Twice Upon A Time - SynopsisBookmark and Share

Saturday, 16 September 2017 - Reported by Marcus
Twice Upon a Time: Mark Gatiss, Peter Capaldi, David Bradley (Credit: BBC)BBC Worldwide has issued the press synopsis for the Doctor Who Christmas Episode Twice Upon A Time.

The episode will be the last story to star Peter Capaldi as The Doctor and will feature David Bradley in the role of the First Doctor.

Pearl Mackie returns as Bill Potts, alongside Lily Travers and Jared Garfield who recreate the first Doctor's companions Polly and Ben. Mark Gatiss also joins the cast as The Captain

Two Doctors stranded in a forbidding snowscape, refusing to face regeneration. And a British army captain seemingly destined to die in the First World War, but taken from the trenches to play his part in the Doctor’s story. This is the magical last chapter in the Twelfth Doctor’s epic adventure. He must face his past to decide his future. And the Doctor will realise the resilience of humanity, discovering hope in his darkest frozen moment. It’s the end of an era. But the Doctor’s journey is only just beginning.
The information was released by the BBC Shop in the United States who have posted details of the DVD release of the story.




Pearl Mackie back on the London StageBookmark and Share

Friday, 15 September 2017 - Reported by Marcus
Pearl Mackie, who played Bill in the most recent series of Doctor Who, is returning to the London stage in a new production of Harold Pinter's play The Birthday Party.

The production runs at the Harold Pinter Theatre from 9th January until 14th April 2018 and marks the 60th Anniversary of the play.

Also starring Toby Jones, who played the Dream Lord in Amy's Choice, and Zoë Wanamaker, the voice of Cassandra, the production is directed by Ian Rickson.
Stanley Webber (Toby Jones) is the only lodger at Meg (Zoë Wanamaker) and Petey Boles’ sleepy seaside boarding house. The unsettling arrival of enigmatic strangers Goldberg (Stephen Mangan) and McCann disrupt the humdrum lives of the inhabitants and their friend Lulu (Pearl Mackie), and mundanity soon becomes a menace when a seemingly innocent birthday party turns into a disturbing nightmare. Truth and alliances hastily shift in Pinter's brilliantly mysterious dark-comic masterpiece about the absurd terrors of the everyday.




Peter Capaldi signed script up for auctionBookmark and Share

Saturday, 26 August 2017 - Reported by Chuck Foster
The Doctor Who Appreciation Society have launched an auction on behalf of Syrian Refugees in North London, a charity run from Muswell Hill Methodist Church and supported by the current Doctor, Peter Capaldi and his wife Elaine. A number of items are up for auction, including the original readthrough script for the episode Listen, signed and illustrated by the actor.


DWAS: Peter Capaldi charity auction (Credit: DWAS)


The auction ends just after 5pm on the 4th September - visit the DWAS website for full details.





RiffTrax present The Five DoctorsBookmark and Share

Thursday, 17 August 2017 - Reported by Chuck Foster
RiffTrax Live: Doctor Who (Credit: Fathom Events)A special presentation of The Five Doctors will be taking place in the United States over the next couple of weeks:

The Doctor is in the house! The RiffTrax house, that is! The stars of Mystery Science Theater 3000®, Mike Nelson, Kevin Murphy and Bill Corbett, are back on the big screen for a legendary riffing of the 1983 Doctor Who film "The Five Doctors." Someone is taking the Doctor's past selves out of time and space, placing them in a vast wilderness - a battle arena with a sinister tower at its center. As the various incarnations of the Doctor join forces, they learn they are in the Death Zone on their home world of Gallifrey, fighting Daleks, Cybermen, Yeti and a devious Time Lord Traitor who is using the Doctor and his companions to discover the ancient secrets of Rassilon, the first and most powerful ruler of Gallifrey.

Join Mike, Kevin and Bill as they join the Five Doctors for one of the most thrilling Doctor Who adventures ever!

The special showing will be presented in cinemas around the USA on the 17th and 24th August - see the Fathom Events page for more details.





