Euros Lyn to helm Tennant finaleBookmark and Share

Saturday, 31 January 2009 - Reported by Anthony Weight
A press release published on the Newsarama website has revealed that director Euros Lyn is to oversee the final two special episodes of Doctor Who which will see out David Tennant's time as the Tenth Doctor. The news was revealed as part of the promotion for Lyn's forthcoming appearance at the New York ComicCon event in the United States, where he is to promote Torchwood: Children of Earth, which he has also directed.

Lyn is the only director to have worked on every production block to date of the new Doctor Who series. He helmed The End of the World and The Unquiet Dead for the first series; Tooth and Claw, The Girl in the Fireplace, The Idiot's Lantern and Fear Her for the 2006 run; the Christmas special The Runaway Bride for the third production block, and most recently the two-parter Silence in the Library and Forest of the Dead for series four in 2008. In addition, Lyn directed the mini-episodes Children in Need Cutaway in 2005 and and Music of the Spheres in 2008, the former of which was David Tennant's first full broadcast scene as the Doctor, meaning Lyn will have bookended the actor's time in the TARDIS.

The first two special episodes to be shown this year are being directed by James Strong and Graeme Harper. No broadcast dates are yet known, but it is expected that Lyn's two-part finale will be shown over the Christmas and New Year period.




K9 Production LatestBookmark and Share

Saturday, 31 January 2009 - Reported by DWNP Archive
Posted By John Bowman

Production on spin-off series K9 is well under way in Brisbane, with the fourth block of filming due to complete at the end of next week.

Paul Tams, who along with Bob Baker is the show's co-creator and co-associate producer, told The Doctor Who News Page that there would be 13 blocks, each comprising two half-hour episodes, with principal photography set to end on May 7.

Taking the opportunity to put the record straight on various matters regarding the show, he confirmed that the series would be known purely as K9, adding: "Bob and I are pleased with the interest shown and hope K9 will be viewed as a series that Who fans old and new will all find something enjoyable from."

And as a teaser, he said: "I've made sure that hidden in most episodes fans will spot some nod to the past - either a mention or a visual treat."

Regarding the electronic dog itself, he said: "K9 will be seen on screen as both an animatronic prop and in CGI form. The latest design I have done that is being used in the show is sleek and different from any previous images seen on the net, etc. K9 will, however, be recognisable to fans new and old as the K9. And to clear up the identity of which mark K9 this is, to quote Doctor Who itself he is the original you might say!"

Most information - including cast and characters - was being kept under wraps but Tams added: "The show will feature several new races of monsters created by Bob and myself, alongside the Jixen Warriors as reported previously.

"We first planned and created the show back in 1998, so it has taken 11 years to get to the production stage. It has been a long and rocky road and we are working with some very talented people here: actors, artists, sculptors, costume-makers. The schedule is very hectic and full on.

"I have to tip my hat - if I wore one - to the creative teams in the '60s who worked under such pressure to turn monsters, costumes and sets around at such a fast pace on Doctor Who. I now know how they must have felt - exhausted!"

A new logo has been created, which will be revealed in due course, and Tams said that the show would be airing later this year, with Australian broadcaster Network Ten currently lined up to carry it.




Prop Bus Damaged In DubaiBookmark and Share

Saturday, 31 January 2009 - Reported by DWNP Archive
Posted By John Bowman

Extensive damage was caused to a bus due to be used in Dubai for filming the Doctor Who special Planet of the Dead.

Dubai newspaper 7DAYS has uploaded a report with a picture showing the double-decker's roof crushed. It says the vehicle was damaged by a crane operator at Dubai port as it was being brought into the United Arab Emirates state. The left side of the bus was also crushed inwards, windows were smashed, the frame was bent and paint was ripped from the roof. The vehicle is currently being repaired. (NB: The 7DAYS report could be considered to contain a minor spoiler.)

The accident has also been covered by BBC NewsThe Sun and Telegraph. (NB: Both newspaper reports contain plot details.)

Although parts of the story's script had to be rewritten the BBC said that filming was "continuing as normal". Another bus is being used for filming in Cardiff.

The images below show more of the damage that was caused to the bus. (NB: These pictures are copyright and courtesy of 7DAYS. They may not be copied or published anywhere else without permission of 7DAYS.)




