Gareth David-Lloyd to Direct Twisted ShowcaseBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 21 October 2015 - Reported by Marcus

Twisted ShowcaseTorchwood’s Gareth David-Lloyd to make his directorial debut in fourth series of hit Welsh web show, Twisted Showcase

Best known for his role as Ianto in Torchwood, Welsh actor Gareth David-Lloyd is returning to both direct and star in the fourth series of the hit web show, Twisted Showcase, due to be released in 2016.  Today sees the launch of a crowd funding campaign to raise funds for the production of the series.

The only British independent web series to be named in The Guardian top 25 must watch shows in 2012, Twisted Showcase is an anthology series mixing genres from horror and psychological thriller to sci-fi and comedy. The fourth series is created by Wrexham based writer, Robin Bell, one of the original creators of the web show.

Today (Tuesday 20 October) sees the launch of a crowd funding campaign to raise the £2,000 required to produce the fourth series. Fans old and new can support the campaign here and watch a special message from Gareth David-Lloyd on what to expect from the brand new episodes. Backers of the campaign can receive rewards ranging from early access to exclusives to a Gareth David-Lloyd fan pass and even the chance to be a producer on the series.

As with the previous series, series four will draw on a range of modern anxieties to offer unique, stand-alone installments, each offering something new and different to shock, amaze and entertain. Twisted Showcase will be revealing its line-up of directors, writers and actors over the course of the next week via Twitter

Gareth David-Lloyd commented:

I love the horror genre and I am always looking for opportunities to help showcase new talent. I couldn't resist the offer to star in and direct an episode of series four. Web drama is such a fertile ground and I feel very much part of the future - help support Twisted Showcase and you can be part of that future too!”

Twisted Showcase writer, Robin Bell, said:

'm still amazed at how far Twisted Showcase has come, from fumbling through our early films with a half broken camera and a crew of two, to seeing brilliant, respected actors making their directorial debut in our series and working with scripts written by BAFTA winning writers. With every series our ambition has grown, while retaining our trademark of psychological terror within the confines of a small budget. As with anything in Twisted Showcase, though, the achievement of dreams is accompanied by a nightmare, and that is funding the series. There's no easy way around this, but if this series is to happen we really need the public's help to make it a reality.


FILTER: - Torchwood

The Prisoner CastingBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 13 October 2015 - Reported by Marcus

The Prisoner 1 (Credit: BIg Finish)Big Finish has  confirmed that actor Mark Elstob has been cast in the leading role of Number Six in its brand new audio revival of The Prisoner.

The new production is based on the highly influential 1967-’68 ITV series, which starred Patrick McGoohan as a former spy imprisoned in the mysterious ‘Village’. Desperate to learn his secrets, the Village’s authorities used ever more ingenious methods to bend Number Six to their will — including the iconic ‘Rover’, a menacing, howling ball-like object.

Elstob  is known for his many stage appearances, including Present Laughter, Neville’s Island, The Importance of Being Earnest, Sir Peter Hall’s Hamlet and Steven Berkoff’s Salome, as well as for his year in Emmerdale as Andrew Fraser. He was chosen for the part of Number Six after an extensive search by writer/director and producer Nicholas Briggs.

I knew, of course, that the casting of Number Six was pivotal. Patrick McGoohan was the driving force of the original series, both on and off-screen. The new central performance would have to be every bit as powerful in its own way. I did a lot of searching and listening to clips and showreels  I had meetings, I spoke to actors and agents. I looked further and wider than I’d ever done for any Big Finish casting. And then I realised that I’d worked with the ideal person, long, long ago. An actor who was a brilliant, powerful leading man — Mark Elstob. There was one other key ingredient I was looking for. Someone for whom doing The Prisoner would mean something. Someone who knew the series. I didn’t know Mark was a fan of The Prisoner, but I knew he was a fan of Doctor Who, so I harboured a hope that, as someone interested in cult TV, he’d at least have heard of The Prisoner. As luck would have it, he is as nuts about the series as I am. We had a meeting — and there, sitting in front of me was my new Number Six. I was certain

Mark Elstob said 

Patrick MacGoohan’s The Prisoner is a bona fide classic, representing a high watermark of television. In the hierarchy of British TV fantasy, Number Six has a status perhaps matched only by Quatermass and Doctor Who. For me personally, to play this part is more than just a great job for an actor, it is the stuff of which a fan’s dreams are made. Thank you, Big Finish! 

The administrative head of ‘The Village’ is Number Two, and throughout the original series Number Six found himself pitted against a series of different authority figures in this role. The audio series follows the same template, with different actors appearing in the part. John Standing (V for Vendetta, The Elephant Man, 8 ½ Women), Celia Imrie (Bridget Jones, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Highlander), Ramon Tikaram (This Life, Fortitude, Stella, Man Down) and Michael Cochrane (Sharpe, The Archers, The Iron Lady) will each appear as Number Two, subjecting Number Six to a variety of ordeals.