Lethbridge-Stewart: South Wales short story competition 2017Bookmark and Share

Thursday, 10 August 2017 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Candy Jar Books will be launching a short story competition for their Lethbridge-Stewart series from 17th August:

Lethbridge-Stewart at the Candy Jar Book Festival (Credit: Candy Jar Books)Candy Jar Books is offering an exciting, new opportunity for aspiring writers. Launching at Candy Jar Book Festival in Cardiff, writers can submit a short story based on the Doctor Who character Brigadier Lethbridge Stewart.

These stories will be included in a book to be released early next year.

Shaun Russell, head of publishing, says:
We had huge success with the previous two short story competitions and we wanted to do something different this year. With the fiftieth anniversary of the Brigadier coming up we felt that this would be a fantastic opportunity for budding writers to write their very own Lethbridge-Stewart story.
The overall winner will offered the chance to pen their very own Lethbridge-Stewart book, and work alongside range editor and creative director of the Haisman estate, Andy Frankham-Allen, and will also receive a Kindle Fire to read it on. Both the winner and runner-up will receive all the Lethbridge-Stewart novels from 2018. All winning entries will see their stories published in book form in 2018.

Lethbridge-Stewart has been an essential part of the Doctor Who universe since 1968. He was created by authors Mervyn Haisman and Henry Lincoln for the six-part Doctor Who serial The Web of Fear. Forty-nine years since the Brigadier appeared in Doctor Who he has become one of the show’s most iconic characters, having appeared with ten different Doctors in countless TV episodes, books, audio dramas and comic strips. And his legacy continues on with his daughter appearing in Doctor Who since 2012.

The Lethbridge-Stewart South Wales Short Story Competition will launch at Candy Jar Book festival on 17th August. Candy Jar is hosting a free event at Cardiff Central Library at 1pm: a panel with Lethbridge-Stewart authors Nick Walters, Simon A Forward, Tim Gambrell, Alyson Leeds and range editor Andy Frankham-Allen, discussing writing Lethbridge-Stewart and Doctor Who novels and short stories. And prior to that, at 12pm, cover artist Richard Young will be hosting a drawing class.

Andy Frankham-Allen says:
It’s a unique opportunity to have so many of our authors together in one place. We’ll be talking about the differences between writing novels and short stories, and offer some hints and tips for those interested in entering the short story competition. We are extremely committed to encouraging new talent and hope the public will take the time to come along and possibly enter the competition.
The South Wales Short Story Competition will be accepting submissions from 17th August. Entrants are permitted to submit up to two short stories of no more than three thousand words. The competition is open to all unpublished writers across the UK.

Andy Frankham-Allen believes that short stories are an excellent way for writers to perfect their craft. He said:
The discipline and imagination required for creating and structuring a good short story is excellent practice for aspiring writers. The experience winning writers will gain will be invaluable in preparing them for any future writing career.

All submissions must be received by the end of September. The competition is £5 to enter per story. The terms and conditions, such as copyright restrictions, will be emailed once the entrant has paid.

Entries can be sent via the Candy Jar Book Festival website.
Or at: https://www.freewebstore.org/jellybeanbooks/product/lethbridge-stewart%20short%20story%20competition

Alternatively, they can also be posted to Candy Jar Books, Mackintosh House, 136 Newport Road, Cardiff, CF24 1DJ
For more information please contact Shaun Russell on 02921 157 202 shaun@candyjarbooks.co.uk.


The South Wales Short Story Competition is currently accepting submissions. Entrants are permitted to submit up to two short stories and these can be a maximum of 3000 words. The competition is open to all unpublished writers across the UK.
Please include:
  • Your name, age, email, address and telephone number
The winning entry will receive a Kindle Fire and Lethbridge-Stewart publishing deal. All shortlisted entries will be published in the third volume of the South Wales Short Story Competition anthology.
£5 entry fee for up to two stories.
Submissions can be entered from Thursday 17th August to the end of September.