Gallifrey 2009 UpdateBookmark and Share

Saturday, 31 January 2009 - Reported by Shaun Lyon
In less than two weeks, Gallifrey 2009, the twentieth annual North American Doctor Who and science fiction media convention will begin! The official convention of Outpost Gallifrey and the Doctor Who Forum, the 2009 Gallifrey One event takes place February 13-15 at the Los Angeles Airport Marriott Hotel, and features an enormous guest lineup including Doctor Who 2005-2008 producer Phil Collinson in his first-ever convention appearance; the sixth Doctor,Colin Baker, sponsored by Alien Entertainment; Nicola Bryant and Wendy Padbury, Peri Brown and Zoe Heriot from classic Doctor Who; Torchwood star Gareth David Lloyd (Ianto Jones); recurring Torchwood cast member Kai Owen (Rhys Williams) sponsored by Tenth Planet Events; writers Phil Ford (head writer for "The Sarah Jane Adventures"), Keith Temple ("Planet of the Ood"), Paul Cornell ("Human Nature"), James Moran("The Fires of Pompeii") and Rob Shearman ("Dalek"); "Doctor Who: The Forgotten" comic writer Tony Lee and illustrator Pia Guerra; Big Finish producer Jason Haigh-Ellery and cast members Laura Doddington and Ciara Janson; actor/comedian Toby Hadoke; and Doctor Who/Torchwood novelist and script editor Gary Russell.

In addition, Gallifrey 2009 has confirmed a variety of new guest appearances in the past few weeks, some appearing on stage and some signing autographs only on one or more days, including Claudia Christian (Babylon 5); Tracy Scoggins (Babylon 5 and Crusade); John Levene (Sgt. Benton from Doctor Who, signing at the Sci Fi Sea Cruise tables); Damian Samuels (Mr. Lloyd from the Doctor Who episodes "The Empty Child" and "The Doctor Dances"); writers David GerroldMarc Scott Zicree and Marv Wolfman; Doctor Who novelists and audio writers Simon Guerrier, Nev Fountain, Mark Wright, Caroline Symcox, Darin Henry and Peter Anghelides; and many, many more!

For more information, visit the website here at Outpost Gallifrey.




Doctor Who Adventures: Issue 100Bookmark and Share

Friday, 30 January 2009 - Reported by Marcus
Doctor Who Adventures celebrates its 100th issue this week with 100 Doctor Who prizes up for grabs, including books, DVDs, audiobooks and toys. There is also a special feature about some of the sonic devices in the series, everything from the sonic screwdriver to the sonic blaster.

Also in the issue:
  • Posters: Matt Smith, a Dalek, the Graske and Miss Hartigan.
  • Interview: Actress Dervla Kirwan talks about her time as horrible Hartigan.
  • Tales from the TARDIS: the Doctor and Donna meet Miss Foster…
  • Secrets: Special stunts from The Next Doctor.
  • Doctor’s data: Facts about Rosita, the Other Doctor’s companion.
  • Who's where?: Monsters invade the Doctor Who Adventures office.
  • Terror through time: Have you ever heard of the Vervoids?
  • Comic strip: The Doctor and his new friend Heather take a trip to Delquis.
  • Subscription offer: Subscribe today and get a Sarah Jane Adventures CD!




Once More for FreemaBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 27 January 2009 - Reported by Shaun Lyon
Both Teletext and The Sun are reporting today that Freema Agyeman will return to Doctor Who for one more appearance as Martha Jones before David Tennant leaves the role. Agyeman is, according to the reports, scheduled to appear in one of the four upcoming specials that Tennant will appear in before turning over the role to Matt Smith. Says the Sun, "Freema's on board. It's early days so it's unclear what exactly Martha will be up to in the new show."

Agyeman will be doing a Q and A, with Chris Chibnall, Ben Daniels and Dick Wolf after a preview screening of Episode 1 of Law and Order on Thurs 5th Feb at the British Film Institute in London.




News Round UpBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 27 January 2009 - Reported by Marcus
David Tennant's performance in the Royal Shakespeare Company's production of Hamlet, has won him the best Shakespearean performance award from the Critics Circle. Tennant shared the award with Sir Derek Jacobi who won for his performance of Malvolio in the Donmar Warehouse's production of Twelfth Night. Tennant described the experience of playing Hamlet "a dream I never imagined I would get to fulfil".

Former companion and Blue Peter presenter, Peter Purves's autobiography is being published by Green Umbrella Publishing on 10th February. The book, which is being promoted as a scandalous read, will cover Purves time on Doctor Who, working with the first Doctor William Hartnell, as well as his later work on Blue Peter and Kick Start. He will be making several appearances at signing sessions around the UK.