Nicholas Briggs said

I remember explaining to Celia Imrie that they used to hire whichever marvellous, fruity actor was available to play Number Two for each episode, For The Prisoner: Volume 1, I opted to echo this policy, dipping into the impressive back-catalogue of actors Big Finish has been lucky enough to work with. And I can confirm that they are all not only fruity and marvellous, but by turns terrifying and mesmerising.

Other inhabitants of the Village include Sara Powell as Number Nine, Kristina Buikaite as Number Eight and Jez Fielder as Number 17 — with Helen Goldwyn as the Village Voice, Jim Barclay as Control and Barnaby Edwards as Number Two’s diminutive Butler. Sarah Mowat plays the role of Zero-Six-Two, a former accomplice of Number Six.

The Prisoner: Volume 1 is released in January 2016.

FILTER: - Big Finish

Thunderbirds: A Complete Guide to the Classic SeriesBookmark and Share

Friday, 9 October 2015 - Reported by Marcus

Thunderbirds: A Complete Guide to the Classic Series (Credit: Panini)Fifty years after International Rescue’s first mission, Thunderbirds continues to entertain children and adults all over the world.

Panini Magazines have published a lavish, 116-page ‘bookazine’ celebrating this timeless classic. Writers include former Fanderson chairman Chris Bentley, Andersonic editor Richard Farrell and Thunderbirds author Sam Denham.

Highlights include:

  • A detailed guide to all 32 episodes of the classic series and the original feature films.
  • Previously unpublished interviews with Thunderbirds’ creator Gerry Anderson and director of photography Paddy Seale.
  • A tribute to Derek Meddings by BAFTA-winning special effects director Mike Tucker.
  • New interviews with voice artists David Graham, Shane Rimmer, Jeremy Wilkin and Matt Zimmerman, model-makers Alan Shubrook and Mike Trim, director David Lane and head of merchandising Keith Shackleton.
  • A guide to 1960s Thunderbirds collectables.

...and much more.


Thunderbirds: A Complete Guide to the Classic Series is edited by Marcus Hearn and designed by Mike Jones, the team behind the 50th anniversary book Thunderbirds: The Vault.

Marcus Hearn said

In terms of its content and scope the bookazine is very different from The Vault. The articles offer fresh perspectives on the series and we’ve uncovered some rare and previously unseen material. Fifty years is an important milestone, and it’s our aim to celebrate it in style.


Thunderbirds: A Complete Guide to the Classic Series is available from WH Smiths and all newsagents, price £9.99.



Sherlock SpecialBookmark and Share

Thursday, 8 October 2015 - Reported by Marcus

The BBC has released a new trailer for the upcoming Sherlock Special


It is due to be seen on BBC One in the UK and PBS Masterpiece in the US.


FILTER: - Sherlock

The Martian ChroniclesBookmark and Share

Friday, 2 October 2015 - Reported by Marcus

Big Finish have announced a special release of B7 Media’s acclaimed dramatisation of Ray Bradbury’s The Martian Chronicles this December.

The new drama, originally broadcast on BBC Radio 4, stars Derek Jacobi (Last Tango in Halifax, I, Claudius, Doctor Who: Utopia) and Hayley Atwell (Marvel’s Agent Carter, The Pillars of the Earth, Doctor Who: Blood of the Daleks) as the leaders of an expedition to Mars, tasked with a secret mission.

When the first expedition to Mars mysteriously disappears, Earth sends a second to find out what happened. But the real mission is classified. And only Captain Wilder knows the truth.

Spender, an anthropologist on Wilder’s crew, attempts to prevent the colonisation that she believes will eradicate the last of an ancient people living on Mars. But to what lengths will she go?

As the honourable but duty-bound Captain Wilder tracks the now rogue Spender into the Martian mountains, the future of this ancient planet is at stake. Meanwhile, Earth itself teeters on the brink of its own global catastrophe as the very survival of humanity hangs in the balance.

The adaptation recently won the Silver Award for Best Drama Special at the 2015 New York Festivals International Radio Program Awards. Alistair Lock was also nominated for Best Sound Designer at the 2014 Radio Production Awards. The release was produced by Patrick Chapman and directed by Andrew Mark Sewell who said

‘Over the years Big Finish has become synonymous with the very best in fantasy and science fiction audio drama, ‘and we’re delighted that they’ll be releasing our award-winning dramatisation of Ray Bradbury’s classic fable of Martian colonisation.’

Big Finish Executive Producer Jason Haigh-Ellery said

“The Martian Chronicles is a legendary sci-fi book, which has been turned into a fantastic award winning production by Andrew and his team at B7 Media — I’m delighted that Big Finish will be able to bring this classic story to a wider audience around the world”.

The Martian Chronicles, will be released in December and is available to pre-order now. The full-cast includes Derek Jacobi, Hayley Atwell, Anna Madeley, Mark Lewis Jones, John Altman, Zoe Tapper, Jonathan Rhodes, Dean Harris, Ryan Sewell, Rachael Naylor, Jacob James, Robert Lock, Mellissa Aston-Munslow and Owen Sewell