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January 2007

Michelle Collins
TV Series News
January 31, 2007  •  Posted By Josiah Rowe
The BBC's Doctor Who website has confirmed that Michelle Collins, best known for her role as Cindy Beale on EastEnders, has been cast in an upcoming Doctor Who episode.

Collins will appear in episode 7, written by Chris Chibnall and directed by Graeme Harper. Her character is named McDonnell.

More casting information, and the title of this episode, will be revealed in Doctor Who Magazine #379, released on newsstands in the UK tomorrow (1 February).

UPDATE: The title of episode seven has been announced as 42. Show head Russell T Davies is quoted in DWM as saying: "Yes, spelt with numbers not letters!"

According to DWM, the episode will also feature William Ash playing Riley, Matthew Chambers (Korwin), Anthony Flanagan (Scannell), Gary Powell (Ashton), Rebecca Oldfield (Erina) and Vinette Robinson (Lerner).
BBC's download plans get backing
January 31, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
The BBC Trust have given their provisional approval to the BBC's proposals for making their television output available via their website for "on-demand" access. This ought to enable Doctor Who episodes to be made available from the official site later this year.

However, this is only provisional approval; the Trust will reach its final decision before 2 May 2007, after taking account of the responses it receives during the consultation period.

The BBC Trust must give its approval to this service before the BBC can launch it as the Trust exists to safeguard the interests of UK licence fee payers, ensuring that the BBC provides high quality output and good value. The on-demand service, which has been trailed with a number of BBC2 programmes over the past year, would be a major shift in broadcasting for the corporation if rolled out across all their television output.

The online programmes would be available for 30 days after initial broadcast and would be restricted by use of Digital Rights Management. The trust's press release gives some more information on the nature of the DRM:
As proposed, the TV catch-up service on the internet relies on Microsoft technology for the digital rights management (DRM) framework. The Trust will require the BBC Executive to adopt a platform-agnostic approach within a reasonable timeframe. This requires the BBC to develop an alternative DRM framework to enable users of other technology, for example, Apple and Linux, to access the on-demand services.
Cover for Torchwood DVD Vol 2
DVD and Video
January 31, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
The cover artwork for the second volume of Torchwood on DVD has been released and can be seen by clicking on the thumbnail below. Volume two, due to be released in the UK on February 26th, features the episodes 'Countryside', 'Greeks Bearing Gifts', 'They Keep Killing Suzie' and 'Random Shoes'.
New Runaway Bride photos
TV Series News
January 30, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
There are only 328 shopping days left until next Christmas, but if you and your bank balance are still recovering from the effects of the last Christmas, the BBC's official site have given you a reason to remember the good things about Christmas 2006, with a bundle of new photographs from The Runaway Bride.
Casting Rumour from the Sun
TV Series News
January 29, 2007  •  Posted By Jarrod Cooper
The Sun Online has released an article stating that Life on Mars star John Simm is the "favourite to play" an important character in series 3.

For more details click on the spoiler space below.
The Sun claims that John Simm is in negotiations to play the Master, who would return in a major twist at the end of the third series.
Sir Derek Jacobi, 68, will play another Who foe - The Professor. "He poses as a good guy but the Doctor discovers the truth when The Professor dies and regenerates."
Canada: Fear Her Delayed One Week on CBC
January 29, 2007  •  Posted By Mike Doran
The broadcast of the David Tennant episode Fear Her originally scheduled for tonight on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation is being delayed one week due to the broadcast of a live event. The broadcast of Ken Dryden's Jersey Retirement Ceremony live from Montreal conflicts with Doctor Who's time slot in Atlantic Canada and if it runs longer than scheduled could also affect the broadcast of the show in Quebec and Ontario. Due to this conflict the CBC will air a repeat of New Earth this evening. Fear Her will now air on February 5th.
Newspaper interview with Freema
Press Clips
January 29, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
New companion Freema Agyeman is interviewed in the current issue of the children's publication The Newspaper, which is distributed through schools in the UK. It is a short interview, and has mild spoilers concerning Martha's character and how she differs from Rose.
What's Martha like?

She's older than Rose, more secure, but she doesn't have a boyfriend. She has her own little flat and her family around her. Rose had only her mum, but Martha has a big family. She isn't looking to the Doctor for guidance or education, she wants adventure! She hasn't kissed her old life goodbye though, and I think she intends to go back to qualify as a doctor. There are funny moments when the Doctor says, 'I'm the Doctor' and Martha says, 'So am I'! She speaks her mind.

The Doctor's companions have changed over the years.

The girls were called assistants, they sounded like a magician's helper but now they are stronger thanks to girl power! It's about companionship, friendship, teamwork, exploration and looking out for one another.

In the last series you played a character who was killed by Cybermen, Martha isn't related to that character, is she?

No, the writers have found a clever way around it. You'll see!
Six Doctors' costumes included in high-profile auction
January 29, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
More than 400 outfits tailored by Angels, the pre-eminent costumier for films shot in the UK, will be auctioned by Bonhams of London. The collection includes costumes that were worn by some of Hollywood's biggest names, from Errol Flynn to Al Pacino, as well as outfits from classic British television shows, including Doctor Who.

Six Doctors are represented in the Doctor Who collection, including Jon Pertwee's jacket, which comes complete with a sonic screwdriver, which the auctioneers found in one of its pockets. The tool, which the Doctor used to open locks, is simply a pen glued to a toothpaste tube cap and sprayed silver.

Costumes worn by Pertwee, Patrick Troughton and Tom Baker are expected to fetch £20,000 each and Christopher Eccleston's leather jacket is estimated at £4,000.

Amongst the other costumes is Sir Alec Guinness's brown hooded cloak from Star Wars, which went missing for 30 years and was only discovered in 2005 when Angels made an inventory of its 1.5 million outfits which hang on six miles of rails in a warehouse in north London.

The auction, which takes place on 6th March, is expected to raise more than £1 million. Below are full details from Bonhams of the Doctor Who items included.
Costumes representing six of the Dr Who actors from the period of 1963 – present day will be sold.

A complete Patrick Troughton outfit (the second Dr. Who) comprising full-length fur coat, tailcoat, checked trousers, shirt, tie, handkerchief and bandana is estimated at £15,000-20,000. Known for his scruffy appearance, Troughton played a much quirkier Doctor. The producers and writers behind the programme wanted the Doctor's second incarnation to be a contrast to first Doctor, William Hartnell's 'Victorian Headmaster' mode of attire. Therefore Troughton was unveiled as, in his words, the "Cosmic Hobo," an eccentric exemplified by his unusual combination of garments, and in particular his long hair coat.

The third Doctor Who, John Pertwee, is represented through his black cape coat, burgundy velvet jacket, black cravat, and his sonic screwdriver (estimate of £15,000-20,000). Pertwee took the character of the doctor in a different direction from the ‘Cosmic Hobo' of before, Pertwee opting for being a dandy with a twist: he was a master of Venusian Karate and became a Doctor to rival James Bond with his ingenious gadgets and quick wit, Victorian tailcoats, deep purple velvet jackets, capes and scalloped shirtfronts.

Tom Baker, the fourth incarnation of the Doctor, exploded onto our television screens in 1974, unmistakable with his mass of teeth and curls. Baker came to resemble a comic hitchhiker, with his long overcoat, Victorian jackets and overlong woolly scarf.

The complete outfit for Tom Baker includes a maroon wool top coat, three pairs of trousers (tweed, grey wool and dark grey cotton), striped waistcoat, three felt hats and a striped scarf, and is estimated at £15,000-20,000. A wine coloured 3/4 length coat, complete with two large added pockets for the Doctor's jelly beans and sonic screwdriver used by Baker in various episodes of Dr Who (including some Dalek Episodes), is estimated at £8,000-10,000. The fifth Doctor, Peter Davison, is represented with a beige and orange-edged single breasted top coat, stripe trousers, cricket jumper, white shirt and straw hat, estimated at £8,000-10,000.

An outfit worn by Sylvester McCoy – the seventh Doctor Who – including a cream linen jacket, grey pinstripe trousers, shirt, tie, pullover, scarf, shoes, cravat and hat, is estimated at £5,000-7,000.