Submission guidelines for the Lethbridge-Stewart South Wales Short Story Competitions:
  • Maximum of 3000 words.
  • This competition is open to anybody who has never been published before, whether you’re a fan of Doctor Who and Lethbridge-Stewart or not. We’re looking for different takes on the character of Lethbridge-Stewart, in different settings. It could be a version of the man living in Victorian London, or it could be a version of the character living in the far future. Any kind of story, in any setting, as long as Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart carries the basic core principles that make the character the legend he is: heroic, stoic, laid back and often ironic, a field officer who ensures loyalty due to his willingness to lead by example.
  • A free short story will be sent to all applicants, so even if you have never encountered Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart before, you can get a sense of the man.
  • Our license is with the Haisman Literary Estate only, therefore you CAN use any character from the Doctor Who serials The Abominable Snowmen, The Web of Fear and The Dominators, or any original character found Candy Jar Books’ Lethbridge-Stewart series (except the Rutans and Group Captain Gilmore, who were used by Candy Jar under express permission).
  • You CAN NOT use any other Doctor Who characters or monsters or UNIT.

The main event kicks off on Monday 14th August at 11am with open auditions for Nigel Hinton’s The Norris Girls book trailer at the Cardiff Story Museum. This is a chance for young performers to show off their talent. The book has been endorsed by Jacqueline Wilson and Cathy Cassidy, and has been described as the “modern version of Little Women”.

Nigel Hinton, the award-winning Buddy’s Song and Beaver Towers author, says:
I’ve written a short script based on my book and entrants can download it from my website. We’re looking for three aspiring young actresses to play Beth, Georgy and Katie, who respectively are fourteen, twelve and ten years old.
Mark Jones, creator and author of Time to Sleep Stories will be hosting a “Sleep Workshop” at the Cardiff Story Museum on Monday 14th August at 3.00pm.

Mark says:
Several years ago I witnessed a number of work colleagues suffering from the effects of stress. At the same time it was being widely reported that children were suffering from a lack of sleep due to the onslaught of digital technology and bedtimes were becoming a battlefield for parents. I realised that I could use my storytelling skills by writing gentle fantasy tales, and including within the stories breathing and calming techniques that could help relax children at bedtime.

Throughout the week, Candy Jar will be hosting book signing sessions, workshops, and “meet the artist” events. Attendees will be able to meet some of Candy Jar’s finest authors including former The Honeycombs bassist Roger J Simmonds, Hinterland director and award-winning author Griff Rowland, Michelle Briscombe, Jane Cohen, Laura Shire, and accomplished children’s author Sue Hampton (who will be signing exclusive copies her new Lethbridge-Stewart spin-off children’s novel The Lucy Wilson Mysteries).

Shaun Russell says:
We have a whole host of incredible authors and illustrators who have been announced as part of the seven-day festival. Our aim is promote reading, writing and creativity in the heart of the city.
Lauren Thomas, publishing co-ordinator at Candy Jar, believes that the festival is a fantastic way to engage young people with reading. She says:
As with our previous festivals, the exciting activities on offer will help to engage the local youth with great children’s literature.




Christmas Details Announced at SDCCBookmark and Share

Sunday, 23 July 2017 - Reported by Marcus
This news item contains official information released by the BBC at the Doctor Who panel at San Diego Comic Con. some readers may consider the information spoilers.

Twice Upon a Time: Mark Gatiss, Peter Capaldi, David Bradley (Credit: BBC)


The BBC has announced that Peter Capaldi’s final episode of Doctor Who, to be broadcast this Christmas will be called

Twice Upon a Time


Twice Upon a Time: Pearl Mackie (Credit: BBC)The episode will also feature Pearl Mackie returning as Bill Potts. Viewers will have to wait until Christmas to discover exactly how Bill, who will appear throughout the episode, makes her return.

It was also revealed that Mark Gatiss will co-star in the episode in a guest role, playing a World War One soldier - known so far only as ‘The Captain'

As previously revealed in the closing moments of the 2017 series finale, the special will feature Peter Capaldi’s current Doctor team up with the First Doctor, played by David Bradley.





