Bernard Horsfall 1930 - 2013Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, 29 January 2013 - Reported by Marcus
The actor Bernard Horsfall has died at the age of 82.

He appeared in 14 episodes of Doctor Who, alongside the second, third and fourth Doctors.

Born on 20th November 1930 in Bishop's Stortford, Hertfordshire, Horsfall had a long career in film and television in the UK, including roles in the feature films On Her Majesty's Secret Service, Gandhi and Braveheart.

He appeared in many classic television dramas including Casualty, Agatha Christie: Poirot, The Bill, The Jewel in the Crown, Juliet Bravo, Minder, When the Boat Comes In, Within These Walls, Jackanory, Elizabeth R, Doomwatch, Out of the Unknown, Softly Softly, Dr. Finlay's Casebook and Z Cars. He also played the respected doctor Philip Martel in the Channel Islands wartime drama Enemy at the Door, which ran for 26 episodes between 1978 and 1980.

Horsfall's first appearance in Doctor Who came in the 1968 story The Mind Robber, where he played Lemuel Gulliver, encountered by the second Doctor in the Land of Fiction.

After a small role as the First Time Lord in the final Troughton story The War Games, Horsfall returned to the series in 1973, playing the Thal Taron in the six-part story Planet of the Daleks, working with the third Doctor to defeat the Daleks on the planet Spiridon.

His final role in Doctor Who is arguably the one he is most famous for, playing Chancellor Goth in the 1976 story The Deadly Assassin. His most famous scene involved a battle with the fourth Doctor inside the Matrix with the climax of episode three showing the Doctor being held underwater by Goth. The sequence prompted complaints from the TV campaigner Mary Whitehouse and was edited from repeat showings.

Horsfall returned to the world of Doctor Who in 2003 when he played Arnold Baynes in the Big Finish audio play Davros.

The actor, who was due to attend the 2013 Gallifrey One convention next month, collapsed and died this morning.




Preview and Details for "Prisoners of Time"Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, 29 January 2013 - Reported by Josiah Rowe
Diamond Comics, the main distributor for comic books in North America, has published a preview of the first issue of IDW's new Doctor Who comic, Doctor Who: Prisoners of Time. The first five pages of issue #1 can be read in PDF format here.

As previously reported, Doctor Who: Prisoners of Time is written by Scott and David Tipton. Each issue will feature each of the eleven Doctors in turn, with art by a different artist. The first issue's art is by Simon Fraser; the second issue, featuring the Second Doctor, will be illustrated by Lee Sullivan; Mike Collins will tackle the Third Doctor in the third issue, and the fourth issue will have art by Gary Erskine. Artists on the remaining issues have yet to be announced.

Interested readers can find interviews with both the Tiptons at Comic Book Resources, with Scott Tipton at Comic Book Therapy, and with Simon Fraser at downthetubes.net (though some readers may consider some of the promotional material in those interviews to be spoilers).

The first issue will be available in comic stores and via download at Comixology.com this Wednesday, January 30. North American readers who prefer their comics in old-fashioned paper-and-ink format can find their nearest comic store via the Comic Shop Locator.






Guests Announced For Tomb Screening At BFIBookmark and Share

Monday, 28 January 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
The guest line-up for next month's celebratory screening of The Tomb of the Cybermen at the BFI Southbank was announced today.

The event, which takes place on Saturday 9th February at 2.30pm, will see seven people make up the Q&A panels. They are:
Part of the organisation's Doctor Who At 50 season to mark the show's milestone anniversary, it sold out to BFI members before tickets went on general release.

Throughout 2013, the BFI is showing a story per Doctor as well as digitally-restored prints of the two Dalek films. It will also be premièring An Adventure In Space And Time - a 90-minute BBC Two docudrama about the show's creation, written by Mark Gatiss, which is due to start shooting next month.

Marking the Third Doctor's era, the première of the colour-restored story The Mind of Evil plus a discussion takes place on Sunday 10th March at 2pm. Tickets will go on general sale on Tuesday 12th February at 11.30am. BFI members get priority booking plus discounts on ticket prices and are exempt from booking fees. An annual membership currently costs £30 - down from £40. This special offer expires at the end of February - click here for more details.





"Splendid chaps" podcast now availableBookmark and Share

Monday, 28 January 2013 - Reported by Adam Kirk
The Splendid Chaps podcast is now available on its website.  As previously reported, to celebrate 50 years of Doctor Who,  John Richards (creator/writer of the ABC1 sitcom OutlandBoxcutters podcast) and Ben McKenzie (Channel 31′s Planet NerdDungeon Crawl, ‘patron saint of geek comedy’ – T-Squat magazine) have joined forces to host a year-long performance/podcast project, entitled "Splendid Chaps", in Melbourne, Australia.
Each month, from January to November 2013, John and Ben will record a live Doctor Who panel discussion – one for each of the eleven Doctors – with a different theme, special guests, musical and comedy performances and loveliness. These will also be edited into podcast episodes, released on the 23rd of each month.

The highlight of the first podcast, featuring the first doctor, includes Alexandra Tynan (nee Sandra Reid) talking about her designs for the Cybermen, in both The Tenth Planet and The Moonbase, and also the filming of the first doctor's regeneration scene. The podcast is also available at iTunes.




Troughton And Gold Win Audio Drama AwardsBookmark and Share

Sunday, 27 January 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
Both David Troughton and Murray Gold were winners at the BBC Audio Drama Awards 2013 this evening.

The event - a celebration of audio drama on air and online - was hosted by David Tennant at BBC Broadcasting House. He said:
The quality of our radio drama is one of the things that makes me proud to be British. Acting on the radio is challenging, inspiring, delicate, and always a privilege. Radio drama is often overlooked and undervalued next to its showier younger siblings on the television and in the cinema, and yet it is on the wireless that so many important and brilliant talents have been discovered and nurtured. I am delighted radio drama is being celebrated in this way.
Troughton was named Best Supporting Actor for his portrayal of the Earl of Leicester in BBC Radio 3's Singles and Doublets, while Gold's Kafka the Musical, which aired on Radio 3 and starred Tennant in the title role, won the Tinniswood Radio Drama Award 2012 for best radio drama script. Tennant was named Best Actor in last year's BBC Audio Drama Awards for his portrayal of Kafka in the production.

The BBC awards covered audio dramas first broadcast in English in the UK between 1st October 2011 and 31st October 2012 – or first uploaded/published for free listening online in the UK during the same period.


Last Wednesday's National Television Awards saw Colin Morgan win the Drama Performance: Male gong for Merlin, while Coronation Street, produced by Phil Collinson, won the Serial Drama trophy, Downton Abbey, starring Hugh Bonneville and Penelope Wilton (who presented the Best Actor award to Andrew Scott for Betrayal on Radio 4 at this evening's BBC Audio Drama ceremony), claimed the Drama title, and Paul O'Grady: For The Love Of Dogs won the Factual Entertainment award.





The War Machines on UKTVBookmark and Share

Saturday, 26 January 2013 - Reported by Paul Scoones
UKTVThe 50th Anniversary season of classic Doctor Who stories on UKTV in Australia and New Zealand continues with The War Machines.

The four-part story is broadcast on Sunday 27th January at 4:15pm (New Zealand) and 4:30pm (Australia). New Zealand has another screening for The War Machines on Monday 28th January at 4:00am.

The 1966 story was first broadcast in Australia in 1967. New Zealand viewers saw it in 1969.

This is the fourth story to be aired as part of the channel's celebration of the First Doctor this month. It follows earlier screenings of An Unearthly Child, The Aztecs and The Dalek Invasion of Earth.

UKTV is showing stories every Sunday throughout the year in the lead-up to the anniversary in November.

From next week the focus shifts to the Second Doctor, with The Tomb of the Cybermen scheduled for 3rd February, followed by The Dominators (10th), The Mind Robber (17th), and The Seeds of Death (24th).

Up-and-coming broadcasts from both 20th and 21st Century series of Doctor Who can be found via UKTV's Doctor Who sections for Australia and New Zealand.





The Reign of Terror: related animationsBookmark and Share

Friday, 25 January 2013 - Reported by Chuck Foster
BBC Worldwide have released a number of videos to tie in with The Reign of Terror coming out on DVD next Monday.

In Animating the Doctor, lead animator Chris Chapman from Planet 55 Studios demonstrates the process of bringing the First Doctor to animated life in his attire as a regional officer from the Provinces. Travelling with the Doctor is a creation by the company of the First Doctor within the TARDIS as he prepares to undertake his travels. Finally, A glimpse inside the First Doctor's TARDIS presents a brief colour animation of the console room as it was imagined during the first season of the show.





