Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Pet Shop Boys: 'Electric'

Details of the Pet Shop Boys new album were revealed today on the duo's official website. Electric will be released worldwide on July 15th, and is the first to appear on their own x2 label via Kobalt. Recorded in London, Berlin and Los Angeles, and produced by Stuart Price, Electric features eight new tracks and a cover version of Bruce Springstein's The Last To Die, whilst singer and rapper, Example performs on Thursday
Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe commented that the new work - their twelfth studio album - is a response to the reflective nature of previous release, Elysium, and Electric is "pretty banging!"
The album - with artwork (shown here) again by Farrow - opens with the new single, Axis, and the full listing is:
  1. Axis
  2. Bolshy
  3. Love Is A Bourgeois Construct
  4. Flourescent
  5. Inside A Dream
  6. The Last To Die
  7. Shouting In The Evening
  8. Thursday
  9. Vocal

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Doctor Who Vs. A Night To Remember

This British cinematic adaptation of Walter Lord's best-selling book, A Night to Remember (Holt, 1955) was released by Rank in 1958, and recounts the final night on board RMS Titanic. The film was directed by Roy Ward Baker, and producer William MacQuitty used White Star Line blueprints to create life-like sets, while Titanic officer Joseph Boxhall was a consultant.
Despite it's modest production values, A Night to Remember is still regarded by critics as the most historically accurate of the many Titanic movies, and earned a Golden Globe award.
The story of the 'unsinkable' liner's  loss in 1912 was told from the point of view of her passengers and crew, principally Second Officer Charles Lightoller, portrayed by Kenneth More (1914-1982).
Bob Ballard's discovery of the wreck of Titanic in 1985 sparked a fresh wave of public interest in the disaster, and Lord (1917-2002) penned a sequel, The Night Lives On (1986) and even acted as a consultant on James Cameron's Titanic (1997).
This film featured twenty-two future Doctor Who cast and crew connections:      
  • Honor Blackman (Mrs Lucas) went on to find global fame as Cathy Gale in The Avengers (1962-64) and Bond girl, Pussy Galore in Goldfinger, before playing Professor Lasky in The Trial of a Time Lord: Terror of the Vervoids, and voiced Queen Anahita for The Children of Seth (Big Finish, 2011)
  • Roanld Allen (Clarke) was Rago in The Dominators, and Professor Ralph Cornish in The Ambassadors of Death
  • Richard Leech (First Officer Murdoch) was Gatherer Hade in The Sun Makers
  • Ralph Michael (Yates) was Balaton in The Pirate Planet
  • Jack Watling (Fourth Officer Boxhall) was Professor Edward Travers in both Yeti stories of the 1960's, opposite his real-life daughter, Deborah Watling (aka. Victoria Waterfield)
  • Geoffrey Bayldon (Cyril Evans) was Organon in The Creature from the Pit, and voiced the 'Unbound' First Doctor for Auld Mortality (BF, 2003) and A Storm of Angels ( BF, 2005)
  • Harold Goldblatt (Guggenheim) was Professor Dale in Frontier in Space
  • Andrew Keir (Joseph Bell) was Wyler in Daleks: Invasion Earth 2150 AD
  • Philip Ray (Anderson) was Professor Daniel Eldred in The Seeds of Death
  • Roger Avon (Reginald Lee) was Saphadin in The Crusade, Daxtar in The Daleks' Master Plan episode, The Traitors, and Wells in the second Dalek film
  • Jeremy Bulloch (Boy) was Hal in The Time Warrior
  • George A Cooper (Purser Hughes) was Cherub in The Smugglers
  • Glyn Houston (Stoker) was Professor [Owen] Watson in The Hand of Fear, and Colonel Ben Wolsey in The Awakening
  • Robert James (Hesketh) was Lester in The Power of the Daleks, and the High Priest in The Masque of Mandragora
  • Stratford Johns (Crewman) was Monarch in Four to Doomsday
  • Howard Lang (Chief Officer Henry Wilde) was Horg in 100,000 BC
  • Derren Nesbitt (Stoker) was Tegana in Marco Polo, and voiced Thomas Dodd for Spare Parts (BF, 2002) and Ordinal-General Quences for Unbound: Auld Mortality
  • Steve Plytas (Greek Passenger) was Wigner in The Tenth Planet
  • Mavis Ranson (Passenger) was a Schoolgirl in An Unearthly Child
  • Richard Shaw (Crewman) was Lobos in The Space Museum, Cross in Frontier in Space, and Lakh in Underworld
  • Jack Silk was a stuntman on The Daemons too
  • David Harcourt was a camera operator on both Dalek feature films too