After a 16-year absence of the series, Christopher Eccleston returned as The Doctor. In the sale is his black leatherette jacket estimated at £3,000-4,000.
"Moths Ate My Doctor Who Scarf" - on tour
Special Events
January 28, 2007  •  Posted By Paul Hayes
Outpost Gallifrey has received the following press release concerning the one-man show Moths Ate My Doctor Who Scarf, which after its success at the 2006 Edinburgh Fringe Festival is going out on the road in 2007. The release runs:
Being the surprise critical and commercial success of last year's Edinburgh Fringe wasn't enough for Toby Hadoke and his one man show Moths Ate My Dr Who Scarf. He's now embarking on a nationwide tour (preliminary dates below, more to follow). The show has recently been bought by BBC 7 and is being turned into a two part comedy drama for broadcast later in the year (although this will be very different from the one-man show). The tour kicked off at The Windsor Arts Centre in January and came perilously close to selling out.

Award winning comedian Toby Hadoke takes you on a personal odyssey through one man’s obsession with a TV show. Sharp, satirical, poignant and ultimately uplifting, this show appeals across the board, even to people without intimate knowledge of Time Lords and Tetraps. Not suitable for football hooligans, Daily Mail readers, Hollyoaks actors or The BNP.

“Recommended – a confident performer in a well structured and surprisingly effective one-man show with an emotional kick” – The Times

“Eloquent, forthright, passionate – one of the most entertaining hours this side of Gallifrey” – Chortle

“A must see – well conceived and worryingly accurate”
– Edinburgh Evening News.

The tour will be intermittent – these are confirmed dates, with a further thirty or so awaiting confirmation throughout the year. Visit TobyHadoke.com for updates.

14th February – Leicester Comedy Festival (please note, the addition of an apostrophe to the word Moths was made by the team behind the festival brochure and a move Toby would like to wash his hands of)
16th & 17th March – Theatre Royal, Bath (16th is an extra date due to demand)
23rd March – Glasgow Comedy Festival
11th May – Hemel Hempstead
25th May – St Albans
8th June – The Lowry, Salford
14th June – Ammanford Mines Theatre
23rd Sept – Sheffield Comedy Festival, The Lescar
Spears wanted for Doctor Who
January 27, 2007  •  Posted By Michael Regina
According to Yahoo (via WENN) Britney Spears will be offered the chance to play a group of sex-mad aliens on sci-fi TV show Doctor Who. Russell T Davies, a fan of the pop princess, wants to take the series to Hollywood so Spears can make a spectacular cameo playing a cloned extra-terrestrial. Davies says, "I'd love Britney to do it - it would be so much fun. I'm not sure she'll come to Cardiff where the show is shot so I'm nagging the BBC to fund a Hollywood special."

How serious this quote was is unknown. The story first appeared in the UK tabloid the Daily Star, so perhaps we can place this story safely in the rumor department.
Punk gigs likened to DW cons
January 27, 2007  •  Posted By John Bowman
Sham 69 singer Jimmy Pursey has likened punk nostalgia gigs to Doctor Who conventions.

He made his barbed comment following the iconic group's acrimonious split. The band were formed in 1975 but have broken up after a disagreement over live performances.

Guitarist Dave Parsons and drummer Ian Whitewood claim to have sacked the singer as he had not shown much interest in playing live.

However, Pursey hit back, saying he only rejected revival gigs that had been arranged purely for money, adding that Parsons had left the group.

"I can turn down a nostalgia gig, which is like a Doctor Who convention, where it's just bringing a load of old punk rockers together to celebrate nostalgia," Pursey told BBC News.

Both sides are now claiming ownership of the band's name.
Canada: CBC Ratings Update
January 26, 2007  •  Posted By Mike Doran
Doctor Who returned to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation on Monday January 15th, 2007 with the broadcast of The Satan Pit at 8:00pm. Up against The Golden Globe Awards and night two of the season premiere of 24 a total of 516 000 viewers tuned in to watch the return of the series after a Christmas break. This was down slightly from the season high 536 000 who watched The Impossible Planet back on December 5th, 2006.

Monday January 22nd, 2007 saw a total of 388 000 viewers tuning into the CBC to watch Love & Monsters. Competition for Doctor Who varies by timezone but included the return of Prison Break, Corner Gas, 24 and the premiere of the second half of the first series of Heroes.

(With thanks to Rod Mammitzsch and DWIN)
Sarah Jane - Final ratings
January 26, 2007  •  Posted By Marcus
The final ratings for "The Sarah Jane Adventures" has been confirmed as 2.92 million viewers, which was 15% of the television audience.

Of that audience 44% was male and 56% female.

16% of the total was under 16, giving a children's audience of 465,000 which was 19% of children watching.

Of the children 51% were boys and 49% girls. 25% were between 4 and 6, 39% between 7 and 9, 23% between 10 and 12 and 14% between 13 and 15.

Final figures are much more accurate than the initial overnights and include viewers who recorded the programme and watched it within seven days.
Doctor Who Cartoon
January 25, 2007  •  Posted By Josiah Rowe
The BBC's Doctor Who website has announced that an animated Doctor Who cartoon is being produced, to air as part of Totally Doctor Who next year. David Tennant and Freema Agyeman will voice the Doctor and Martha in the animated story, and Anthony Head will play Baltazar, Scourge of the Galaxy (not Mr. Finch from "School Reunion"). Toby Longworth (who has played many roles for Big Finish Productions' line of audio dramas) will also appear.

The cartoon will have 13 parts, comprising a single story titled "Infinite Quest". Russell T Davies describes the story: "The Doctor and Martha follow a trail of clues across wild and wonderful alien worlds, to find the location of the legendary lost spaceship, the Infinite." The story is written by Alan Barnes and directed by Gary Russell.

Full details are available on the BBC site here; the story was broken by the Daily Mirror here.

27th Jan: the image of the Doctor and Martha is shown on the BBC News Entertainment pages as The Big Picture.
Long running rumour confirmed
TV Series News
January 25, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
Julie Gardner, the executive producer of Doctor Who, has confirmed a long running rumour concerning the nature of Paul Cornell's story, which will form episodes eight and nine of series three. The confirmation comes as part of an interview to be published in the final issue of Dreamwatch magazine.
According to the new Dreamwatch website, Gardner confirms that Paul Cornell's story has links to his novel Human Nature, published as part of Virgin's New Adventures series in 1995. This confirms a long running debate in our spoilers forum.

In the novel, the Doctor gives up his Time Lord persona to experience life as a human teacher.
The Master comes to Heroes
January 25, 2007  •  Posted By Jeremy Bement
According to various websites, it has been confirmed that Eric Roberts, who portrayed the Master in the ill-fated Doctor Who Fox TV movie, has joined the cast of NBC's hit show Heroes. He will be playing an associate of Claire's father, the mysterious H.R.G. (Horn Rimmed Glasses.) This marks the second former-Doctor Who alumnus to join the series as Ninth Doctor Christopher Eccleston appeared in this week's episode.
Doctor Who Magazine 379
January 25, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
Issue 379 of Doctor Who Magazine is due out on 1st February; the following is a preview including the cover. Click on the thumbnail for a larger version.
(Thanks to Tom Spilsbury/DWM)
Grab your popcorn, take your seats and discover the story of the lost Doctor Who movie - in the new issue of Doctor Who Magazine !

Find out what connects killer scarecrows, a giant game of pinball, the Daleks, and, er, Vincent Price, as DWM charts the incredible story behind the unmade motion picture - with insightful comments from writers Tom Baker and Ian Marter, as well as a full and detailed plot synopsis, and some beautiful new illustrations from artist Brian Williamson.

Also this issue, Helen Raynor talks exclusively about her new Doctor Who episode, Daleks in Manhattan; The Fact of Fiction uncovers Fourth Doctor classic Image of the Fendahl; and the Tenth Doctor and the Brigadier find themselves in the thick of the battle in Part 2 of their new comic strip adventure, The Warkeeper's Crown.

Plus! The first three Doctors are plucked out of their timestreams to solve Doctor Who's dating problems; Russell T Davies goes for a 3am walk around Cardiff Bay in Production Notes; and all the latest news, views and reviews from the worlds of Doctor Who.