People RoundupBookmark and Share

Friday, 25 January 2013 - Reported by Chuck Foster
David Tennant in Richard II. Photo: RSCDavid Tennant is to return to the Royal Shakespeare Company in October; the actor will play the title role in Richard II at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford-Upon-Avon in a production helmed by his former Hamlet director, Gregory Doran, and will be joined by another Hamlet compatriot Oliver Ford Davies. An interview with Tennant on the role can be watched via the RSC. Priority Booking opens on 11th February for the five week production which runs from 10th October to 16th November, with public tickets available from the 18th March.

The BBC have released the warm-up video for Matt Smith's appearance on Top Gear as the Star in a reasonably priced car last year, during which he engages in a rendition of Singing In The Rain!

'River Song' is to meet 'Captain Jack' as Alex Kingston is to be a guest star on CW series Arrow, which also features John Barrowman as a guest character. The actress is to play Dinah Lance, the separated wife of police sergeant Quentin Lance and mother of Laurel. [Entertainment Weekly, 22 Jan 2013]

Bernard Cribbins spoke about the way children's television has developed over the years: "It's all very fast and noisy now I think. You think of the gentleness of Jackanory, somebody would walk onto the set, sit down and say 'hello I'm going to tell you about Ratty and Mole and the Wind in the Willows' and off you went. Nice and gentle, and the only thing you saw, apart from the guy or lady talking to you, was a few captions and illustrations, which were stills. That was how it used to be. Pure, simple storytelling. Now there seems to be - sometimes, not always - a tendency to use every single opportunity to put in CGI and animation and a lot of it is, I think, gratuitous when the story is actually doing the work for you." [BBC News, 19 Jan 2013]

Talking about her role as Larissa Loughton in The Carrie Diaries - and more importantly her fashion sense - Freema Agyeman said: "I always look forward to my costume fittings because I walk in and I can instantly tell which rail is mine, because they have the brightest shiniest outfits that make me smile because they are so outrageous and so wacky but beautifully put together. I think they look like pieces of art." [Celebuzz, 23 Jan 2013]

Brian Cox has been re-elected as the University of Dundee's rector, serving students' interests. He said: "It is such a privilege and honour to be allowed to serve the students of Dundee for another three years. I hope to reciprocate in my heart the tremendous trust you have given me." [BBC News, 18 Jan 2013]

Adam Woodyatt spoke about his interest in appearing in Doctor Who: "I want to be an alien, heavily made up so people wouldn't be able to tell it was me. I think everyone of my generation would like to do Doctor Who because we all have something significant from the show that we remember from childhood. For me it was Jon Pertwee, the Brigadier and these giant maggoty slug things. I have this memory of watching it when I was off school ill. So it must have been repeated in the daytime. Or maybe it was the school holidays. I do like the new series as well, though - I enjoyed the Christmas special and I think Matt Smith is brilliant." [Radio Times via RTE, 18 Jan 2013]

Neil Gaiman, a patron of the Bookend Trust (a Tasmanian education charity) visited Dunalley Primary School, which was unfortunately destroyed during recent wildfires that rampaged across the island. Niall Doran, director of the Trust, told us:
Neil Gaiman and Polly Adams with the pre-release copy of Chu's Day donated to the school by Bloomsbury.Neil took part in a fundraising concert on Monday night, but he, Bookend and his publishers (Hachette Australia and Bloomsbury) also arranged for a special donation to the new school library consisting of a full set of Neil's children's books and a wider selection of the publishers' other children's titles. In addition, they have also kindly provided a selection of Neil's adult books and titles from other authors that can be distributed to the wider community and/or used for fundraising.

Neil visited the school site for a tour of the damage and the reconstruction. Also there to show their support were Polly Adams (daughter of the late, great Douglas Adams) and the 2012 & 2013 Tasmanians of the Year: Robert Pennicott and Andrew Hughes. The Bookend Trust chartered a seaplane from Tasmanian Air Adventures in order to be able to get Neil back to Hobart in time for media interviews and sound-checks before the MONA fundraising concert for the bushfires. Neil spoke on Australian national radio to publicise the visit and the concert, and also talked about his upcoming Cyberman episode.

Photos of the visit can be seen at the Bookend Trust Facebook site.




BFI: The First Doctor panelBookmark and Share

Friday, 25 January 2013 - Reported by Chuck Foster
The British Film Institute have now made parts of the Q&A panel with guests at the screening of An Unearthly Child on 12th January available to watch via their YouTube channel.

