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Friday, 17 September 2021

ITV detective drama, Grace, begins filming in Brighton

ITV detective drama, Grace, begins filming in Brighton starring John Simm, Richie Campbell and Rakie Ayola, written by acclaimed screenwriter Russell Lewis, based on the bestselling novels from Peter James and co-produced by Second Act Productions, Tall Story Pictures and Vaudeville Productions.

Zoe Tapper joins Grace as Cleo Morey alongside guest actor Arthur Darvill

Three brand new Grace films, adapted from international bestselling author Peter James's award-winning novels, have commenced filming in Brighton with John Simm in the lead role of the tenacious detective.

Acclaimed screenwriter and Endeavour creator, Russell Lewis, has adapted the 3 x 120 screenplays entitled Not Dead Enough, Dead Man's Footsteps and Dead Tomorrow which are devoted to the work of Detective Superintendent Roy Grace, a hard-working police officer who has given his life to the job, but walks a career tightrope, as he has the capacity to clash with his boss, ACC Vosper.

Commented John Simm about his return to Grace:
"Everyone involved with Grace is very excited to be back in Brighton bringing the next three Peter James novels to the screen. Like the first two, they've been brilliantly adapted by Russell Lewis and we can't wait to get started."

Richie Campbell and Rakie Ayola also reprise their roles as DS Glenn Branson and ACC Vosper following the success of the first film, Dead Simple, which aired on ITV in March 2021 and achieved consolidated ratings of 8.8m viewers.

Arthur Darvill (World on Fire, DC's Legends of Tomorrow, Broadchurch) guest stars in the first film with Zoe Tapper (The One, Liar, Nightflyers) also joining the cast as recurring character, Cleo Morey, a mortuary technician, who takes a shine to Grace.

Co-produced by Second Act Productions, Tall Story Pictures and Vaudeville Productions, the first of the new films, Not Dead Enough, sees Grace and Branson investigating the murder of wealthy socialite and patron of local charities, Katya Bishop, wife of a prominent Brighton entrepreneur, played by Arthur Darvill, who becomes the main suspect in the investigation. The Bishops seem to have led a charmed life, until Grace digs deeper behind the respectable facade and discovers all is not what it seems. Doing so, however, places him unknowingly in grave danger.
In Dead Man's Footsteps, Grace leads the inquiry into the discovery of a woman's skeletal remains in an old storm drain, believed to be the wife of a failed Brighton conman, who died several years prior in a plane crash. Grace must re-trace the man's steps in the years before his death, which leads him on a murky trail through the world of Brighton's oldest crime families but it's not only on the professional front that Roy is chasing ghosts.
When in Dead Tomorrow a body is dredged up from the seabed of the English Channel it initially appears a burial at sea gone wrong, but a strange incision on the victim soon points to something very sinister. When two more bodies are found, news spreads like wildfire through Sussex and Grace begins to unearth that this is part of an altogether more chilling design, one which forces him to confront the question of just how far anyone would go to save the ones they love.

Kiaran Murray-Smith (Grace, Bulletproof, Silent Witness) returns to produce the series again this year with Henrik Georgsson (Tsunami, The Bridge, Marcella) directing the first film, Brian Kelly (Poldark, The Lock and Downton Abbey) directs the second film and Kate Saxon (Endeavour, Silent Witness, Casualty) will take the helm for the third title, Dead Tomorrow.

Mrs Brown’s Boys returns for a live Halloween special on BBC One

There's spooky going's on in the Brown household where anything can, and probably will happen.

Originally a theatre production, Mrs Brown's Boys is created, written by and stars Brendan O'Carroll as misbehaving matriarch Agnes Brown, who just can't help interfering in the lives of her family and friends. The show was first broadcast on BBC One in 2011 and has since become one of biggest comedies on tv. In summer 2016 Mrs Brown's Boys was broadcast live for the first time on BBC One.

Mrs Brown's Boys was voted best sitcom for the 21st century in a Radio Times poll and has won numerous awards, including a Bafta for best scripted comedy (2012), the Writers Guild Great Britain Award (2014) and has won an incredible five National Television Awards for the most popular comedy TV programme (2013 - 2020).

Brendan O'Carroll says: "It's a huge thrill to do another 'live' show for the BBC. It'll be so wonderful so see them nervous all over again. We will be trying our best to stick to the script, but honestly a script is just a guideline Ha ha ha!! Bring it on!"

Charlotte Moore, Chief Content Officer, BBC, says: "I'm thrilled that we are marking the 10th anniversary of the award-winning Mrs Brown's Boys coming to BBC One with this very special live broadcast. A huge thank you to Brendan and the team for keeping us all so brilliantly entertained for a decade. I can't wait to see what mischief Agnes and family have in store for us this Halloween."

Filming underway on series seven of Inside No. 9 as cast is confirmed and first look image is revealed

Principal photography is now underway on the seventh series of Steve Pemberton and Reece Shearsmith's critically acclaimed and BAFTA-award winning anthology series Inside No. 9 (6 x 30), plus a first look image of the brand new series is also revealed alongside casting details.

Produced by BBC Studios Comedy Productions and broadcast on BBC Two and BBC iPlayer, the new series of Inside No. 9 will feature six stand-alone stories, once again inviting viewers into Shearsmith and Pemberton's world of the extraordinary and macabre.

Headlining series seven are Daniel Mays (Line of Duty, Good Omens), Jason Isaacs (Harry Potter, The OA), Sophie Okonedo (The Escape Artist, Britannia), Jessica Hynes (There She Goes, W1A), Diane Morgan (Mandy, Motherland), Daisy Haggard (Back To Life, Breeders), Annette Badland (EastEnders, Doctor Who), Siobhan Redmond (The Replacement, Unforgotten) and Ron Cook (Hot Fuzz, The Salisbury Poisonings).

Also set to feature in the upcoming series is Reece Shearsmith and Steve Pemberton's fellow co-creator, writer and star from The League of Gentlemen, Mark Gatiss (Sherlock, Dracula).

Reece Shearsmith and Steve Pemberton say: "We hope you'll join us and another incredible cast of actors for more surprises that will make your jaws drop and spines tingle. Heads might even roll, and if not heads, definitely eyes."

Gregor Sharp, Commissioning Editor at the BBC, says: "Inside No. 9 is a crown jewel of comedy and we can't wait to see what twisted gems Reece and Steve have in store for us in the new series."

Josh Cole, Head of Comedy, BBC Studios Production, says: "It's a joy to be back in the Inside No. 9 saddle. Reece and Steve are comic masters, and their new scripts are better than ever. Which really is saying something when the last bunch won Best Comedy at the BAFTAs!"

Since its launch in 2014, Inside No. 9 has received widespread critical acclaim and has won an enviable étagère of awards, including the comedy prize at the 2016 Rose d'Or, two RTS Awards and two BAFTA TV Craft Awards (including Comedy Writing), South Bank Show and Writers' Guild awards. In addition to this, Steve Pemberton won the Best Male Performance in a Comedy Programme at the 2019 BAFTA TV Awards and the series won Best Scripted Comedy at the 2021 BAFTA TV Awards.

All previous episodes of Inside No. 9 are available to watch now on BBC iPlayer and series seven will premiere on BBC Two and BBC iPlayer in 2022.

GamesMaster is set to make a return to E4 later this year

It's been off our screens for 23 years, but the iconic series, GamesMaster is set to make a return to E4 later this year, in partnership with Oculus Quest 2 from Facebook

In this new E4 Digital Original Commission co-produced by Barcroft TV, a Future PLC company and Alaska TV, the 3x60' series will premiere on E4's YouTube before a linear TX on E4. It is the first fully cross-platform branded entertainment deal of this type from 4Studio.

The series will see celebrities, gaming stars and super fans all take part in challenges, races and epic fights. Through virtual battles across a range of games, the competitors will try everything in their power to claim a legendary Golden Joystick Trophy. But whilst they play, they'll be watched over by the all-knowing GamesMaster, famously portrayed in the original by Sir Patrick Moore.

To introduce GamesMaster into the modern era of gaming, E4 has partnered with Oculus from Facebook to showcase Oculus Quest 2, a VR headset that will elevate the players experiences and break out of the two dimensional.