Monday, 8 April 2013

Doctor Who Vs. The Final Cut

The final serial in the BBC's Francis Urquhart trilogy followed House of Cards (1990) and To Play The King (1993) and again starred Ian Richardson as the scheming Conservative Prime Minister in his last, turbulent years in power.
This four-part political drama, based on Michael Dobbs' novel, originally aired in November 1995, and featured sixteen Doctor Who cast and crew connections:
  • Paul Freeman (Makepeace) voiced Jalnik for The Foe from the Future (Big Finish, 2012), an unused TV script by Robert Banks Stewart
  • Isla Blair (Claire) was Lady Isabella Fitzwilliam (pictured, left) in The King's Demons, and voiced Paula for Exotron (BF, 2007)
  • Nickolas Grace (Pitt) made a brief TV appearance as Albert Einstein in Death is the Only Answer (shown during the last installment of Doctor Who Confidential), and voiced the Time Lord Straxus for three Big Finish dramas - Human Resources (2007), Sisters of the Flame, and The Vengeance of Morbius (both 2008)
  • Kevork Malikyan (Nurse) was Kemel Rudkin in The Wheel in Space
  • for David Ryall (Bullerby), Nick Brimble (Corder), and crew members Ian Punter, Dave King, and Ken Ledsam see my blog for To Play The King
  • Peter Symonds (Polecutt) was a Soldier in Terror of the Zygons
  • David Ashford (Newsreader) was Dad in The Greatest Show in the Galaxy
  • Derek Lea (Thug) was a stuntman on DalekBad WolfThe Parting of the WaysThe Age of Steel, and Partners in Crime
  • Trevor Steedman (Detective) was a Seabase Guard in Warriors of the Deep
  • Joseph Long (President) was Rocco Colasanto in Turn Left
  • Miles Richardson (Jardine) was Douglas Cavendish in both video spin-offs Downtime (1995), and Daemos Rising (the loose sequel to The Daemons, 2004), and voiced Charles Darwin for Bloodtide (BF, 2001), Braxiatel for Zagreus (BF, 2003) and Black Rod for The Gunpowder Plot (BBCi, 2011)
  • associate producer Tony Redston production manager onTime and the Rani and The Mark of the Rani

Friday, 5 April 2013

Doctor Who Vs. To Play The King

This four-part sequel to House of Cards (1990) again starred Ian Richardson as scheming Francis Urquhart (now the Tory Prime Minister), opposite Michael Kitchen as the newly crowned British monarch. This political drama, based on Michael Dobbs' novel, was first screened in the autumn of 1993, and featured sixteen Doctor Who cast and crew connections:
  • for director Paul Seed, Colin Jeavons (as Stamper), Christopher Owen (McKenzie), Kenneth Gilbert (Earle), Nigel Taylor (associate producer), Ken Ledsham (production designer), Rosalind Ebbutt (costume designer), Barrie Tharby (recordist), and Ian Punter (cinematographer) see my blog for House of Cards
  • Nicholas Farrell (Mycroft) voiced Gammades for Time Reef and Phil for A Perfect World (Big Finish, both 2008) and was Brian Green PM in Torchwood: Children of Earth
  • Frederick Treves (Quillington) was Brotadac in Meglos
  • Pip Torrens (Harding) was Headmaster Rocastle in Human Nature and The Family of Blood
  • Don Warrington (Gaunt) was the President of Great Britain (pictured, left) in Rise of the Cybermen, and voiced Rassilon for Seasons of FaerThe Time of the DaleksNeverland (all 2002), Zagreus (2003), Caerdroia, and The Next Life (both 2004) - all from Big Finish
  • Nick Brimble (Corder) voiced Shreeni for Exotron (2007), Dudley Jackson for The Eternal Summer (2009), Kith for Max Warp (2008), and Olaf Eriksson for The Book of Kells (all BF)
  • David Ryall (Bullerby) voiced both Carthok and Valentine for Phantasmagoria (BF, 1999)
  • George Raistrick (Gropeham) made his TV debut as a Guard in Day of the Daleks (part 3)
  • James Snell (DI Hackett) was Harry in The Daemons
  • John Bleasdale (Journalist) was one of the titular The Robots of Death
  • film editor Dave King edited The Mutants too
  • stunt arranger Terry Forrestal was a Driver in K9 and Company
  • casting assistant Andy Pryor has worked as casting director on NuWho since the programme was revived in 2005, as well as The Sarah Jane Adventures and every episode of Torchwood

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Special: Return of the Zygons!

Following yesterday's first script read-through for the Doctor Who anniversary special, publicity photos were released online by BBC Cardiff. 
Matt Smith, David Tennant, and Jenna Louise Coleman joined their latest co-star, the Welsh actress Joanna Page, best known for sitcom, Gavin & Stacey.
Today, the Corporation revealed that 'classic' series monsters, the Zygons will also feature in the forthcoming story. Often cited as Tannant's favourite Who baddie, these shape-shifting aliens' only television appearance was in Terror of the Zygons, way back in 1975.
Filming on the special began today, and the newly re-designed Zygon seen here was pictured on location, outside Neath, South Wales.