Sunday 30 June 2019
Buckle up and enjoy the high-speed ride with Keshet Productions’ new car show for ITV4
ITV today announced a brand new car show, Speed Freaks, which will air on ITV4 later this summer.
From Keshet Productions, this 6 x 60’ series will see entrepreneur and daredevil Zef Eisenberg take on his toughest challenge yet - to break the British land speed record in a car he plans to engineer himself.
With over 40 land speed records currently to his name, he’s already done it on a bike at the iconic Pendine Sands in Wales. Now Zef wants to finish what Sir Malcolm Campbell started in 1927 and break the 200mph barrier in a car and, in doing so, become the only person to hold the British land speed records on both two and four wheels.
In order to prepare for this dangerous feat, Zef is scouring the nation to meet fellow motoring mavericks and glean essential engineering know-how from their incredible “franken-machines”. Whether they’ve fitted a 24,000cc W12 aero-engine into a car, or built from scratch a full Dakar off-road racer, Zef’s going to get behind the wheel and under the bonnet of Britain’s fastest cars, bikes and boats.
Inspired by these extraordinary machines, Zef will challenge his own team of mechanics to take a different vehicle each week and make it as fast as humanly possible. Currently in production, each 60 minute episode will feature fantastic vehicles, adrenaline-filled action from behind the wheel, and incredible engineering.
The knowledge they gain will play a crucial part in helping this real-life Tony Stark and his team prepare Zef’s crazy 1200hp specially built road-legal Porsche 911 Turbo S for the series finale - his death-defying record attempt at Pendine Sands. Will Speed Freaks see Zef succeed and achieve a life-long ambition to take his place amongst the British legends of land speed?
Speed Freaks has been commissioned for ITV4 by Paul Mortimer, Head of Digital Channels and Satmohan Panesar, Commissioning Editor, Factual Entertainment. Executive Producers are Stephanie Fox and David G Williams from Keshet Productions. The series is distributed by Keshet International.
David Williams, Keshet Productions said, “This high-octane series features a feast of items and VTs geared up to indulge anyone with an interest in cars, motorsports and engineering. Zef’s need for speed and desire to break that land-speed record is infectious and makes for compelling viewing.”
Friday 28 June 2019
As James Corden takes a break from full time hosting duties this year due to work commitments, friends of the show will be sharing the reigns on Sky One’s BAFTA-winning original show, A League of Their Own.
With James set to host two episodes of the series, a host of famous friends will be taking to the hot seat for the remaining episodes. These include comedian and former panelist, Jack Whitehall; presenter extraordinaire, Clare Balding; A League of Their Own regular, David Walliams; queen of showbiz, Amanda Holden; British sprinter, Dina Asher Smith and the show’s very own Romesh Ranganathan.
The fourteenth series will also see the return of all the regular players. Jamie Redknapp will be welcoming Romesh Ranganthan back to his team and Freddie Flintoff will hold his position as blue team captain.
Zai Bennett, Director of Programming, Sky, said: “We’re delighted that James is hosting two of the shows this series but appreciate he has other work commitments this year. Therefore, we’ve got a brilliant line up of guests to keep his seat warm and we have no doubt that our new guest hosts will ensure that the laughs continue”
Among the fun planned for this year’s series, Freddie, Jamie and Romesh will take a two-day trip to Dartmoor, joining up with marines where they will be taken through an assault course and tasked with abseiling down a treacherous cliff face. Further VT’s to be announced.
Guests taking part in the series include boxing superstar, Tony Bellew; skiing sensation, Chemmy Alcott; comedians Rob Beckett and Tom Davis; I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here winner, Harry Redknapp; gymnast, Max Whitlock; speed skater, Elise Christie; former footballers, Alex Scott, David Ginola, Robin van Persie, Jermaine Jenas and Joe Cole; cricket legend, Jimmy Anderson; presenter, Helen Skelton and gold medal winner, Sam Queck.
With one in five British adults being unable to swim and one in three children leaving school without being able to swim, Channel 4 and Twofour, part of ITV Studios, today reveal the line-up for the new large-scale celebrity series, Sink or Swim (w/t) in support of Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C).
Joining the previously announced Olympic gold medallist Linford Christie and Coronation Street star Sair Khan will be Sky News anchor Kay Burley, The Last Leg’s Alex Brooker, TOWIE stars James ‘Arg’ Argent and Georgia Kousoulou, Blue singer Simon Webbe, Love Island’s Wes Nelson, Hollyoaks actress Rachel Adedeji, television presenter Diane Louise Jordan and Linford Christie’s fellow Olympic gold medallists, Tessa Sanderson and Greg Rutherford.
Sink or Swim (4 x 60’) attempts to erase the stigma of being a non-swimmer and follows the progress of our cast some complete non-swimmers, some who just need to polish up their skills as well as those with a fear of open water or those who have been taught to swim as children but now struggle to do so for health reasons – as they are pushed to their absolute limits.