GamesMaster, a Future PLC brand, launched in January 1992 and ran for seven series. The series was the first British show dedicated to gaming and across the run, became a cultural phenomenon with names such as Ian Wright and Zoe Ball as celebrity guests and a young Simon Amstell as a hopeful contestant.

Sacha Khari, Head of Digital Commissioning at Channel 4 said: "GamesMaster was a household name back in the 90's and this new revamped version for social and E4 retains the elements that made this show so special, whilst also bringing it bang up to date, improving game quality and bringing in fresh and current names to tackle the trickiest GamesMaster challenges yet. "

All episodes will premiere on E4's YouTube, followed by a linear play on E4. Further information on the casting, including the face of the GamesMaster, will be revealed in due course.

The partnership with GamesMaster and Oculus Quest 2 from Facebook was brokered by 4Sales working with Mindshare Invention and also includes a digital ad campaign for All 4.

Thursday, 16 September 2021

All Creatures Great and Small 'triumphant reboot' returns for Series Two tonight

The charming, much-loved All Creatures Great and Small, based on the hugely popular novels of James Herriot (aka James Alfred Wight OBE), returns for a second series of veterinary adventures, budding romances, and life in the sleepy town of Darrowby, Yorkshire with its rolling fields, and colourful community.

The first series captivated the nation, ranking as Channel 5’s number one British drama of all time and now the much-anticipated series two arrives. Following its run on Channel 5, it comes to DVD alongside the Complete Series 1 & 2 Box set on 22 November 2021, courtesy of Acorn Media International.

We return three months later to follow the trials and tribulations and lives and loves of the locals, surrounded by the beautiful Yorkshire dales, where farmers and vets alike savour a foaming pint at the end of a hard day’s work.

After Helen Anderson (Rachael Shenton – Hollyoaks) jilted her intended, Hugh Helton (Matthew Lewis – Harry Potter), at the altar, she, and James (Nicholas Ralph - The Most Reluctant Convert C.S. Lewis) can finally address their feelings for each other.  But it can be tricky in such a close-knit community where not everyone takes too kindly to Helen’s decision. Prompted by James’ and Helen’s affections, Siegfried (Samuel West – Darkest Hour), Tristan (Callum Woodhouse – The Durrells) and Mrs Hall (Anna Madeley – Deadwater Fell) also reflect on their places in the world, meanwhile a trip back home to Glasgow forces James to choose between duty and love…

Series One begins in 1937, Britain where we meet James Herriot, a newly qualified animal surgeon who moves to a small-town in Yorkshire to begin his first job with the irritable but kind veterinarian Siegfried Farnon. Once there, he quickly discovers that treating the animals is as much about looking out for their owners: there are plenty of people and animals to care for, challenges to meet, and life-affirming lessons to learn along the way.

All Creatures Great and Small will love this soul-soothing and heart-warming family favourite.

Buy Series 1 now at https://amzn.to/3EsjeXI

Pre-order series 2 at https://amzn.to/2YYhpkN


Tuesday, 14 September 2021

Maya Jama Confirmed To Host Walk The Line

Acclaimed broadcaster Maya Jama will take the helm as presenter of brand-new show Walk The Line when the show debuts on ITV and ITV Hub later this year.

Maya joins Simon Cowell on the new format, which is co-produced and co-developed by Syco Entertainment and Lifted Entertainment, part of ITV Studios.

Maya Jama is one of the hardest working and most exciting presenters in the industry. She set a new record as the youngest ever host of the MOBO Awards, she hosted the EE BAFTA film red carpet, ITV's Brit Awards Backstage show, Stand up to Cancer and Comic Relief. She's recently been on TV screens presenting Save Our Summer and Glow Up. She's a regular on Celebrity Juice, Celebrity Goggle Box and on the panel of ITV's award-winning show Don't Hate the Playaz. She then recently made her acting debut as Brenda in Katherine Ryan's Netflix series 'The Duchess'.

Walk The Line is a high-octane series offering music acts a chance to win a life changing prize pot of £500,000. The musical acts - be they soloists, duos, bands, or choirs - will take to the stage to perform for the nation, as well as Simon Cowell and a panel of judges to be confirmed in due course.

But to win the money, talent alone isn't enough - the contestants will need nerves of steel as they determine whether to cash out or physically Walk The Line and risk it all to stay in the competition.

Maya Jama said: "If someone said to me, describe your dream job. It would be this! I literally couldn't be more excited to be working with Syco, Lifted Entertainment and the incredible team at ITV on Walk The Line."

Incredible technology takes viewers on an emotional journey deep inside the human body

BBC Factual has commissioned a brand new 6 x 60 min series, Doctor, Can You See Me Now? (w/t) for BBC Two and BBC iPlayer, to be presented by Kate Garraway with Dr Guddi Singh.

Made by Remarkable Television (part of Banijay UK), this groundbreaking series uses the latest augmented reality know-how and medical imaging technology to allow patients to see inside their own bodies, to better understand their medical condition and the treatment choices available to them.

Patients with a range of common health issues from heart disease to kidney stones, endometriosis to back pain, will experience an extraordinary medical consultation made possible by cutting-edge technology.

They, and viewers, will see in thrilling visual form what is ailing them, as their condition is brought to life in a sensational and interactive way, providing insights and answers to questions which have plagued them for years. And, as they embark on their road to recovery, we will follow them every step of the way.

Catherine Catton, Head of Commissioning, Popular Factual and Factual Entertainment, says: "We are delighted to be working with Dr Guddi Singh, Kate Garraway and the team at Remarkable to create the next generation of health format which will combine warmth, expertise and cutting-edge technology to provide unprecedented insight into common health conditions."

Kitty Walshe, Managing Director (Factual) Remarkable Television, adds: "We've learnt an enormous amount having reinvented other genres of television through the use of groundbreaking technology, and this series will continue our push into establishing the next generation of popular factual formats using cutting-edge technology.

"Applying it to health will allow us to see conditions we are all familiar with unpacked in such incredible 3D visuals - it is utterly thrilling and takes the genre to the next level. Patrick Furlong, Claire Hughes and the team have done a wonderful job and the series will be a fascinating watch."

Kate Garraway says: "I am thrilled to be part of this fascinating new series that uses the most incredibly advanced technology to help us get a better understanding of how our bodies function when they require urgent medical attention.

"I believe we have all become increasingly curious about our health and well-being since the start of the pandemic, including me personally. I'm looking forward to delving deeper into the fascinating, emotional and empowering journey of all our patients and for them to see what is going on inside their own bodies."

Dr Guddi Singh says: "As a medical doctor who is committed to making health care better, it's been incredibly exciting to be part of this show and to see, first-hand, the possibilities opened up by augmented reality for clinical practice.

"We so often feel as though our doctors don't get us, or that we only really understand a fraction of what we're being told in the clinic. What if augmented reality helped bridge the gap? What if it allowed doctors and patients to connect and make more of their conversations in ways that simply weren't possible before?

"At a time when health has never mattered more, I'm thrilled and privileged to be part of public service broadcasting that explores these questions with the British public."

Monday, 13 September 2021


Deceit - Released on DVD from 20th September

And to celebrate we have a great competition for you and 2 DVDs to give away.

In 1992 a young-woman, Rachel Nickell, was tragically murdered on Wimbledon Common, while out walking with her two-year old son.  A passer-by found the distressed little boy clinging to his mother and many lives were destroyed… not only by the brutal killing, but by the subsequent media frenzy that lead to one of the most controversial and catastrophic police investigations of its time.
Now a brand-new four-part, true-crime drama, Deceit looks at the fallout from the shocking killing of the vivacious 23-year-old at the start of her adult life, and the ensuing investigation.

When BBC Crimewatch aired, witnesses identified a man often seen walking his dogs on the Common… that man was Colin Stagg. Lacking forensic evidence to link him to the crime, the Metropolitan police – pressured by the media outrage, and their obsession with justice – are determined to catch the guilty man before he kills again, and so, devise a plan to ensnare him...

Evocative, engrossing and emotive, Deceit dramatises the Metropolitan police’s controversial honeytrap operation that saw ambitious and determined undercover officer, Sadie Byrne – codenamed Lizzie James (Niamh Algar – Raised by Wolves, The Virtues) used as sexual bait, to entice the suspected killer to confess. Leading the case is a young Detective Inspector, Keith Pedder (Harry Treadaway – The Crown, Star Trek), who is under pressure to solve the case and enlists the nation’s infamous criminal profiler, Paul Britton (Eddie Marsan – Happy Go Lucky, Sherlock Holmes) to devise the undercover operation.

Written and produced by Emilia di Girolamo (Law & Order UK) this captivating and challenging drama shows the female perspective and explores the historic treatment of women. 

Deceit beckons the crucial question: who is being deceitful, and who is being deceived?

For your chance to win just answer the question below.

Who is the writer and producer of Deceit?

Send your name, address and of course the answer to competition365@outlook.com

Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 27-09-21
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.
5. Entries that come directly from other websites will not be accepted.

Friday, 10 September 2021

The Only Way is Essex is back for a brand-new series on ITVBe

The Only Way is Essex is back for a brand-new series on ITVBe on 12 September 2021

Returning to the heart of Essex, this series will delve deeper than ever before into the lives of our TOWIE cast, from relationships and families, to businesses and personal passions.

The romances, drama and world record-breaking triumphs of the last series were a rollercoaster. Now, our cameras are back and promise to bring you the latest buzz from our Essex faves.

Kicking things off with a sun-soaked opening episode, the group are on a glamorous staycation on the south coast, spending the week in Sandbanks, Dorset, home of the world's most expensive coastal real estate. From beach parties and jet-skiing to fabulous holiday homes, will this UK getaway rekindle relationships? Spark new ones? Or will summer flings and social media mishaps interfere?

Since the cameras left them, a lot has changed for our glam group. Chloe Brockett and Lockie are the talk of the town as news of their secret tryst spreads like wildfire. Has their news confined itself to the Essex gossip mill, or have the juicy details reached a certain someone in Dubai?

Chloe Sims is on the road to 40 and trying to process the fact her little girl Maddie is growing up; whilst her sisters Frankie & Demi look to pursue a joint dream. Amy is back with her daughter Polly by her side, she's newly single and on a mission to find a man.

Diags focuses on his latest challenge with his dad's business; Saffron is on a new spiritual path and blocking out all negativity; and Roman's modelling career is flourishing with the help of his new cheerleaders - the Sims sisters. Pete is throwing himself into his business and putting his serial-dater knowledge to good use by planning a singles retreat for the gang.

Dani & Gatsby are very loved up, but have they gone official yet? Elsewhere, Amber & Dan have been discussing the next step in their relationship, is it time to add to their family?

ITV announce Ant & Dec’s Limitless Win, a new primetime quiz show with the world’s first ever limitless jackpot

The ground breaking gameshow with an endless money ladder is set to air on ITV and ITV Hub next year.

Created by Hello Dolly, Ant & Dec's Limitless Win will be a Hello Dolly and Mitre Studios coproduction, presented by Britain's favourite duo Ant & Dec.

It features the world's first ever limitless jackpot and a money ladder that never… ever… ends. Every question is an opportunity to climb the endless money ladder and reach the big money, but only a correct answer banks the cash.

Push their luck too far and they'll crash out of the game and lose it all.

Packed with drama, jeopardy and real emotion, it's quite literally the biggest prize ever conceived.

Ant McPartlin, said "We're genuinely so excited to launch this new series. It's something we've been developing with Hello Dolly and ITV for a while now and we can't wait for you all to experience it. We hope you love it as much as we do."

Declan Donnelly, said "It's been a number of years since we launched a brand new TV format, it's not something we do very often! But we've hit on something that is ground breaking and innovative, and that's why we are so excited to host this series and bring it to the nation."

Alma’s Not Normal starts Monday 13 September at 10pm on BBC Two

Series Overview
We meet Alma - whose tumultuous childhood has led to continual chaos - as she embarks on a new beginning after a break-up, inspiring her to finally get herself sorted. And she's not going to be just 'okay'… she's going to be fabulous!

With a rebellious streak a mile wide and no qualifications to boot, Alma decides to explore the role of an escort to support her dreams of being a star. Many adventures and misadventures ensue as she navigates the past she's had and the future she wants.

Meanwhile, and she is trying to get her family back together. She has her work cut out as she tries to fix the strained relationships between her drug-addicted mum and her vampish Grandma, Joan. Alma's mum Lin, with bright pink hair, a toothless gurn and a children's lunchbox she fashions as a handbag, battles her long-term drug addiction with the same angst and disorder that she does her mother, Joan.

Expect a bitingly funny and unflinching take on issues from class, sexuality, motherhood, friendship, abuse and mental health, in a series that is full of heart, humour and candour, celebrating powerful and complex women dealing with the hand they were dealt whilst doggedly pursuing their dreams. 

Usain Bolt, Idris Elba, Nile Rodgers, Eve, Mel B, Judi Love, Munya Chawawa and Krept & Konan among the all-star line-up confirmed for The Big Breakfast

BAFTA award-winning Mo Gilligan and presenter AJ Odudu will be joined by an all-star celebrity line up as Channel 4's seminal breakfast entertainment show, The Big Breakfast, returns to screens on Friday at 8am for the Black to Front Project, almost 30 years after first launching.

Olympic legend Usain Bolt, music hero Nile Rodgers, smash hit singer-songwriter Eve, acting icon Idris Elba, musicians Krept & Konan and Tokyo 2020 medallists Emily Campbell and Kye White will join The Big Breakfast as the show comes live from its original East London location, the Lock Keeper's Cottages.

With its original anarchic spirit, distinctive energy and unique sense of humour reimagined through an unashamedly Black British lens, the two hour special will also see newsreader Phil Gayle return to read the news, Judi Love assuming her position as our On The Bed host, Big Zuu cooking up a storm in the kitchen, and Melvin Odoom pounding the streets of the UK where one viewer will be playing for prizes on their doorstep. Pop icon Mel B will be giving the behind-the-scenes scoop on what to expect when she takes over the airwaves for Mel B's Packed Lunch at 12:30pm. The Receipts Podcast trio, Tolly, Audrey and Milena, will be answering a host of dilemmas, Munya Chawawa's alter ego, Barty Crease, will offer the alternative news and there will be cameo appearances from EastEnders' own Winston (Ulric Browne) and Love Island's Toby Aromolaran.

There will be fresh new features alongside some nostalgic Big Breakfast classics including Family of the Week, Super Hints, One Lump or Two and Don't Phone, It's Just For Fun plus more famous names and surprise guests popping by for games, music and chat.

Mo Gilligan: "Like so many of us, I loved The Big Breakfast and I am so grateful to be asked to host this special event, particularly as part of such a hugely thrilling and history making day for British television!"

AJ Odudu: "I absolutely can't wait to get stuck into The Big Breakfast. It is such an iconic show to be part of and I am buzzing it is finally coming back! I'm so looking forward to working with Mo and I can't wait to wake up the nation! I'm thrilled to be part of Channel 4's Black to Front Project – which quite rightly gives a platform to deserving Black British TV talent across our industry, both on and off-screen. It's going to be really special."

Melvin Odoom: "The Big Breakfast inspired me, and I'm sure many more of us in the industry, to get into TV back in the day. With its colourful chaos in the mornings, it looked like the most fun job in the world, so it's a real dream come true to be part of the squad bringing the show back and giving it our own flavour. I'm really proud to be part of Channel 4's Black to Front Project, which we hope will inspire another generation of TV talent on and off-screen."


Channel 4 confirms psychological suspense drama, Close To Me, starring Christopher Eccleston, Connie Nielsen, Susan Lynch and Leanne Best will air in the autumn

Close to Me is the 6 x 60' story of Jo Harding (Connie Nielsen), a woman who seems to have it all – a beautiful house in the country, a loving family and Rob, her devoted husband (Christopher Eccleston). But following a fall, an entire year suddenly vanishes from Jo's memory. As she struggles to piece events together, Jo discovers that her life wasn't quite as perfect as she imagined – and that someone will do all they can to keep a terrible secret from her. Close to Me is based on the best-selling novel of the same name by author Amanda Reynolds.

Their children, Finn and Sash, are played by Tom Taylor (Us, Doctor Foster) and Rosy McEwen (The Letter Writer, The Angel of Darkness). Jo's best friend Cathy is played by Susan Lynch (Save Me, Unforgotten), while Leanne Best (Young Wallander, Cold Feet) stars as Rob's co-worker Anna. High-profile Danish actor Henning Jensen (When the Dust Settles, Countdown Copenhagen) features as Jo's father Frederik, while Ellie Haddington (Enola Holmes, Motherland) plays her neighbour Wendy. Ray Fearon (Da Vinci's Demons, His Dark Materials) plays Jo's boss Nick and Nick Blood (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, Strike) stars as Sash's boyfriend Thomas. Jamie Flatters (Liar, So Awkward) plays Owen and Lorraine Burroughs (Hard Sun, The Five) stars as Helen.

Tuesday, 7 September 2021

Tom Kerridge, Nisha Katona and Ed Gamble announced as new judging panel on BBC Two’s Great British Menu

The BBC's Great British Menu has today confirmed a new judging panel for the next series, which will be made up of Chef's Tom Kerridge and Nisha Katona, and comedian and host of a popular food podcast, Ed Gamble, when it returns to BBC Two in early 2022.

Great British Menu will begin filming for the thirteenth series this autumn when Tom, Nisha and Ed will join host Andi Oliver to judge heats across the UK. The most talented chefs from across the UK will battle it out for the chance to cook at a banquet that, in the year of the BBC's centenary, will celebrate British creativity through 100 years of television broadcasting.

Tom Kerridge, Chef, says: "I am so thrilled to be judging Great British Menu, it holds such a special place in my heart having cooked at the banquet twice. I've been through it, I know the pressure, the highs and the lows, which is what makes it such a brilliant competition and a great show. I can't wait to meet the chefs and see some of the UK's finest talent shine."

Nisha Katona, Chef and Restaurateur, says: "What an absolutely delicious privilege it is to make the ranks of judge on the Great British Menu! As a chef with restaurants across the country I have always been so invested in the sublime skills of our culinary regions. Their virtuosity and artistry has always blown me away and to join the happy GBM tribe is nothing less than a dream come true. Pass me a fork!"

Ed Gamble, Comedian and host of food podcast Off Menu, says: "It's a great honour to be asked to judge on this shining jewel in the BBC's crown. I've been in strict training for the show by eating full meals every hour. Good news: I love food. Bad news: I eat with my mouth open."

Oliver Peyton and Matthew Fort will leave the programme as judges after 15 years, as will Rachel Khoo who featured as a judge in series 12

Tony Bellew and guests - including Ricky Gervais, Wayne Rooney and Joy Crookes - get angry in a new podcast for BBC Sounds

Ex-boxing world champion Tony Bellew will open up about the things that get him riled in new BBC Sounds and BBC Radio 5 Live podcast, Tony Bellew Is Angry

Being angry is no bad thing when you're a boxer, but now Tony's not punching people for a living he needs a new outlet.

Throughout the series he will go toe to toe with different guests as they talk about the times in their lives when they've been infuriated - from life-changing pivotal moments to the everyday stuff that aggravates us all. Tony will ask how they've dealt with it and what they've learnt, in the hope of gathering some tips on dealing with his own anger.

Tony says: "I've been fuelled a lot in life by anger, so looking back on why I've made certain decisions and why I've done the things I have was like therapy. I've really enjoyed listening to other people's stories and their experiences in dealing with anger. Hearing the things that make people mad has made me realise I'm not on my own, so for me it was good to get things off my chest and off my mind."

Tony Bellew Is Angry begins on 14 September with two episodes featuring Wayne Rooney and James English. Other episodes include Ricky Gervais and Joy Crookes, with more to be announced, as they share anecdotes of their anger through tears, laughter and rage.

BBC One announces follow up to record-breaking documentary, Katie Price: Harvey And Me

In January, Katie Price: Harvey And Me was released to huge critical and audience acclaim, gathering over five million viewers in 30 days on BBC iPlayer, and becoming the biggest BBC documentary of the period for 16-34 year olds. Critics also praised the documentary for opening up the conversation about raising disabled children. The programme has also recently been shortlisted for a National Television Award and a Grierson Award.

Harvey And Me followed Katie Price and her son Harvey (then 18), who lives with a number of complex physical and neurological conditions, as they navigated Harvey's transition into adulthood and further away from home. Katie met other parents of disabled children and the film shone a light on the little-known issues around care provision and education for those with complex needs.

Now, in Katie Price: What Harvey Did Next (w/t), cameras will follow Katie and Harvey through six months of Harvey's life which will see an huge amount of change. Harvey is leaving behind the school he's attended for a decade and, after a summer with the family and a day of new experiences shadowing staff at a train company, he will embark on a challenging and exciting new chapter as a residential student of National Star College, hours from his family, that will be his home for the next three years.

The transition to this new way of life will be a big upheaval for the family, although the highly specialised teaching and therapy Harvey will receive will lay the crucial foundations for a more independent adult life. Meanwhile, Katie must also come to terms with him being away from home, and with the progress he's making without her. Will this separation, as painful as it may be for Katie and Harvey, ultimately be the best thing for both of them?

As Harvey and his new fellow students start to learn skills, including work experience and interacting with others in the local community. The film will explore the broader issues that all young adults face as they transition from school to college, as well as how it feels to make new friends, miss home or live more independently as a young person with additional needs.

Katie Price says: "The overwhelming love and support we received following Harvey And Me earlier this year was incredible. To see how so many people connected with our story and how it has helped so many families out there who are going through similar experiences has made me so proud. But Harvey's story doesn't end there.

"In this next documentary we will again open up our lives to viewers, as Harvey takes the next step into adulthood as he moves out of our family home. I want to show our real story about how Harvey and I cope with such a big change in our lives, and hopefully help others dealing with similar issues."

What Harvey Did Next (w/t) will be a coming-of-age story with a difference, a complex and nuanced look at the experience of being a disabled young adult; we feel every frustration, and celebrate all the joys and successes of Harvey and his new friends at National Star College, in this next chapter of the life of the Prices.

Jamie Oliver leads search for undiscovered cookbook star in new TV competition

In a brand-new TV format from Jamie Oliver Productions and Plum Pictures, Jamie Oliver leads the quest to find the next big name in cookery.

A book deal with Penguin Random House is up for grabs as the search to discover who has the recipe for success, and a winning cookbook concept, begins. The competition is open to foodies from all walks of like, from humble home cooks and unknown chefs, to Instagram food-influencers and street food vendors.

Jamie Oliver presents the series and, having developed 25 cookbooks during his career to make him the biggest selling non-fiction author in UK history, he will mentor the contestants, sharing his knowledge and experience to help develop their skills and passion for food.

Over seven episodes and with Jamie's guidance, our would-be cookery authors must prove to publishers and expert judges they have what it takes to create a bestseller.

The series begins with wannabe cookbook authors from across the country pitching their unique cookbook ideas and signature dishes. The panel of experts will pick their favourites to return for the next part of the process, where the competitors must cook more dishes, hone their book concepts and see how well their recipes measure up to testers at home.

Packed full of incredible food, the series culminates with three finalists bringing their books to life for the judges and industry experts in a final pitch for the ultimate prize.

Only one foodie will walk away with their very own publishing deal with Michael Joseph at Penguin Random House.

Jamie Oliver said: "I have been crafting cookbooks for over 20 years and I know the dedication, skill and intuition it takes to create recipes people want to buy and try at home. Breaking into publishing is incredibly difficult - an impossible dream for so many amazing cooks out there - so I am just so excited to get out there and discover incredible new talent, new perspectives and new approaches to cooking and food. We know the talent is out there and I'm thrilled to be able to help them fulfill their potential."

Monday, 6 September 2021

GOOD GRIEF Season 1, hilarious new TV comedy written by & starring from Eve and Grace Palmer Exclusive UK Premiere on Sundance Now 30 Sept, 2nd Season in 2022

You’ll be dying with laughter as Good Grief the latest comedy sensation from New Zealand , hits UK TV on 30 September with its premiere exclusively on Sundance Now via Amazon Prime Video Channels.

With a second series already commissioned to premiere next year, the laugh-out loud six-part series comes to the UK and follows the lives, loves,  deaths and disasters of two differing sisters who are thrown together when they inherit their late grandad’s funeral parlour.

A new comedy force to be reckoned with, real life sisters Eve and Grace Palmer take the leads and also co-write this cleverly observed, brilliantly wry series that chimes perfectly with the current run of outstanding comedies championing strong female talent. Channelling Six Feet Under themes with Stath Lets Flats and This Country humour, this fish-out-of-water comedy series might just be the funniest show to come out of the country since Flight of the Conchords.

With no idea how to run a funeral home – or the oddball staff that work there – Ellie (Eve Palmer, Jawbone) and Gwen Good (Grace Palmer, Shortland Street) are thrust into a world of embalming, emceeing, and extreme embarrassment. Recently fired from her teaching career, Ellie starts to warm to the job, while all Gwen wants to do is escape to Bali and become a DJ. But facing death every day gives Ellie and Gwen the chance to reassess their own lives and out of the sadness they face comes laughs aplenty.

The series deftly blends tragedy and comedy and features stand-out performances from a stellar case including Vinnie Bennett (Fast & Furious 9), Josh Thomson (The New Legends of Monkey), Sophie Hambleton (Westside), Lucy Wigmore (Shortland Street) and Bree Peters (Sweet Tooth).

Eve and Grace Palmer said, “They say ‘if you don’t laugh, you’ll cry’ but we hope that in watching this dark comedy about life and death, you’ll be able to do both.”

Good Grief, Season 1 is co- created and co-written by Eve and Grace Palmer along with co-creator/co-writer Nick Schaedel, directed by Kiel McNaughton (The Legend of Baron To’a, My Life is Murder), and produced by Angela Cudd (I Am Waru) and Kerry Warkia (Vai, Waru). Season 2 has been co-commissioned by AMC Networks’ IFC and Sundance Now from Kiel McNaughton and Kerry Warkia’s Brown Sugar Apple Grunt Productions Ltd.

Sundance Now, the streaming service from AMC Networks, is available as an Amazon Prime Video Channels add on in the UK.

Sunday, 5 September 2021

Introducing The Great Debate with Trevor Phillips

Sky News has announced the arrival of a new programme The Great Debate.

Hosted by Trevor Phillips, the weekly discussion programme will give the audience the power to question the decisions that are made about their lives and interrogate the people who make them.

The dizzying speed of the news agenda can lead to a cacophony of competing opinions. In contrast, The Great Debate will spend a full hour exploring in depth and in detail the single issue dominating the news that week, helping the audience find answers to the questions that matter to them.

The programme will feature contributions from the leading experts, opinion-formers and decision-makers in that field. But it will put the audience at the heart of the show – they will determine the questions, recount their experiences and share their views.

Trevor Phillips said: "In a world where things are moving faster than ever, where there is more information than most of us can handle, and people in charge too often underestimate the intelligence of the public, there should be room for informed debate that wrestles with questions to which there are no easy answers.

"The Great Debate audience will be the star of our show - our agenda will be set by real world opinion rather than people with titles in front of their names or letters after them.

"Nothing is off limits. That means we can't be sure what questions will be asked and no one will know what the answers will look like. But everyone will emerge with a fuller understanding of the issues that matter to our viewers, and we hope a passion to join in the argument."

The Great Debate will be broadcast simultaneously on Sky Showcase and Sky News at 9pm, weekly from Monday 27th September.

All Around Britain returns for second series

All Around Britain returns for a second series on Sunday 5th September at 11.55am, bringing a ray of sunshine into ITV viewers' homes on Sunday mornings.

Alex Beresford and Ria Hebden are back to present the 10-part series and will be exploring some of the most glorious and fascinating visitor destinations and landmarks across Britain and Northern Ireland.

Plus they will be bringing viewers the very best heartwarming stories from all of ITV's regional teams.

Ria said: "I'm delighted to be presenting All Around Britain again. Alex and I had a blast travelling the breadth of the UK in the last series, meeting fascinating people and hearing their inspirational stories. I'm passionate about hearing peoples' stories, so I'm in my element. I've got my wellies at the ready and I can't wait to meet more amazing people and to explore more of this stunning country of ours."

Alex said: "I'm really excited and looking forward to the second series of All Around Britain with Ria. We'll be bringing you stories of amazing people from across the country and celebrating all things British!"

All Around Britain, airs on itv every Sunday from September 5th at 11.55am

Yung Filly to take BBC Three on their third date, as Hot Property is confirmed to return for series three

In the series, trusted wingman Filly travels around the UK to meet single people looking for love.

The premise is simple: Filly takes the Hot Property singletons through the keyhole, snooping around the homes of potential suitors, deciding who to date based purely on the stuff they own, the rooms they live in, and the verdict of their friends and family.

The last one standing is taken on a date - where they'll find out whether the attraction is there IRL.

Yung Filly says: "I'm so gassed to be presenting the third series of Hot Property. The rooms keep getting more extreme, the fun we have on set is insane. I can't wait for everyone to see what we've been up to."

More details about the new series will be revealed in due course.

Julia Davis, Charlie Cooper and David Avery to guest star in season 3 of Channel 4 and Roughcut TV's Stath Lets Flats

Filming has wrapped on Channel 4's critically acclaimed and triple BAFTA-winning comedy Stath Lets Flats, from the award-winning Roughcut TV.  The series is written and created by Jamie Demetriou, who returns in the lead role of Stath. Season three will feature some stellar guest stars, including Julia Davis (Nighty Night) who appears in one episode as Kris, Carole's belittling and snobbish sister; David Avery (We Are Lady Parts) plays Bambos, Stath's flash barber cousin …and Charlie Cooper (This Country) plays Gregory - a lettings agent who is passionately devoted to his wife and runs a rival agency called Live Love Lets.

The returning cast includes Natasia Demetriou (What We Do In The Shadows), Kiell Smith-Bynoe (Ghosts), Katy Wix (The Windsors), Ellie White (The Other One), Al Roberts (Feel Good) and Christos Stergioglou (Dogtooth) as Stath's father, Vasos. Season three will also see the following guest cast back; Emmy nominated Nick Mohammed (Ted Lasso), David Mumeni (Dead Pixels) and Tom Stourton (Siblings).  The new series will air later this year on Channel 4 and will be available on All 4.

The third series will pick up where the second finished with a shocking cliff-hanger as incompetent letting agent Stath (Demetriou) is faced with rescuing the family business, Michael & Eagle, and his relationship with Katia (White), while expecting his first child by Carole (Wix). Meanwhile his sister, Sophie (Natasia Demetriou), and best friend, Al (Roberts), deal with the fallout of finally declaring their feelings for each other.

Jamie Demetriou commented: "Times are the worst they have been in living memory, but fear not, a sitcom about a lettings agency is back for a third series! All the characters (bar a few who had availability issues) are back and saying stuff aaaall over again! Get ready to hear what they say! Listen closely and you might even hear a thing or 2 from some new celebrated guest stars. Did somebody say…. the whole England football team?? No, it'll be comedy actors!"

Self-confessed enthusiast & collector of miniatures Sandi Tokskvig to front The Great Big Tiny Design Challenge for More4

The Great Big Tiny Design Challenge from Wales-based Yeti, is an 8-part series for More 4, fronted by self-confessed enthusiast & collector of miniatures Sandi Toksvig.   This epic competition will challenge designers to renovate an entire derelict mansion, inspired by real-world designs. The catch is that the luxury fantasy home they must renovate is doll sized.

Whilst the projects may be tiny, the task is huge. Our cast of miniacs (people who create all things miniature) will be set a series of challenges to test their design and practical skills. From crafting a Regency inspired dining room, complete with a dinner service and spread to die for to designing an Art Deco Bathroom, fitted with a a fully plumbed bath. Many of the installations they create in each mini build will need to function and fit the brief to pass the judges' critical eye.

Judging the series are interior design guru Laura Jackson and world-record holding miniature sculptor Willard Wigan MBE (World's Tiniest Masterpieces), who will preside over both the individual and team tasks set to the contestants.  

Sandi Toksvig says: "I couldn't be more thrilled to be hosting The Great Big Tiny Design Challenge. Finally a TV show in my size.  I can't wait to marvel in miniature."

Sandi will delve into the inspiration behind the contestant's builds and bring viewers on journeys through real life stately homes across Britain, showcasing our rich history of opulent and outstanding interior design.

Ultimately, there can only be one winner, but who leaves each week is entirely up to the judges. Tasked to work in teams as well as take charge on their own, this series will test the Miniacs' skill and creativity to the max. Each week their finished designs are displayed before the judges, with Sandi giving us an ultimate Tiny Tour.  With cutting edge GFX, she'll be shrunk down to explore these incredible mini rooms up close for herself.

One design is selected as the week's winner and is installed in our miniature mansion. Over the series we'll see this shabby, run down derelict miniature mansion transformed into the ultimate fantasy home that we'd all love to live in, if only we could fit.

Wednesday, 1 September 2021

Iain De Caestecker and Joanna Vanderham to lead cast of new thriller The Control Room for BBC One

Iain De Caestecker (Us, Roadkill, Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D) and Joanna Vanderham (Dancing On The Edge, The Go-Between, Man In An Orange Shirt) will lead the cast of the three part drama which will be directed by Amy Neil (Trust Me, Hanna). Further cast includes Sharon Rooney (My Mad Fat Diary, The Capture, Finding Alice), Daniel Portman (Game of Thrones, Vigil), Taj Atwal (The Syndicate, Line of Duty) and Stuart Bowman (Bodyguard, Versailles).

A gripping new thriller set in Glasgow, The Control Room tells the story of Gabe (De Caestecker), an ordinary man who works as an emergency call handler for the Strathclyde Ambulance Service in Glasgow. His world is turned upside down when he receives a desperate life-and-death call from a woman who appears to know him. With Gabe under pressure to work out who she is, he makes a decision that threatens to have devastating consequences.

Iain De Caestecker says: "The Control Room is one of the most exciting scripts I've ever read, I was on the edge of my seat the whole time so I'm thrilled to now be bringing it to life. I've always loved working with the BBC and am especially delighted to be filming alongside this fantastic cast and crew in my hometown of Glasgow."

Joanna Vanderham says: "I am so excited for the opportunity to bring Nick Leather's incredibly complex characters to life. Filming in my home country of Scotland is always special and my research for the character means I've been reminiscing about my own adolescence. The BBC create some of the best global programming there is and Amy Neil is going to add The Control Room to their exceptional catalogue. I can't wait for people to see what we do!"

Tuesday, 31 August 2021

Guilt - first look picture

Award-winning drama Guilt returns soon for a new four-part series full of twists, turns and deception…

Written by Neil Forsyth, Guilt stars Mark Bonnar as Max McCall, Sara Vickers as Erin, Stuart Bowman as Roy Lynch and Emun Elliot as Kenny. Also starring Phyllis Logan, Greg McHugh, Sandy McDade, Henry Pettigrew, Rochelle Neil and Robin Laing.

Guilt is an Expectation and Happy Tramp North co-production for BBC Scotland and BBC Two.

Friday, 27 August 2021

Cheryl shares the R&B songs that shaped her life in new music show on BBC Sounds

You, Me & R&B with Cheryl is the brand-new music show from BBC Sounds and BBC Radio 2 beginning Friday 27 August.

Across 12 episodes Cheryl will share stories of her youth and love for R&B music, from TLC to Beyoncé.

Cheryl says: "I've always had an absolute love and passion for R&B so I'm hoping listeners are transported back and absorbed in their own nostalgia too. Music can be really healing when you're going through something painful or happy, by revisiting those moments you can take back your power, I've discovered that myself throughout the process."

As a teenager Cheryl sought after the soulful melodies from the likes of Mary J Blige and Erykah Badu. Throughout the series she'll look at uncovering the root of her obsession with the genre, reflecting on childhood stories and the songs connected to those special moments.

The nostalgic R&B tunes chosen by Cheryl will soundtrack some of her most prominent memories as she journeys through heartbreak, love and the songs that healed her soul.

You, Me & R&B with Cheryl is the latest in a collection of new on-demand music shows curated by high-profile guests on BBC Sounds, including Charli XCX's Best Song Ever and Romesh Ranganathan: For The Love Of Hip Hop, with more to be announced soon.

Mel B to present special episode of Steph’s Packed Lunch as part of Channel 4’s Black to Front Project

Channel 4's daytime show Steph's Packed Lunch is to become Mel B's Packed Lunch on Friday 10th September as part of the channel's Black to Front Project.

Former Spice Girl Melanie Brown is making her live presenting debut as she takes the helm of the lunchtime show, which broadcasts live from Mel's hometown of Leeds each weekday.

Mel will be joined by popular Steph's Packed Lunch regular and football icon Chris Kamara, while resident chef Freddy Forster cooks up tasty treats in the kitchen.

Mel B's Packed Lunch will feature celebrity guests, topical chat, real-life issues and consumer items. Plus, our regular lunchmates will be in the studio to join in the conversation and add different opinions and perspectives to discussions.

Melanie Brown said: "It's going to be a lot of fun and I can't wait to spice up lunchtime television. I'm also really proud to be part of Channel 4's Black to Front Project, that's something to really celebrate."

Mel B's Packed Lunch will broadcast live from 12.30pm on Friday 10th September on Channel 4 and All 4.

The Real Dirty Dancing to be hosted by Ashley Roberts and Keith Lemon

Ten celebrities are in for the time of their life as they're transported back to the swinging 60s for an immersive and nostalgia packed dance experience like no other – The Real Dirty Dancing (W/T), produced by Thames (a Fremantle label) is coming to E4 in 2022.

Co-hosted by Dirty Dancing superfan Keith Lemon and Heart FM showbiz host and Pussycat Doll Ashley Roberts, across eight episodes, The Real Dirty Dancing (W/T), will follow 10 famous faces as they move into a stunning Lakeside location reminiscent of the original Kellermans resort, where their dance moves will be well and truly put to the test. In couples, they'll compete as they take on challenges and dance routines based on iconic scenes from the classic film. Each couple has one thing in common – they all want to be the last Baby and Johnny standing.

The celebs will need to prove themselves as they take part in entertaining challenges that'll require them to embody the characters from the cult classic, as they work around the clock to discover their inner Johnny or Baby. There'll be no spaghetti arms as they attempt to learn and perform routines inspired by iconic moments, from 'Hungry Eyes' to the jaw dropping Mambo dance, but can they muster the strength for the lake lift, or the elegance required to balance on a fallen log? One thing is for sure, watermelon carrying skills are essential.

The celebrities will be dancing with various partners throughout the course of the show. Inspired by the Australian series of the same name, The Real Dirty Dancing (W/T) will culminate in the showstopping finale where the top two couples take on the moment every fan dreams of – the last dance of the season, with that gravity defying lift! The remaining six celebrities will become backing dancers in this one-off celebratory performance.

Keith Lemon said: "Dirty Dancing is such a good film and of course I've been Baby myself! Twice now! Once for Let's Dance for Comic Relief and once when we did it on The Keith & Paddy Picture Show. So yeah I was chuffed to be asked to host this show! And to be hosting with me mate Ashley! It's gonna be so fun! Ya can tell how excited I am, look how many exclamation marks I've used! Can't wait!"                                                                        

Ashley Roberts said: "I LOVE Dirty Dancing, the film literally had a huge impact on my life, and I couldn't be more excited to be involved in this series. I'm going to be on hand to help out the celebs with their Johnny and Baby moves and look forward to being reunited with Keith. Wish me luck! It's going to be a lot of fun."

Channel 4 adds late-night topical discussion show Unapologetic to The Black to Front Project line up

A late-night topical discussion programme, Unapologetic, has been added to Channel 4's The Black to Front Project content line up. Produced by SBTV and Cardiff Productions, the 1x60 programme will be hosted by DJ and presenter Yinka Bokinni and social media star and presenter Zeze Millz.

In a world where you can be cancelled at a moment's notice, Unapologetic is a show where guests will be encouraged to say what they want to say without apologising for it. This isn't a show about Black people, this is the show where Black people talk freely about everything. It will offer new views on existing subjects as well as bringing new subjects and voices to the table.

Featuring guests from the worlds of politics and popular culture as well as the people who've been at the heart of controversies themselves, the programme will challenge ideas of what Black people are allowed to say and what is off-limits. Tackling topics such as Black Lives Matter, football, racism, colourism, and what's making news on social media, Unapologetic won't hold back.

Channel 4 commissions 80’s crime-comedy The Curse

Channel 4 has commissioned the brand-new crime-comedy The Curse, written by the combined multi-BAFTA award-winning partnership of Tom Davis and director James De Frond (Murder in Successville, King Gary), along with Steve Stamp, Allan Mustafa, Hugo Chegwin (People Just Do Nothing). The Curse is a comedy caper set in London in the early 80's, following a gang of hopeless small time crooks who through their own stupidity and poor judgement find themselves embroiled in one of the biggest gold heists in history.  The series is produced by Shiny Button, a Banijay UK company.

The 80's saw the elevation of materialistic values, in a decade where the rich got richer (mainly at the expense of others). The same era saw a rise in armed robberies with local lads taking from the very people they felt were robbing them.

The comedy is a fictionalized tale loosely inspired by an infamous robbery from the early 80's, where six men raided a depot near one of London's airports thinking they'd walk away with £50,000 in cash, only to stumble across seven thousand bars of gold, with a street value of tens of millions!

The Curse stars Allan Mustafa (playing Albert Fantoni), Steve Stamp (playing Sidney Wilson), Hugo Chegwin (playing Phil 'The Captain' Pocket) and Tom Davis (playing Big Mick Neville), a group of hapless small-time criminals who become embroiled in the plot.  They are normal working-class men who just dabble in low level crime to make ends meet during the recession hit decade.  But the naïve gang royally bite off more than they can chew with the heist and subsequently are stuck with the impossible task of coming up with a plot to rid themselves of the loot before they get nicked or even worse, end up dead…

Emer Kenny (Pramface, Beaver Falls) plays Natasha, wife of criminal Albert, who narrates the tale. The series also stars Peter Ferninando (The Letter for the King) as Crazy Clive Cornell, a "proper" gangster that the gang become involved with during the heist, Ambreen Razia (This Way Up) as Detective Thread, Geoff Bell (His Dark Materials) as Detective Saunders and Michael Smiley (Luther) as Ronnie Gatlin.

The Curse is a tale of friendship. Can a group of childhood friends stick together when they find themselves transformed overnight from nobody's to somebody's and what are the sacrifices that they must make to survive…and ultimately is all the money in the world ever really worth it?

It's a story of trust, greed, ambition, class and in-equality.

Fiona McDermott, Head of Comedy at Channel 4, said: "It's been such a treat to see these mega comedy talents collide with The Curse. As gripping as it is daft, we're thrilled to have such an ambitiously funny show from these brilliant creatives coming to Channel 4."

Steve Stamp, added: "I've always wanted a mullet so really this is just an excuse to do that. But also an absolute privilege to work with such a talented group of people and to be making something with this level of scale and ambition. Really excited to start shooting."

Tom Davis, commented: "Ever since first meeting Allan, Steve and Hugo myself and James have been buzzing to work with them. Channel 4 has such an incredible history in bringing working class stories to life, we're excited to add this tale to the mix."

Tuesday, 24 August 2021

Lorraine Kelly returns 1st September

Lorraine Kelly returns this September with an Autumn full of life saving campaigns, celebrations of friendship and top celebrity guests

Following a fabulous summer with Christine Lampard and Ranvir Singh, Wednesday 1st September sees the Queen of Daytime TV Lorraine Kelly back in the hot seat to bring viewers an autumn jam packed with thought provoking campaigns, celebrations of female friendships and the very best celebrity guests back in the studio. Plus the Woman of the Year awards returns, there's a celebration of Black History Month and a brand new chef is added to the Lorraine line up.

Casting announced for Dolly Alderton’s Everything I Know About Love

Inspired by her own wildly funny, occasionally heart-breaking, internationally bestselling memoir of the same name, Everything I Know About Love, will give an unflinching account of surviving your 20s. The 7-part series for BBC One will be directed by China Moo-Young (Intergalactic, Harlots) and produced by Working Title Television (We Are Lady Parts, Hanna), which is part of NBCUniversal International Studios, a division of Universal Studio Group.

The central love story of Everything I Know About Love is between two childhood best friends Maggie played by Emma Appleton (Pistol, The Witcher, Traitors) and Birdy played by Bel Powley (The Morning Show, Informer, Diary Of A Teenage Girl). Set in a 2012 London house-share with flashbacks to suburban adolescence in the early noughties, the series is an unflinching deep dive into bad dates, heartaches and humiliations and begs the question: can platonic love survive romantic love as we grow up?

Joining besties Maggie and Birdy, are Marli Siu (Alex Rider) playing Nell, Jordan Peters (Pirates, Gangs Of London) playing Neil and making their on-screen TV debuts are Aliyah Odoffin playing Amara, Connor Finch playing Street; and Ryan Bown in his breakout role as Nathan.

Dolly Alderton says: "I am beyond thrilled with every actor we have on board for Everything I Know About Love. Aisha Bywaters has helped us find our dream cast and we are so excited to see them inhabit the world of the show and bring its stories and relationships to life."

Filming for Everything I Know About Love will begin imminently in Manchester and London, and will air on BBC One and BBC iPlayer in 2022.

Prestigious cast join Channel 4’s Chivalry, written by and starring Sarah Solemani and Steve Coogan

Emmy award-winning Wanda Sykes stars as Jean Shrill, a shrewd studio executive. Jean arranges for Bobby Sohrabi (played by Sarah Solemani), a passionate indie-darling filmmaker, to take over as director of "A Little Death", the problematic movie produced by Cameron O'Neill (played by Steve Coogan). Cameron must navigate remaining relevant at a time when cancel-culture is all too real and is surprised when spending time with Bobby awakens a creative side of himself, he thought had long-since passed. What will Jean do to keep her empire intact, and what will Bobby do to build one?

Sienna Miller plays Lark, the magnetic and dynamic leading actress of Cameron's movie. She's a fighter and no stranger to The Hollywood Boys' Club.

Lolly Adefope plays Ama, Cameron's new assistant who's eager to quickly climb the ladder of success. Robert Lonsdale joins playing Rick, the editor of "A Little Death" who aims to keep the film on track while often caught in the crossfire of Bobby and Cameron's creative sparring.

Adjani Salmon is Aston, Bobby's patient, and generous husband. Down on his luck from a failed start-up, Aston agrees to move to the tech-Mecca California with Bobby, hopeful to reinvent his career while Bobby strikes while the iron's hot in hers.

Chivalry is a fresh new look on gender politics and romance, and asks the question: can one build and sustain a successful, relevant career in Hollywood without sacrificing authenticity? Chivalry grants the audience permission to laugh while asking complex questions that we as a society often find hard to discuss.

Claudia Winkleman to host Channel 4 gameshow with only One Question

The series will see Claudia Winkleman invite a pair of contestants to answer just a single question to win a £100,000 prize. The contestants will be faced with twenty possible answers, but only one answer is correct. Eliminate the incorrect answers and they'll be on the path to victory, but eliminate the one correct answer and it's game over.

Host Claudia Winkleman comments: "I am ridiculously excited about One Question. There's no time limit, no buzzers, no complicated rules. A sofa, a chat, just one question that could win our players £100k. Not only that, we give them the answer. Tricky part is we give them 19 wrong answers too. I've bought a new black sweater and the studio has a toasted sandwich maker. I can't wait."

Monday, 23 August 2021

Sky Arts reveals the UK’s favourite public art ahead of brand new series, Landmark

A 1.2 tonne metal sculpture of a soldier reflecting on the horrors of World War One has been crowned the UK's best piece of outdoor artwork.

Ray Lonsdale's 2014 statue, called '1101' to mark the first minute of peace after armistice at 11am on November 11, 1918, is also known as 'Tommy'.

It was initially only meant to be a temporary display but following its unveiling, it became so popular that locals started a fundraising campaign to have it permanently installed.

In 2015, after raising the £102,000 necessary, it was moved to a paved platform in the town, and a time capsule containing donated items, including a letter from Ray Lonsdale, a T-shirt, children's artworks, war remembrances, and a Victory Medal was buried beneath it.

The moving sculpture, in Seaham, County Durham, took top spot following a nationwide poll by Sky Arts to celebrate the launch of its new series, Landmark, which will see a new wave of public art in the UK as the country's best artists compete for the chance to create a brand-new national landmark.

Sky Arts initially asked 1,000 UK adults to share their favourite pieces of free-to-view outdoor artwork, before the list was whittled down to a top 20 by curator, Clare Lilley, one of Landmark's expert judges, before 2,000 adults then voted for their favourites.

Lonsdale's work topped the list ahead of Andy Scott's 'Kelpies', a giant horse installation in Falkirk, Scotland and the 'Uffington White Horse', the chalk hill figure in Oxfordshire.

Making up the top five was 'The Angel of the North', by Antony Gormley, and Martin Jennings' 'Women of Steel' in Sheffield.

New three-part series Freddie’s First Eleven set to give Flintoff his biggest challenge yet

Sporting hero Andrew 'Freddie' Flintoff is taking on what might be the biggest challenge of his entire career: he's going to attempt to set up on one of the country's most unlikely cricket teams.

On his roster: 11 talented teens from some of the most underprivileged parts of his native Lancashire. They have never played cricket before in their lives and probably haven't even considered it, deeming cricket as the domain of the posh and the privileged. Freddie's goal is simple: to prove that anyone can find camaraderie, confidence and success playing the sport he loves. Success is by no means guaranteed, but whatever happens, Freddie is setting out to change their lives and the future of the game he so adores.

Freddie says: "I made it to the highest level of cricket attending state schools on an estate in Preston, but I can't see many others doing that now. The vast majority of the England's men's national cricket team attended private school. Cricket is more elitist per head than rugby, rowing and the House of Lords. We've got to do something to get young, working-class people playing our national summer sport again. I really hope this series can demonstrate that with some time and coaching anyone can learn to love cricket and have the opportunities that came my way."

Celebrity guest judges are revealed for the next series of RuPaul’s Drag Race UK: Oti Mabuse, Matt Lucas and Kathy Burke

Following on from the feverish excitement of last week's cast announcement, we're pleased to ru-veal details of three of the nine guest judges, who will appear on the third series of the BBC Three phenomenon RuPaul's Drag Race UK, coming to BBC iPlayer in Autumn 2021.

The third series of RuPaul's Drag Race returns to BBC Three in September, and the extra special guest judges will join RuPaul alongside Michelle Visage, Graham Norton and Alan Carr as Ru looks for the UK's Next Drag Race Superstar.

Two-time champion of Strictly Come Dancing, Oti Mabuse brings her Strictly sparkle to the Drag Race runway, lending her extensive dance expertise to the 12 new queens.

Actor, comedian and presenter Matt Lucas brings a playful addition to proceedings as he take up his position on the opening episode.
And finally, actress and comedian Kathy Burke brings her Gimme Gimme Gimme realness to the judging panel.

Channel 4 commissions The Simple Life

Is modern life bad for us? A major new six-part Channel 4 series, The Simple Life will explore this question, following 24 Brits as they come together to live by the rules of a community who chose to disregard the majority of modern values – the Amish.

The 24 contributors include a social media content creator, a Norfolk rapper, a former soldier, twin brothers from South London and a gay couple – one of whom is head of nursing operations across three NHS hospitals and the other an ex-army media – with their two adopted children. They will be joined in an idyllic countryside backdrop by an Amish family of five from Ohio, home to the largest Amish community in the world.

The community will live off-grid on a 40-acre farm complete with a lake and a wood but without their phones, any form of technology, mains electricity or gas. They will be required to raise a barn and build a pig ark for the impending arrival of their livestock in addition to harvesting over three acres of hay – all in the traditional Amish way, without mechanisation. The community will also need to travel into the local town via horse and cart for supplies and to trade or sell results of the cottage industries they have started. The Amish family will offer the community advice on the day-to-day lifestyle as well as guidance on how to live simply – and ultimately how to find happiness with a more humble existence.

The project will be overseen by world renowned psychologist, Barry Schwartz who, in his bestselling book, The Paradox of Choice, argued that rather than bringing us happiness, the choices available to us in modern life only make us feel more stressed and that too much choice makes us unhappy.

Filmed over a six-month period, a team of British scientists will monitor and evaluate changes in the wellbeing of the community across the filming period – both on the farm and when they return to their normal, modern lives. Will there be a positive impact on the mental and physical health of those taking part or is there a desperate need to get back to their consumerist packed lifestyles?

The Simple Life offers a world where manual labour is central, a world in tune with the environment and a world based on valuing the person within – one based entirely on community and not focussed solely on our own needs.

Tuesday, 17 August 2021

First look images from Sky and HBO co-production Landscapers starring Olivia Colman and David Thewlis

Sky today reveals exclusive first look images of Landscapers; an exhilarating and darkly funny exploration of love and fantasy starring Olivia Colman and David Thewlis. Inspired by real events, the four-part Sky Original limited series is created and written by Ed Sinclair in his first television screenplay and sees writer-director Will Sharpe (The Electrical Life of Louis Wain, Flowers) bring his singular vision to the story. Landscapers is the latest project from SISTER for Sky Studios and HBO after the multi-Emmy and BAFTA award-winning hit Chernobyl.

Multi award-winner Olivia Colman (The Favourite, The Crown) plays Susan Edwards with David Thewlis (I'm Thinking Of Ending Things, Fargo) portraying Christopher Edwards.

Colman and Thewlis are joined by Kate O'Flynn (Bridget Jones's Baby), Dipo Ola (We Hunt Together), Samuel Anderson (The History Boys), David Hayman (The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas), Felicity Montagu (I'm Alan Partridge) and Daniel Rigby (Eric and Ernie, Flowers).

Landscapers tells a unique love story involving a seemingly ordinary couple who become the focus of an extraordinary investigation when a couple of dead bodies are discovered in the back garden of a house in Nottingham.

Mild-mannered husband and wife Susan (Colman) and Christopher Edwards (Thewlis) have been on the run from reality for over 15 years. When Christopher makes a startling call home to his step-mother, their role in a terrible crime that remained undiscovered for over a decade begins to emerge into the light. As their relationship is subjected to the glare of a full police investigation, the devoted couple are separated for the first time in their marriage.​

As the investigation moves forward, inspired by Susan's obsession with old Westerns and classic cinema the fantasists cast themselves as Hollywood heroes in narratives of their own invention.  Powered by Susan's extraordinary imagination, Susan and Chris's fantasy world provides a much needed sanctuary from real-world horrors and their own clawing guilt, but also threatens to undo them completely. 

Landscapers will air on Sky Atlantic and streaming service NOW later this year.

First-look images released for BBC One’s new conspiracy thriller The Trick - coming this Autumn

First look images have been released of Jason Watkins (Line Of Duty, The Lost Honour Of Christopher Jefferies), Victoria Hamilton (Doctor Foster, Life), George MacKay (1917, Pride) and Jerome Flynn (Game Of Thrones, Ripper Street) starring in BBC One's new conspiracy thriller, The Trick.

The landmark film (1x90') tells the story of world-renowned Professor Philip Jones, Director of Climate Research at the University of East Anglia, who back in 2009 found himself at the eye of an international media storm, and the victim of cyberterrorism.

With time running out against an unseen enemy, The Trick looks at the potentially devastating consequences to humanity from climate change denial; how a media storm undermined public confidence in the science and how the concept of 'truth' took a back seat - causing us to lose a decade of action. The film also charts the unjustified persecution of Phil Jones (Jason Watkins), his wife Ruth's (Victoria Hamilton) fierce support of her husband, and the fight for the ultimate exoneration of himself and the science.

The ensemble cast also includes George MacKay (1917, Pride), Jerome Flynn (Game Of Thrones, Ripper Street), Adrian Edmondson (The Pact, Save Me), Aneirin Hughes (Hinterland, Keeping Faith), Pooky Quesnel (The A Word, The Victim), Richard Elfyn (The Pact), Rhashan Stone (Keeping Faith, Finding Alice), Justin Salinger (Hanna), Tara Divina (Line Of Duty) and David Calder (Time, The Hatton Garden Job).

This powerful single drama is produced by Vox Pictures, the team behind the critically acclaimed Keeping Faith, and is written by Bafta-nominated Owen Sheers and directed by Pip Broughton. Adrian Bate produces for Vox Pictures and it is executive produced by Ben Irving for the BBC.

The Trick (1x90') is coming this autumn to BBC One and BBC iPlayer.