Big Bang Theory back for seventh series on E4Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, 22 October 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
Sitcom The Big Bang Theory returns to E4 on Thursday 31st October for its seventh series.

The first episode of the 24-episode run is called The Hofstadter Insufficiency.
Sheldon and Penny bond in Leonard's absence, Raj finds someone to share his heartache with, and while away at an out-of-town conference, Bernadette and Amy are 'hit on' at the hotel bar.
It will air at 8.30pm, having premiered exactly five weeks earlier in the USA on CBS.

Wizards vs Aliens Series 2 pictures releasedBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 22 October 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
Pictures from the new series of Wizard vs Aliens were released by the BBC today.

The 14-part CBBC show begins on Monday 28th October at 5pm and sees Jessica Plummer joining the regular cast as new wizard Chloe Martin.

Guest-starring in the first story - 100 Wizards - is Cyril Nri, who played The Shopkeeper in The Sarah Jane Adventures.

Only Connect on the moveBookmark and Share

Saturday, 19 October 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
The BBC Four quiz show Only Connect is to move to BBC Two next year.

Hosted by Victoria Coren Mitchell and currently in its eighth series, the programme - in which teams compete to find connections between seemingly unrelated clues - will stay on BBC Four for another series next spring before hopping channels.

Janice Hadlow, the controller of BBC Two and BBC Four, said:
BBC Four has a proud tradition of growing successful shows and I'm delighted Only Connect is making the move to BBC Two, where I hope it will connect with an even broader audience.
Coren Mitchell commented:
I and the rest of the Only Connect team are hugely excited about our Icarus-like flight towards the sun of mainstream broadcasting. If our wings start melting, I'll just flap harder.
Alan Tyler, the BBC's executive editor for entertainment commissioning, added:
Victoria and the Only Connect team have set the gold standard in quizzes. We are all really looking forward to seeing the show in its new home, whilst the hunt is already under way for a successor on BBC Four.
Only Connect is made by Parasol Media Ltd and RDF Television, produced by Jenny Hawker, and executive-produced by Chris Stuart and Mark Hill. The show regularly attracts more than a million viewers, making it one of the most-viewed programmes on BBC Four.

The channel has tendered for a replacement show and, following short-listing, is currently seeing run-throughs of three contenders: The Knowledge from BBC In-House Entertainment, Enigma from RDF-Parasol, and Eliminate The Impossible from Victory Television.

Musketeers action shot releasedBookmark and Share

Saturday, 19 October 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
The first on-set action shot from new BBC One drama The Musketeers was released today, ahead of the series' 2014 launch.

Based on the classic characters created by Alexandre Dumas, the show will tell the story of an elite group of soldiers in 17th-century Paris who protect the king at any cost. D'Artagnan (Luke Pasqualino), Athos (Tom Burke), Aramis (Santiago Cabrera), and Porthos (Howard Charles) are brothers-in-arms, fighting for what is just, regardless of personal risk.

Writer and creator Adrian Hodges said:
I'm thrilled we can finally release the first image since wrapping filming. I hope the picture gives a good idea of the look and intensity of the Musketeers themselves, and a hint of the excitement of each powerful, dramatic, and action-filled episode.
The cast will also include 12th-Doctor-to-be Peter Capaldi, Tamla Kari, Maimie McCoy, Hugo Speer, Ryan Gage, and Alexandra Dowling, as well as a multitude of guest stars.

The series will comprise ten 60-minute episodes, and is a BBC Drama Production for BBC One, co-produced with BBC America in association with BBC Worldwide.

Jessica Pope is the BBC executive producer, Hodges is an executive producer and the lead writer, and Colin Wratten is the producer.

Wizards vs Aliens new series start detailsBookmark and Share

Thursday, 17 October 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
The second series of Wizards vs Aliens is to start on Monday 28th October at 5pm.

The CBBC science fantasy drama is back for an extended 14-week run of two episodes a week, following its first series of 12 weeks last autumn, and will comprise seven two-part stories. The first adventure is entitled 100 Wizards and has been written by series co-creator Phil Ford and directed by Beryl Richards. The concluding part will air on Tuesday 29th October at the same time.

Tom and Benny make an amazing discovery – a new wizard called Chloe. The race is on to find her before the Nekross can feast. But when Hex TV steps in to broadcast Chloe's powers worldwide, every wizard in the land faces danger. Can Tom stop Chloe in time, before the Nekross can spring their trap?

In the second episode of the week, with 100 wizards trapped in the Nekross King's evil scheme, Tom, Benny and Chloe must unite to fight the enemy. But with the mighty spaceship Zarantulus on its way to Earth, time is running out. Tom faces losing his family – and losing his heart to Chloe too.
The show stars Scott Haran as Tom Clarke and Percelle Ascott as Benny Sherwood, with the voice of Brian Blessed as the alien Nekross King.