DWM 379 is on sale from Thursday 1 February 2007.
Derek Jacobi in Series Three
TV Series News
January 24, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
One of Britain's best known actors, Sir Derek Jacobi, is to guest star in the forthcoming third series of Doctor Who, according to Thursday's Daily Mirror.

The tabloid paper also reveals the name of his character. Click on the spoiler box below to see the details. While the BBC have confirmed Jacobi's involvement, they have neither confirmed nor denied the spoiler which has resulted in much speculation in our forum.

While this is Jacobi's first appearance in televised Doctor Who, he has previously voiced the Master in the six-part animated BBCi webcast Scream of the Shalka, as well as taking a starring role in one of the Dr Who Unbound audio dramas for Big Finish in 2003.
According to the Daily Mirror, Jacobi will appear as a "good guy" called The Professor who helps the Doctor and Martha to save Earth and the human race.
Tennant praises Agyeman
January 24, 2007  •  Posted By John Bowman
David Tennant praises newcomer Freema Agyeman in an interview today on Sci Fi Wire.

In the interview, conducted by e-mail, he tells the Sci Fi Channel's news service that the actress "hit the ground running" when she took on the role of Martha Jones, and said he let her deal with the pressure of replacing such a popular and high-profile cast member as Billie Piper in her own way.

Tennant says Agyeman "inhabited Martha Jones from day one without a hint of trepidation or nervousness. I found myself quite envious of her confidence. She is going to be brilliant."

He also tells of how difficult it was to shoot the final scenes with Piper, saying they started sniffling during a run-through of the lines on the make-up bus.

Tennant says Martha and the Doctor have an entirely different relationship to Rose and the Doctor, adding: "As with any big relationship, it takes time for the scars to heal. Perhaps the Doctor feels like he's dealt with it, but Martha might disagree." He also says she "makes herself indispensable".
ITV prepares to take on Dr Who
January 23, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
The UK's largest commercial broadcaster, ITV, have revealed a major marketing campaign for their six million pound science-fiction dinosaur drama Primeval which they hope will be their answer to BBC One's Doctor Who in the Saturday tea-time slot.

David Pemsel, ITV's new group marketing director, said: "Primeval is a bold scheduling step into Saturday night family drama. We believe the series will have both a wide ranging family appeal as well as becoming cult viewing for aspirational adults."

According to Media Bulletin, ITV is backing their series with a heavyweight marketing campaign. Transmission dates are not yet confirmed, but the series is believed to start in mid February.
M and C Saatchi has created an off-air campaign, encompassing outdoor and press ads, while ITV's in-house promotions agency, ITV Creative, has produced the on-air activity.

The creative introduces members of the cast and attempt to recreate the high-tempo pace of the series with action scenes and the strapline, "Time for adventure".
Series Three launch night party
Special Events
January 22, 2007  •  Posted By John Bowman
A Series Three launch night party is to take place in central London, giving fans the chance to see the premier episode live on a big-screen plasma projection system with full surround sound - and possibly in the company of a famous name or two.

This is a free event and 100 entrance tickets have been set aside for a prize draw, due to take place three weeks before the confirmed series launch date.

Organiser Jeremy Bentham, who staged similar capacity celebrations in 2005 and 2006, said: "If you are aged 18 or over and your name comes out of the hat, you could be among the party-goers cheering on 'Smith and Jones' plus any other supporting Doctor Who programming broadcast that day. And you never know who else might just pop by . . . "

Pictured above with two party-goers at last year's event is Nicholas Courtney, who played the Brigadier during the show's classic era. Below is a model of K9, which was on display at last year's party - click on the image of K9 for a larger version.

The party starts at 4pm and a cash bar and full food menu will be available throughout the afternoon and evening. In addition, from 10pm there will be free admission to the venue’s nightclub event.

To enter the draw, send a postcard stating your full name, address, daytime contact number and the number of tickets you would like (maximum two) to: DW Launch Party 2007, 13 Northfield Road, Boreham Wood, Herts, WD6 5AE.

Winners only will be notified by post the week following the draw.

Those who subsequently find that they are unable to attend the party are asked to return their ticket(s) to the draw address as soon as possible so that they can be reallocated via a waiting list of names that will be drawn out of the hat following the initial allocation.

Details of accommodation near the party venue can be provided for people travelling long distances - simply ask for this on the postcard.

NB: Licensing laws mean that all winners and guests must be at least 18 years old. No admission without a valid ticket.

(Photos courtesy of Dave Parsons.)
The Runaway Bride - Audience Breakdown
January 21, 2007  •  Posted By Marcus
Final data has now been received for the Christmas day showing of "The Runaway Bride". The programme achieved a final rating of 9.35 million viewers, which was a 38% share of the total television audience.

Of that audience 50% were male and 50% female.

20% of the audience was aged of 4 to 15
9% was aged 16 to 24
13% was aged 25 to 34
19% was aged 35 to 44
17% was aged 45 to 54
11% was aged 55 to 64
12% was aged over 65

The total Children's audience was 1.83m and it was by far the highest rated programme, with those aged 4 to 15, for Christmas week. The children's share was 57%

The Children's audience was more skewed towards the males with boys making up 55% of the audience, while girls made up 45%.

18% were between 4 and 6
30% between 7 and 9
30% between 10 and 12
21% between 13 and 15
Big Finish New Releases
Big Finish
January 21, 2007  •  Posted By Jarrod Cooper
Big Finish has released the cover images and plot information for their January and February Doctor Who releases.

January sees the release of Circular Time. Written by new series writer Paul Cornell, it features Peter Davison and Sarah Sutton in four one-episode stories.

February has Sylvester McCoy, Sophie Aldred, and Philip Olivier being joined by Are You Being Served? alumnus Trevor Bannister for Nocturne.
Circular Time

Summer to winter, the seasons turn.
In the springtime of a distant future, the Doctor and Nyssa become embroiled in Time Lord politics on an alien world. During the stifling heat of a summer past they suffer the vengeful wrath of Isaac Newton. In the recent past, Nyssa spends a romantic golden autumn in an English village while the Doctor plays cricket. And finally, many years after their travels together have ended, the two friends meet again in the strangest of circumstances.
Four seasons. Four stories. Now close the door behind you, you're letting the cold in...

Nocturne -

On the human colony planet Nocturne, there is suffering and blight, tragic symptoms of an ages-old war. Never the less, Nocturne is also one of the Doctor's favourite places in all of time and space, because it is here that a late, great flowering of human art - the High Renaissance - is taking place.
He has been back here, many times. It is a place of music and art which he finds inspirational and uplifting. It is a place he wants to share with Ace and Hex. It's always been a safe haven for him, a world of friends and laughter. But with strict Martial Law imposed on the front-line city, and the brutal scourge of interstellar warfare vicing the system, how safe can anyone really be?
There is a note of death in the wild, midnight wind...
Eccleston on Heroes Monday
January 21, 2007  •  Posted By Josiah Rowe
Just a reminder readers in the US and Canada that Christopher Eccleston will be appearing on the television series Heroes tomorrow, Monday January 22.

In the US Heroes is broadcast on NBC at 9:00pm Eastern and Pacific, 8:00pm Central and Mountain. In Canada Heroes runs on the Global Television Network. Eccleston plays a man named Claude who can become invisible.

The character, who is named after Claude Rains, star of the 1933 film The Invisible Man, will appear in several episodes in the remainder of this season.

UPDATE: The Sun had a picture story about Eccleston's Heroes role in its edition dated January 24, saying the show will be on the Sci Fi Channel next month.
Billie storms the Charts
January 21, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
Following from the promotional campaign we have been reporting on this week, Billie Piper has returned to the Top 40 charts with a re-entry for her 1999 hit "Honey to the Bee", which has entered the charts this week at number 17.

Radio 1 breakfast presenter Chris Moyles announced to his listeners on Monday 15th that he was planning to conduct a test to see if he could exploit a change in the way the charts are counted, where downloads are included alongside singles.

He played Billie's 1999 hit Honey to the Bee, which charted as high as number 3 first time round, to see if hearing the old hit would encourage people to download it and get it into the charts. Expect a very happy Mr Moyles on Radio 1 tomorrow morning; Billie is also likely to be pleasantly surprised; the hit has returned without her singing a note!

Billie's success is also reported by BBC News.