The celebrities will be teamed with a group of leading figures and professionals from the world of swimming including Olympic silver medallist Keri-anne Payne and adventurer Ross Edgley (best known for being the first person in history to swim around Great Britain). Keri-anne and Ross will be lead-trainers, with support from Paralympic champion Ellie Simmonds. Together, the trainers will offer vital training and support to transform the celebrities into strong swimmers, capable of taking on a series of challenges. Each episode will culminate in a punishing qualification swim and the celebrities left standing (or in this case, swimming) at the end of the gruelling training process will take part in the ultimate open water challenge together as they attempt to swim the English Channel.
SU2C – a joint national fundraising campaign from Cancer Research UK and Channel 4 has to date raised over £62 million for research into cancer which will accelerate new cancer treatments to UK patients and save more lives.
Sink or Swim was commissioned for Channel 4 for by Commissioning Editor for Entertainment, Steven Handley. It will be executive produced by Mel Leach, Andrew Mackenzie and Caroline Davies for Twofour.
Steven Handley, Commissioning Editor for Entertainment at Channel 4 says: “Sink or Swim promises to be one of the most perilous Stand Up To Cancer Celebrity Challenges we have ever attempted. It will push the boundaries of what Celebrities will endure and overcome to raise money and awareness for charity and we are delighted to be working with TwoFour on this ambitious project. I’m thrilled to announce such an incredible and diverse cast for the series. They all have truly captivating stories behind why they find swimming terrifying and I cannot wait to see them embark upon this epic challenge.”
Mel Leach, Executive Producer for Twofour added, “Swimming the Channel is a monumental feat for even the very best swimmers, let alone those who can’t even swim a length. Our brave celebrities will have to overcome their fears and embark on a huge mental and physical transformation to complete this epic challenge.”
Posted by JD at 19:01
Tuesday 25 June 2019
Thursday 4th July 2019
9.00pm - 10.00pm
“When I think about her, I think of her playing with her brothers and her sister. If those were her last moments on this earth, then that’s what I would have chosen for her… That must have been a lovely afternoon for them. Both the boys are dads now. I can live with her not being here any more. I can’t live with them not being able to live their lives because she’s not. And I can’t have him [Roy Whiting] take any more than he took. He took enough that day and I won’t give him any more.” - Sara Payne
In this new documentary for ITV’s Crime & Punishment strand, Susanna Reid speaks to Sara Payne about the murder of her eight-year-old daughter Sarah, reflecting on the devastating impact it has had on her family, and the lasting legacy of her death nearly 20 years on.
The abduction and murder of Sarah Payne from a field near her grandparents’ home in Sussex in July 2000 shocked the nation, particularly when it was revealed the culprit Roy Whiting was a convicted paedophile who had committed a similar crime - though not murdered the girl - some years previously.
Sarah’s mother campaigned to change the law, allowing concerned parents access to the sex offender register, and succeeded in changing the criminal justice system. A decade on, as she turns 50, Sara Payne gives Susanna a vivid insight into her daughter, her family and the effects the murder and ensuing court case had on those left behind in their wake.
Featuring interviews with Sarah’s brothers and sister, as well as her grandparents, who have never spoken before, the documentary explores the case from the Payne family’s perspective, going behind the headlines to explore how they coped at the time, and the long-lasting impact it has had on all of them.
This is an Optomen production for ITV
Posted by JD at 17:00
Keeley Hawes is to star as the real-life detective who brought five killers to justice in the heartbreaking true story of Banaz Mahmod, the young Londoner murdered by her own family for falling in love with the wrong man.
Written by Gwyneth Hughes (Vanity Fair, Dark Angel, Remember Me), Honour tells the powerful story of Detective Chief Inspector Caroline Goode’s passionate search to discover the fate of missing 20-year old Banaz.
DCI Goode, played by Keeley Hawes, discovered that Banaz had been to the police five times to report threats to her life from members of her own family. Appalled that her own colleagues had missed multiple chances to save a young woman’s life and prevent a so-called “honour” killing, Caroline vowed that she would not rest until she finally got justice for Banaz. It was a promise that quickly became personally consuming. This tense and emotionally vivid drama brings Caroline’s long and unwavering quest to life.
Commented Gwyneth Hughes:
“Banaz Mahmod met her brutish death on the orders of her own father and uncle, which I find profoundly unsettling. That this story is ultimately so uplifting is down to the sheer heroism and dedication of the police officers who hunted down her killers. Caroline Goode and her team felt real love for this girl they’d never met. I found their unusual warmth and humanity deeply moving.”
Commented Keeley Hawes:
“It is a privilege to be working on Honour as Buddy Club's first ever project. In a time where honour killings are still rife, it is critical to shine a light on such an important subject. Banaz Mahmod's story, and DCI Goode’s subsequent investigation, is certainly one that needs to be told and I am proud to be a part of it.”