The first, nine minute segment from before the story was shown features a chat with the story's vision mixer Clive Doig and special sounds creator Brian Hodgson, alongside writer/actor Mark Gatiss (writer of the 50th Anniversary drama An Adventure in Space and Time). The second, fifteen minute segment features a cast and crew discussion after the showing, with Waris Hussein (director), William Russell (Ian), Carole Ann Ford (Susan), Jeremy Young (Kal), Donald Tosh (writer/script editor), and William Hartnell's granddaughter Jessica Carney.



The next (sold out!) event takes place on 9th February with the Second Doctor celebrated by a showing of The Tomb of the Cybermen (guests to be announced).




BBC AudioGo: Shadow of DeathBookmark and Share

Friday, 25 January 2013 - Reported by Chuck Foster
BBC AudioGo have released details for next month's release in their 50th Anniversary special series Destiny of the Doctor. Shadow of Death is written by Simon Guerrier and set during the Second Doctor's era; it is performed by Frazer Hines (Second Doctor companion Jamie McCrimmon), with Evie Dawnay.

Destiny of the Doctor: Shadow of DeathDestiny of the Doctor: Shadow of Death
Written by Simon Guerrier
Starring Frazer Hines, with Evie Dawnay
Released 7th February 2013 (pre-order)

Following an emergency landing, the TARDIS arrives on a remote world orbiting a peculiar star – a pulsar which exerts an enormous gravitational force, strong enough to warp time.

On further exploration the Doctor and his friends, Jamie and Zoe, discover a human outpost on the planet’s surface, inhabited by scientists who are there to study an ancient city. The city is apparently abandoned, but the scientists are at a loss to explain what happened to its sophisticated alien architects. The Doctor discovers that something dark, silent and deadly is also present on the world – and it is slowly closing in on the human intruders...
 




New Series 7 Publicity Picture ReleasedBookmark and Share

Thursday, 24 January 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
A new publicity picture has been released following yesterday's announcement that Doctor Who will be returning on Saturday 30th March for the first episode of eight in the next part of Series 7.

The image, as seen below, shows Matt Smith and Jenna-Louise Coleman. Although newly released, it appears to hail from a photo shoot last March when Coleman was announced as the new companion.






Silva Screen 50th Anniversary releasesBookmark and Share

Thursday, 24 January 2013 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Silva Screen: The Caves of AndrozaniSilva Screen have announced plans for several classic television soundtracks to be released on CD over the course of the 50th Anniversary year.

The anniversary range will kick off on 25th March 2013 with the release of the original television soundtrack for the 1984 Fifth/Sixth Doctor regeneration story The Caves of Androzani, as composed by Roger Limb with the BBC Radiophonic Workshop.




Doctor Who Adventures 304Bookmark and Share

Thursday, 24 January 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
The new edition of Doctor Who Adventures - out today - comes with free Silurian and Weeping Angel armies plus a board game on which to use them.

Also in issue 304 are:
  • A guide to the universe's scariest monster armies
  • Silurian jokes
  • More comic adventures for the Doctor and Decky Flamboon
  • Puzzles
  • Posters
As well as being available in print form, the publication can also be downloaded as an app for the iPhone and iPad from the App Stores in the UK and USA.




Silver Coins for the Golden AnniversaryBookmark and Share

Thursday, 24 January 2013 - Reported by Paul Scoones
A legal tender coin, and a series of collectible coins are due to be issued to mark the 50th Anniversary.

New Zealand Mint will launch a one-ounce silver .999 coin which features an engraved picture of the TARDIS and a 50th Anniversary logo. The coin comes packaged in a 3D model replica of the TARDIS, which opens with the TARDIS sound effect.

The coins themselves are legal tender for $2 in the South Pacific Island nation Niue.

Later in the year New Zealand Mint will also release collectible coins featuring all 11 Doctors. Further Doctor Who coin releases are also planned for 2014 and 2015.
“We are thrilled to be partnering with New Zealand Mint on this global deal. It is an historic year for the Doctor Who brand, and we are pleased to be able to bring this unique product to Doctor Who fans and coin collectors alike,”
- Rachael Hammond, BBC Worldwide’s Senior Licensing Executive, Consumer Products
 “I grew up watching Doctor Who as a child in New Zealand which, coincidentally, was the first country outside the UK to screen the show. It’s a great honour to now be asked to produce these coins to celebrate the 50th anniversary. Fans are going to really like what we’ve come up with.”
- Simon Harding, NZ Mint Chief Executive
The coins will officially launch at the World Money Fair in Berlin on 1 February and will be available from 1st May. They can be pre-ordered  at www.newzealandmint.com for NZD $155 each + shipping, or via selected international coin distributors.