Peter Capaldi's Salary RevealedBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 19 July 2017 - Reported by Marcus
Peter Capaldi was paid between £200,000 and £250,000 for his work on Doctor Who in the previous financial year, according to figures published by the BBC today.

The BBC has been instructed by government to publish the salaries of all on screen staff members who earn more than £150,000 each year, as part of the 2016 charter renewal.

The BBC has 96 staff members who fit into this category with Radio 2 and Top Gear presenter Chris Evans topping the chart with a salary of over 2 million pounds.

The highest paid actor is Derek Thompson from Casualty who earned between £350,000 and £400,000 in the year. The list only includes those working directly for the BBC and not those working on independent productions comissioned by the corporation, such as Sherlock.

The figure just reflects the amount of licence fee money paid to the actor and does not include any money paid by the commercial company BBC Worldwide for any other work undertaken.




Trevor Baxter 1932-2017Bookmark and Share

Monday, 17 July 2017 - Reported by Chuck Foster
The actor and playwright Trevor Baxter has died, aged 84.

Graduating from RADA in 1961, Baxter appeared in a variety of shows since his debut in the 1950s, chalking up credits in a number of well-known series such as Adam Adamant Lives!, Z Cars, Thriller, The New Avengers, George and Mildred, Rumpole of the Bailey, and in later years roles such as Lanyon in Jack The Ripper, Gordon Naylor in The Politician's Wife, and Dr Albrigtsen in Maelstrom. On the big screen, he appeared in films including Nutcracker, Parting Shots, Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow and Van Wilder: The Rise of Taj.

However, for Doctor Who fans it is the pairing up with Christopher Benjamin to play Professor George Litefoot alongside Henry Gordon Jago that he will be remembered for. Created for the 1977 fourth Doctor tale The Talons of Weng-Chiang, the partnership proved popular and memorable, and though rumours of a spin-off television series never came to fruition at the time, the duo found new life through Big Finish with their own series of audio adventures. (You can read the Big Finish tribute here).

Louise Jameson played Leela alongside Baxter in The Talons of Weng-Chiang and today paid tribute to the actor.
Unbelievably sad to learn that marvellous TrevorBaxter has left the building.He has been in my life since 1976.Witty and vibrant to the end.
Off-screen, Baxter appeared with the Royal Shakespeare Company, and was also an accomplished playwright, with plays such as Edith Grove, The Undertaking, Ripping Them Off and Through A Glass Darkly. In 2003 he adapted Oscar Wilde's A Portrait of Dorian Gray for the stage, and in 2005 Wilde's short story Lord Arthur Savile's Crime.

Trevor Baxter, 18 Nov 1932 - 16 Jul 2017




The Doctors Will Return at ChristmasBookmark and Share

Sunday, 2 July 2017 - Reported by Marcus
he Doctor (Peter Capaldi), The First Doctor (David Bradley) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Ray Burmiston))
The closing moments of the Doctor Who series ten finale confirmed press speculation that this year’s Doctor Who Christmas special will be a multi-Doctor adventure featuring the current Doctor played by Peter Capaldi and the First Doctor played by David Bradley.

The BBC has issued a picture showing the two actors together.

David Bradley played William Hartnell in the 2013 drama based on the creation of Doctor Who, An Adventure In Space And Time, were he played Hartnell creating the character of the original Doctor

Further casting and details for the Doctor Who Christmas special will be revealed in due course. The special will serve as Peter Capaldi's farewell to the series and will feature the debut of the next Doctor.




Doctor Who Actors Honoured by QueenBookmark and Share

Saturday, 17 June 2017 - Reported by Marcus
Several Doctor Who alumni have been mentioned in the Queen's Birthday Honours list.


Veteran actress and comedienne June Whitfield has been made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire.

June Whitfield played Minnie Hooper, active member of the Sliver Cloak, in the 2010 Doctor Who story The End of Time.

