next edition will be on Monday 4th November at 12.30am (except Scotland, when it will air at 1.15am). It will be off air in January, when the slot will be taken by the BBC Two astronomy show Stargazing Live, hosted by Professor Brian Cox and Dara O Briain.







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