Filming will begin in September.
Monday 24 June 2019
London Kills - Series 1 is released on DVD on July 1st
From the creator of Suspects comes gritty, gripping new police drama London Kills. London's best detectives take on its worst crimes in this slick and thrilling mystery series which sees the world’s most exciting city as the backdrop for a string of killings – all investigated by an elite murder squad.
Hugo Speer (The Full Monty, Britannia) stars as the brooding head of department DI David Bradford, who returns to work after three months compassionate leave, after the disappearance of his wife. Tensions arise as he clashes with the ambitious DS Vivienne Cole (Sharon Small – The Inspector Lynley Mysteries, Trust Me) who has been running the murder squad in his absence. The crack team includes seasoned detective DC Rob Brady (Bailey Patrick – Bodyguard, Eastenders) and big-hearted trainee TDC Billie Fitzgerald (Tori Allen-Martin – Unforgotten, Pure), whose inexperience may get her into trouble. Guest stars include: Jennie Jacques (Vikings), Glynis Barber (Night & Day), Laurie Brett (Eastenders) and Frances Tomelty (Catastrophe).
Delving into the gruesome metropolitan murders that are all part of his day job, David must grapple with the constant pain of not knowing what has happened to his loved one. As suspicions are raised, he has to put his personal issues aside to focus on his job and learn to trust his colleagues….but can he solve the case closest to him?
Created by crime TV don Paul Marquess, known for his work on The Bill, M.I.T.: Murder Investigation Team, Crime Stories and Suspects, London Kills is the perfectly polished result of the passion and expertise of a true police procedural aficionado. Shot documentary style on hand held cameras, this nail-biting drama will keep you on the edge of your seat.
London Kills will be available on DVD and digitally to download and keep from iTunes, Amazon Prime Video and Google Play.
Buy from Amazon Here (Opens in a new window)
For your chance to win just answer the question below.
Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 08-07-19
2. No alternative prize is available
3. When the competition ends as indicated on this page, any and all entries received after this point will not count and emails blacklisted due to not checking this page first.
4. Winners will be chosen randomly and will be informed via email.
"This album basically is my childhood. Mixing the movies I was obsessed with and the big band music I felt such an affinity when everyone else was listening to A-Ha." - Joe Stilgoe
The album continues Joe's much loved and critically acclaimed style of combining great songs from the past with an exciting and relevant new spin. Connecting the dots between the 50s and 80s, THE HEAT IS ON! shines a spotlight on some of the greatest movie songs from 80s blockbusters - Beverly Hills Cop, Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure, Batman, Short Circuit, The Karate Kid and many more.
Using the great arrangers of the 1950s as inspiration - Nelson Riddle, Robert Farnan, Sammy Nestico - these classic songs are almost unrecognisable in their new guise as perhaps the lost standards from the decade of swing and rock 'n' roll.
Says Joe - "Growing up in the 80s in Southern England wasn't much like the movies, but on the daydreamy days I would imagine I was Tom Hanks in Big, Michael J Fox in Back To The Future, Judd Nelson in The Breakfast Club and sometimes even Mary Stuart Masterson in Some Kind Of Wonderful. I fell in love with the music from American films, as they seemed to have everything I longed for - the wide streets with white clapboard houses, perfect front lawns and strangely amenable older residents with hoses, the bikes with armchair seats ridden by the kids in ET, the sense of adventure and stories in Stand By Me, the massive drums and massive choruses from those ballads that only the 80s knew how to deliver. All that was missing for a boy who would go on to dream of singing with a big band was that - big bands. I don't remember any big band music from the 80s, or at least, none that reached me. So, for this album, I thought we'd bring it all together."
What if all these songs from all these life-changing movies were actually big band classics?
Joe Stilgoe is a true modern-day entertainer, known globally as a performer of wit, style and a level of musicianship which has seen him be recognised as one of the best singer
Buy from Amazon Here (Opens in a new window)
For your chance to win just answer the question below.
Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 08-07-19
2. No alternative prize is available
3. When the competition ends as indicated on this page, any and all entries received after this point will not count and emails blacklisted due to not checking this page first.
4. Winners will be chosen randomly and will be informed via email.
Friday 21 June 2019
Sky announces upcoming original Christmas special, Cinderella: After Ever After, starring David Walliams
Sky announced upcoming original Christmas special, Cinderella: After Ever After, starring David Walliams, Sian Gibson, Celia Imrie and Sir Tom Courtenay
This Christmas, Sky One turns the classic Cinderella story on its head, thanks to new Sky original comedy Cinderella: After Ever After starring David Walliams. Sian Gibson, Celia Imrie and Sir Tom Courtenay also join the all-star line-up in this King Bert Productions special.