She is one of the UK's best loved actresses having first come to the attention of the public in the 1950's in a succession of Radio comedys. In 1968, June Whitfield and Terry Scott began their long television partnership which peaked with roles as husband and wife in Happy Ever After followed by Terry and June . Since 1992, Whitfield has appeared in Jennifer Saunders's sitcom Absolutely Fabulous playing Edina Monsoon's mother. In recent years she has played a regular character in Last of the Summer Wine as well as a recurring character in The Green Green Grass.

The actress Sarah Lancashire has been made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire or OBE.

Sarah Lancashire appeared in the 2008 story Partners in Crime where she played Miss Foster,, employed by the Adiposian First Family to breed a new generation after their breeding planet was lost.

Lancashire first came to public attention appearing in the long running soap Coronation Street. Other roles include parts in costume dramas such as Oliver Twist, Lark Rise to Candleford and the BBC1 crime thriller Happy Valley, for which she recieved the 2017 British Academy Television Award for Best Actress.

Actor David Walliams has been made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire.

David Walliams played Gibbis in the 2011 story The God Complex.

Walliams is best known for his partnership with Matt Lucas on the BBC One sketch show Little Britain. Since 2012 he has been a judge on the ITV talent show Britain's Got Talent. Walliams is also a writer of children's books. To date he has sold more than 12.5 million copies and his books have been translated into 46 languages.

Walliams, who has raised a considerable ammount of money fnor Sport's Relief, recieved the award for services to charity and the Arts.

Actress Gugu Mbatha-Raw has been made a Member of the Order of the British Empire or MBE.

Gugu Mbatha-Raw plated Tish Jones, sister of Martha, in Series Three of Doctor Who.

Mbatha-Raw played a supporting role in the Tom Hanks comedy Larry Crowne, and had starring roles on the short-lived television series Undercovers and Touch. She appeared in the British period drama Belle and the romantic drama Beyond the Lights.

In 2015 she played the title role in Jessica Swale's play Nell Gwynn, winning a nomination for an Evening Standard Theatre Award for Best Actress.
The awards are presented by HM Queen Elizabeth on the recomendation of the British Prime Minister Theresa May.




The Doctors: The Pat Troughton YearsBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 14 June 2017 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Koch Media have released the second in their collection of interviews from Reeltime Pictures with stars from Doctor Who, this time focussing on the second Doctor, Patrick Troughton's era.

The Doctors: The Pat Troughton Years (Credit: Koch Media)The Doctors: The Pat Troughton Years
Produced by Keith Barnfather (order from Amazon)

A new double-DVD release in the highly regarded series exploring the world of TV’s Doctor Who in what will build into a complete work on The Doctors.

This is the definitive set of interviews with the team of actors who brought the Patrick Troughton era of Doctor Who to life, offering a whole new insight into the making of the classic science fiction series.

  • Includes a special tribute to PATRICK TROUGHTON containing messages from a host of stars and production staff from DOCTOR WHO.
  • Presented by voice of the Daleks Nicholas Briggs.
  • Quality in-depth interviews with, Anneke Wills (Polly), Michael Craze (Ben), Frazer Hines (Jamie), Deborah Watling (Victoria) and Wendy Padbury (Zoe).
  • This 2 DISC special collectors edition is 5 hours of pure nostalgia, which will give you a whole new insight into the making of Doctor Who.
  • Includes special feature: Introduction by Nicholas Briggs & Producer Keith Barnfather.


Competition

To be in with a chance to win a copy of The Doctors: The Pat Troughton Years courtesy of Koch Media, simply answer the following question:
Which of the second Doctor's companions travelled with him for the longest time?
Please send your answers along with your name, address and where you heard about the competition (news site, news app, other website, etc.) to comp-kochmedia@doctorwhonews.net with the subject "Oh my word!". The competition is open to UK readers only, closing date 30th June 2017. Only one entry per household will be accepted.