The following story is called Vice Versa, written by Clayton Hickman and again directed by Richards, while the third one is The Cave of Menla-Gto, penned by Joseph Lidster, the fourth one is The Curse of Crowe, written by Gareth Roberts, and the fifth one will be The Thirteenth Floor, again by Ford, which was originally intended for the fifth series of The Sarah Jane Adventures but never made as the show was ended following the death of lead actress Elisabeth Sladen. The sixth story is entitled Endless Night, also written by Ford, while the title of the series finale is yet to be revealed, as is the identity of the actress playing Chloe.

The BFI is holding a preview of the first two episodes of the new series on Saturday 26th October at 1.30pm, with Haran, Ascott, and Ford being joined by Michael Higgs, who plays Michael Clarke, and producer Brian Minchin as the special guests. Tickets can be bought via this link.

The scripts for episode 1 and episode 2 of the first series are available to download for free from the BBC Writersroom.

In The Flesh series two filming startsBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 15 October 2013 - Reported by John Bowman
Filming on the extended second series of BBC Three zombie drama In The Flesh has started, it was announced today.

The first series, which aired in March this year, ran for three episodes, but the new series is double that length.

Creator Dominic Mitchell reignites the world of teenager Kieren Walker, a PDS (Partially Deceased Syndrome) sufferer, who continues in his struggle to find acceptance in the fictional village of Roarton.

The living and the undead have reached a fragile peace, with Kieren desperately keeping his head down, squirrelling money into his "escape fund". But in the wider world, fear is in the air. The radical Pro-Living Party, Victus, is gaining government seats, with a resulting spate of PDS terrorism linked to the Undead Liberation Army. With the arrival in the village of new and explosive characters from both Victus and the ULA, Kieren's plans are thrown into disarray as both set their sights on him and he finds himself caught in the emotional crossfire. A quiet life is not an option.
Returning to the series, Luke Newberry as Kieren Walker leads the cast, together with Emily Bevan as his upbeat friend and fellow medicated zombie Amy Dyer, Harriet Cains as his feisty sister Jem, and Stephen Thompson as the aspirational parish councillor Philip Wilson.

Also returning are Kenneth Cranham as Vicar Oddie, Kevin Sutton as Gary, Steve Cooper as Steve Walker, Marie Critchley as Sue Walker, Sandra Hugget as Shirley Wilson, Gerard Thompson as Dean, and Gillian Waugh as Pearl Pinder.

They are joined by new cast members Wunmi Mosaku, playing local MP Maxine Martin, and Emmett J Scanlan, who plays Simon - a charismatic disciple of the Undead Prophet.

The drama started filming on Monday 7th October and is being shot around the north-west of England.

Director Jim O'Hanlon said:
With its uniquely naturalistic take on the zombie genre, told as much from the point of view of the zombies - or PDS sufferers - themselves as that of the locals forced to live alongside them, In The Flesh is original, dramatic, funny, politically engaged, and never less than 100 per cent emotionally truthful.

It's rare to find a series that is so exciting, entertaining, and humorous, and yet has so much to say about the world we live in today. The characters have genuine verve, wit, colour, and depth, and I can't wait to get started on bringing them to life.
BBC Three controller Zai Bennett said:
I am excited that BBC Three viewers will once again have the chance to immerse themselves in writer Dominic Mitchell's intricate world, which brings such realism to the scenario of medicated zombies being reintegrated into the community. The popularity of series one is testament to the strength of the cast, production team, and conviction with which Dominic writes.
And Mitchell, who last month was named one of BAFTA's 17 Breakthrough Brits, said:
Returning to Roarton village has been a real joy, revisiting old characters and inventing new ones, entangling their lives and their loves. My hope is that In The Flesh series two will have something for everyone: with high-octane genre thrills running alongside emotional, hard-hitting domestic drama, with plenty of black humour to boot.
Meanwhile, Newberry said:
I'm very excited to continue on Kieren's journey, and am delighted In The Flesh will be returning for a second series. New characters arrive in Roarton, introducing him to further challenges and new dilemmas, as he begins to feel trapped between the living and the dead.
It is being made by BBC Drama Production North in co-production with BBC America, produced by John Rushton, and executive-produced by Hilary Martin, Katie McAleese, and Ann Harrison Baxter. The development producer is Simon Judd.

The drama was first developed by the BBC Drama Production team in Salford after Mitchell was discovered through the BBC Writersroom competition Northern Voices.