Torchwood has been nominated for best Drama Series, in the annual Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) media awards. GLAAD is dedicated to promoting and ensuring fair, accurate and inclusive representation of people and events in the media as a means of eliminating homophobia and discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation. The awards will be presented at three separate ceremonies: in New York on March 28, in Los Angeles on April 19 and in San Francisco on May 9.

Former companion Louise Jameson has given an interview to Kent Life. Jameson who played Leela, talks about her relationship with fourth doctor Tom Baker and well as her work on other projects.

Scorenotes.com has uploaded an audio interview with Doctor Who composer, Murray Gold. Gold discusses both Doctor Who and Torchwood in the segment.

Radio Times has put together a selection of photographs from the recent Radio Times Covers Party. They are available on the website.

Thanks to Roger Jones, Andrew Futter, Rob Turner and Tom H.




Australian news and ratingsBookmark and Share

Sunday, 25 January 2009 - Reported by Adam Kirk
The 'fast-tracked' The Next Doctor has debuted in Australia to disappointing ratings. The 2008 Christmas Special averaged only 738,000 in the five major capital cities, compared to the 1 million plus viewers who regularly watched Series Four in 2008. The lower ratings are probably explained by the summer 'non-ratings' period, the Australia Day long weekend and the 1.745 million viewers who watched Australian Jelena Dokic's remarkable progress to the quarter-finals of the Australian Open on Channel 7. Meanwhile the Australian Broadcasting Corporation will start repeats of series two on ABC1 on Tuesdays at 8.30pm, starting with 'The Christmas Invasion' on 27 January 2009. The national broadcaster will also broadcast the corresponding episodes ofConfidential Cutdown for series two, starting with 'New New Doctor' on Tuesday 3 February 2009 at 9.15pm. This will be the free-to-air debut of this series of 'Confidential' on Australian television.

Meanwhile, in the local media, Patricia Maunder of The Age calls 'The Next Doctor' a 'bit of a tease'. TV Tonight in its preview of the same episode also writes that 'ultimately, this Christmas edition feels like the universe, or 'WHOniverse', is undergoing great change – rather like some of the plots we've enjoyed before. With Donna Noble's tale concluded in 2008, The Doctor is now sans assistant. As enjoyable as it tries to be, the writing in this episode is no better or worse than a weekly episode, upstaged by the 2007 Titanic special featuring Kylie..' Meanwhile Ian Cuthbertson ofThe Weekend Australiawrites of 'The Next Doctor' that 'it would be hard to go past a sensational line-up on the national broadcaster this evening, which has a little something for everyone.'

Thanks to the contributors to the Australian forums.




Specials casting confirmedBookmark and Share

Friday, 23 January 2009 - Reported by Marcus
The BBC have confirmed the casting of Michelle Ryan in the Planet of the Dead, the first of four Doctor Whospecials which will air in 2009.

Ryan, who is best known for her roles as Zoe Slater in EastEnders and Jaime Sommers in the recent remake of Bionic Woman, will play the mysterious Lady Christina de Souza, who joins David Tennant, as the Doctor, on a bus trip which takes a very unexpected detour into danger. She said "I'm a huge fan of Doctor Who and very excited to be joining David Tennant and the Doctor Who team. It is such a fantastic show and I can’t wait to get started!"

British comedy star Lee Evans will also be joining the cast playing a character called Malcolm, whose life becomes connected to the Doctor's under extraordinary circumstances.

Noma Dumezweni returns to the series as Captain Erisa Magambo, last seen helping Rose and Donna save the world in Turn Left.

Executive Producer and writer Russell T Davies said "Michelle is one of the most sought after young actors in the country and we are delighted to announce that she will be joining the team. As always the script is being kept strictly under wraps however we can reveal that Lady Christina is a woman with a mysterious past who's going to have a huge impact on the Doctor! "

The episode will be screened at Easter.


UPDATE:
Lee Evans will be appearing on Friday Night with Jonathan Ross, 10:35pm on BBC1 tonight.

Several newspapers have covered this casting news, including The TelegraphThe Daily MailThe SunThe Guardian, as well as BBC News.




Lee Evans cast in specialBookmark and Share

Thursday, 22 January 2009 - Reported by Anthony Weight
The Doctor Who News Page has learned that actor and comedian Lee Evans has been cast as "a Professor" in one of the forthcoming special episodes of Doctor Who, four of which will be broadcast during 2009 and into New Year 2010. Evans confirmed his casting during this afternoon's studio recording of tomorrow's edition of BBC One chat show Friday Night with Jonathan Ross, saying that he had been approached a few days beforehand and was delighted to be working on the series.

