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Monday, 24 June 2019

Competition: Win London Kills - Series 1 on DVD


London Kills - Series 1 is released on DVD on July 1st

And to celebrate we have a great competition for you and 3 copies on DVD to give away.

Synopsis
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.

Which actor stars as the brooding head of department DI David Bradford in London Kills?

Send you name, address and of course the answer to competition@jonn.co.uk


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.

Competition: Win Inspector Montalbano - Collection 9 on DVD


Inspector Montalbano - Collection 9 is released on DVD on July 1st

And to celebrate we have a great competition for you and 3 copies on DVD to give away.

Synopsis
OUR FAVOURITE Sicilian detective Inspector Montalbano returns for his final enthralling series of intrigue, drama and fine food, set against a stunning sun-drenched backdrop.

The final episodes of the hugely popular, long-running drama will be served up on digital and DVD as Inspector Montalbano Collection 9 courtesy of Acorn Media International, following its run on BBC4.

Based on Andrea Camilleri’s bestselling books, the show is a TV ratings hit and stars Luca Zingaretti as the eponymous much-loved icon of contemporary detective drama.  The series has all of the thrills of Scandi-noir, but with fine food, Sicilian culture and the warmth of the Mediterranean sun.

Salvo Montalbano is a sharp, unconventional detective who must fight to succeed within Italy's precarious justice system, alongside his trusted colleagues. The final two feature length delights find him amidst a refugee crisis, tying up some murderous loose ends and tackling a triple blast from the past.

Buy from Amazon Here (Opens in a new window)

For your chance to win just answer the question below.

Which actor plays Salvo Montalbano, the police chief of Vig├áta?

Send you name, address and of course the answer to competition@jonn.co.uk


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.

Competition: Win Joe Stilgoe - The Heat Is On! - Swinging The 80s on Audio CD


On 28th June, Silva Screen Records will release Joe Stilgoe - The Heat Is On: Swinging The 80s, Joe Stilgoe’s album of 80s movie hits arranged in a 50s big band style.

And to celebrate we have a great competition for you and 3 copies on CD to give away.

Synopsis
"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.

In which decade did Joe grow up in, in Southern England, Was it the 70s, 80s or 90s?

Send you name, address and of course the answer to competition@jonn.co.uk

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”.

Cold Feet to return to ITV for a ninth series


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.

Stranger Things 3 | Final Trailer | Netflix


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

Wednesday, 19 June 2019

BBC One announces Gary Lineker: My Grandad’s Untold War


The Second World War continues to touch all of our lives, but despite the number of films and print stories dedicated to the war, there are still extraordinary new stories to be told. In Gary Lineker: My Grandad’s Untold War (w/t), a one hour film for BBC One, Gary Lineker explores a brutal but often overlooked chapter.

Gary Lineker says: “My grandfather never talked to me about the war, but I've since discovered a little about what happened to him and his colleagues. This made me curious to discover more. Seventy five years on, it's important that we don't forget the lessons and horrors of war."

Charlotte Moore, Director, BBC Content, says: "Gary is one of the country’s most popular presenters and this is a fascinating chance to explore the war through his grandfather’s unique experiences. This documentary will show how individuals lives can be changed forever by global conflicts and yet when they return home their sacrifice is too easily forgotten."

Abigail Priddle, Commissioning Editor, says: "So many of us have that sense of curiosity about what our grandparents did in the war. Following in his grandfather’s footsteps, Gary will learn more about how his family contributed to the Allies’ success in WWII and allow us all to get a greater understanding of how this conflict shaped a generation."

In this film, Gary follows in the footsteps of his grandfather - an ordinary man caught up in extraordinary events in the Mediterranean theatre of war. Through an immersive journey in to his grandfather's service, Gary will uncover a whole new take on this iconic part of our shared national story, and take a fresh look at the history of World War Two.

As a member of the Royal Army Medical Corps, Gary's grandfather was involved in a key campaign in Italy, but despite risking life and limb on the front lines, he and his fellow soldiers were branded 'D-Day Dodgers'.