Doctor Who Experience to Close 9th SeptemberBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 14 June 2017 - Reported by Marcus
BBC Worldwide have confirmed the Doctor Who Experience will close on Saturday 9th September 2017

The Experience, based at Porth Teigr, Cardiff Bay, opened in July 2012 after a brief run in London. During its five-year tenure, it has welcomed many fans to the welsh capital with its interactive experience and displays of sets and props from the series.

The Experience has planned a number of special events throughout the summer with tickets for the final period being released from midday on Friday 16th June.

The Filming Location Walking Tours will return from the 8th July. These are a 75-minute walk around Cardiff Bay and features sites from Series 10 and memorable locations from previous series.

Series 10 content will be brought into the Experience, with the finished exhibition being unveiled on the 8th July. This will include props, costumes and sets from Series 10, that will join the Peter Capaldi and Pearl Mackie costumes which are already part of the exhibition.

Earlier this year it was announced that the Yeti from The Web of Fear, during Patrick Troughton’s incarnation as the Doctor, was voted by fans as the Doctor Who monster they’d most like to see restored as part of the ongoing Restoration Project. So to celebrate, Model Unit expert, Mike Tucker will also be on hand on the 8th July to reveal the final, renovated monster in all its glory to visitors.

On 22nd July, the Experience will host its final Monster Event, with the Cybermen at its theme. The day will include workshops and question and answer sessions with monster-makers, Millennium FX; a chance for fans to be converted into Cybermen; as well as live Mondasian Cybermen roaming the Experience floor. The day will be completed with a viewing of the final two-part episode, first screened on BBC One on 24th June & 1st July, screened in the Experience’s exhibition area.

Later in the holidays, on the 5th August, fans can look forward to the biggest Doctor Who Experience Cosplay Celebration yet. Fans will be invited and encouraged to visit dressed as their favourite Doctor Who character or monster.

Ticket information is available from doctorwhoexperience.com




Doctor Who Countdown ConcertBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 13 June 2017 - Reported by Marcus
The BBC have announced a special screening of Episode 11 of Doctor Who, complete with a live music accompaniment from the The National Orchestra of Wales will take place in Cardiff on June 24th

The episode will be screened at BBC Hoddinott Hall in Cardiff’s Wales Millennium Centre. It will be followed by an on-stage Q&A with some of the team behind the show, including Pearl Mackie (Bill Potts) and lead writer and executive producer, Steven Moffat.

The evening will be hosted by Jason Mohammad and promises monsters and surprises. Fans will be invited to submit questions for both Pearl and Steven through the BBC’s official Doctor Who website and social feeds. For those unable to attend in person, the live Q&A with Pearl will be live streamed on the BBC One Facebook page and the Doctor Who YouTube Channel.

Tickets are free and will be allocated via a random ballot. Applicants need to be able to attend the event in Cardiff and make their own arrangments for travel and accommodation.

To enter the ballot you need to Tweet #DWFinaleCountdown to @bbcdoctorwho.

Fifteen winners will be selected at random from all entries. Each winner will receive a pair of tickets for the event.The winners will be contacted by Direct Message just after 3pm Wednesday 14 June, so you must be following @bbcdoctorwho. If you do not reply within the time specified in the Direct Message the tickets will be offered to another entrant selected at random.

Full details on the BBC Webpage




Doctor Who Experience Seeks Summer HostsBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 7 June 2017 - Reported by Marcus
BBC Worldwide are looking for people to work at the Doctor Who Experience in Cardiff this summer.

Fixed term Summer contracts are being offered to support the core team at the Experience during peak periods over the holiday period before the Experience closes its doors later this year.

Successful candidates will be expected to deliver excellent customer service and interact with guests at every opportunity. They will need to be able to answer visitor questions and deal with queries as well as assisting visitors who have special requirements, as well as assisting with large groups and school parties. You must be able to work on a rota basis including weekends, Bank Holidays and evenings.

The BBC is looking for people with a personable and friendly manner with the ability to work within a fast paced team environment. Fluency in a second language is useful as is enjoyment and knowledge of Doctor Who, including the classic series.

The closing date for applicants is 7 July 2017.

Full details can be found at BBC Career Search