Evans has worked as both a stand-up comic and an actor, appearing in several Hollywood movies. His films include MouseHunt, There's Something About Mary and The Fifth Element. On stage, he appeared in the 2004-05 London run of The Producers, as Leo Bloom.

The news of his casting has also been reported at Chortle.co.uk.

UPDATE, 18.15 GMT: Evans's comments during the Jonathan Ross recording have been confirmed in a BBC Press Release.




Dubai newspaper reports on filming plansBookmark and Share

Thursday, 22 January 2009 - Reported by Josiah Rowe
Following on from an earlier blog report from The Guardian, the Dubai-based newspaper 7DAYS has reported that filming for one of the forthcoming Doctor Who specials will take place in Dubai. There has been no official word from BBC sources; the7DAYS article quotes an unnamed "BBC insider" confirming that the series will be filming in Dubai "later this year". The same article also states, "At least one other episode will be shot in the US, it was disclosed."

The newspaper also created a few images of Doctor Who aliens and villains in Dubai scenes; one of these is at right. The rest can be seen in the "e-paper" available on the7DAYS website after (free) registration.

Thanks to "chelwood" of the Doctor Who Forum.




Michelle Ryan cast in specialBookmark and Share

Thursday, 22 January 2009 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Since Matt Smith's announcement at the beginning of the year, media speculation has moved onto who the companion to his Doctor will be for the next series. Whilst the media has speculated on a number of names for the role, such as Lily Allen and Rachel Stevens, most recently they have turned their attention towards former EastEnders actress Michelle Ryan.

Betting company William Hill had initially placed the odds on the actress at5/1; however the Sunday Mirror reported last weekend that Ryan had been "in secret talks with BBC bosses" over the role of companion to the eleventh Doctor, and that an announcement would be made by the BBC very soon (also reported by Digital SpyCoventry TelegraphMarie Claireand Den of Geek).

However, with production having now commenced on the first Doctor Who special Planet of the Dead, fans who have been watching events unfold in Cardiff over the last few days have reported on Ryan being involved with this episode. This was confirmed last night with the actress being seen performing with current Doctor David Tennant. Though there has been no official confirmation of her role from the BBC as yet, it is believed that she is playing the part of companion to the tenth Doctor for this special, with The London Paper today reporting her character name as 'Lady Christina de Souza'.

Ryan has recently been seen on television in the BBC's Saturday night fantasy series Merlin, and the short-lived re-imagining of The Bionic Woman. She also appeared in Doctor Who's new head writer Steven Moffat's previous series on the BBC, Jekyll.


Update 2200: further coverage of casting in Den of Geek and Daily Mail.

(with thanks to Lee Tucker and the Cardiff Kinda Group)




Shooting resumes on Doctor WhoBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 20 January 2009 - Reported by Anthony Weight
For the first time since the completion of material for "The Next Doctor" in April 2008, BBC Wales have resumed the production ofDoctor Who. Work began yesterday, on Monday the 19th of January, with director James Strong helming material for the forthcoming special Planet of the Dead at Museum Avenue and Park Place in Cardiff.

As has become the custom, the shooting of Doctor Who has attracted the attention of fans, several of whom have been down to the location to observe activity and take photographs, one of which is reproduced at the right. The Doctor Who News Page will avoid giving any spoilers for episodes while they are in production, but those interested in finding out more about the production in Cardiff can follow the link to the set reports thread in the Doctor Who Forum by clicking below.

Picture by Scooty of The Doctor Who Forum




Doctor Who special effects nominated at VESBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 20 January 2009 - Reported by Chuck Foster
The seventh annual award ceremony for the Visual Effects Society is taking place on the 21st February, and Doctor Who has been nominated for two awards:

In the Outstanding Visual Effects in a Broadcast Miniseries, Movie or Special, the Christmas special The Next Doctor has been nominated for its effects for the Cyber-King; it will be up against 'Generation Kill', 'Knight Rider' and 'John Adams'.

For Outstanding Matte Paintings in a Broadcast Program or Commercial we seeSilence in the Library nominated, up against 'Generation Kill' and 'Merlin'.

The VES is a professional, honorary society, dedicated to advancing the arts, sciences, and applications of visual effects and to upholding the highest uniform standards and procedures for the visual effects profession. The VES is the entertainment industry's only official trade organization representing the extended community of visual effects practitioners including supervisors, artists, producers, technology developers, educators and studio executives.

(with thanks to The_Iceman2288)