While the veterans of the D-Day landings in Normandy have gone down in history as heroes, Gary wants to know why men like his grandfather were treated by some as second-class veterans, and told they had it easy. As he follows his story and gets hands-on with history, Gary will uncover heroic, deeply personal and harrowing stories not only of his grandfather but of the men he fought alongside in Italy.

BBC Four presents A Night In With Bros


Following the success of the year’s most talked about documentary, Bros: After The Screaming Stops, 1980’s pop icons Matt and Luke Goss have been invited to return to BBC Four in July to curate an entire evening of programming inspired by their childhood, their musical influences and long careers in and out of the spotlight.

A Night In With Bros follows previous curated nights on BBC Four - Keith Richards’ Lost Weekend and Boys On Film: A Night With Duran Duran. Matt and Luke will be revealing the shows and artists that inspired them growing up, introducing nostalgic clips and programmes from the BBC archive as well as interviewing specially invited guests in the studio.

There will also be brand new footage filmed with the brothers in the aftermath of their rise back to the top, as they continue their efforts to rebuild their friendship and fractured relationship. This new material will feature exclusive studio content and a first behind-the-scenes look at their preparations for their imminent shows in London, Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland.

Matt Goss says: “Throughout our long careers, we have been inspired by so many musical influences, and we’re so excited to take a walk down memory lane and share some of our most favourite moments that have led us to this point. There are going to be quite a few surprises and we can’t wait to share this special evening on BBC Four with our fans.”

Luke Goss says: “As we prepare for our Irish and UK shows, we wanted to come together to create a whole evening of entertainment with friends and special guests. We wanted to show some of the music, film and TV that we grew up watching and create moments of nostalgia. Our documentary After The Screaming Stops has been supported from day one by BBC Four and they have been a joy to work with, so it was an honour being asked to create an entire night of entertainment. This night on BBC Four is a way of saying a big thank you to everyone who has supported us along the way.”

The evening will air on BBC Four in July from 9pm until late during which there will be another chance to see Bros: After The Screaming Stops, the Bafta-winning and Edinburgh TV Award nominated film that made everyone fall in love with them all over again. The documentary received its TV premiere on BBC Four in December 2018 and was broadcast again on BBC Two in January.

Monday, 17 June 2019

Psychopath with Piers Morgan






"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

BBC Ouch invites storytellers with disabilities to share a stage with comedian Laura Lexx at Edinburgh






Submissions are now open for BBC Ouch's fourth storytelling event, hosted by Laura Lexx (pictured) at the 2019 Edinburgh Festival Fringe.


The BBC is giving disabled people and people with mental health difficulties the opportunity to submit a true story about an unusual, complicated or funny encounter based on the theme Lost And Found. Successful applicants will get the chance to work with a top comedy script producer, and perform on the main stage in front of an audience at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.


Laura Lexx, who has appeared on BBC One's Live At The Apollo and has previously won Best MC at the Comic's Comic Awards, will present BBC Ouch: Storytelling Live 2019 on 5 August at the BBC's Big Blue Tent.


Laura Lexx says: "I took part in the show last year to share my experience of dealing with anxiety and depression. I remember standing backstage worrying that I wasn't anxious enough to be a part of a show like this... oh the ridiculousness of worrying you're not worried enough to be officially worried.


"Being there on the night was skin-tinglingly exciting, watching people share stories that had never been public before, and the response afterwards to videos shared online was mind-blowing. Events like this really reach the audience they need and make a difference."


Philip Henry, one of last year's storytellers, says: "Being part of the BBC Ouch's event last year was an amazing experience for me, I'm so glad I took part. After the show aired on BBC Two I was contacted by people from all over the world and the feedback was 100 percent positive.


"From casual viewers who enjoyed the comedy of the story, to fellow sufferers who saw themselves in my situation and could empathise with my plight, I was overwhelmed with the messages of congratulations and support. Since then I've received funding to make a short film version of the story I told, so it's helped my career as a writer and film-maker too. I'm so glad BBC Ouch gave me the platform to raise awareness of Crohn's in such an entertaining way."


Damon Rose, Editor of BBC Ouch, says: "This show is the highlight of our year. Our aim is to find talented disabled people and people with mental health difficulties, and ask them to share their entertaining and often funny stories about their unique experiences. We want to share these stories far and wide - and where better to start than on the BBC stage at the Edinburgh Festival?"


Submissions for stories close at 10am on Thursday 27 June 2019.


Email your entries to ouch@bbc.co.uk

Take a first look at BBC One’s major new thriller series The Capture






The first image of Holliday Grainger (Strike, Patrick Melrose) and Callum Turner (War & Peace, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes Of Grindelwald) in BBC One's forthcoming surveillance thriller The Capture has been released.


When soldier Shaun Emery's (Turner) conviction for a murder in Afghanistan is overturned due to flawed video evidence, he returns to life as a free man with his young daughter. But when damning CCTV footage from a night out in London comes to light, Shaun's life takes a shocking turn and he must soon fight for his freedom once again. With DI Rachel Carey (Grainger) drafted in to investigate Shaun's case, she quickly learns that the truth can sometimes be a matter of perspective. Should she trust Shaun Emery?


The Capture is an acutely timed thriller that looks at a troubling world of fake news and the extraordinary capabilities of the intelligence services. In this 'post-truth era', can we really believe what we see?

Thursday, 13 June 2019

Jude Law set to star in The Third Day, a new Sky and HBO original drama


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.

Celebrity contestants announced for the return of The Crystal Maze


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.

First-look image and casting announced for C4's Aisling Bea comedy, This Way Up


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







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.

BBC One announces adaptation of iconic Worzel Gummidge starring Mackenzie Crook with first look picture







A dazzling, modern adaptation of Worzel Gummidge comes to BBC One in two hour long films, inspired by the classic books of Barbara Euphan Todd.


Mackenzie Crook writes, directs and stars as Worzel Gummidge. Leopard Pictures, part of Argonon Group, are partnering with Treasure Trove Productions and Lola Entertainment to bring these glorious stories to life for an audience of all ages. The films have been commissioned by Shane Allen, Controller Comedy Commissioning for the BBC, and Charlotte Moore, Director of Content for the BBC.


The first 60 minute episode, The Scarecrow Of Scatterbrook, sees two young strangers arrive in the village of Scatterbrook. It's not long before Susan and John encounter Worzel Gummidge, the Scarecrow of Ten Acre Field. Their world is sent spinning into confusion when they realise Gummidge comes to life. The only person more shocked is Worzel, when he discovers that the children are not in fact fellow scarecrows but humans.


Their worlds should never commune but fate has conspired to create an extraordinary union. The seasons have stopped and the harvest hasn't arrived. The rhythm of the natural world is out of kilter and this unlikely trio must try to put it right. Magic, mystery and mayhem unfurl.


The second episode, The Green Man, welcomes another mysterious arrival to Scatterbrook. The Green Man is the creator of scarecrows and keeper of scarecrow lore. He isn't at all happy that Worzel is consorting with humans. Elsewhere, local aristocrat Lady Bloomsbury Barton is holding a fete, with a Scarecrow competition that Worzel is determined to win. What will Worzel's most competitive rival, Soggy Bogart, and The Green Man make of it all?


Mackenzie Crook says: "I'm thrilled to be back working with the BBC and many members of the Detectorists team to bring Worzel Gummidge to a new generation of viewers and reintroduce him to old friends. Adapting Barbara Euphan Todd's books into these two films has been a joy and I've completely fallen for her charming, irreverent scarecrow. Fingers crossed for a glorious English summer as we head out to Scatterbrook Farm and Worzel's Ten Acre Field."

David Tennant, Cush Jumbo lead cast of gripping 4-part drama Deadwater Fell







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."

E4 gets set for Pants on Fire







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?

Tuesday, 4 June 2019

Death Row: Countdown To Execution


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.”