The other track with a Doctor Who association which received a promotional campaign this week, the song "Love Don't Roam" from the Doctor Who Soundtrack album, has failed to chart. However, it did receive its first radio play on Saturday's Jonathan Ross show on Radio 2. Will it receive further coverage and chart in weeks to come? Time will tell.
Netflix needs the Doctor
DVD and Video
January 20, 2007  •  Posted By Jeremy Bement
According to tvshowsondvd.com, several Netflix customers noted that their rented copies of Doctor Who: The Complete Second Series disc one had a problem.

Apparently at the 32-minute mark of New Earth the episode switches to a rather gruesome scene from "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning". Along the same lines, the special features section of the disc does not work.

Once the BBC were contacted and made aware of the issue they quickly responded with a statement that yes, there was a problem with the discs in question.

Only Netflix copies of disc one were affected and not those for purchase in stores. While the BBC works on replacing the faulty DVDs, Nexflix has pulled disc one as being available for rent until the situation is resolved.

UPDATE: The Sun picked up on this story in its January 26 edition, claiming it was an exclusive.

Headlined "The Tardis Chainsaw Massacre", it has a mocked-up picture of a Dalek armed with a chainsaw and quotes a BBC insider as saying: "It's very, very embarrassing. Doctor Who's a family show and the most scary thing is probably a Dalek, yet the Texas Chainsaw Massacre films are among the most frightening ever made."

A BBC spokeswoman is quoted as blaming a "manufacturing problem" and says: "We apologise for any distress we may have caused. We are doing our best to rectify this problem."

(Additional reporting by John Bowman.)
New venues for exhibitions
Special Events
January 20, 2007  •  Posted By John Bowman
Manchester and Land's End have been announced as new locations for Doctor Who Up Close exhibitions this year.

The official exhibitions site says the Manchester display, running from March 31 to November 5 at the Museum of Science and Industry, will be the "largest ever Doctor Who exhibition". People will reportedly have the first chance to see some of the creations from Series Three there.

The museum's website says there will be props, costumes and monsters on display, while 24hourmuseum reports that among them will be items from "The Runaway Bride".

The Manchester attraction's site also has details of a Foto Fun event taking place between February 12 and 18 in which people can have their picture taken fighting a Dalek.

The museum is in Liverpool Road in the Castlefield district of Manchester.

Meanwhile, Land's End will have its own Up Close exhibition from Easter 2007, according to the official exhibitions site, although no more details are available as yet.

(With thanks to Steve Layton.)
The Doctor and Ardal in Canada
Press Clips
January 20, 2007  •  Posted By John Bowman
The Ottawa Citizen takes an extensive look at the release of Series Two on DVD in Canada.

In his piece, Chris Knight explains why exactly the show has appealed to the Canadian frame of mind.

The article concludes by looking at the DVD release in Canada of the first season of BBC sitcom My Hero, starring Ardal O'Hanlon, who plays the character Brannigan in episode three of Series Three.
Doctor Who Singles Chart battle
January 19, 2007  •  Posted By Chuck Foster
The BBC children's news programme Newsround is the latest to report on plans to put Love Don't Roam by Murray Gold into the UK Singles charts.

Reporter Lizo Mzimba commented: "It's all happened because of a change in the rules on how the singles chart works. Now any song, whether it's a single or an album track, whether it's in the shops or only by downloading, can make it into the singles chart if enough people buy it. That's what a group of Doctor Who fans have tried to take advantage of. They've spent the week trying to persuade people to download a track featured in the Doctor Who Christmas Special, in the hope that the song Love Don't Roam - which was never intended to be a single - will actually make it into the singles chart next week."

He went on to say: "If you think it's ridiculous that a Doctor Who song could be popular enough to get into the charts, think again - a few years back this song (Doctorin' The TARDIS), inspired by Doctor Who, not only got into the charts, it got to number one!"

The item was entitled "David Tennant vs Billie Piper" as, in addition to above and as we previously reported, BBC Radio One DJ Chris Moyles is also attempting to get a track into the charts - Honey to the Bee by former Doctor Who actress Billie Piper.

Newsround have also invited viewers to vote on which song they'd like to see make it to the top of the charts their website - though you can't vote for both!

Though not referenced by name, Outpost Gallifrey made it into the item, used as an illustration of one of the sites where the download is being discussed (see above picture).

(Billie Piper was also mentioned on this morning's Entertainment Today, talking about her new play Treats, but also to comment that she was on their first ever show, some 250 editions ago.)
Torchwood on Spanish TV
January 19, 2007  •  Posted By Benjamin F Elliott
Trade magazine Variety is reporting that the Spanish network Cuatro has purchased Torchwood, along with a number of US dramas.
Battles in Time Expansion
January 18, 2007  •  Posted By Jarrod Cooper
GE Fabbri has announced a new expansion set to the Doctor Who: Battles in Time magazine and collectible card series. The new set, The Annihilator Series, will feature 100 new card designs. The Expansion set, which includes images from The Runaway Bride, will be included starting with Issue 12.
“As well as some terrifying Racnoss Empress cards, there are some amazing moving-image ultra rare cards in this set,” says Battles In Time editor, Claire Lister. “We’re lucky that Doctor Who features several monsters that look very different underneath from what you’d expect on the outside, so look out for a Sycorax Unmasking Card, a Dalek Mutant reveal, and a particularly chilling card where Toby Zed becomes possessed by the Beast!”
BBC Chief: Dr Who is our creative future
TV Series News
January 18, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
On the day when the BBC's Director General expressed real disappointment at the Government's final licence fee level settlement, which funds the corporation, he also gave a keynote speech on the BBC's creative future. Addressing The Future Of Creative Content Conference, part of the Media Summit 2007 event taking place in London, Mark Thompson gave a detailed lecture, but highlighted only one programme as an example of how the corporation was making its creative future a reality - Doctor Who. This part of his lecture is quoted below.
But it's incredibly important that we don't define "value" solely around productivity or cost-cutting. One of the fundamental lessons we learned from Creative Future was the value you can grow, the audiences you can build, when you think about projects not just in terms of single linear broadcast windows but across different platforms and media.

It will be much harder to justify very high budgets for content that only gets a single outing on a linear channel. But that's no longer the right way to think about content commissioning. In future major projects should extend not just across TV, the web, radio, and mobile but through multiple windows across time and across different business models.

So: Russell T Davies, Julie Gardner and BBC Wales build a brilliant sci-fi production factory to deliver Doctor Who. And when I say "factory" I don't just mean physical production, I mean ideas, development, brilliant scripts, design as well. A complete creative operation.

The factory of course makes even better creative and economic sense when you add Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures. Doctor Who plays out across BBC and UKTV channels. The Torchwood website is not just commissioned on day one but is out there before the TV premiere. There's a coherent plan in place for the whole audience relationship with the content almost from the start.

Now clearly this kind of 360 degree exploitation could be creatively limiting or tawdry. Commercial priorities could distort the original commissioning intention. But it really hasn't been in this case and that's because we've had totally committed creative leaders at the centre of decision-making at every stage of the process. You'd have to talk to them directly to hear how they've found it, but my sense is that the sheer scale of the possibilities, the potential to link different titles and different platforms has been creatively inspiring and liberating.
Paul Cornell at London Event
January 17, 2007  •  Posted By Mike Doran
Doctor Who writer Paul Cornell will be a guest at the monthly meeting of the British Science Fiction Association, in London, on the evening of Wednesday 24th January, where he will be interviewed by science fiction critic and fan Graham Sleight. The meeting is upstairs at a pub called the Antelope on Eaton Terrace (nearest tube Sloane Square). The interview starts at 7pm, but fans will be milling about downstairs from 5pm.

As well as being the writer of the episode "Father's Day" from the 2005 Doctor Who series and two episodes of the upcoming 2007 series Paul has written many Doctor Who books and audios as well as other novels and comic books.
"Survival" coming to DVD
DVD and Video
January 17, 2007  •  Posted By R. Alan Siler
BBC DVD/2Entertain has announced full details of the DVD of "Survival", which will be hitting the British retail shelves in a 2-disk, heavily specials-laden release on 3 April 2007. The final story of the original Doctor Who series, "Survival" (starring Sylvester McCoy as the Doctor, Sophie Aldred as Ace, and Anthony Ainley as the Master) is also the 40th Classic Doctor Who DVD release.

Special features include:

Disc 1

  • Main commentary withith Sylvester McCoy, Sophie Aldred and script-editor Andrew Cartmel.
  • Second commentary (episode three only). Fan commentary from the winners of a recent Doctor Who Magazine competition.
  • Cat Flap - a two-part documentary covering the making of Survival. Part One covers set-up and pre-production, Part Two covers shooting and post-production. With Sylvester McCoy, Sophie Aldred, Lisa Bowerman, Will Barton, Sakuntala Ramanee and Adele Silva, script editor Andrew Cartmel, director Alan Wareing, visual effects assistant Mike Tucker, composer Dominic Glynn and costume designer Ken Trew. Narrated by Paul Ewing.
  • Deleted and Extended Scenes - material from the first edit of the story that didn't make the final cut, plus comparisons of some of the scenes before and after the video effects were added.
  • Out-takes and comedy moments from the production of the story.
  • Continuities and trailers from the original BBC1 transmission.
  • Photo Gallery - production and behind-the-scenes stills from the making of the story.
  • Isolated Score - option to view the story with synchronous isolated music.
  • Radio Times listings in Adobe pdf format for viewing on PC or Mac.
  • Programme subtitles and subtitle production notes.

Disc 2

  • Endgame - Why was Doctor Who cancelled at the end of Season 26? What might have been in store for the Doctor and Ace if the series had continued into Season 27? With Sylvester McCoy and Sophie Aldred, script editor Andrew Cartmel, writers Ben Aaronovitch and Colin Brake, BBC Head of Drama Series Peter Cregeen, composer Mark Ayres and visual effects designer Mike Tucker. Narrated by Paul Ewing.
  • Search Out Science - a schools programme featuring the Doctor and Ace, with Stephen Johnson and K9.
  • Little Girl Lost - A retrospective look at the development of Sophie Aldred's character, Ace, from her first story, Dragonfire through to her last, Survival. With Sophie Aldred, creator Ian Briggs and script editor Andrew Cartmel.
  • Destiny of the Doctors - Anthony Ainley's last appearance as The Master, in these links from the 1997 computer game.

For complete details on the release, please visit the Restoration Team's website.
Billie in the Charts again
January 17, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
Billie Piper could make a big impact return to the top 40 charts on Sunday, and all without singing a note.

Radio 1 breakfast presenter Chris Moyles announced to his listeners on Monday that he was planning to conduct a test to see if he could exploit a change in the way the charts are counted, where downloads are included alongside singles.

He played Billie's 1999 hit Honey to the Bee, which charted at number 3, to see if hearing the old hit would encourage people to download it and get it into the charts.

And download sales have already picked up with the song making it into the Top 75 midweek chart and today climbing into the iTunes Top 20.

This high profile marketing has somewhat eclipsed the similar promotional campaign we reported on last week. That campaign, started in our forums and echoed on many Dr Who sites since, is promoting downloads of the song Love Don't Roam, from the Dr Who Soundtrack album. Undeterred, and with all the enthusiasm of fandom, that purchasing drive continues all this week.
Raiders of the Lost Archives
Missing Episodes
January 17, 2007  •  Posted By Chuck Foster
ITV broadcast the first part of their new series, Raiders of the Lost Archive, last night; presented by Paddy McGuinness, the show features clips for famous television personalities that were thought to be lost to the archives.

The programme has been made through searches through industry archives and private collections, and the show has also made an appeal for other shows to be returned, in a similar vein to the BBC's own Treasure Hunt appeal. This new more general initiative has its own website to accompany the show, and includes a section for the 50 most wanted television shows - of which Doctor Who is listed (number 12 in the alphabetical list). Says the site: "Over 100 episodes of this ever popular series are missing or part missing – all from the black and white 60s era of the show. Doctor Who fans are particularly interested in recovering “The Tenth Planet” Episode 4 which was first broadcast on October 29, 1966. It was the final story of the first Doctor, William Hartnell’s era and the first story to feature the Cybermen. Patrick Troughton also makes his first, uncredited appearance as the Second Doctor. Many classic gems now survive only as soundtracks and photographs. Additionally, some Jon Pertwee 70s episodes made in colour only survive in b/w. Do you have “The Web of Fear” episodes 2-6 or “Fury from the Deep”?"

The next show will feature a very young David Tennant (above) in an early television appearance!
Gunfighters CD release
January 17, 2007  •  Posted By Brigadier Bill
The BBC has given a few details about the release of the Hartnell story "The Gunfighters" on CD scheduled for 5 February. The release, which features linking narration by Peter Purves, will also include a special interview with Purves on the making of the episode. As a special there is a 10-minute bonus track of the original recordings of Lynda Baron singing "The Ballad of the Last Chance Saloon" from the story. This is the first ever release of the soundtrack that is sure to set the toes tapping.
Torchwood - Final Ratings
January 17, 2007  •  Posted By Marcus
BARB have released figures for the final week of "Torchwood".

The BBC3 showing achieved a rating of 1.23 million viewers and was the most watched programme on BBC3 for the week. Overall it was the second most watched programme on all multi channel TV, being beaten by "Monday night Football" on Sky Sports.

The BBC2 repeat scored 2.14 million and was the 21st in the BBC2 chart.

The final figures show that, after launch, the series settled down with an average audience of around 4 million viewers each week. The Appreciation index for all episodes was above the average for drama and ended with a massive 86 for the final BBC3 programme.

Click on the graphics below for the full details.
Billie Piper's Treats
January 15, 2007  •  Posted By Chuck Foster
Actress Billie Piper appeared on Breakfast on BBC1 this morning to promote her west-end debut in the Christopher Hampton play Treats. Also featuring Kris Marshall (My Family, Murder City) and Laurence Fox (Lewis), the play opens at London's Garrick Theatre on 28th February (previews from the 20th) and runs until 26th May.

The play is also on tour beforehand, appearing at the Theatre Royal in Windsor (16-27 Jan), Malvern Theatre (29 Jan - 3 Feb), Bath's Theatre Royal (5-10 Feb), and London's Richmond Theatre (12-17 Feb).

More details on the play may be found at theatre.com and the London Theatre Guide.
Torchwood BBC3 Success
January 15, 2007  •  Posted By Marcus
Final figures give "Torchwood" nine of the top fifteen ratings for programmes shown on BBC Three in 2006. The programme is by far the most successful ever shown on the channel.

Before "Torchwood" the record for the highest audience for the channel, was held by an episode of "Little Britain", shown on 19th October 2004, with 1.90m viewers.

Torchwood had the second highest ratings on all Multi Channel Television shown during 2006, just being beaten by "Terry Pratchetts Hogfather" which got 2.65 million viewers.
Top BBC3 Programmes for 2006

1 Torchwood 22/10/06 Sunday 21:00 - 2.56m
2 Torchwood 22/10/06 Sunday 21:51 -2.52m
3 Torchwood 29/10/06 Sunday 21:59 -1.77m
4 Torchwood 05/11/06 Sunday 22:00 -1.39m
5 Torchwood 26/11/06 Sunday 22:00 -1.31m
6 World Cup 2006: Post-Match Croatia v Australia 22/06/06 Thursday 21:49 -1.28m
7 Torchwood 12/11/06 Sunday 21:59 -1.26m
8 Spooks 16/10/06 Monday 22:26 -1.23m
9 Torchwood 19/11/06 Sunday 21:59 -1.22m
10 EastEnders 21/09/06 Thursday 21:59 -1.13m
11 Torchwood 03/12/06 Sunday 22:00 -1.12m
12 EastEnders 16/02/06 Thursday 22:00 -1.12m
13 60 Seconds 22/10/06 Sunday 22:39 -1.10m
14 Spooks 17/09/06 Sunday 22:29 -1.09m
15 Torchwood 10/12/06 Sunday 22:00 -1.07m
BBC Online Drama Awards - clean sweep for Dr Who
TV Series News
January 15, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
The results have been published for the BBC website's Best Drama Awards for 2006. The awards have been comprehensively won by Doctor Who, where it won each category with a clear majority of votes cast. The site features quotes from voters and video clips. The votes are revealed over a number of pages, but are summarised below.

Best Drama:

1: Doctor Who (31.33%)
2: Robin Hood (19.38%)
3: Jane Eyre (12.08%)
4: Life on Mars (6.37%)
5: Holby City (5.29%)

Best Actor:

1: David Tennant (39.96%)
2: Jonas Armstrong (13.25%)
3: Toby Stephens (10.49%)
4: Richard Armitage (4.97%)
5: John Simm (3.09%)

Best Actress:

1: Billie Piper (42.74%)
2: Ruth Wilson (16.01%)
3: Lucy Griffiths (11.03%)
4: Amanda Mealing (5.65%)
5: Lacey Turner (2.69%)

Favourite Moment:

1: Rose's exit [Doctor Who] (27.25%)
2: Jane and Rochester's Reunion [Jane Eyre] (4.11%)
3: Daleks v Cybermen [Doctor Who] (4.08%)
4: Ruth's exit [Spooks] (2.49%)
5: Robin hears Marian accepting Guy's proposal [Robin Hood] (2.05%)

Best Drama Website:

1: Doctor Who (36.90%)
2: Robin Hood (18.17%)
3: Spooks (6.79%)
4: EastEnders (6.70%)
5: Torchwood (6.45%)
Media picks up download story
January 13, 2007  •  Posted By Paul Hayes
British tabloid newspaper The Sun has picked up the story previously reported by the MediaGuardian about Doctor Who fans attempting to get the song "Love Don't Roam" from the Christmas special soundtrack downloaded enough times to see it enter the UK Top 40. (See yesterday's news story).

The Sun's report, which features on the "TV Biz" page of their print edition published in the UK today, runs: "Doctor Who fans are plotting to get a song used in the hit BBC show’s Christmas special to Number One. Love Don’t Roam — sung by The Divine Comedy’s Neil Hannon — featured in the Runaway Bride episode. And because the new singles chart includes downloads of old songs, fans are urging each other to download the track for 79p."

The story has also been reported at the Entertainment Wise website.
The Dreamwatch is over
January 12, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
Subscribers of the UK magazine Dreamwatch are currently receiving a letter from its publishers Titan informing them that they have ceased publication of the title.

The publication began life in the early 1980s as an amateur fanzine under the title Doctor Who Bulletin. In this form, it took a generally critical tone towards the then current era of the show, and at times its producer, John Nathan-Turner, personally. However, it became popular with some fans due to its frequent reporting of breaking news, offering an alternative to the officially sanctioned Doctor Who Magazine.

When in 1989 Doctor Who was rested, the fanzine expanded to cover other genre films and TV series, and the title was changed to DreamWatch Bulletin so that the popular abbreviation DWB would remain intact. In 1994, it was turned into a professional news stand magazine: the title was shortened to simply Dreamwatch and the numbering of the magazine was restarted from issue 1. The final issue will be number 150, or 280 if you count from the original DWB, and is due to be published on 25th January.

UPDATE: Brian J Robb, Editor of Dreamwatch, has announced in our forum that the title will be relaunched as a new website, functioning as both magazine and archive. It will be available from the address www.DWSciFi.com from 25th January.
The Guardian, Outpost Gallifrey, and the Top 40
January 12, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
The MediaGuardian's Media Monkey diary column has featured Doctor Who for the second time this week (requires free registration to view). This time the reference is to Outpost Gallifrey, and specifically a plan apparently being put together by fans on this website's forum to use the new download rules of the UK pop music singles chart to propel Murray Gold's song "Love Don't Roam" into the Top 40. The song, which was sung by Neil Hannon of the band The Divine Comedy, featured in the recent Christmas special episode "The Runaway Bride", and as well as being included on Gold's Doctor Who soundtrack CD is also available to buy online from music downloading sites such as Apple's iTunes service.

"The world of Doctor Who fans is awash with plots and rumours at the moment," claims the report. "The Outpost Gallifrey fan site is cautioning that Monkey's suggestion on Wednesday that Jason Statham will be the next Doctor is mere speculation. Anyway, now a new conspiracy has been hatched: now that the singles chart takes account of downloads, Whovians have spied an opportunity to send a ditty of their choice into the charts."

The report further quotes Outpost Gallifrey forum users "Christopher M Wadley" and "Perfecto" on plans to organise mass downloads of the song, before concluding that: "Given the power of these campaigns - remember the 390,000 people who classed themselves as Jedi in the 2001 census - expect Love Don't Roam to materialise into the top 40, or the hit parade as they called it in William Hartnell's day."
New Beginnings DVD set delayed
DVD and Video
January 11, 2007  •  Posted By Brigadier Bill
2Entertain has announced that its New Beginnings DVD set will not be ready for its scheduled release. Originally due out on 22 January, the boxed set will now reach the shops on 29 January.

The much anticipated set contains "The Keeper of Traken", "Logopolis" and "Castrovalva" - adventures that saw both the return of the Master plus the transition from Tom Baker's Doctor to Peter Davison's.

This story refers to the United Kingdom release of this DVD set. Release dates for Canada/USA and New Zealand/Australia have not yet been announced.
Runaway Bride - Official Ratings
January 11, 2007  •  Posted By Marcus
Doctor Who was the 10th most watched programme on British Television during Christmas week, with a final official rating of 9.35 million viewers.

The official figures released by BARB are much more accurate than the initial overnights and include viewers who recorded the programme and watched it within seven days.

This gives "The Runaway Bride" the third highest rating since the programme returned in 2005, with only "Rose" and "The Christmas Invasion" scoring higher.

The BBC3 repeat of the programme was watched by 591,000 viewers and was the 19th most watched programme on Multi Channel TV for the week
Top Programmes. Week Ending 31 Dec 2006

1 THE VICAR OF DIBLEY (MON 2134) - 12.39 - BBC1
2 EASTENDERS (MON 2103) - 11.56 - BBC1
3 CORONATION STREET (MON 2003) - 10.20 - ITV1
4 EASTENDERS (THU 1929) - 10.10 - BBC1
5 EASTENDERS (FRI 2000) - 9.90 - BBC1
6 CORONATION STREET (WED 2033) - 9.87 - ITV1
7 CORONATION STREET (FRI 2030) - 9.74 - ITV1
9 EASTENDERS (MON 1829) - 9.40 - BBC1
10 DOCTOR WHO (MON 1900) - 9.35 - BBC1
11 EMMERDALE (FRI 1933) - 9.23 - ITV1
12 EMMERDALE (THU 1902) - 9.07 - ITV1
13 EASTENDERS (TUE 1901) - 8.95 - BBC1
15 EMMERDALE (WED 1900) - 8.64 - ITV1
16 CORONATION STREET (SUN 1929) - 8.57 - ITV1
17 CASUALTY (SAT 2028) - 8.29 - BBC1
18 EASTENDERS (WED 1959) - 7.96 - BBC1
20 EMMERDALE (MON 1902) - 7.69 - ITV1

Source BARB
Torchwood sold to New Zealand
January 10, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
BBC Worldwide has sold the first series of Dr Who spin-off Torchwood to Antipodean broadcaster TVNZ. The 13 part drama is part of a "significant package" of more than 40 hours worth of drama, natural history and factual programming including ITV event drama Primeval and wildlife skein Galapagos.

In a press release, Lisa Clements, Vice President of Programme Acquisitions at TVNZ said: "Torchwood and Primeval are both groundbreaking, action-packed shows representing a new direction in UK drama that is ideally suited to the innovative and exciting channel offering of TV2."
MediaGuardian picks up Statham rumour
TV Series News
January 10, 2007  •  Posted By Paul Hayes
The MediaGuardian website's "Media Monkey" diary column (requires free registration to view) has picked up on the recent tabloid rumours about actor Jason Statham being a possible contender for the role of the Eleventh Doctor as and when David Tennant decides to leave the series.

"The BBC may still be denying speculation that David Tennant will leave his role as Doctor Who during the fourth series of the new generation Doctor - he is currently filming the third - but names have started to filter though as to who his replacement might be," reports the column. "Monkey has been told that a name under serious consideration within the BBC is that of Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels actor Jason Statham. Apparently BBC controller of fiction Jane Tranter wants to "sex up" the sci-fi series once Tennant departs and thinks Statham - the former squeeze of model Kelly Brook - is the man for the job. Watch this space..."

