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Friday 28 February 2020

Frank of Ireland with the Gleeson Brothers


Frank of Ireland, a brand-new series from Sharon Horgan and Clelia Mountford’s Merman starring Brian Gleeson. A co-production between Channel 4 and Amazon Studios, the 6x30 series is the first comic vision penned by brothers Brian and Domhnall Gleeson and Michael Moloney.

Frank Marron, played by Brian Gleeson (Peaky Blinders, The Bisexual), is a 32-year-old catastrophe. A misanthropic, narcissistic, fantasist in arrested development who thinks the world owes him something. But, nonetheless, he’s our hero. They don’t all wear capes, okay?!

Frank lives in Dublin with his mother Mary (Pom Boyd, Rosie, Rialto,Snakes and Ladders), and that’s fine. He is single and his pocket money hasn’t increased in a decade or more, but you know what?! That’s fine too. Frank is a musician, understood? He hasn’t written a song or played a gig in seven years and five months, but that is totally, 100% fine. His ex-girlfriend Aine (Sarah Greene, Dublin Murders, Rosie, Ransom) has a new boyfriend Peter-Brian (Tom Vaughan-Lawlor, Dublin Murders, Rialto, Avengers: Endgame) for the first time since they split, and Frank may be finding that a tad difficult, alright? When did they part, you ask? About seven years and five months ago, give or take a day, but that’s a total coincidence, just in case you’re wondering. It’s all absolutely fine. Frank is fine.

Frank is also fine because of his wingman (read gopher) Doofus, played by Domhnall Gleeson (The Revenant, Ex-Machina, The Force Awakens). Doofus foolishly thinks they are best friends and it’s his job to blow smoke up, facilitate and attempt to fix the relentless debris in Frank’s wake. It’s a big job for such a fellow.

Frank of Ireland is a physical and ridiculous brand of humour with an original twist. Filming in Dublin and Belfast has just begun with the transmission date on Channel 4 to be announced in due course (probably when Frank feels like it).  It will be available on Amazon Prime Video in the US, Canada and Australia.

Brian, Domhnall, and Michael Moloney said: 
“We’re so excited to work with MJ, Sharon, and Clelia on this, our first and (we’ve been told) last television series.”

Sharon Horgan, Merman Co-founder, added:
“Working with the Gleeson Brothers has been like living in a very funny, existential dreamscape.  I laughed so much making the pilot that it became annoying. So Clelia and I are very glad and relieved they still chose to make this series with us.”

Monday 24 February 2020

ITV commissions four-part evocative thriller, Hollington Drive


ITV today confirmed commission of four-part evocative thriller, Hollington Drive, from acclaimed screenwriter Sophie Petzal.

Produced by West Road Pictures, the All3Media scripted production label fronted by Managing Director and Executive Producer, Jonathan Fisher, Hollington Drive focuses on the lives of two sisters, Theresa, and her older head teacher sibling, Helen. 

Both women appear close and their families enjoy spending time together.  We open on a warm, balmy evening, barbecue sizzling on the patio, the perfect family setting. The atmosphere is chilled, as they lounge in Theresa and her partner Fraser’s perfectly manicured garden.  Apart from Fraser’s brother Eddie winding everyone up, there’s hardly a hint of tension, but this is the calm before storm. 

When Theresa’s ten-year-old son, Ben, asks to play in the nearby park with his cousin Eva, the adults begin to niggle.  Fraser is relaxed and is fine for them to go, but this doesn’t help Theresa’s fears of foreboding and growing feelings of anxiety.  

As expected the children don’t return on time, and Theresa goes in search.  Her suspicions are heightened when she finds the children on the edge of a woodland area and they appear to be fighting.  Immediately her instincts tell her something terrible has happened.  

This is all too realised when later that evening distraught neighbour, Jean, calls on the family.  Her ten-year-old son Alex has gone missing…….

In a plot thick with secrets, lies, twists and turns, Theresa can’t help thinking her son knows more than he is saying. Could Ben and his cousin Eva be implicated in Alex’s disappearance?  Why are they both so subdued and now behaving out of character? The neighbourhood are compelled to help with the search for Alex, but what if he’s been murdered and her own son is his killer?

Hollington Drive has been commissioned by ITV’s Head of Drama, Polly Hill.

Commented Polly Hill:

“I am delighted to be making Sophie's brilliant script for ITV.  It’s a beautifully written thriller that looks at maternal love and sisterly love, in a story that will compel and surprise the audience.  I am also pleased to be working with Jonathan Fisher and our first ITV drama with West Road Pictures.”  

Sunday 23 February 2020

Liar Returns This March! - Liar Series 2 Episode 1 Preview


Series 2 Starts Monday 2nd of March.

Series overview
Three weeks after damning evidence was uncovered proving Andrew Earlham sexually assaulted nineteen women, his body is found in the Kent marshes. As one of Andrew’s more recent victims, Laura Nielson can’t help feeling relieved by the news of his death. The last three weeks spent knowing Andrew was somewhere out there and missing have not been easy.

Yet the seaside community is rocked when the case quickly becomes a murder investigation. Out of town officer DI Karen Renton is put in charge of the case, and together with DS Rory Maxwell, they begin to unpack the events of the three crucial weeks leading up to Andrew’s death. The news cast a shadow over those who knew Andrew, all of whom, like Laura, are trying to move on with their lives.
As the search to find Andrew’s killer gains momentum, the community will be forced to face up to the secrets of their recent past, secrets many of them hope will stay buried. Soon, Laura finds herself thrown deep in the mire of Andrew’s destructive path, and once again must fight to be believed.

Episode 1
Three weeks after his disappearance, Andrew’s body is found on the Kent marshes. His throat slit, it’s declared he was murdered. Laura meanwhile is trying to move on from her ordeal. She’s slowly growing in confidence in her new relationship with Ian and has returned to work. Yet her initial relief upon learning of Andrew’s death is cut short. As DI Renton and DS Maxwell seek to determine who killed him, Laura finds herself drawn into Andrew’s destructive path and once again must fight to be believed.

Cast
Laura Nielson - Joanne Froggatt
Andrew Earlham - Ioan Gruffudd
DI Karen Renton - Katherine Kelly
DS Rory Maxwell - Danny Webb
Oliver Graham - Sam Spruell
Winnie Peterson - Amy Nuttall
Carl Peterson - Howard Charles
Katy Sutcliffe - Zoë Tapper
Liam Sutcliffe - Richie Campbell
DI Vanessa Harmon - Shelley Conn
Jennifer Robertson - Jill Halfpenny
Ian - Kieran Bew
Luke Earlham - Jamie Flatters
Ruby Allen - Sian Clifford

Saturday 22 February 2020

Official trailer for Sky original series Devils, starring Alessandro Borghi and Patrick Dempsey is revealed


The first official teaser trailer for the Sky original production, Devils, has been revealed starring Alessandro Borghi (The First King: Birth of an Empire, Suburra) and Patrick Dempsey (The truth about the Harry Quebert Affair). Filmed between Rome and London, the teaser provides a preview of a story about finance, power and disenchantments.

Alessandro Borghi is Massimo Ruggeri, the ruthless and ambitious Head of Trading of one of the most important investment banks in the world, the New York – London Investment Bank (NYL); Patrick Dempsey plays Dominic Morgan, one of the most powerful men in global finance, Massimo’s mentor and CEO of the bank. Their deep bond, however, begins to crack when Massimo gets involved in an inter-continental financial war, due to Dominic’s hidden agenda. Eventually, the Italian Head of Trading will be forced to choose between standing behind his mentor or stopping him.

The series, based on Guido Maria Brera’s bestseller “I Diavoli”, is a Sky Italia and Lux Vide production financed by Sky Studios, in collaboration with Orange Studio and OCS. NBCUniversal Global Distribution holds the international rights.

Kasia Smutniak (Loro, Perfetti Sconosciuti) is Nina, the sophisticated and strong-willed wife of Dominic Morgan. She is joined by a wider international cast including: Lars Mikkelsen (The Killing, Sherlock, House of Cards), Laia Costa (Victoria), Malachi Kirby (Roots), Paul Chowdhry (Live at the Apollo, Swinging with the Finkels), Pia Mechler (Everything Is Wonderful), Harry Michell (Chubby Funny) and Sallie Harmsen (Blade Runner 2049).

Devils is directed by Nick Hurran (Sherlock, Doctor Who, Fortitude, Altered Carbon) and Jan Michelini (I Medici). The series is written by Alessandro Sermoneta, Mario Ruggeri, Elena Bucaccio, Guido Maria Brera, Chris Lunt, Michael Walker, Ben Harris, Daniele Cesarano, Ezio Abate and Barbara Petronio.

Westworld III trailer launch


Westworld will return for its third season on 16 March on Sky Atlantic and NOW TV, simulcasting in the UK the same day as the US for all eager fans, with the full trailer now available to view:

The show’s third season will see many of its stars return, including Evan Rachel Wood as Dolores, Thandie Newton as Maeve, Ed Harris as the Man in Black, Jeffrey Wright as Bernard, Tessa Thompson as Charlotte, and Luke Hemsworth as Stubbs.

Joining the cast for the new series are Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad), Vincent Cassel (Black Swan), Lena Waithe (Master of None), Scott Mescudi (Need for Speed), Marshawn Lynch, John Gallagher, Jr. (10 Cloverfield Lane), Michael Ealy (2 Fast 2 Furious) and Tommy Flanagan (Gladiator).

Created for television by Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy, and based on the film written by Michael Crichton, Westworld is a dark odyssey about the dawn of artificial consciousness and the birth of a new form of life on Earth. The theme for this new season is “New World” and Nolan comments: “Dystopia can look pretty beautiful in the world. Just because the world is corrupt inside, doesn’t mean it can’t be smothered over and pretty. We wanted to find a version of dystopia that we hadn’t seen before.”

ITV commissions high octane thriller, Trigger Point, starring Vicky McClure


Counter terrorism policing and the terrifying work of the Metropolitan Police Bomb Disposal Squad are the breath-taking backdrop for new ITV drama commission, Trigger Point, starring Vicky McClure, written by Daniel Brierley and produced by Jed Mercurio’s company, HTM Television. 

Set in contemporary London, Trigger Point, is a high-octane six-part thriller series focusing on the Bomb Disposal Squad. Known as “Expo”, officers risk their lives daily on ‘the long walk’ towards danger.  Death is always just a heartbeat away.

Vicky McClure (Line of Duty, I Am Nicola) will play front line officer Lana Washington, who is an experienced bomb disposal operative. Reckless and out of control, Lana is ex-military and pushed to breaking point dealing with a series of improvised explosive devices which threaten the capital during a terrorist summer campaign. 

Under extreme pressure and searching for answers, Lana can’t help but become suspicious that the bomber is premeditatedly targeting her unit.  It’s a terrifying thought, but against all odds how does she prove it and discover the bomber’s real identity?

Commented Vicky McClure:

“So grateful to be working with Jed again. I’m really looking forward to creating a strong, bright and troubled character in Lana Washington. Daniel Brierley has produced a brilliant and nail-biting script. I can’t wait to get started later this year.”


Wednesday 19 February 2020

The BRIT Awards 2020 Winners' list


The BRIT Awards 2020 with Mastercard took place last night (Tuesday 18th February), marking a night of ‘firsts’ for the 40th show, and celebrating the achievements and success of both British and international artists and musicians over the past twelve months, live from The O2 Arena in London and broadcast exclusively on ITV and YouTube worldwide.  The show featured more music than ever before with three stages and back-to-back world class performances.

Jack Whitehall was back for a third turn to steer the show through nine awards presentations and nine performances, which included a stunning show opener from Mabel - who went on to win Best Female Solo Artist - for her Gold-certified hit single ‘Don’t Call Me Up, which she performed alongside a hundred dancers, and the global exclusive and spine-tingling live debut of ‘No Time To Die’, the official theme song for the new James Bond theme, performed by Billie Eilish along with her brother FINNEAS, Hans Zimmer and Johnny Marr. Billie was later presented with International Female Solo Artist.

In a first, The BRITs gave the artists performing on the night creative control over their performances - leading to some of the most unique and memorable performances The BRITs has ever seen.

The highly sought after Mastercard Album of the Year award went to Dave, for his critically acclaimed and chart-topping debut Psychodrama. He performed the album’s first single ‘Black’ earlier in the show, a politically-charged, stripped down version accompanied by just a pianist.

Lewis Capaldi - who performed his breakout No. 1 single ‘Someone You Loved’ - followed last year’s Critics’ Choice nomination with a double win, for Best New Artist and Song of the Year. Ahead of the main show, the Scottish singer-songwriter was the first artist to ever perform on The BRITs’ red carpet with an exclusive performance for the ITV2 Red Carpet show broadcast and as part of TikTok’s exclusive red carpet live-stream.

As well as celebrating the biggest moments in music in 2019 the night was a celebration of discovery and opportunity too. Tonight, the BRITs Rising Star award (formerly Critics’ Choice) was presented as part of the main show, which also saw winner Celeste perform her single ‘Strange’ - both BRITs firsts.

Stormzy was honoured with Male Solo Artist, following his win in the same category in 2018, ahead of a show-stopping medley performance featuring hundreds of dancers, a choir and guest appearance from Burna Boy.

The show also saw an exhilarating performance from Lizzo, and Sir Rod Stewart was back at The BRITs to perform solo as well as being joined by Faces bandmates Ronnie Wood and Kenny Jones to close the show with their hit song ’Stay With Me’.

Towards the start of the show, Whitehall addressed the audience to pay tribute to presenter and broadcaster Caroline Flack.

Earlier in the day, Fred again.. was presented with Producer of the Year on the red carpet; the youngest ever recipient of the award.

The BRIT Awards 2020 with Mastercard took place at The O2 Arena in London on Tuesday 18th February and were broadcast live on ITV and streamed on YouTube across the world (excluding the UK and Ireland) for the seventh consecutive year.

Amazon Music are the digital music partner for The BRIT Awards 2020 with Mastercard. Alongside being hosts of the Official BRIT Awards 2020 playlist, they’ll exclusively host live music from the show - available to stream post-event on Amazon Music Unlimited. Further playlists celebrating the best of The BRIT Awards over the past 40 years including - Best of the BRIT Awards: 80s, Best of the BRIT Awards: 90s, Best of the BRIT Awards: 00s and Best of the BRIT Awards: 10s are available to stream on Amazon Music now.

As well as being the digital music partner for The BRITs 2020 with Mastercard, Amazon Music are sponsors of the Best Male solo artist & Best Female solo artist award categories.

And The Winners Are…. (in order presented on the night)...

WINNERS

BEST NEW ARTIST - Lewis Capaldi
Presented by Clara Amfo and Niall Horan

FEMALE SOLO ARTIST - Mabel
Presented by Jorja Smith and Ellie Goulding

MALE SOLO ARTIST - Stormzy
Presented by Ronnie Wood

INTERNATIONAL MALE SOLO ARTIST - Tyler the Creator
Presented by Kiefer Sutherland and Paloma Faith

GROUP OF THE YEAR - Foals
Presented by Hailee Steinfeld, Courtney Love and Anne-Marie

RISING STAR - Celeste
Presented by Sam Fender and Adwoa Aboah

INTERNATIONAL FEMALE SOLO ARTIST - Billie Eilish
Presented by Melanie C

SONG OF THE YEAR - Lewis Capaldi ‘Someone You Loved’
Presented by Sir Tom Jones

MASTERCARD ALBUM OF THE YEAR - Dave ‘Psychodrama’
Presented by Billie Eilish and Finneas O’Connell

Miriam Margolyes, Julia Deakin and Simon Day to appear in the new series of The Windsors


Miriam Margolyes (Call the Midwife, Miriam’s Big Fat Adventure) to guest star as Queen Victoria, Julia Deakin (Spaced, Shaun Of The Dead, Hot Fuzz) and Simon Day (The Life of Rock with Brian Pern, The Fast Show) to play Carole and Mike Middleton in the new series of The Windsors on Channel 4.

Wills (Hugh Skinner) is torn when the older royals decide to go on strike and Charles (Harry Enfield) tries to persuade him to join forces. When trying to make his decision Wills is given advice by a portrait of Queen Victoria played by Miriam Margolyes.

Charles and Camilla (Haydn Gwynne) reluctantly agreed to visit the Middletons’ house with Wills and Kate (Louise Ford). While there Charles thinks he hears Mike threatening to chop off his and Camilla’s heads! Charles informs Camilla who takes matters into her own hands and plots to kill the Middletons but will Wills stop Camilla’s evil plan before it’s too late?

Miriam Margolyes commented: “Queen Victoria has always been one of my heroes. I hope she’ll forgive my irreverent portrayal.”

Julia Deakin said: “I am shocked they let me have a go at this. I love the show and everyone wonders how they get away with it, the answer is…because it’s funny!  Carole is a gift, an enigma wrapped in a riddle.  So little footage of her actually speaking exists! Less is definitely more.  The Windsors version is far from this. Mix Carole and Mike on a weekend with Camilla and Prince Charles. Oh dear!”

Simon Day added: “Great to be appearing in The Windsors as Mike Middleton. I never thought I would get this close to the royal family.”

The Windsors series 3 will air from Tuesday 25th February at 10pm Channel 4 and all episodes will be available to stream on All4.


Monday 17 February 2020

Cold Feet consciously uncouples


Cold Feet concludes its ninth series tonight with Adam (Jimmy Nesbitt), Karen (Hermione Norris), Jenny (Fay Ripley), Pete (John Thomson) and David (Robert Bathurst) all set to embark on adventures new; Adam and Karen's relationship is thrown into jeopardy by an offer that's hard to refuse. Meanwhile, some unexpected romantic vibes leave David with a spring in his stride.  And, whilst drafting up their bucket list, the Giffords receive some news that puts a whole new perspective on life.  Series nine ends with new beginnings, as new challenges test the oldest of friendships.  Second chances, health and heartbreak.  If ever we needed evidence that life can throw anything your way Cold Feet is it…

The series first launched in 1997 and successfully aired on ITV for five series. It returned in 2016 for a further four, critically acclaimed series. Tonight’s episode will be the last episode in the current run as the the award-winning drama is taking a break from our TV screens. Creator Mike Bullen, the cast, producers and ITV all felt the time was right to rest the drama before embarking on a tenth series, allowing time to pass before exploring the characters and their stories at a later stage.

Mike said:
“We feel we've explored to our satisfaction the issues confronting the characters at this stage of their lives and we want to give them all a little time to move on, to put clear water between the stories we've told thus far and the issues they'll be exploring when they are empty nesters staring down the barrel of grandparenthood. We're looking forward to returning at a later date to document the agony and the ecstasy of the third age…"

Saturday 15 February 2020

Stranger Things Season 4 Teaser - From Russia with love… Netflix


Netflix dropped a Valentine’s Day treat on Friday morning in the form of a teaser for “Stranger Things 4.”

The teaser, aptly titled “From Russia With Love,” reveals that David Harbour’s Hopper is alive … and in Russia.

The Protector is coming back with its 3rd season globally on Netflix on March 6th


About The Protector Season 3:
In season 3, Hakan enters into a fierce battle to save Istanbul from returning to hell by his brother, who carries the blood of “The Protector”. While the city suffers from a fatal virus, Faysal and Ruya are getting closer to their evil plans. Hakan has to reach Nisan (Funda Eryiğit) to find an antidote and on this path Burak (Taner Ölmez) joins Hakan on this adventure to save the citizens of the city. Trying to survive against all this, Hakan must also find Vezir, the infamous immortal, the rebel, who is getting ready to conquer Istanbul with a fury of six hundred years. The history of Hakan's ancestors sheds a light to his battle today and he gets ready for his journey between the past and the present.

Starring Cagatay Ulusoy, the 10-episode super hero fantasy also stars Hazar Erguclu, Funda Eryigit, Taner Olmez, Okan Yalabik, Bige Onal and Burcin Terzioglu.

Friday 14 February 2020

The Trouble with Maggie Cole (Trailer)


The Trouble with Maggie Cole is a new drama series starring Dawn French that will start airing March on ITV.

The new series will star Dawn French, Mark Heap, Julie Hesmondhalgh, Vicki Pepperdine, Patrick Robinson, Phil Dunster, Gwyneth Keyworth and Kerry Howard.


The Trouble with Maggie Cole is set in a picturesque small coastal town called Thurlbury with a close-knit community.  It follows the stories and fall out for Maggie Cole (played by Dawn French) who doesn’t pay attention to the cautionary adage that ‘those in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones’.

When a radio journalist interviews her for a small reportage piece about local life she gives him far more detail (and embellishment) about the locals and their personal lives than he was counting on.  In the days and weeks following the show’s broadcast, Maggie sees the butterfly effect of how her very public gossip-fest affects various figures around the town and disrupts their lives.

Thursday 13 February 2020

First Look - Breeders - Premieres on 12 March on Sky One


Martin Freeman and Daisy Haggard star in a new Sky original comedy, exploring the paradox that every parent knows but never admits; you would willingly die for your children, but quite often you also want to kill them. Martin Freeman stars as Paul, a caring father discovering he’s not quite the man he thought he was. His partner in this impossibly steep parental climb is Ally (Daisy Haggard), who runs a recording studio, makes Paul laugh and can read a story to their children while she's technically asleep. In this honest and uncompromising comedy Paul and Ally are juggling full-time careers, aging parents, a mortgage, upheavals in their relationship and the unenviable curveballs of parenting their young children.

Starring
Martin Freeman, Daisy Haggard, Alun Armstrong, Michael McKean and Patrick Baladi



First look of Sky original drama Gangs of London


Sky today revealed the first look trailer and images of its new visceral, action-packed thriller, Gangs of London, which takes audiences on an immersive journey into the hidden heart of the capital. Starring a multi-talented ensemble cast featuring Sope Dirisu, Joe Cole, Colm Meaney, Lucian Msamati and Michelle Fairley.

This nine-part Sky original drama which is co- production with Cinemax, will launch on Sky Atlantic and TV streaming service NOW TV later this year.


Gangs of London was created by visionary award-winning filmmaker of The Raid film franchise, Gareth Evans and his creative partner Matt Flannery and executive produced by Thomas Benski and Lucas Ochoa for Pulse Films and Jane Featherstone for Sister. This epic saga, with family at its heart is unlike anything seen on TV before, as Gareth’s unique brand of cinematic action explodes on to the small screen for the first time.


Set in the heart of one of the world’s most dynamic and multicultural cities, Gangs of London tells the story of city being torn apart by the turbulent power struggles of the international gangs that control it and the sudden power vacuum that’s created when the head of London’s most powerful crime family is assassinated.


For 20 years, Finn Wallace (Colm Meaney) was the most powerful criminal in London. Billions of pounds flowed through his organisation each year. But now he’s dead – and nobody knows who ordered the hit. With rivals everywhere, it’s up to the impulsive Sean Wallace (Joe Cole), with the help of the Dumani family headed by Ed Dumani (Lucian Msamati) to take his father’s place. if the situation wasn’t already dangerous enough, Sean’s assumption of power causes ripples in the world of international crime.


Perhaps the one man who might be able to help him and be his ally is Elliot Finch (Sope Dirsu), who up until now, has been one of life’s losers, a lowlife chancer with a mysterious interest in the Wallace family. But as the wind of fate blows, Elliot finds himself transported to the inner workings of the largest criminal organisation in London.


Watch the trailer below.

Flesh and Blood - New ITV Drama - Trailer


Ep1 - Monday 24 February: 9pm - 10pm
Ep2 - Tuesday 25 February: 9pm - 10pm
Ep3 - Wednesday 26 February: 9pm - 10pm
Ep4 - Thursday 27 February: 9pm - 10pm

Series overview
Imelda Staunton (A Confession, Maleficent, Paddington, Harry Potter, Vera Drake), Francesca Annis (Home Fires, The Little House, Cranford), Russell Tovey (Years and Years, Quantico) and Stephen Rea (Dickensian, War & Peace, The Honourable Woman) star in Flesh and Blood - a darkly witty and gripping four-part drama created and written by Sarah Williams (The Long Song, Case Sensitive, Poppy Shakespeare), which explores family
dynamics and modern relationships as they spiral towards a tragedy and possible crime.

Joining the ensemble cast are Claudie Blakley (Manhunt, Grantchester, Lark Rise To Candleford), Lydia Leonard (Gentleman Jack, Absentia, Apple Tree Yard), Sharon Small (London Kills, Trust Me, Born to Kill), Lara Rossi (Cheat, Crossing Lines), Keir Charles (Man Up, Love Actually, Green Wing), Vincent Regan (Victoria, The Royals, Atlantis), Grace Hogg-Robinson (The Coroner, Mum) and David Bamber (Valkyrie, Doctors, The Bourne Identity).

Directed by BAFTA nominee and Grierson award winner Louise Hooper (Cheat, Vera, Cold Feet), Flesh and Blood is a modern story of three adult siblings - Helen (Claudie Blakley), Jake (Russell Tovey) and Natalie (Lydia Leonard) - who are thrown into disarray when their recently widowed mother Vivien (Francesca Annis) declares she’s in love with a new man, Mark (Stephen Rea).


Episode 1
In the aftermath of a family celebration, a body lies on the beach, terribly injured – perhaps dead. But who is it?

Just a few weeks earlier, a family of adult siblings is shaken when their recently-widowed mother, Vivien, announces her love for a new man, retired surgeon Mark. Tensions rise as the siblings’ question why Vivien hasn’t mentioned Mark before and are forced to reassess her entire marriage to their father. Mark seems devoted to her, but isn’t it all a bit sudden?

Even Vivien’s neighbour, Mary, is surprised by this turn of events and closely scrutinises the new arrival.  She feels protective of Vivien and this family she has known so well and for so long.

At the same time, events in the siblings' own love-lives start to spiral out of control. Vivien’s eldest daughter Helen is overloaded at work, unaware that her family is fracturing as husband George and daughter Lily feel ignored.

Middle son Jake is a personal fitness instructor. His marriage with Leila hit the rocks months ago thanks to Jake’s gambling. In order to regain Leila’s trust and put his family back together, he'll need to pay back his debts. With this in mind, a wealthy client offers him a highly unorthodox solution.

Vivien’s youngest daughter, Natalie, has been involved with Tony for nearly five years now. However, she expertly conceals this as Tony happens to be her boss – and also married. Natalie’s growing worry that, despite his promises, Tony will never leave his wife, leads her down a dangerous path.

When Vivien suffers a health scare and Mark moves in to look after her, the siblings become alarmed about their mother's growing dependence on him and suspect that he’s only after her money. But can they overcome years of sibling rivalry to truly put their mother’s health and happiness first?

Meanwhile Mary is quietly watching events unfold from her garden next door and dispensing tea, sympathy and advice to them all.


Wednesday 12 February 2020

Channel 4 is to return to Victorian London for a second helping of Year of the Rabbit


Channel 4 is to return to Victorian London for a second helping of Year of the Rabbit. The 6x30 comedy series will once again focus on tough booze-hound detective Rabbit (Matt Berry), his hapless partner Strauss (Freddie Fox) and the country’s first female police officer Mabel (Susan Wokoma) as they fight crime in London’s east end.

You can catch up on Series One by clicking HERE (Link opens in a new window)

At the end of the first series Lydia (Keeley Hawes) had pulled the wool over everyone’s eyes, with Strauss thinking they were lovers and Mabel joining Lydia’s secret female society, mistakenly thinking it was a power for good. After Rabbit and the gang foiled Lydia’s plot to take down London, saving the day.  But, with Lydia still at large and Her Majesty requesting an audience with Rabbit, Strauss and Mabel for a secret job…anything could happen.

Matt Berry commented: ”I’m looking forward to Inspector Rabbit returning back to our screens to fight crime in the past. This time he’ll deal with all sorts of unearthly forces, including the Royal Family! Victorian London is presently very much where it’s at.”

Fiona McDermott, Head of Comedy at Channel 4, says: “Year of the Rabbit is one of the most glorious, gutsy and audacious comedies on TV, made by a fantastic cast and crew who relish every detail. We're thrilled to welcome it back. Here's to more absurd capers in the dark underbelly of Victorian London.” 

IFC and Sundance TV Executive Director Blake Callaway added: “Ever since he guest starred on Portlandia, we knew we wanted more Matt Berry on IFC. An often-drunk, frequently filthy, and always foul-mouthed Victorian detective hits the perfect ‘slightly off’ spot.”


First look clip from The Secret Life of the Zoo


The Secret Life of the Zoo returns on Thursday 13 February at 8pm on Channel 4

The Secret Life of the Zoo returns, as cameras once again lead viewers into the places that Chester Zoo’s visitors never get to see. In this week's first episode there's a deep dive into the aquarium where a battle for survival is brewing, and alpha male Arnie, king of the Indian mudskipper fish, rules the roost among these extraordinary creatures who can exist both in and out of water. Gentle Danny is being bullied, and blacklisted from the food supplies. Can he survive?

Monday 10 February 2020

Love Island travels to Romania


10th February 2020 – ITV Studios’ and Motion Content Group’s award-winning, record-breaking format Love Island has been commissioned by Antena in Romania, which becomes the 15th territory to broadcast a local version.

In 2020, ITV2 in the UK are showing two series of the show (series 6 & 7), while it will also debut in France on Amazon Prime in March and return on CBS in the US following a successful launch in 2019. Last year it also launched in Belgium, Netherlands, Poland and Hungary. It has run for three series in Germany, two in Australia and Norway, and has also been commissioned in Sweden, Denmark and New Zealand.

Maarten Meijs, President, Global Entertainment at ITV Studios, said:

“We’ve consistently said that the essence of Love Island is about the road to finding love, and this is something audiences the world over can relate to, as it’s increasing international reach and popularity proves. Love Island has been a game-changer. It has broken viewing records across the globe and we are really excited about the new international launches coming this year.”

Love Island is based on a format owned by ITV Studios and Motion Content Group Ltd and is distributed internationally by ITV Studios.

Full of flirting, jealousy, rejection and fun, Love Island sees its occupants living in a stunning villa in a beautiful location. They are on the lookout for romance but as always, the road to love never runs smoothly, as they must not only choose their partner wisely but also win the hearts of the public. It’s up to the viewers to decide who they want to stay in the show as they watch the relationships develop and ultimately which pair they want to crown the hottest couple on the island.

Competition: Win The Brokenwood Mysteries Series 6 on DVD


The Brokenwood Mysteries Series 6 is out on DVD on 17th February.

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

Synopsis
BROKENWOOD, NEW ZEALAND: Population 5000 and declining – slowly – one by one, or two by two, depending on the murder rate that week. Series Six of hit New Zealand crime drama The Brokenwood Mysteries recently aired on UKTV’s Drama Channel, and arrives on DVD 17 February 2020, alongside the Series 1 to 6 Box Set, courtesy of Acorn Media International.

Four-times-divorced, country-music-loving, big city cop Detective Inspector Mike Shepherd (Neill Rea – Go Girls) has settled into the rural town of Brokenwood. He was first brought in to solve the case of a dead farmer suspected of foul play, and never left. There’s no rest for the wicked and the crimes keep on coming. Along with his by-the-book young partner Detective Kristin Sims (Fern Sutherland – The Almighty Johnsons), Mike delves into the quaint community’s dark underbelly, where shadows lurk beneath the surface.

A murder at a Victorian dress-up Steampunk event, a renowned crime author falling victim to a killing right out of his books, an animal activist found dead on the first day of duck hunting season, and run-ins with some familiar faces as they are called in to investigate a suspicious suicide at Brokenwood Women’s Prison – can Mike and the team get to the bottom of these gruesome goings-on?

Featuring a soundtrack of Mike’s favourite soulful country music to match the rural setting, each series contains four gripping stand-alone, feature-length stories.

Murder lurks in the most unlikely of places in The Brokenwood Mysteries.


Buy from Amazon by clicking here (Opens in a new window)

COMPETITION CLOSED


Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 24-02-20
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 7 February 2020

Interview with Steffan Cennydd (Connor Pritchard - Hidden)


Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

I’m from Carmarthen. I moved to London after school to train at the Guildhall. Since graduating in 2017, I’ve been in a few films, a couple TV series and travelled the world taking three plays on tour with Shakespeare’s Globe! But Hidden was by far the largest project I’ve been involved in, in terms of scale and ambition it was on another level. The locations and the storyline really stretched me and I learnt a lot from the whole process. I hope you enjoy it!

Your character Connor is new to the series, can you describe him and how he fits into the storyline?

Without giving too much away, Connor has moved to Blaenau from south Wales with his Mam and brother. Let’s just say he’s fallen in with the wrong crowd and from the moment we meet him we know he’s found himself in the wrong place at the wrong time. I can’t say more than that!

Tell us about the locations featured in series two...

The series is based in Blaenau Ffestiniog, which is such a unique place in north Wales. It’s surrounded by enormous slate piles that create a sort of mini climate of its own. When you get up out of the town and see what’s all around, the scenery is breath-taking.

What was the most challenging aspect of filming Hidden?

The weather we were faced with was so erratic; we had mini heatwaves, some snow, hail, storms all within a single month. I remember being soaked through getting back to my hotel at night on numerous occasions. Another challenge is shooting bilingually, flipping back and forth to shoot everything twice is tricky, especially at the start, you find yourself speaking the wrong language quite often. But by the end, they seem to offer different insights into the characters and their mentalities.

What did you enjoy most about being part of the new series?

It was a long shoot, five months. During that time you create such a team effort mentality. Everybody chipping in when we’re all freezing in a quarry at 4am. We felt like a big unit by the end, getting it done together, it was lovely.

Wednesday 5 February 2020

Interview with Sian Reese-Williams (DI Cadi John - Hidden)


Were you surprised by the success of the first series?

Not so much surprised as proud. While filming it felt like we were making something of high quality and so it was lovely to see that people really enjoyed it and wanted more. And it’s great to see how well it’s been received in other countries - knowing that we’ve played a part in bringing Welsh drama onto the international stage is wonderful.

Were there any new challenges for you personally and for Cadi in the new series?

Series two picks up around nine months after series one ends. We find Cadi trying to deal with the grief of losing her father, while trying to keep her head in her work.

It’s a difficult time for her - just as one begins to come through the initial shock of losing someone and start to try and deal with it, that’s the time that everyone around you starts to forget and move on. She’s also faced with dealing with the estranged daughter of the victim of the case, and the parallels she sees between the two of them are difficult for her to navigate professionally.

What was different, if anything, for you in series two?

It was just so great to come back and revisit a character to see how she’d changed in that time. And it was a joy to be working with the same team again - we’d all been so proud of the work we’d achieved with series one, so for us all to come back together for a second series was really exciting.

The second series introduces a whole new set of characters and plots. How did that suit you?

Obviously, with a new case, we had a new cast of guest leads so it did feel strange for a time to be without the brilliant actors we had first time round. But it means it keeps it feeling fresh - almost like a brand new job. And our new guest leads were all so brilliant that it was just lovely to come to work every day knowing we had something exciting and new on our hands.

The new series is set in new location in the form of Blaenau Ffestiniog. How was that?

Obviously the weather in north Wales can be challenging at times! But it serves the show so well that it’s impossible to complain - it looks so great on screen. And the people of Blaenau were so welcoming and happy to have us. We had a great time.

Tuesday 4 February 2020

Amy Huberman is FINDING JOY in her new sitcom with Laura Whitmore , Aisling Bea & Peter McDonald


Amy Huberman (Cold Feet, Striking Out) writes and stars alongside Aisling Bea (This Way Up, Living with Yourself) and Jenny Rainsford (Fleabag) in a new, hilarious six-part comedy series Finding Joy, that  follows the trials and tribulations of a journalist turned accidental superstar vlogger. Finding Joy arrives on DVD 16 March 2020 courtesy of Acorn Media International following its UK premiere on UKTV’s W Channel.

Joy (Huberman) may have just broken up with her long-term boyfriend, Aidan (Lochlann O'Mearáin – Vikings), and her best friend Trish (Hannah James-Scott – Crumble) is busy having a baby, but she’s totally fine…no matter what her dog, Canine Aidan (Peter McDonald – Dublin Murders), thinks.

Joy is perfectly happy with her secluded and orderly life as a back-room news editor. That is until her quiet life is turned upside down as she is summoned to step into the position of the media corporation’s sexy and adventurous lifestyle guru and Ireland’s most beloved vlogger, Flora the Happy Hunter (Laura Whitmore – Love Island presenter). Joy is catapulted headlong into the unknown and unwelcome world of social media stardom.

Forced to share her fears, feelings, and wardrobe malfunctions with the world, maybe the vlogosphere can help Joy solve the problems plaguing her personal life: tackling breaking boundaries through full-contact wrestling and ex-boyfriend induced insanity through hot yoga – what could go wrong?

With straight-talking manager Charlene (Rainsford) and quirky new roommate Amelia (Bea) at her side, Joy pushes herself outside of her comfort zone, all in the name of learning about the crazy, uncomfortable and new-age methods people use to find – well joy.

Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon return with The Trip To Greece on Sky One next month


The Trip is returning to Sky One and streaming service NOW TV on 3 March 2020 at 10pm with a fourth instalment of the multi award-winning and much-loved comedy series, starring Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon.

The Sky original series, from Revolution Films and directed by Michael Winterbottom, will see Steve and Rob’s fictionalised characters embark on a road trip around Greece for a fresh helping of gastronomic adventures. The six part series is succulently seasoned with laughter, impressions and scintillating conversation.

The Trip to Greece is sure to satisfy viewers’ palettes as the duo lock horns over tragedy, comedy, myth and history. All while dining on cuisine traditional to beautiful Greek hot spots including Assos, Kavala, Stagira, Athens, Epidaurus, Hydra and Plyos among many, many others.

“What a joy to go island hopping with the incomparable Steve and Rob. Greece is the birthplace of democracy but more importantly the birthplace of Michael Winterbottom’s latest vision, which we can’t wait to share with our customers. Yamas!”
Jon Mountague
Director of Comedy, Sky Studios



Endeavour, returns for a seventh highly-anticipated series.


ITV’s hugely popular detective drama, Endeavour, returns for a seventh highly-anticipated series.

Sun 09 Feb 2020 - 8pm to 10pm

The latest series of critically-acclaimed drama, which is produced by leading drama indie Mammoth Screen - part of ITV Studios - in partnership with Masterpiece, will consist of three, brand new interconnecting feature-length films. Each film has once again been written by Russell Lewis who has penned all 27 Endeavour screenplays to date.

Shaun Evans reprises his role as DS Endeavour Morse, alongside Roger Allam as DCI Fred Thursday, for a new set of compelling cases. Following the success of his directorial debut on the drama during series six, Shaun Evans has also directed the first film of the new series.

In addition, Anton Lesser (Game Of Thrones) returns as CS Reginald Bright, Sean Rigby (Gunpowder) as DS Jim Strange, James Bradshaw (Close To The Enemy) as Dr Max DeBryn, Abigail Thaw (I Want My Wife Back) as Dorothea Frazil and Caroline O’Neill (Last Tango In Halifax) as Win Thursday.

The new trilogy of films mark Endeavour and his colleagues entering a new decade and era of change. Opening on New Year’s Eve 1969, normal order has been resumed and the team reunited at Castle Gate CID, with Chief Superintendent Bright back in charge.

However, the events of the past year have left their mark, and the new series will see old friendships challenged and new relationships blossom.

Film 1 - Oracle

As Endeavour sees in the new year – 1970 – at an opera house in Venice, a murder on an Oxford towpath speaks to Thursday’s intuition, and convinced he has the man responsible, he vows to bring him to justice. Returning home, Endeavour makes a new acquaintance, and old friendships show signs of strain.

Later, when an exciting new educational television programme appeals for Academic presenters, a contentious college project develops into a fatal battle of the sexes. On investigating, Endeavour and Thursday discover a potential link between the department and a young woman’s troubling premonitions.

Cast
DS Endeavour Morse - Shaun Evans
DI Fred Thursday - Roger Allam
CS Reginald Bright - Anton Lesser
DS Jim Strange - Sean Rigby
Dr Max Debryn - James Bradshaw
Dorothea Frazil - Abigail Thaw
Win Thursday - Caroline O’Neill
Mrs Bright - Carol Royle
Violetta - Stephanie Leonidas
Ludo - Ryan Gage
Jenny Tate - Holli Dempsey
Professor Blish - Angus Wright
Dr Naomi Benford - Naomi Battrick
Dr Jeremy Kreitsek - Reece Ritchie
Dr Dai Farman - Richard Harrington
Carl Sturgis - Sam Ferriday
Mrs Carlin - Beverley Klein
Saward - John Hales
Molly Andrews - Lucy Farrar
Reet Ellison - Nicola Duffett
Bridget - Flora London
Mrs Blish - Lucy Briers
Tony - Oliver Boot

Award-winning US comedy Seinfeld to air on All 4 from this week


Regarded as one of the most influential sitcoms, Seinfeld will find a new home on All 4 from 7 February 2020, as part of a streaming deal with Sony Pictures Television (SPT).

Originally airing between 1989 to 1998, Seinfeld stars Jerry Seinfeld as a stand-up comedian whose life in New York City is made even more chaotic by his quirky group of friends who join him in wrestling with life's most perplexing, yet often trivial questions.

Described by The Guardian as ‘the greatest US sitcom ever written’, the show also features Julia Louis-Dreyfus as Elaine Benes, Jerry's ex-girlfriend and current platonic pal; Jason Alexander as George Costanza, Jerry's neurotic hard-luck best friend; and Michael Richards as Jerry's eccentric neighbour, Kramer.

Originally running for nine seasons and a total of 180 episodes, the first three seasons of this nostalgic hit will drop onto All 4 on 7 February, with the remaining six made available every Friday until mid-March when the full nine will be available to stream for free.

Charlie Palmer, Managing Editor of All 4 said: “I couldn’t think of a better way to kick off 2020 than with the addition of Seinfeld, one of the most influential sitcoms of all time, to All 4. In making it available for free, we hope to bring a whole new audience to a show that has already earned an enduring and loyal fanbase.”

Monday 3 February 2020

Competition: Win Britannia - Series 2 on DVD


Britannia - Series 2 is out on DVD on 10th February.

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

Synopsis
RUTHLESS ROMANS, drugged-up Druids and capricious Celts…welcome to Britannia. Olivier award-winning playwright Jez Butterworth (The Ferryman) pens this rich historical series that blends fact and fantasy to create a fever-dream drama. Recently returning for its second series on Sky Atlantic, Britannia Series II comes to DVD and digital from Acorn Media International on 10 February 2020 alongside a Series I & II Box Set.

Series one begins in 43AD, as Roman General Aulus Plautius (David Morrissey – The Missing) arrives in Britannia, determined to conquer it where Julius Caesar lost to the Druids 90 years earlier. He leverages rivalries between Celtic tribes: the Regnii led by Queen Antedia (Zoë Wanamaker – Harry Potter), and the Cantii led by the aging King Pellenor (Ian McDiarmid – Star Wars).

As Cantii royal siblings Phelan (Julian Rhind-Tutt – Harlots) and Kerra (Kelly Reilly – True Detective) vie over their right to the throne, there are greater forces at work. High Druid Veran (Mackenzie Crook – Detectorists) summons spirits with gruesome rituals to achieve his own ends, while chosen child Cait (Eleanor Worthington-Cox – Gwen) seeks to fulfil a prophecy with the help of demon-possessed madman Divis (Nikolaj Lie Kaas – The Killing).

The second series follows two years later as the Roman hold over Britannia grows stronger and while some Celts continue the fight to reclaim their land, others are happy to be Romanised rather than face extinction. But when a dead man wakes, it triggers an epic battle of wills between two Druid brothers that puts everyone in danger, and jeopardises Cait’s chances at saving Britannia from the Romans once and for all…

Who will rule Britannia?


Buy from Amazon by clicking here (Opens in a new window)

COMPETITION CLOSED

Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 17-02-20
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.