Wizards Vs Aliens: Grazlax AttacksBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 30 October 2012 - Reported by John Bowman
Pictures from Grazlax Attacks - the second adventure in the new CBBC series Wizards vs Aliens - have been released by the BBC today.



The two-part adventure, written by Phil Ford, will air on Monday 5th November and Tuesday 6th November at 5.15pm.

In part one, Tom's quiet Saturday at Benny's house becomes a thrilling fight for their lives when the vicious alien Grazlax hunts them down. The two boys must learn to fight together, combining Tom's magic with Benny's science, or the Nekross's savage pet will succeed – and devour them.

In part two, the Grazlax is out of control. But Tom has used up all of his magic, and Benny's scientific genius is useless against a creature from beyond the stars. It's a race against time for both humans and Nekross as the Grazlax menace grows – but will stopping the rampage leave any survivors at all?

Episodes 5 and 6 - which together form the adventure Rebel Magic, written by Joseph Lidster - are scheduled to air on Monday 12th November and Tuesday 13th November, again at 5.15pm.

In part one, when Tom meets another wizard called Jackson Hawke he can't resist dabbling in dangerous magic. Benny tries to warn him, to no avail, but all three lads are unaware of the Nekross getting closer and closer – and this time, alien Prince Varg is determined to make it personal.

In part two, Tom and Jackson take the fight to the Nekross, but their forbidden Grim Magic is taking its toll on Tom. Only Benny can help his best friend – but he's been enchanted. Tom's dad Michael and gran Ursula fight to reach Tom in time, but dawn is rising, and the final confrontation is about to begin . . .

The series comprises 12 episodes.




Merlin: The DisirBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 30 October 2012 - Reported by John Bowman
Next Saturday's episode of Merlin - entitled The Disir - sees Frances Tomelty, Sian Thomas, and Helen Schlesinger guest-starring as the three eponymous soothsayers, and fellow guest star Andrew Tiernan as Osgar.

Pictures from the episode were released by the BBC today, as seen below:


This fifth episode of the current 13-part series will air at 8.15pm on Saturday 3rd November on BBC One.

In the inky depths of an ancient pool, three soothsayers cast a dark judgment upon the king of Camelot. But despite Merlin's warnings, headstrong Arthur refuses to take the words of the Disir seriously, and their fury rains down on Camelot. Only the greatest sacrifice can appease them, and with the kingdom in jeopardy is it one that Arthur is prepared to make? Faced with the king's uncertainty, Merlin has just one chance to save him from his destiny - but this decision comes at the highest price.

Meanwhile, episode 6 - believed to be called The Tribe - is scheduled to be broadcast on BBC One at 8.20pm on Saturday 10th November.

When Gwen is snatched from Camelot without warning, Merlin knows there can be only one person responsible: Morgana. Arthur is determined to rescue his Queen – but it's not going to be easy, for she is locked in the Dark Tower, a place that haunts the dreams of men. Arthur and his Knights must embark on a quest like no other, battling through a landscape riddled with hidden dangers, perilous obstacles, and magical beings. As they near their goal, Merlin's sense of dread reaches breaking point. What twisted game is Morgana playing? And more importantly, just what is the final test that awaits them in the tower?

UPDATE - 1st NOVEMBER: Episode 6 has now been confirmed to air at 8.05pm.

UPDATE - 3rd NOVEMBER: Episode 6 is to be called The Dark Tower, not The Tribe.




In The Flesh Filming BeginsBookmark and Share

Friday, 26 October 2012 - Reported by John Bowman
Filming on BBC Three's new zombie drama In The Flesh has started.

Directed by Jonny Campbell, the three-part series has been written by TV newcomer Dominic Mitchell, pictured, with the cast led by Luke Newberry as Kieren Walker. David Walmsley plays his best friend, Rick Macy, Emily Bevan is fellow zombie Amy Dyer, and Harriet Cains is his sister, Jem Walker.

They are being joined by Ricky Tomlinson as Ken Burton, Steve Evets as Bill Macy, and Kenneth Cranham as the Rev Oddie.

In The Flesh is the story of teenager Kieren Walker and his reintegration back into the local community and the heart of his family. After his death four years ago, his friends and family thought they'd never see him again. But then, shortly after his funeral, thousands of the dead were reanimated in one freak night and now, after months of rehabilitation and medication, the zombies are gradually being returned to their homes.

With its central themes of redemption, forgiveness, acceptance, denial, and the very essence of what it means to be alive or dead, In The Flesh is a complex but tender look at what happens when families get a second chance at mending their past and working together towards an unpredictable future.

Filming started on Sunday 21st October, with shooting taking place around the north-west of England and the action set in the fictional village of Roarton. The cast also includes Alex Arnold as Alex, Steve Cooper as Steve Walker, Marie Critchley as Sue Walker, Stephen Thompson as Philip Wilson, Sandra Hugget as Shirley Wilson, Gerard Thompson as Dean, Kevin Sutton as Gary, John Owen-Jones as Keith, Karen Henthorn as Janet Macy, Oliver Birch as Giles Weir, Steve Garti as Duncan Lancaster, and Juliet Ellis as Patty Lancaster.

Campbell said:
From the moment I read the opening scene I was hooked. Dominic is an utterly fearless and instinctive young writer with an uncanny ability to tell a great story full of humour and humanity in a most original way - an elusive and rare combination in TV drama. What's most exciting about In The Flesh is that it challenges our preconceptions about the standard zombie genre and in so doing almost certainly creates a new one.

The hour-long episodes were developed by the BBC Drama Production team in Salford after they read entries for the BBC Writersroom contest Northern Voices.