As with the previous reports regarding Statham, this appears to be nothing more than rumour, with no solid evidence available of when - and indeed, if - David Tennant currently plans to leave the series.
Doctor Who nominated for Nebula Award
TV Series News
January 10, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
Steven Moffat's Doctor Who script "The Girl in the Fireplace" has been included in the Preliminary Ballot for the Nebula Awards for 2006. The awards, which have been run since 1965 by The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA), are due to be handed out in May. The SFWA has 1,400 members including some of the biggest names in science-fiction and fantasy.

The season two Doctor Who script is up against the scripts for "Batman Begins", by Christopher Nolan and Steven S Goyer, and "Howl's Moving Castle", by Hayao Miyazaki, Cindy Davis Hewitt and Donald H. Hewitt.

These nominations along with a dozen others are part of the preliminary ballot going to members of the SFWA who will help chop it down to a final ballot in March.
The Companion Chronicles
Big Finish
January 7, 2007  •  Posted By Jarrod Cooper
Big Finish has released full cover images and plot information for their upcoming Companion Chronicles series. This series sees Classic companions Vicki, Zoe, Liz, and Romana in brand new stories told from their point of view.
Read by: Maureen O'Brien as Vicki, with Keith Drinkel as The Cinder.
Vicki has a tale to tell. But where does it start and when does it end?
Ancient Carthage. 1164 BC. Lady Cressida has a secret. She keeps it deep in the cisterns below the Temple of Astarte with only one flame for warmth. And it must never get out.
Regency London, 1814 AD. The first Doctor, Steven and Vicki go to the fair and meet the fiery Dragon, the novelist Miss Austen and the deadliest weather you ever did see.
But which comes first? The Future or the Past?
The Phoenix or the Egg? The Fire or the Frost?
Or will Time freeze over forever?

Fear of the Daleks
Read by: Wendy Padbury as Zoe, with Nicholas Briggs as the Daleks
Why has Zoe Heriot been having nightmares about the Daleks? Who is the Doctor, a mysterious man from her past? When an evil scientist hijacks her mind to control a galaxy-conquering weapon, Zoe must stop him. First, she and the Doctor will face an enemy they had thought destroyed forever.

The Blue Tooth
Read by: Caroline John as Liz, with Nicholas Briggs as the Cybermen
"I suppose that was one of the Doctor's most endearing qualities: the ability to make the bizarre and the terrifying seem utterly normal."
When Liz Shaw's friend Jean goes missing, the Doctor and U.N.I.T. are drawn to the scene to investigate. Soon Liz discovers a potential alien invasion that will have far-reaching affects on her life… and the Doctor is unexpectedly re-united with an old enemy…

The Beautiful People
Read by: Lalla Ward as Romana, with Marcia Ashton as Karna
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Private Eye
Press Clips
January 6, 2007  •  Posted By Marcus
The latest edition of Britain's most popular satirical magazine, Private Eye , has latched on to the tabloid speculation about the future of David Tennant in the role. The magazine draws parallels with the present predicament of the country's Prime Minister "Tony Blair" who announced last year he would step down sometime before September 2007.
Dr Who has today been criticised for announcing that he won't be seeking another term as the Time Lord, but not giving an exact timetable for his departure.
"This ongoing uncertainty is destabilising the galaxy at a very inopportune time, with a fresh attack from the Cybermen imminent" said one well-placed Dr Who Source. "We all know that The Master has been waiting for several millennia brooding for the job to be his."
Doctor Who can help save science, says Minister
January 6, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
Teachers should use episodes from Doctor Who to teach school children about science rather than technical and "boring" textbooks, according to the UK Government's new Science Minister.

The Minister, pictured, is quoted in The Sunday Telegraph. Their report goes on to say:
Malcolm Wicks, who was appointed in November following the resignation of Lord Sainsbury, believes that too many pupils are put off science during school.

He claims that popular television shows such as the hit BBC science fiction series and the Star Wars films provide children with an insight into real science that teachers can use to kick-start lessons. Science education campaign groups have warned, however, that shows such as Doctor Who often involve ideas that have little basis in science.

Mr Wicks said: "If you start a lesson with the chemical formulae you will lose 90 per cent of the class. If you start with something interesting or important, like something they read in the paper or saw on television, they will remain interested.

"It can be part of an entrée to some of the more technical, important but slightly more boring parts of the subject. If I was a teacher I would start with a chunk from Doctor Who and Billie Piper and say, 'Actually, what was that all about and how is our textbook relevant to that?'

"Take R2D2 from the Star Wars films, for example. We are already doing that kind of stuff in robotics. I would show that, talk about how you would build a thing like that and its uses in the future in the home, in caring for people and for space exploration."

Mr Wicks believes that it is essential to produce a generation of children who are science-literate so that they can go on to help in making the decisions Britain is likely to face on issues such as climate change and medical research.

However, Derek Bell, the chief executive of the Association of Science Education, said: "We all enjoy programmes such as Doctor Who, but teachers would need to be careful to make it clear which bits are science and which fantasy."
Torchwood- Appreciation Index
January 6, 2007  •  Posted By Marcus
The BBC2 showing of the final episodes of "Torchwood" Season one, achieved an Appreciation Index of 84.

The Appreciation Index, or AI, is a measure of how much the audience liked the programme. It is a score out of 100, based on responses from a carefully selected panel. The average score for drama on BBC1 and ITV1 is 77

The score of 84 is the highest the series has scored on BBC2. It was one of the most enjoyed programmes of the day, only "Desperate Housewives" on Channel 4 scored higher with 85.

On BBC3 the Thursday night showing of "Captain Jack Harkness" had an audience of 233,100 viewers at 2100 which was a 1.2% share. At 0100 66,900 people watched, a 2.9% share.

Meanwhile the Friday night 2100 showing at of "End of Days" was watched by 277,500 viewers, which was 1.4% of the total audience. At 0030 the show had 140,700 viewers a 3.3% share.
Tennant on TV tonight
January 5, 2007  •  Posted By John Bowman
A reminder to Outpost Gallifrey readers that David Tennant is the guest presenter tonight on The Friday Night Project on Channel 4.

During the programme, he will give a monologue and face a grilling from the studio audience.

The entertainment show - returning for a fourth series - is on from 11.05pm to 12.10am.

There is also mention of this on Yahoo Entertainment News (with a picture of a blonde-wigged Tennant) and on Digital Spy.
Big Finish Announces New US Subscriber Service
Big Finish
January 4, 2007  •  Posted By Jarrod Cooper
In a recent statement by John Ainsworth, Big Finish has announced Alien Entertainment as the new Offical Subscription service for Big Finish:
Big Finish are very pleased to announce that they have been able to agree terms on a new US subscription service. From 1st January 2007, Alien Entertainment will be offering subscribers the same, exclusive incentives currently enjoyed by customers who subscribe direct with Big Finish. Alien Entertainment subscribers will receive the Big Finish Magazine CD and the free subscriber special adventure scheduled for December 2007. Unfortunately, we are unable to backdate this service, and all free subscriber discs prior to January 2007 will not be available, except direct from Big Finish at www.bigfinish.com. In addition there will be a new magazine disc - Big Finish Update #1 - which will be available to all dealers due to be released in the Spring.

Unfortunately, due to circumstances that cannot be discussed at this time, Big Finish are presently unable to supply Ministry of Sound and Vision. Existing MOSV subscribers and customers who are owed merchandise from MOSV should contact Big Finish direct at mailorderenquiries@bigfinish.com.

Alien Entertainment can be found at www.alienentertainment.com
Toll Free Telephone number: 1-888-734-7386
Customer Service Hours: Tuesday through Saturday 12noon – 7pm central time
Torchwood BBC2 Overnight ratings
January 4, 2007  •  Posted By Marcus
The final episodes of Season One of "Torchwood" were watched on BBC2 by 2.0m viewers according to the unofficial overnights, an 8.3% share of the audience. The audience was steady throughout the programme peaking at 2.1m for the last fifteen minutes. The programme was the 36th most watched on British TV last night.

Final figures will be released by BARB in two weeks time
Martha in the Tardis
Press Clips
January 4, 2007  •  Posted By John Bowman
Thursday's edition of The Sun has a picture story featuring new companion Martha Jones aboard the Tardis for the first time.

The photo of Freema Agyeman with David Tennant was released by the BBC yesterday.

The press release from the BBC says: "Doctor Who's new companion Freema Agyeman takes her first trip in the Tardis in pictures released today.

"Agyeman, 27, plays medical student Martha Jones opposite the Doctor (David Tennant) in the Bafta award-winning drama that returns to BBC One for a much anticipated third series in the spring.

"Guest stars already confirmed for the third series include Shameless star Dean Lennox Kelly – who is to play William Shakespeare – The League of Gentlemen's Mark Gatiss and comedy actress Jessica Stevenson.

"The most famous Doctor Who nemesis, the Daleks, are to also make a return in a special two-part episode.

"Agyeman replaces Billie Piper, who played Rose Tyler in the show, and is already familiar to Doctor Who fans, having appeared as Adeola in episode 12 of the second series, when she suffered a terrible fate at the hands of the Cybermen."

In the release, Agyeman is quoted as saying: "It's such an incredible thrill to step inside the Tardis and to be part of such an iconic show. I just hope that I'll be a good companion for the Doctor!"

(This picture is copyright BBC and used solely for promotional purposes)
Statham Doctor Who Rumors
TV Series News
January 3, 2007  •  Posted By Michael Regina
Yahoo.uk is reporting (via WENN) that Jason Statham has been offered the title role in the next series of Doctor Who.

There is absolutely no other corroborating evidence from any sources regarding this, this should remain safely in the 'Rumor' department. Click here for the article.
Torchwood Final Ratings - Week ending 17th December
January 3, 2007  •  Posted By Marcus
BARB have released the official figures for the week ending 17th December 2006. The official figures are much more accurate than the initial overnights and include viewers who recorded the programme and watched it within seven days.

The figures show that Episode 9 of Torchwood, "Random Shoes" was watched by 2.26m people. The programme was the 21st most watched on BBC2 for the week and shows an increase on the previous week's figure.

On BBC3 the following week's episode "Out of Time" was watched by 1.03m viewers. The programme was the 6th most watched that week on all multi-channel TV. It was just beaten by "Lost" on Sky One.

The most watched multi-channel programme of the week was "Terry Pratchett's Hogfather" with a massive 2.64m viewers. This programme just beat the record previously held by "Torchwood" as the highest rated non-sport programme ever seen on multi-channel television.
Tennant "Committed to Who"
TV Series News
January 3, 2007  •  Posted By Nathan Baron
A Fan Website dedicated to David Tennant has announced that he is "committed to the series" despite rumors in the tabloids that he was going to quit after the third series.

The article says, "David is absolutely committed to the show and is currently filming the third series. There is no fourth series currently commissioned yet so we could not confirm his involvement in that yet. When a further series is commissioned, we will be able to confirm his involvement."

The website also lists the fact that there will be another Christmas Special in 2007. However, this news cannot be confirmed at this stage.
Naoko Mori Interview
January 3, 2007  •  Posted By R. Alan Siler
Eclipse Magazine ("No Hype Entertainment News") currently features an interview with Torchwood star Naoko Mori. Mori talks about how she chooses roles, diversity in television, haunted hotels, Kermit the Frog, her history with John Barrowman, and Torchwood: the Musical!

"I think Tosh, out of the rest of the team, is the most guarded and private person and she's not particularly good at expressing herself at the best of times. She can be frank and honest, but she's quite shy because she's a private person. She's a very practical person, she loves problem-solving. With 'Countrycide' I think it really shook her because it was so horrific. What can you do? Run!"

You can read the interview in full by visiting the Eclipse Magazine website.
Tuesday Ratings Update
January 3, 2007  •  Posted By Marcus
The fourth outing of "The Runaway Bride" was watched by 461,000 viewers and was the second most watched programme on BBC3 last night.

It was beaten by the 3rd showing of the "Torchwood" finale which got another 523,000 viewers and was the 6th most watched programme on Multi Channel Television. This was the highest audience Torchwood has received for its Tuesday showing in the entire run.

The final BBC2 showing is tonight at 2100.

Finally, the Appreciation Index or AI for "The Sarah Jane Adventures" was 77. The Appreciation Index, or AI, is a measure of how much the audience liked the programme. It is a score out of 100, based on responses from a carefully selected panel. The average score for drama on BBC1 and ITV1 is 77. A score in excess of 85 is regarded as excellent while a score below 60 is poor.
Tennant In Who's Who 2007
January 2, 2007  •  Posted By Kenny Davidson
If proof were needed, David Tennant has had his A-list celebrity status confirmed by being included in the UK's annual publication of Who's Who 2007, which is a directory of society's rich, famous and influential. The reference work has been published since 1849 and has become a benchmark of the genuinely famous in public life.

Tennant, one of the 1000 new entries, was by tradition invited to submit his potted biography. New entries are given free rein to write their submission, but Tennant restricted himself to basic details, which are descibed by Wednesday's Scotsman as "tantalisingly brief. He mentions his father, the Very Rev Alexander McDonald, but not his mother. He gives no details about his love life and does not list any recreations." He lists himself under his real name, David John McDonald, 35-year-old from Renfrewshire.

Other new entries include presenter Noel Edmonds, veteran actor Denis Lawson (listed as Ewan McGregor's uncle), Dame Maggie Smith's actor son Toby Stephens, comedy actor and writer Sanjeev Bhaskar, author Kate Mosse, and the designer of the iPod Jonathan Ive.

The book is published on Wednesday 3rd January, at the noteworthy price of 145 pound sterling. It is not known if those listed receive a complimentary copy. Further details can be found here.

This story of Who appearing in Who's Who is also in the Daily Record, The Guardian, the Metro, The Sun, and The Telegraph.
Torchwood Finale Ratings
January 2, 2007  •  Posted By Marcus
The finale of Season One of Torchwood was seen by 1.11m viewers which was a 5.5% share of the audience.

This is the highest figure achieved since episode 8 and made the programme the 5th most watched on Multi Channel TV, where it was beaten by four sporting events.

The ratings increased throughout the programme and peaked at 1.26m for the final fifteen minutes.

The repeat at 0105 was watched by another 115,000 viewers and got a 4.1% share.
Sarah Jane Overnight Ratings
January 2, 2007  •  Posted By Marcus
The latest spin off from "Doctor Who" debuted on BBC1 with an unofficial overnight audience of 2.9m viewers. The audience share was 18.7% and the programme was the 21st most watched of the day.

In its time slot the programme was just beaten by the film "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" on ITV which got 3.1m viewers. The film benefited from a large increase in viewers in its last fifteen minutes. When it was head to head against Sarah Jane, Sarah Jane got slightly more viewers.

The Children's audience was 0.4m which was 14.4% of all children watching.

The programme rated far higher than the average for CBBC Drama which is around 1 million, although comparisons are difficult as the programme was transmitted on a public holiday so all viewing figures were higher than usual.

The most watched programme of the day was "The Vicar of Dibley", where 12.3m viewers watched Geraldine walk down the aisle followed by the Tenth Doctor and two Daleks.
"Runaway Bride" - More ratings infomation
January 1, 2007  •  Posted By Marcus
Unofficial overnight ratings show that "The Runaway Bride" was the 12th most watched programme on British Television during Christmas week.

Its rating of 8.7m was beaten by four episodes of Eastenders, three episodes of Coronation Street, two episodes of Emmerdale, the film Pirates of the Caribbean and the comedy "The Vicar of Dibley", which was the most watched programme of the week.

Final data will be released by Barb in about 10 days and will include numbers for those who recorded the programme and who watched it within seven days.

Doctor Who was easily the most watched programme by Children during the whole week.
With 1.7m it got 250,000 more 4-16's watching than its nearest rival, the monday edition of EastEnders. It was one of only four programmes to get a share of more than 50% of children watching.
Sydney Morning Herald: Torchwood on ABC in 2007
January 1, 2007  •  Posted By Benjamin F Elliott
The Sydney Morning Herald's TV section for 1 January reports that Torchwood will be among the shows premiering on the ABC network this year. The story is titled Now, Look Here! for readers checking the print edition. Torchwood is on page 4 of the online edition of the article.