All fairy tales end with ‘happy ever after’ but what happens after ever after? The anarchic 60-minute Christmas special begins where the fairy tale ends; Cinderella (Sian Gibson) has just married her Prince Charming (David Walliams), but soon has a rude awakening when she realises married life isn’t all it’s cracked up to be when you have an image-obsessed, floss-dancing, hip-hop rapping husband. Perhaps a glass slipper fitting your foot is not sufficient grounds for a lifelong commitment after all?
This heart-warming festive show follows Cinderella (Sian Gibson) as she fights to save The King (Sir Tom Courtenay) from the traps of her evil stepmother Madame Blackheart (Celia Imrie) and her conspiring and moronic stepsisters Dumbella and Rubella.
David Walliams, said: “When you read a story to a child and it ends ‘they lived happily ever after’ the child often asks what happened next? Now, for the first time in history, we will reveal what happened next for Cinderella, Prince Charming and the Wicked Stepmother. What happened, ‘After Ever After’? We have assembled a magnificent cast and crew for this one-off family comedy film. It promises to be a real treat for TV viewers this Christmas. I want to say a huge thank you to Sky for making it possible”.
ITV today confirmed that BAFTA winning comedy drama, Cold Feet, has been recommissioned for a ninth series from acclaimed creator and writer Mike Bullen and award winning producers Big Talk Productions.
Six further episodes of the Manchester based series will begin shooting later this year commissioned by ITV’s Head of Drama, Polly Hill. Cold Feet stars James Nesbitt, Hermione Norris, Robert Bathurst, Fay Ripley and John Thomson.
At the end of series eight Jenny (Fay Ripley) was dealing with her cancer treatment and with husband Pete (John Thomson) by her side, preparing herself for the long road ahead; David (Robert Bathurst) was putting his life back together with the support of his friends; while Karen (Hermione Norris) and Adam (James Nesbitt) were figuring out the boundaries of their burgeoning relationship and the impact it had on the close knit group.
Executive Producers for the series will be Kathryn O’Connor for Big Talk North alongside Big Talk CEO Kenton Allen and Managing Director Matthew Justice and writer Mike Bullen. The Producer is Jim Poyser.
Polly Hill said:
“We’re delighted to be returning to Manchester for more of Cold Feet. The audience reaction to the last series was incredible with many saying it’s getting better with age! We’re pleased to be working again with Mike Bullen whose moving, funny, complex and absorbing scripts are a joy to commission.”
Kenton Allen said:
“As I keep telling myself, 50 is the new 30, so we’re delighted to be able to continue to tell the stories of these much loved characters, who many of us have grown up with - and we’re delighted to be shooting again in Manchester and growing Big Talk North’s drama output with Cold Feet as our flagship show.”
Mike Bullen added:
"I think we were all overwhelmed by the amazing response to the latest series. Jenny's cancer in particular seemed to touch a nerve with viewers. There are still stories to tell for these characters but I'm conscious that we've raised the bar. The delight at being recommissioned has already been replaced by trepidation at the weight of expectation.”
The six episode series will shoot later this year in Manchester to air on ITV in 2020.
Sidse Babett Knudsen, Mark Lewis Jones, Joanna Scanlan, Genevieve Barr join Sarah Lancashire in The Light
The Light, set in the fictional town of Glyngolau and currently filming entirely on location in Wales, explores a forgotten community devastated by disaster. An explosion on the construction site of a much-needed and sought-after regeneration project in this “left-behind” town claims the lives of many children who have broken into the building site to make mischief. As grief gives way to anger the community finds itself forced to confront difficult truths amid the search for justice.
BAFTA and RTS-winner Sarah Lancashire (Kiri, Happy Valley) plays Polly Bevan the wife of the local politician who championed the project and the person to whom the community turns following the disaster. Councillor Iwan Bevan, her husband, played by Mark Lewis Jones (National Treasure, Keeping Faith), loves his home town and is a respected figurehead for the community. He was passionate about restoring the town to its former glory, but at what cost...?
Behind closed doors Iwan and Polly’s relationship is more complicated than outward appearances suggest, made even more so by the fact that their rebellious teenage daughter Leona, played by newcomer Jade Croot (Casualty), does all she can to aggravate her father. But when Leona suffers life-changing injuries as a result of the accident on her father’s site, the family finds itself tested to the limits.
BAFTA-winner and Emmy-nominee Sidse Babett Knudsen (Borgen, Westworld) plays Harriet Paulsen, the executive at Kallbridge Developments which has overseen the project in Glyngolau. On hearing the news of the disaster, Harriet immediately heads to the site but finds herself the focus of raw grief and anger. She’s tough with a ruthless streak but her desire for self-preservation and to protect the business she’s helped build comes into sharp conflict with her compulsion to do the right thing. Her Executive Assistant at Kallbridge is Tim, played by Nabhaan Rizwan (Informer, 1917). Tim is smart and eager, but his good sense may be clouded by his desire to protect Harriet at all costs.
While the search for the truth behind these events unfolds, the community seeks strength in each other. Polly relies on her oldest friends, like her, born and raised in Glyngolau. Angela Griffiths is played by BAFTA-nominated and RTS-winner Joanna Scanlan (No Offence, Getting On) and single parent Greta is played by BAFTA Cymru Award-winner Eiry Thomas (Keeping Faith, Rillington Place). Both have lost daughters in the accident. The women’s grief begins to turn to fury and a demand for action and justice. Who is to blame?
Debbie Kethin’s life, played by Genevieve Barr (The Silence, Press), is also shattered by events. She must wrestle with the fact that Alan, her husband, was responsible for site security and that the disaster, which also took his life, happened on his watch.
An outsider in town, Martin Harris, played by Shaun Parkes (Line of Duty, The Lost Honour of Christopher Jefferies) finds himself at the centre of events in Glyngolau. After rescuing Leona from the wreckage of the collapsed building, he and Polly find in each other someone they can truly trust. He’s not the only outsider, as Philip Walters, played by Adrian Scarborough (Gosford Park, Killing Eve), is drawn to Glyngolau after the disaster. He circles the community in the aftermath of the explosion, asking questions and probing for details about what happened. Who is he, what’s his agenda, and should the community place their trust in his action plan for justice? As the stakes rise for all concerned, and as each side looks to see how the law can best serve their needs, Laura, played by Ruth Madeley (Years and Years, Don’t Take My Baby), is hired by Kallbridge to serve as Harriet’s counsel.
The Light (w/t) aims to explore the nexus between blame, revenge and justice, and explores the contentious question of responsibility - social, corporate and personal – that the accident gives rise to.
It's almost time. Stranger Things 3 premieres July 4. Only on Netflix.
The third season of the American science fiction-horror web television series Stranger Things, titled onscreen as Stranger Things 3, will premiere exclusively via Netflix's web streaming service on July 4, 2019. The series was created by the Duffer Brothers, who are also executive producers along with Shawn Levy, Dan Cohen and Iain Paterson.
The third season stars Winona Ryder, David Harbour, Finn Wolfhard, Millie Bobby Brown, Gaten Matarazzo, Caleb McLaughlin, Noah Schnapp, Sadie Sink, Natalia Dyer, Charlie Heaton, Joe Keery, Dacre Montgomery, Cara Buono, and Maya Hawke. Cary Elwes, Jake Busey, Francesca Reale, and Priah Ferguson also appear in recurring roles
Monday 17 June 2019
"Even during the time that I was stabbing her, I was struggling with myself to stop" Paris Bennett
"He'll [Paris] will be nice, personable, polite. He is very charming when he wants to be. I mean he is a psychopath" Charity Bennett (Paris' mother)
"I think viewers at the end of this are going to be absolutely stunned that somebody like this could potentially be back on the streets in a few years time." Piers Morgan
In this brand new, ground-breaking and revelatory 1 x 60 minute documentary made by Plum Pictures, Piers Morgan ventures behind bars for an extraordinary encounter with diagnosed psychopath Paris Bennett, a man who is more intelligent, more cunning and more manipulative than any criminal Piers has met before.
In 2007, Paris – a 13-year-old with a genius level IQ - stabbed to death his 4-year-old sister, Ella. This was no impulsive fit of rage, but a cold, deliberate act planned for weeks beforehand and born of festering resentment.
In Bennett's first interview on British television he admits to Piers that the murder was driven by a calculated desire to inflict pain and misery upon his mother, Charity – who in a unique format twist is watching the encounter as it unfolds on a TV monitor in a nearby room.
Paris Bennett said: "Yes, I did commit a monstrous crime but does that one mistake define my entire life...I don't think it does".
Charity has stood by her son even though she fears that when he gets out, Paris could still harbour violent intentions towards her. Unlike many of the American murderers Piers has interviewed, it is likely that one day he will walk out of prison a free man. Despite his heinous crime, Paris is first eligible for parole in 8 years' time.
The situation is now even more complex as Charity has a younger son, Phoenix. Charity fears that, after his release, they both could be a target for Paris' psychopathic resentment. Experts have advised Charity to go into hiding not only to protect herself but Phoenix, too. Soon, Charity may face an incredibly tough choice: to walk away from the son she has stood by for over 10 years in order to protect her youngest child.
As Piers burrows into the workings of Paris' psyche over one intense hour, the interview is also viewed by a former elite FBI profiler and one of America's leading criminologists. At key moments they forensically analyse Paris' answers and give us key insights into the workings of his mind.
Dr Casey Jordan said: "Psychopathy can't be cured. He will not, can not change. He can be managed which is why he is in a prison but it will never go away. In my opinion, he should never get out."
With a story that will leave any parent genuinely torn over what they would do in Charity's situation - and expert analysis that adds a fascinating layer to the prison encounter - Piers' interview with Paris lays bare the workings of a dangerous mind, and the terrible toll a violent psychopath can inflict on those who love them the most.
ITV on 27th June at 9pm
Posted by JD at 20:21
Thursday 13 June 2019
Sky and HBO have commissioned a new six-part drama limited series, The Third Day starring Jude Law.
The Third Day is the first original drama to be produced by Sky’s new production house, Sky Studios, in partnership with Plan B Entertainment, the world-renowned immersive theatre company Punchdrunk International and writer Dennis Kelly (Utopia, Pulling).
It is the latest commission from Sky and HBO as part of their collaboration on original projects and it comes hot on the heels of their critically acclaimed and internationally successful mini-series Chernobyl.
Jude Law stars as Sam, who after being drawn to a mysterious Island off the British Coast, is thrown into the unusual world of its secretive inhabitants. Isolated from the mainland, the rituals of the island begin to overwhelm him, and he is confronted by a trauma from his past. As the line between reality and fantasy blurs, Sam finds himself immersed in an emotional quest which puts him at odds with the islanders and begins to threaten their way of life.
The six part, one-hour episode limited series will be directed by BAFTA Award-winner Marc Munden (National Treasure, Utopia) and will be produced by Adrian Sturges (Chimerica, The Enfield Haunting). Kit de Waal and Dean O’Loughlin are also writers for the series.
Production will start on The Third Day in the UK in July 2019 and the limited series will air in the UK and Ireland next year on Sky Atlantic and streaming service NOW TV, and in the US on HBO.
Channel 4’s iconic adventure gameshow is back with all-new celebrity line-ups taking on the maze and its brand new Eastern Zone, it was announced today (WEDS).
Maze Master Richard Ayoade will once again lead the celebrities through each zone in this 6’x60 series, which will see teams take on a host of skill, physical, mental and mystery challenges, in the hope of winning crystals that can be exchanged for time in the iconic Crystal Dome. The celebrities will once again aim to win a prize sum for Stand Up To Cancer.
Leading the pack of celebrities that are set to tackle the new challenges of the maze is TV star Gemma Collins, along with TV presenter Carol Vorderman; comedian Ellie Taylor; reality TV star James “Arg” Argent and broadcaster and writer Rick Edwards.
TV presenter Anita Rani captains a team with TV presenter and professional dancer AJ Pritchard; actor and comedian Tom Rosenthal; gold medal winning Paralympian Hannah Cockroft; and sports presenter Jeff Stelling.
Comedian Vic Reeves; TV personality Ferne McCann; former English cricketer Graeme Swann; and comedian and presenter Susan Calman will take on the maze with actress Nancy Sorrell at the helm.
Ackley Bridge actress Sunetra Sarker will attempt to steer politician Ann Widdecome; reality TV star Wes Nelson; TV presenter Matthew Wright; and actress Nikki Sanderson to victory.
Comedian Al Murray; actress Kara Tointon; Hollyoaks actor Ashley Taylor Dawson; and reality TV star Olivia Attwood take on the maze with team captain TV and radio presenter Melvin Odoom.
Actor Steve Pemberton takes charge of professional dancer Oti Mabuse; reality TV star Jack Fincham; TV presenter Anna Richardson; and comedian Russell Kane.
With the introduction of the new Eastern Zone - influenced by the historic art, architecture and monuments of East Asia, and the added pressure of the new Mega Crystal option – a chance to supersize one crystal that, if won, could give them double the time of a regular crystal, there are sure to be a few unexpected hurdles in this new series.
The Crystal Maze will begin Friday 21st June, 8pm on Channel 4.
The Crystal Maze is a Fizz production, part of the Banijay Group. The executive producer for Fizz is Neale Simpson.
Channel 4 today announces cast, with a first-look image, for This Way Up (previously announced as Happy AF); A pin-sharp and poignant new six-part comedy in association with Hulu in the U.S., written by and starring, actor and comedian Aisling Bea (The Fall, The Comedy Lineup).
Bea plays Aine, a whip smart English-as-a-foreign language (TEFL) teacher trying to pull her life back together after a “teeny little nervous breakdown", as her sister Shona, played by Sharon Horgan (Catastrophe, Pulling), worries, not only about her younger sibling, but also about her own life choices. The TEFL school where Aine teaches brings together a room full of characters also trying to find their own hope, direction and happiness in this messy world.
Joining Bea and Horgan are Aasif Mandvi (The Daily Show, Halal in the Family) in the role of Shona’s boyfriend Vish, Tobias Menzies (The Crown, Outlander, Game Of Thrones) as Richard, father to one of Aine’s students and Indira Varma (Patrick Melrose, Luther, Game of Thrones) playing Shona’s colleague and confidante Charlotte.
Other members of the cast include Sorcha Cusack as Aine and Shona’s mother, Chris Geere as Aine’s ex-boyfriend, Freddie, Kadiff Kirwan as Aine’s roommate Bradley, Ricky Grover as Aine’s friend Tom, Ekow Quartey as Aine’s boss James and Pik-Sen Lim, Todor Jordanov, Jassem Mougari, Daniela Spataru as Aine’s TEFL students.
Aisling Bea, writer and star, said: "After years of scripts and projects that never made it to air, this show is a bit of a dream come true, so I really bloody hope you like it. Sharon and I first played sisters in a TV show that got cancelled about eight years ago and we have gone on many drunken nights out across the world together since to stay in character for this project.
Friday 7 June 2019
ITV commissions six part thriller, Tenacity, from screenwriter Peter A. Dowling. Produced by Bad Wolf and Entertainment One
ITV's Head of Drama, Polly Hill, has commissioned the high octane, six-part thriller television series Tenacity from Bad Wolf in partnership with Entertainment One.
When a dead submariner is discovered aboard the British nuclear submarine, Tenacity, disgraced military detective Danielle 'Dan' Lewis is sent to investigate the accident. But when the case turns to murder it puts her in conflict with Tenacity's crew, her Navy superiors, and into the crosshairs of an assassin who has infiltrated her nuclear base with an agenda that will not only destroy national security but kill Dan and everyone she loves.
Commented Polly Hill:
"Peter has written an incredible script with a brilliant and complex heroine leading an investigation that genuinely surprises. I am so delighted to be working with Bad Wolf and Entertainment One on this incredible drama, that promises to have an audience hooked from the start. We are excited to have this on ITV and think it will be addictive viewing."
Inspired by J.S. Law's novel, Tenacity, the series is created and written by Peter A. Dowling, whose credits including Flightplan and Reasonable Doubt.
Posted by JD at 13:08
Deadwater Fell (w/t), a new 4X60' drama written by Daisy Coulam (Humans, Grantchester) and produced by Kudos, part of Endemol Shine UK, follows two families in the aftermath of a horrific crime. The series, set in the small fictional town of Kirkdarroch, starts filming this month entirely on location in Scotland.
When a seemingly perfect and happy family is murdered by someone they know and trust, the small Scottish community they call home becomes riven with mistrust and suspicion as those closest to the family begin to question everything they thought they knew about their friends...
As much as it is an exploration of the anatomy of a terrible crime, Deadwater Fell (w/t) is equally a forensic dissection of two relationships – Kate and Tom, Jess and Steve. BAFTA and NTA-winning David Tennant (Broadchurch, Dr Who, Good Omens) stars as Tom Kendrick. The local GP, a trusted, admired and much-liked member of the community. A doting father to three little girls, a loving husband, his marriage to Kate, played by Anna Madeley (Patrick Melrose, The Crown, Utopia) appears nothing short of perfect. Kate teaches at the local primary school working alongside her best friend, and closest confidante, Jess Milner.
Jess, played by Cush Jumbo (The Good Fight, The Good Wife, Vera), used to be a bit of an outsider, someone who could never really settle down. But when she met Steve 6 years ago, she quickly moved to Kirkdarroch and made a home with him. She helps him look after his two sons from his previous marriage with whom he shares custody with his ex. Steve, played by Matthew McNulty (Versailles, Cleaning Up, The Terror), was born and raised in Kirkdarroch. A Police Sergeant, he's not had to deal with much crime in the sleepy village and their happy life together is only marred by their struggle to have a child of their own.
But in one night the illusions of happiness and contentment are shattered as the community is drawn to Kate and Tom's family home in the forest by the flicker of flames and the smell of smoke. Amid the confusion of the house fire, Kate and her three children are found dead, and Tom, who is found alive, is rushed to hospital. It soon becomes apparent, however, that Kate and her children weren't killed in the fire and the village realise that something unspeakable has happened. As the fingers of suspicion point first to Tom, then to others as more details of that night emerge, Jess becomes desperate to understand what could have caused such a tragedy, and what secrets lie at the root of this terrible act. She puts everything she has on the line to get to the truth, no matter how difficult that truth may be to accept.
Of the series David Tennant says, "Daisy Coulam has written something very special, chilling and fascinating with these scripts. I am honoured and delighted to be part of telling this extraordinary story."
Cush Jumbo adds, "I'm so excited to be part of bringing Daisy's dark and mysterious story and the character of Jess to life."
Posted by JD at 13:04
A brand-new entertainment series for E4 will put teams of bluffers to the ultimate test. Pants on Fire (w/t) will see new and emerging faces from the world of comedy go head-to-head in an extreme bluffing show to try to impress a celebrity jury, with host Emma Willis.
In each show, three teams of fearless comics will plot their own crazy and outrageous challenges. They could come up with anything: From swimming with sharks to winning a pro-wrestling battle royale. Then in front of a studio audience and a celebrity jury, the three teams will present evidence to help prove that they have completed their audacious stunts. The celeb panel will interrogate the teams to figure out if they are telling the truth or telling fibs. Will the teams have authentically pulled off these improbable stunts, or have they just been pulling a fast one?
Posted by JD at 13:02
Tuesday 4 June 2019
Thu 13 Jun 2019
9.00pm - 10.00pm
“This is a journey to a pretty bleak place, a maximum security prison, where there are men being held who know that they are facing a sentence of death… I just wonder what he’s thinking, whether he thinks he deserves his punishment, whether he will ask forgiveness, and what his thoughts are on the years and years he has spent in prison.” - Susanna Reid
In the first part of this new two-part documentary series in ITV’s Crime & Punishment strand, Susanna Reid travels to Huntsville in Texas, home of the most active death chamber in the United States, to come face-to-face with death row inmate Patrick Murphy, who is confronting the imminent prospect of being put to death as his execution date draws ever closer.
Murphy was one of the members of the notorious ‘Texas 7’ gang who violently murdered a police officer while on the run, after he and six other criminals launched one of the most infamous prison breakouts in American history.
With his execution date set and his final days counting down, during an in-depth interview Murphy recalls what led him to the brink of the death penalty - from the prison escape which led to the murder, to how he and the other convicts managed to overpower prison guards and evade capture. He recounts his part in the crime and how he feels about the fate that is only days away.
Delving into the details of the crime, Susanna discovers that Murphy may not be as culpable as she first thought of the murder itself. He didn’t pull the trigger that killed the police officer, and he wasn’t at the scene of the robbery which led to the murder in the year 2000.
Susanna meets lawyers fighting for and against his execution, the family of the victim, as well as Murphy’s son, who grew up not knowing his father until he broke out of prison and became one of the most wanted men in the United States. As Murphy lives out his last few days and hours, she gains a vivid insight into the impact his execution will have on them all.
Susanna asks what the small-town, believed to be broadly pro-execution community of Huntsville feels about Murphy’s sentence, and whether he should pay with his life for the crime. She also finds out what it’s like to live with an execution chamber on their doorstep.
When his execution day arrives, Susanna is outside the death chamber, with those closest to the crime waiting for news from inside where Murphy’s final moments are counting down,.
When Susanna first meets Murphy, facing him on the other side of a visiting booth window on death row, she asks what brought him to this point. He says: “A lot of poor choices that I’ve made. Basically we all have a choice to do one thing or another, it’s just I’ve made the wrong choices almost every time. And so really, basically, I’ve screwed up.”
During the encounter, Murphy recalls shocking details about his past life of crime - as well as revealing to Susanna his remorse and feelings about his impending execution. Though in favour of execution in principle, he is appealing his sentence and says: “I disagree with the reason why, but I’m at peace with what may happen… You hope for the best and expect the worst. And I’m expecting the worst.”
His lawyer David Dow, who is managing his appeal, says he doesn’t believe Murphy deserves to be executed as he was the getaway driver, and wasn’t at the scene of the shooting. He says: “Six of the so-called ‘Texas 7’ went into the store and participated in the robbery. My client Patrick Murphy wasn’t in the store. Was Murphy a major participant in the armed robbery that led to the murder of the police officer? I don’t think so.”
Dixie Buchanan, the partner of police officer Aubrey Hawkins who was gunned down by the gang, says she has no regrets about Murphy facing the lethal injection. She says: “Every time one of the ‘Texas 7’ is executed, I do feel relief. I don’t have any sympathy, I think he deserves to die. Period.”
Murphy’s son Patrick III provides an insight into his father, who he has only met three times - all since his arrest - and says he feels an unusual kinship with the victim’s family. He says: “It’s not exactly something to be proud of when your father’s a cop killer… I think about Aubrey Hawkins, usually around Christmas time. I think he had a son. That kid has grown up not knowing his father and I can sympathise with that because I didn’t know mine.”
Huntsville is a town centred around a cluster of prisons, an execution chamber and a death row museum, employing about 6,700 people in total. Susanna speaks to local people and asks them whether they are in favour of the death sentence.
Among those she speaks to is former Huntsville public information officer Michelle Lyons, who witnessed an estimated 300-plus executions, and says her view on the process began to change once she became a mother. She says: “Back then, I don’t think I really thought about it, ever. But when I became a parent in ‘05, that’s when I really started to struggle with it. Seeing the inmates’ moms watch this execution, and it tore me up.”
As the time of Murphy’s execution looms, his lawyers are still filing appeals aimed at a late stay of execution - including one stating that he would like his Buddhist Monk, Rev Shih, to be present - despite the fact Christian ministers are usually the only religious figures allowed in the chamber. Outside the death chamber, Murphy’s son Patrick III tells Susanna: “It may sound cold-hearted but I’m just here to make sure it’s over.”
Posted by JD at 12:55