Mitchell said:
When I took part in the fantastic BBC Writersroom Northern Voices scheme, never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that my drama about the medicated undead would be produced, let alone with such an incredibly talented cast and crew attached.

Newberry stated:
I am really excited to be playing Kieren, who is an amazingly complex character. He is on an unthinkable rollercoaster of a journey, one in which he has been given a second chance at life, and he has to come to terms with how to deal with that. The characters may look like zombies but this is a very human story about people trying to survive.

Made by BBC Drama Production North, it is being produced by Ann Harrison Baxter, having been commissioned by drama commissioning controller Ben Stephenson. The executive producer is Hilary Martin. BBC Three controller Zai Bennett said:
It's a testament to Dominic Mitchell's fantastic script that some of the greats of UK drama are joining our exciting young actors for BBC Three's new zombie drama.




Wizards Vs Aliens: Dawn Of The NekrossBookmark and Share

Thursday, 25 October 2012 - Reported by John Bowman
Pictures from Dawn Of The Nekross - the first adventure in the forthcoming new CBBC series Wizards vs Aliens - have been released by the BBC.



The two-parter will air on Monday 29th October and Tuesday 30th October at 5.15pm, with the series comprising 12 episodes.




Merlin: Another's SorrowBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 24 October 2012 - Reported by John Bowman
Pictures have been released by the BBC for next Saturday's episode of Merlin, entitled Another's Sorrow.

The special guest stars are Janet Montgomery as Princess Mithian, James Fox as King Rodor, and Fintan McKeown as King Odin.



The fourth episode of the current 13-part series will air at 8.20pm on Saturday 27th October on BBC One.

With Princess Mithian as the perfect bait, Morgana conjures a deception so powerful that the whole of Camelot is taken in - even Merlin himself. But as the storm clouds gather, will the young warlock see through the lies? Or will Morgana at long last fulfil her dreams of revenge?

Meanwhile, episode 5 is currently scheduled to be broadcast on BBC One at 8.20pm on Saturday 3rd November, with special guest stars Frances Tomelty, Sian Thomas, and Helen Schlesinger as the three Disir, and Andrew Tiernan as Osgar.




Wizards Vs Aliens Gets Two Series At LeastBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 23 October 2012 - Reported by John Bowman
Two series of the new CBBC show Wizards vs Aliens have been made, according to the new edition of Radio Times.

The action adventure drama, created by Russell T Davies and Phil Ford, starts on Monday 29th October at 5.15pm. Two episodes will air each week, on Mondays and Tuesdays, and the new Radio Times, out today, which has a colour feature promoting the show, says a total of 26 episodes have been filmed, with 12 of them comprising the first series and the remaining 14 making up a second one. Just when the second series will be broadcast is unknown as yet.

The show sees the alien Nekross intent on devouring all the magic on Earth and 16-year-old wizard Tom Clarke (Scott Haran), helped by his friend Benny Sherwood (Percelle Ascott), determined to defeat them.

Also appearing in the series are Annette Badland as Tom's grandmother Ursula Crowe, Michael Higgs as Tom's dad Michael Clarke, Jefferson Hall as Varg, Gwendoline Christie as Lexi, Brian Blessed as the Nekross King, Dan Starkey as Randal Moon, Manpreet Bambra as Katie Lord, Connor Scarlett as Quinn Christopher, Brian Miller (Elisabeth Sladen's husband) as Old Mark, and Sara Stewart as Miss Webster, with Don Gilet and Nina Sosanya making guest appearances as Benny's parents. The writers include Clayton Hickman, Joseph Lidster, and Gareth Roberts.

In Radio Times, Davies talks about the genesis of the show, which aims to fill the void left by The Sarah Jane Adventures following the death of Elisabeth Sladen in April 2011.

This show came out of the oddest circumstances, which we'd never been in before - our lead actor died . . . and it was just the most bizarre, tragic thing. It's still strange and sad that she's gone, but the brutal truth is that there were also a lot of people out of work - writers, designers, crew and everyone - in that brand-new studio in Cardiff, so we had to come up with something. We could have got another old Who companion and put them on that set, but it would have been so fake.

He added:
I love spaceships and robots and Phil loves the supernatural and everything magic, so it just made perfect sense to bring those worlds together, precisely because it doesn't happen. If you suggested that a spaceship should land in Merlin, they'd chuck you out of the room and tell you that it's the wrong mythology. Similarly, you could never cast actual spells in Doctor Who. Wizards vs Aliens is a genre-shock of two genres that never usually meet - there are stories spilling out because of that.

Episodes 1 and 2 make up the adventure Dawn Of The Nekross, and episodes 3 and 4 have been revealed to be collectively called Grazlax Attacks.

In part one, Tom Clarke is hiding a secret – he's a schoolboy wizard! But when the magic-eating alien Nekross arrive on Earth, a battle for survival begins. Tom must use his magical powers to protect his family – but only the school geek, Benny, can help him against the plans of the terrifying Nekross King.

In part two, with his gran trapped in outer space, Tom and Benny must dare to go inside the mystical Chamber to ask the mysterious Randal Moon for help. But with time running out for Ursula and Tom's dad joining the fight, can even a magical hobgoblin fight an enemy from beyond Earth?

In part one, Tom's quiet Saturday at Benny's house becomes a thrilling fight for their lives when the vicious alien Grazlax hunts them down. The two boys must learn to fight together, combining Tom's magic with Benny's science, or the Nekross's savage pet will succeed – and devour them.

In part two, the Grazlax is out of control. But Tom has used up all of his magic, and Benny's scientific genius is useless against a creature from beyond the stars. It's a race against time for both humans and Nekross as the Grazlax menace grows – but will stopping the rampage leave any survivors at all?

Promotional images from the show were released by the BBC today, as seen above and here: