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Wednesday, 28 April 2021

Sky announces supernatural crime thriller The Rising, a new in-house production from Sky Studios

Sky today announces a new eight-part supernatural crime thriller The Rising which is due to begin filming in the Lake District next month, which is adapted from the Belgian crime thriller Hotel Beau Séjour.

The Rising is the first series produced entirely in-house from Sky Studios, Sky's production and development arm, who are working with executive producer Julian Stevens, producer of The Fall (BBC Two) and Informer (BBC Two).

The Rising is the story of Neve Kelly (Rugaard), who discovers that she is dead. She's scared and confused by this new existence. But, when she realises she has been murdered, she's furious. She's determined to find her killer and get justice, believing that it was someone she knew.

Impulsive and restless, Neve regrets never leaving her isolated community. And, as she comes to terms with her abilities, she begins to destabilise the lives of those she left behind. Particularly her estranged father, Tom (Daniel Ings) and her beloved mother Maria (Emily Taaffe).

Neve is a disruptive, unsettling hero who should not exist, and she needs to find her purpose. She takes us through the investigation into her death, going where the police can't. In the process she uncovers deeply buried secrets and is forced to re-examine everything about her life and the people she cared about.

With nothing to lose but time, Neve will push for the truth even when it hurts. Her return forces everyone around her to change, confess, or start covering their tracks. But, it also reveals that there are others like her out there…

With a distinctive tone and visual style, The Rising is a story about love, justice and the cost of pursuing the truth in a world that wants to keep it hidden.

The series is set to star a fresh line up of young emerging talent including Clara Rugaard (I Am Mother) as protagonist Neve, Nenda Neururer (A Brief History of Struggle) as the irreverent Alex Wyatt who has recently returned to the area after three years away and Solly McLeod (Boxing Day) as Joseph Wyatt, Alex's cousin and Neve's longstanding boyfriend. Daniel Ings (I Hate Suzie), Emily Taaffe (Rare Beasts), Alex Lanipekun (Spooks) and Robyn Cara (Ackley Bridge) are also set to star.

Keeley Hawes & Max Beesley set to star in Sky Original drama The Midwich Cuckoos

Sky announced today casting news for Sky Original drama The Midwich Cuckoos, a dark, disturbing modern-day reimagining of John Wyndham's classic science fiction novel of the same name. BAFTA-nominated Keeley Hawes (Bodyguard, It's A Sin), and Max Beesley (The Outsider, Suits) are set to lead the line-up alongside Aisling Loftus (A Discovery of Witches), Ukweli Roach (Blindspot), Synnøve Karlsen (Last Night In Soho, Clique), Lara Rossi (Robin Hood), Lewis Reeves (I May Destroy You), Rebekah Staton (Raised by Wolves) and Anneika Rose (Line of Duty).

The Midwich Cuckoos is set to begin production in London in May and has been adapted for the screen by Emmy award-nominated writer David Farr (The Night Manager, Hanna). The eight-part series is produced by Route 24 (backed by ITV Studios) and Snowed-In Productions, in association with Sky Studios. The modern-day adaptation is set to air on Sky and streaming service NOW in 2022.

Midwich, a small English commuter town, is liberal and aspirational, populated by nuclear families and affluent high streets. A place where nothing much happens – and for a very good reason.

That is until the twilight hours of a summer's day when a sleepy corner of Midwich is plunged into panic. People pass out on their feet without warning, without reason. Anyone who tries to enter meets the same fate. And nobody can understand why. When the mysterious blackout is lifted, life for those affected returns to apparent normality - except every woman of child-bearing age inside the zone has suddenly and inexplicably fallen pregnant.

As news spreads and tensions simmer, it is up to gifted psychotherapist Dr Susannah Zellaby (Hawes) to help support those affected through the emotional wilderness. Susannah's own daughter, Cassie (Karlsen), has fallen pregnant and harbours deep concerns about who, or what, is behind this phenomenon.

Local officer DCI Paul Kirby (Beesley) is tasked with maintaining order but unbeknownst to them all, a terrifying force is building in the comfortable streets of Midwich. These children – potential parasites - flourish under the very love and care that their families give them. Who are these children? And what do they want?

The Midwich Cuckoos is an unnerving fable for our turbulent times, a thrilling, strange and at times horrifying journey into parenthood, which lays bare any parent's worst fear: that the thing most precious to us – a child – might desire our destruction.

Keeley Hawes, lead actor in The Midwich Cuckoos said "I'm absolutely delighted to be working with Sky and the brilliant Ruth Kenley-Letts on David Farr's superb adaptation of The Midwich Cuckoos. I'm very much looking forward to working with the hugely talented Max Beesley and the amazing cast and I can't wait to enter the strange and unsettling world of Midwich!"


ITV commissions new entertainment series Cooking With The Stars

ITV, has commissioned South Shore to deliver a six-part brand-new entertainment cooking competition called Cooking With The Stars. The series, transmitting this summer on ITV and the ITV Hub, will feature eight celebrities, each paired with an accomplished chef who will mentor, teach and take them from passionate amateur to restaurant level chefs.

TV Presenter Emma Willis and comedian Tom Allen are set to host the series where the celebrities will be cooking up a storm week by week in a bid to outdo their rivals.

Trained by their professional chef partner they'll prepare and present their dishes for judgement. Their mentor chefs then become judges, rating the other celebrity cooks, with the bottom two at risk of leaving the competition. Should they end up in the bottom two the celebrities will be fighting for their place in the contest on their own, with no help from their teacher, as they each present a dish in the hope of saving their spot. This eliminator round is decided by a blind testing from the chefs – unaware of whose food they're passing judgement over the greatest supporter could swiftly and unwittingly become the worst critic and vote for their protégé to leave the competition.

Emma Willis said: "I absolutely love cooking so I can't wait to see the celebrities in the kitchen showing what they have or haven't learnt. What a brilliant opportunity to be trained by some of the best chefs in the business and I'm hoping I can pick up a few tips too. I know it's going to be a lot of fun hosting with the brilliant Tom Allen so I can't wait to get started."

Tom Allen said: "I'm absolutely delighted to be working with Emma and an amazing team of chefs and celebrities. I have a feeling everyone's going to be put through their paces but we're going to have a lot of fun along the way!"

24-year-old student from Glasgow becomes youngest ever BBC Mastermind Champion

BBC One's Mastermind final tonight saw Jonathan Gibson, a 24-year-old student from Glasgow, crowned the youngest ever Mastermind Champion since the show began in 1972.

Currently studying a PhD in Modern History at the University of St. Andrews, Jonathan won by a margin of four points in the Grand Final - scoring a perfect 11/11 in his specialist subject, comedy song writing duo, Flanders and Swann.

Jonathan's other specialist subjects throughout the competition were Agatha Christie's Poirot in the heat and William Pitt the Younger in the semi-final. He scored perfect scores on all three specialist subjects, as well as a perfect general knowledge score in his semi-final round.

Tonight's grand final is John Humphrys' last episode as host of Mastermind, who has presented 735 episodes of the series and asked more than 80,000 questions during that time.

The new series with newly-announced presenter Clive Myrie, a BBC news journalist and regular presenter of the BBC News at Six and Ten, at the helm will be filmed in Belfast later in the summer and will return to viewer's screens on BBC One and BBC iPlayer later this year.

Celeste, Boy George and James Morrison to join Paul Weller live in concert with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Jules Buckley

These three extraordinary artists will bring their individual style and musicality to Weller tracks arranged specially for them in brand new orchestral settings by the BBC SO's Creative Artist in Association, Jules Buckley.

The concert marks Weller's return to live performance for the first time in over two years. Spanning the broad spectrum of his career, from The Jam to as yet unheard new material, the programme includes classic songs You Do Something to Me, English Rose and Wild Wood, along with tracks from Weller's latest number one album, On Sunset.

This one-off performance is the latest collaboration in a series of innovative concerts from the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Jules Buckley, and is part of the acclaimed Live From The Barbican series and will be available to watch via a live stream on the Barbican website.

Following the live show at the Barbican, the concert will be broadcast across BBC TV, radio and online. The complete show will be broadcast on BBC Radio 2 (13 June) whilst 6 Music takes highlights for Gideon Coe's show (17 June) and Edith Bowman presents the concert for TV audiences on BBC Two later in June. The concert will also be made available on demand on BBC Sounds and BBC iPlayer.

Celeste says: "I have found Paul Weller to be such inspiration from afar, and also in the little moments I have spent with him. Wild Wood was a song sung at my first ever gig when I was 16, so to be able to sing it with him now 10 years later feels like a career full-circle moment and I'm truly honoured he's up for doing it!"

Boy George says: "'I'm a big fan of Paul and for me he just gets better and better. I can't wait to sing this song.  Nervous too!"

James Morrison says: "I finally got to meet and work with Paul last year. He's been a hero for my entire musical life. There's soul in everything he does and he's an absolute legend. Musical credibility starts and ends with Paul Weller, so to be invited to perform with him is a genuine honour. And I get to sing one of my favourite of his songs, so I cannot wait."

Channel 4 confirms high-octane thriller Before We Die to air from May

Lesley Sharp leads the cast as DI Hannah Laing in new Channel 4 drama, Before We Die.

Channel 4 today unveils a first-look of award-winning actress, Lesley Sharp (Scott & Bailey, Three Girls, Bob & Rose), in the headline role of its new, high-octane thriller, Before We Die.

Coming to Channel 4 screens next month, the six-part series stars Lesley as Hannah Laing, a senior Police detective who is forced to make a terrible decision as her son, Christian – played by Patrick Gibson (The OA & Tolkien) – goes off the rails. With their relationship seemingly beyond repair, Hannah gets a chance at redemption when Christian becomes caught up in the investigation into the brutal murder of one of Hannah's colleagues and their paths cross again in unexpected circumstances.

Offering the sharpest possible contrast to Hannah's dysfunctional relationship with her son, the tight-knit Mimica family left Croatia for Bristol and now run a successful restaurant, where Christian works. But under the guidance of the ruthless eldest son, Davor, they are ambitious to expand their criminal activities, which risks stretching family bonds to breaking point.  

Set in Bristol, this 6 x 60-minute crime-thriller also stars leading Croatian actor Toni Gojanović – star of HBO Europe's recent hit series, Success – as Davor Mimica, and Vincent Regan (Troy, 300, Wallander) as Billy Murdoch, a non-conformist and rather shadowy investigator, who is seconded to Hannah's unit to advise on Eastern European drug gangs.


Channel 4 commissions animated Christmas special based on Terry Pratchett’s The Abominable Snow Baby from Eagle Eye Drama

Channel 4 has commissioned Terry Pratchett's The Abominable Snow Baby for December 2021. Produced by Eagle Eye Drama, the production company recently launched by the team behind global drama brand Walter Presents, in association with Narrativia, Sir Terry's independent production company, the animated Christmas special is based on a short story from his bestselling book of Christmas tales (Father Christmas' Fake Beard).

The magic of Terry Pratchett, the legendary national treasure and maverick British author who sold over 100 million books worldwide, comes to life in this half-hour programme. The Abominable Snow Baby tells the story of a quintessentially English town which is thrown into disarray by a huge snowfall and the dramatic appearance of a 14-foot tall Abominable Snow Baby.

Shunned and feared by the local townsfolk, Snow Baby is rescued by the indomitable Granny who along with grandson Albert, welcomes him into her home, showering her new pet with love and affection, changing the town's perception and helping the community overcome their initial prejudices.

Commissioned by Channel 4 Head of Drama Caroline Hollick and Commissioning Editor Gwawr Lloyd, the programme is supported by a grant from the BFI's Young Audiences Content Fund, and will be directed by Massimo Fenati and Executive Produced by Tess Cuming, with Eagle Eye Drama's Jo McGrath and Walter Iuzzolino overseeing the project as joint Creative Directors and with Rob Wilkins as Executive Producer for Narrativia.

Created with traditional hand-drawn animation techniques to capture the timeless nature of Terry Pratchett's story, The Abominable Snow Baby is part of a long and established tradition of Channel 4's animated Christmas specials such as The Snowman, The Tiger Who Came to Tea, and last year's Quentin Blake's Clown.

Rob Wilkins, Managing Director of Narrativia and Manager of Sir Terry Pratchett's Estate said:
In his lifetime, Terry wrote over seventy books, which have been translated into 41 languages. He started his career as a writer of short stories for young people, who remained his favourite audience. The Abominable Snow Baby showcases Terry's firmly held belief in not judging people on appearances, his reverence for the elderly, and his very genuine love of Christmas. Narrativia is delighted to see Terry's work brought to life by the talented team at Eagle Eye Drama, in the fiftieth year of Terry Pratchett being a published author.


Monday, 26 April 2021

Josh Hartnett to star in new Sky Original limited series, The Fear Index

Photographer: Sarah Dunn

Sky have announced that internationally renowned actor Josh Hartnett (Penny Dreadful) is to star in the taut new Sky Original thriller The Fear Index based on the best-selling novel by Robert Harris. Adapted by Paul Andrew Williams and Caroline Bartleet, and directed by David Caffrey (The Alienist, Peaky Blinders), the fast-paced four-part limited series also sees Hartnett joined by Leila Farzad (I Hate Suzie, Innocent), Arsher Ali (The Ritual, Informer) and Grégory Montel (Call My Agent). Produced by Left Bank Pictures in association with Sky Studios, The Fear Index will begin filming this month in Hungary and will air on Sky Atlantic and streaming service NOW later this year.

Hartnett, also known for his role as Ethan Chandler in the much-lauded Sky Original series Penny Dreadful, will star as Dr Alex Hoffman, a computer scientist and genius who is ready to make a killing. Alongside his Hedge Fund business partner and best friend, Hugo (Ali), he's launching VIXAL-4 to investors - an AI-driven system that exploits fear in the financial markets and operates at lightning speed to make big returns. The promise is billions, the rich are ready to get richer... but this is not the day Alex and Hugo had planned on. What follows is a fast-paced journey through the worst 24 hours of Alex's life - cutting across reality, memory and paranoid fantasy, forcing him to question everything he sees with his own eyes.

In the pulse of Geneva's financial district, Alex's sanity is shaken after he is viciously attacked at his home by a man who knows all of his security codes. After more unexplained occurrences, Alex becomes convinced he's being framed. But as secrets surface from his past, will anyone believe that he isn't just losing his mind? Detective Leclerc (Montel), assigned to the case, struggles to work this former CERN scientist out, Hoffman's talented artist wife, Gabby (Farzad) might just be losing patience this time, whilst Hugo's only concern is the billion-dollar business on the line. Invention can be lonely, and in a modern world of AI, capitalism and technological breakthroughs, Dr Alex Hoffman might have to learn the hard way that it's not always easy to foresee how destruction evolves from creation.


The Fear Index will air on Sky Atlantic and NOW in the UK and Ireland.

Katherine Ryan announced as the host of ITV2’s new dating game show Ready to Mingle

ITV2 today announced that comedian Katherine Ryan will host brand-new dating game show 'Ready to Mingle' - a 19 x 60" series made by Potato, part of ITV Studios.

Arriving on the channel this autumn, Katherine will preside over the series which follows a single girl in the search for her perfect partner, as twelve male suitors compete for her affections and the chance to win a big money prize.

But in a mischievous twist, not all the boys are single, with a number of them being guided by their partners in pursuit of the prize. Taking up residence in a luxurious house, the single girl will get to know all the boys through activities, games and dates, eliminating each boy one-by-one until her 'dream man' remains.

Which boy will be left standing? Can she suss out who is the real deal? They may not all be single, but they're all Ready to Mingle.

Katherine Ryan said: "I am so excited to be a part of this new dating game show. How could I say no? It's like nothing we've seen before but still with all the drama and dating dilemmas we love to see, and I'll be there front row as it all unfolds!"

Ready to Mingle will air on ITV2 and ITV Hub this autumn. ITV Studios will handle international distribution.

ITV2 announces recommission for The Cabins

ITV2's dating show The Cabins will return for a second series in 2022, after its first series launch became the ITV Hub's most popular entertainment show.

Produced by 12 Yard, part of ITV Studios, and based on an original Dutch format, Let Love Rule, The Cabins saw a cast of singletons ditching the dating rule book and deleting their dating apps in an attempt to find true love.

Moving into the intimate surroundings of The Cabins, the singletons then have 24 hours to decide whether they would like to spend more time together – or call it a day and walk away.

Packed with first ever dates, awkward silences, cooking disasters, karaoke and heartfelt confessions, the first series saw love blossom between Charlotte and Sarah, the first couple to stay for four days and leave as an official 'Cabins couple', hot tubs and body painting with Robyn and Mamudo's fast-paced rollercoaster of a relationship, while axe throwing and tandem bike rides didn't equal passion, it created a heart-warming friendship for Liam and Andras.

The Cabins launched with a consolidated viewing (excluding non-TV viewing) of 0.8 million, with 43% of its viewers amongst 16-34 viewers, making the show the most watched amongst the demographic across digital channels. Following its debut, The programme was The ITV Hub's most popular entertainment show, generating 400,000 streams and more than 800,000 consumption hours.

Paul Mortimer, ITV Head of Digital Channels and Acquisitions, said "The Cabins proved to be a great success amongst our target young audience, and we're hoping cupid's arrow can find its way back to the lodge when we debut our second series on ITV2 and ITV Hub in 2022."

Monica Dolan and Eddie Marsan take the roles of Anne and John Darwin in ITV’s The Thief, His Wife and the Canoe

Monica Dolan and Eddie Marsan take the roles of Anne and John Darwin in ITV's The Thief, His Wife and the Canoe, written by acclaimed screenwriter Chris Lang and produced by award winning producers, Story Films

Renowned actors, Monica Dolan and Eddie Marsan, will play Anne and John Darwin in the extraordinary and compelling ITV drama, The Thief, His Wife and the Canoe.

The real life story of how John Darwin, played by BIFA nominee Eddie Marsan (Ray Donovan, Sherlock Holmes, Happy Go Lucky) faked his own death to claim life insurance and avoid bankruptcy is written by acclaimed screenwriter Chris Lang.

Commented Chris Lang:

"I am beyond delighted to be working with two of the finest actors of their generation. I have admired them both from afar for many years (not in a creepy way though) and cannot wait to see them bring Anne and John Darwin to life."

The drama will focus on how Anne Darwin, played by BAFTA-winner Monica Dolan (Appropriate Adult, W1A, A Very English Scandal),  became complicit in her husband's deception as she started to convince the world, their family and friends, the police and insurance companies, that he had gone missing in 2002 whilst canoeing off the coast of Seaton Carew in Cleveland, where the couple owned two large houses with panoramic views of the sea.

The deception was to take its toll on Anne who lied to their sons, Mark and Anthony, for five years whilst her husband, in the early days of the fraud, secretly lived in a bedsit next door to the home he shared with Anne.

Devastated by the loss of their father, neither son had an inkling their parents were capable of such treachery. Anne and John Darwin eventually decided to leave Seaton Carew and move to Panama City to start a new life together before their secret was exposed by the discovery of an infamous photo of them posing in a Panama real estate office in July 2006.

At her trial Anne Darwin pleaded not guilty, arguing that she had been coerced into the plot by her husband, but the jury didn't believe her. She and her husband were both jailed for more than 6 years.

The four-part drama commences filming in the North East this month  and is produced by Story Films, the company founded by three times BAFTA-winner David Nath (The Murder Detectives, My Name is Lizzie) and fellow award-winning director Peter Beard. Susie Liggat (Giri/Haji) also executive produces, with Alison Sterling (The Windermere Children) producing.

They will be joined by the celebrated screenwriter of Unforgotten and Innocent Chris Lang (The Hookup Plan, Dark Heart, A Mother's Son) who also executive produces the four part series.  BAFTA winning director, Richard Laxton, (Honour, Mrs Wilson, Mum) directs each of the four episodes.

The Thief, His Wife and the Canoe is based upon the unpublished manuscript written by journalist David Leigh who was the first journalist to track down Anne as she was on the verge of setting up a new life in Panama.

Monica Dolan and Eddie Marsan will be joined in the cast by Mark Stanley (White House Farm) and Karl Pilkington (Sick of It, Derek).

Commented Eddie Marsan:

"I'm so thrilled to be working with Chris Lang, one of our greatest writers and to get the chance to work with Monica Dolan. The story of how and why John Darwin faked his own death to defraud insurance companies is fascinating, and if it weren't fact, you'd think it unbelievable. I can't pretend to understand what was going on in his head when he made those choices, but I'm going to do my absolute best to portray him, and I can't wait to get started."

Commented Monica Dolan:

"The Thief, His Wife and The Canoe tells the story of surely the most outrageous fraud of modern times - and my favourite kind of drama is when the outrageous comes from the prosaic. As breath-taking as their managing to pull this deception off in the first place, is how spectacularly the couple wrecked it for themselves as soon as they had got away with it."

Sunday, 25 April 2021

Competition: Win Keeping Faith - Series 3 on DVD


Keeping Faith - Series 3 is released on DVD 3rd of May

And to celebrate we have a great competition for you and 2 copies on DVD to give away.

Synopsis: 
It’s 18 months since we last saw life in Abercorran and Faith and Evan’s divorce and custody battle goes from bad to worse. Refusing to let go, Evan is insanely jealous of Faith’s burgeoning love affair with Steve Baldini and fearful that they intend to start a new life together. 

Meanwhile, Faith and Cerys have established a new law firm and take on the case of 14-year-old Osian Taylor, who is suffering from an aggressive brain tumour that his doctors have declared too advanced to operate on. While dealing with the trauma her imminent divorce is inflicting on her daughters as well as all the pressures of work, Faith faces an even bigger and far more terrifying problem when her long-estranged mother, Rose, reappears. Navigating increasingly impossible dilemmas and for once not able to give all those she loves what they need, Faith heads towards a final confrontation which will transform her life for ever. Features English language and English subtitles

Also the Series 1-3 DVD Boxset is also released on 3rd of May, check that out at https://amzn.to/3tSyM19

Buy From Amazon at
https://amzn.to/2QvA1EX

For your chance to win just answer the question below.

COMPETITION CLOSED

Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 10-05-21
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, 23 April 2021

Sky announces production on the second series of Sky Original Devils is under way

Sky have announced that production of the second series of Sky Original international financial thriller Devils, is under way in Rome. First look images released today show the two protagonists, played by Alessandro Borghi and Patrick Dempsey as they reprise their roles as Massimo Ruggero and Dominic Morgan. Filming for the second series will continue in Rome and London.


Devils is a thrilling story of power set in the world of global finance produced by Sky Italia and Lux Vide in collaboration with Sky Studios, Orange Studio and OCS. Distributed by NBCUniversal Global Distribution on behalf of Sky Studios, the first series has sold in more than 160 territories.

Based on the bestseller "The Devils" by Guido Maria Brera (published by Rizzoli) and told through fictional characters and fragments of reality, the series tells the story of the silent but devastating war affecting the Western world over the last decade. An underground war fought with the most powerful of weapons: finance.


Four years have passed since Massimo Ruggero managed to thwart Dominic Morgan's plan against the Euro, but he paid a high price: Sofia's death. Massimo, now NYL bank's new CEO, has appointed a group of Chinese investors to the board who are waging a silent war against the United States to rule over the tech sector. Acquisition after acquisition, Massimo will discover a pattern where the data of millions of people is collected, used and fought over by the two sides. Becoming NYL's strongest opponent is Massimo's old mentor: Dominic Morgan. Progressively Massimo becomes aware of this silent battle, but it will be in 2020 when the global pandemic hits that this war will come into the light and Massimo will finally have to choose which side to take.

Alongside the two leading actors, Alessandro Borghi playing Massimo Ruggero, who has been appointed CEO of the New York-London Investment Bank at the end of the first season, and Patrick Dempsey as Dominic Morgan, one of the most influential men in the world of finance, there is Malachi Kirby (The Race, Roots), Pia Mechler (Everything Is Wonderful), Paul Chowdhry (Live at the Apollo, Swinging with the Finkels) and Harry Michell (Yesterday, The English Game), playing the Pirates, Massimo Ruggero's most loyal team of traders, and Lars Mikkelsen (The Killing, Sherlock, House of Cards) as Robert Duval, the founder of Subterranea currently in jail.


Joining the wider international cast for the second series are Li Jun Li (Damages, Minority Report, Wu Assassins) playing Wu Zhi, NYL new head of trading; Joel de la Fuente (Law & Order, The Man in the High Castle) as Li Wei Cheng, Chinese investor member of the board of directors of the NYL; and Clara Rosanger (The rain, Il concorso) as Nadya Wojcik., Dominic's brilliant new protegee.

The eight episode second series will be directed by Nick Hurran (Sherlock, Doctor Who, Fortitude, Altered Carbon) and Jan Maria Michelini (I Medici, DOC- Nelle tue mani). The writers include Frank Spotnitz, James Dormer, Naomi Gibney and Caroline Henry.

In the UK, Ireland, Italy, Germany and Austria, the series will launch on Sky Atlantic. In the UK, Ireland and Italy, it will also be available on streaming service NOW, as well as Sky Ticket devices in Germany, Sky X in Austria and Sky Show in Switzerland. International sales for Devils will be handled by NBCUniversal Global Distribution on behalf of Sky Studios.


First look image as filming begins on ITV's The Long Call

First look image of Ben Aldridge and Pearl Mackie as filming begins for ITV's new evocative four-part series, The Long Call

Lead actor Ben Aldridge (Our Girl, Fleabag) has begun filming The Long Call, ITV's gripping four-part event drama adapted by Kelly Jones (Des, Baptise) from the best-selling novel of the same title from award-winning writer Ann Cleeves.

Directed by Lee Haven Jones (Dr Who, Shetland, The Bay) The Long Call follows Detective Inspector Matthew Venn, who has returned to live in a small community in North Devon with his husband, Jonathan (Declan Bennett).

Matthew was brought up in the Barum Brethren before leaving to go to University. At 19 he knew he couldn't continue amongst the community and to his mother's shock and dismay, he declared publicly he no longer believed. Now he's back, not just to grieve for his father, but to lead a shocking murder investigation back where it all began for him.

Matthew is now forced to re-engage with the community he left, including the most painful and challenging of relationships, with his mother Dorothy played by award-winning actress Juliet Stevenson (Riviera, Truly Madly, Deeply).

After the body of a man is found on the beach close to Matthew's home, the investigation throws a cast of doubt on the whole community. Matthew and his team have to get to the bottom of a case which bring with it old wounds and a deadly secret in order to expose the killer.

This powerful and thought-provoking series also stars Pearl Mackie who plays DC Jen Rafferty, a tough and fiercely determined woman who has recently relocated to Devon with her two teenage kids, Ella and Ben. As a diligent worker and a single parent Jen muddles her way through domestic life whilst trying to put some distance between her own traumatic scars from her former life living in London.

Pearl Mackie is notable for her work in television, theatre and film and is best known for her work in the long-running BBC series, Doctor Who, where she played the role of the Doctor's companion, Bill Potts, opposite Peter Capaldi. Pearl's work in theatre includes the award winning and critically acclaimed stage adaptation of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time and Harold Pinter's The Birthday Party. Her film credits include Greed starring Steve Coogan and Isla Fisher.

Ben, Juliet and Pearl are joined by Martin Shaw as the spiritual Brethren leader Dennis Stephenson and Anita Dobson who plays Grace Stephenson.

Adding to the illustrious cast are Dylan Edwards as DC Ross Pritchard, Pearce Quigley as DCI Joe Oldham, Neil Morrissey as Christopher Reasley, Sarah Gordy as Lucy Craddle, Alan Williams as Maurice Craddle and Amit Shah as Ed Raveley.

Apocalypse Wow lands on ITV2

From Tuesday's Child, the creators and producers of LEGO Masters, Killer Camp and The Hit List comes an epic and hilarious new physical game show arriving on ITV2 and the ITV Hub this summer.

Set in a "Torture Dome", an outrageous secret underground club, part-BDSM dungeon, part Fight Club, Apocalypse Wow is hosted by AJ Odudu alongside Hey Tracey's Donna Preston who assumes the role of 'The Mistress'.

Every episode a Clan of five celebrities enter the dome to take on The Mistress's terrifying Superhuman 'Bosses' such as Master Enormo (one of the world's strongest men), The Horn Hunter (a back-flipping parkour master), Hot Slippy Jesus (the UK's no.1 gravy wrestler), The Mermaid (a mermaid) and more. The Clan must unite in a bid to defeat these extraordinary opponents taking them on in a series of ludicrous and entertaining physical challenges. Alone the celebrities would be demolished, but together they stand the chance of overcoming a series of crazed contenders to win the day and take home a load of cash for charity.

Each episode the weakest celebrity must be banished in a hilariously unique way and a new famous face will enter the Torture Dome to join the Clan.

Leading her fellow celebrities through the depravity of the Dome, 'Chief of the Clan' TV favourite Scarlett Moffatt will be joined by:

Drag royalty The Vivienne
Love Island's Chris Hughes
Reality TV star Sam Thompson
TV presenter Karim Zeroual
Comedian Kemah Bob
Pussycat Dolls' Kimberly Wyatt
Reality TV star Jessica Wright
Ibiza Weekender's Jordan Davies
Comedian Darren Harriott
TOWIE favourite Bobby Norris


AJ Odudu said: "I am absolutely buzzing to be hosting ITV2's new show, 'Apocalypse Wow' – it's bonkers, but brilliant. It's full of humour, challenges and all our favourite celebrities! It's going to be a really fun addition to the TV schedule this summer, so come join us – it's quite a ride!"

Donna Preston said: "I've always wanted to have ownership over these celebrities and have them as my servants and with this role, the Mistress, I can do just that. The role of the Mistress is feisty and fun. This show is an absolute belter, it's bizarre and bonkers, and I love it and hope you do too! So darlings, come on board the love train to... Apocalypse Wow."

Scarlett Moffatt, said: "It's hard to put into words how bizarre and crazy Apocalypse Wow is! The pressure was well and truly on for me as I led the celebs into battle. I had the most fun making the series and it's unlike anything I've ever seen on TV before so I'm super excited for everyone to see it. Trust me when I say, you're not going to want to miss this!"

Paul Mortimer, ITV's Head of Digital Channels and Acquisitions, said: "I cannot wait for ITV2 viewers to be captivated by the sheer craziness that is Apocalypse Wow; truly an outrageous and entertaining watch. Our famous faces are in for the wildest of rides but how will they fare as they go up against the most outlandish of opponents to win money for charity?"

Steph Harris, Tuesday's Child's Creative Director, said: "After a year of confinement, Apocalypse Wow is the festival of depravity and circus of silliness we've all been craving. It will be a visual feast of utter madness and unrelenting humiliation of some brave celebs."

Apocalypse Wow has been commissioned by ITV's Paul Mortimer, Head of Digital Channels and Acquisitions and Peter Tierney, Commissioning Editor, Entertainment for ITV. The series is produced by Tuesday's Child. Executive Producer is Steph Harris. Series Producer is Ben Wilson.

Apocalypse Wow will air on ITV2 and ITV Hub this summer.

Pioneering sketch show and Mike Bubbins-penned sitcom amongst new comedy programmes unveiled by BBC Wales

Billed as 'a comedy show for the internet age', Age Of Outrage follows a pilot broadcast on BBC One Wales in February 2020. Shining a light on the frustrations of modern life, the series of six, 20-minute episodes will be one of the first productions in the world to use the innovative technology and virtual sets in a full project.

The new productions aim to establish themselves as a new generation of Welsh comedies, following in the footsteps of recent successes such as The Tuckers and the RTS and BAFTA Cymru-award winning In My Skin.

Forthcoming productions also include a 30-minute pilot Mammoth, written by and starring Mike Bubbins (Tourist Trap; The Unexplainers) alongside Joseph Marcell (The Fresh Prince of Bell Air), Jan Anderson (Casualty, Curb Your Enthusiasm) and Mali Ann Rees (Tourist Trap). Long-running BBC Radio Wales sitcom Bravo 2 Charlies is also making its TV debut, as well as two separate series of short form films featuring writers and performers who have previously worked with BBC Sesh - BBC Wales' platform for helping develop creative talent across Wales with content aimed at 18-34 year olds.

Mike Bubbins says of his forthcoming sitcom, "Tony Mammoth is a man from the 1970s who is frozen in time, to be brought miraculously back to life in the modern day. I tried to make Mammoth a comedy full of heart, positivity and optimism. It has a brilliant, talented cast and crew, and BBC Wales couldn't have been more supportive throughout the whole process. I still can't quite believe it's happening. I didn't think when I resigned as a PE teacher and drove out of the school gates, to try to make a career of comedy, that one day, just fifteen short years later, I'd be driving back in through those same gates to record my own BBC sitcom."

As announced towards the end of last year, the Steve Speirs-penned comedy series The Tuckers will be returning for two more series, with filming due to start in Summer 2021. In My Skin, the multi award-winning comedy-drama from BBC Three and BBC Wales, has recently been recommissioned for a second series. Filming is already under way in Cardiff.


Mammoth

Written by and starring Mike Bubbins, Mammoth follows the story of 1970s PE teacher Tony Mammoth, who is presumed to have been killed in an avalanche on a school trip in 1979. With his body later discovered, he is miraculously brought back to life to resume his teaching position… in 2021.

Produced by BBC Studios and directed by Adam Miller (The Windsors), the 30-minute pilot will also star Joseph Marcell (The Fresh Prince of Bel Air), Welsh actress Jan Anderson (Casualty, Curb Your Enthusiasm) and Mali Ann Rees (Tourist Trap).

Beena And Amrit

A short-form taster episode starring up-and-coming Welsh comedian Priya Hall, co-written with Sarah Breese. Based on her experiences growing up in an Indian family in the south Wales valleys and her relationship with her mother, Priya plays Beena with Meera Syal (Goodness Gracious Me, The Kumars at No. 42) playing the role of the mother.

Produced by Cardiff's 16 Media, the episode is currently in post-production.

Bravo 2 Charlies

Short-form taster TV episode of the successful, long-running BBC Radio Wales sitcom which documents the daily lives and antics of the North Wales Traffic Police.

Produced by Llandudno-based company Giddy Goat.

BBC Sesh Short Form

Two forthcoming sets of six 5-minute shorts are due to start filming in the summer. Featuring writers and performers who have previously worked with BBC Sesh, these series demonstrate BBC Wales' commitment in developing production companies as well as giving additional opportunities to actors discovered through the Sesh platform.

Little Wander and Rubber Chicken will produce one set of shorts each.

Porth Purgatory

Porth Purgatory follows the trials and tribulations of a male twenty-something who is forced to take on what he believes to be a dead-end job.

Co-written and devised by The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama graduate Garyn Williams, working in conjunction with The Mobile Film School, a taster has been filmed and directed by co-writer Kevin Allen (Twin Town).It features star of 'It's A Sin' and fellow Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama alumni Callum Scott Howells.

Age Of Outrage

Billed as 'a comedy show for the internet age', the series follows a pilot show that transmitted in February 2020. The show shines a light on the frustrations of modern life. The series made use of pioneering AI technology (previously seen in Star Wars spinoff The Mandalorian) and virtual sets so that it was able to be filmed during the pandemic. It is due to be broadcast later this year.

BBC Three announces Zara McDermott: Sexism in Schools

Like an alarmingly high proportion of women in the UK, Zara has experience in this area - having been a victim of sexism, harassment and revenge porn twice, once when she was of school age. Zara wants to know why these crimes are so normalised in today's society and get to the root of the problem - do these attitudes and behaviours develop in schools?

Zara will speak to young women and girls about their experiences of 'rape culture' and speak to those in both state and private schools to understand first-hand how these toxic behaviours happen in what is supposed to be a safe and secure environment. She will also hear from young men and boys about their perceptions and whether they fully understand the long-term impact that 'boys will be boys' culture, which seems so prominent in schools, can go on to have.

Zara McDermott says: "After the success of my Revenge Porn documentary, I am both honoured and thrilled to be making my second documentary with BBC Three. I was, and still am, incredibly overwhelmed by the response so far and to be working on another powerful, emotive, educational and eye opening film is going to be a fantastic next step. I hope that by speaking out and bringing awareness to such important yet often taboo topics, we can help people not just across the country, but the world too."

Fiona Campbell, Controller of BBC Three, says: "Zara's first BBC Three film about revenge porn was both shocking and eye-opening and the response has been incredible. We're really looking forward to working with her again for this film that confronts another important subject that needs to be discussed and we're hoping that this film will be equally impactful with our audience."

Zara's first documentary, Zara McDermott: Revenge Porn, which came out earlier this year was hugely successful and is the most-requested BBC Three factual programme of 2021 so far.

Ben Fogle makes a pilgrimage to Scotland’s islands in new BBC series

In Sacred Islands with Ben Fogle (4x60); the award-winning broadcaster, author and adventurer will explore the beating heart of community and spirituality from the Western and Northern Isles to the Inner Hebrides. This personal pilgrimage will see him explore what it is about each island that touches his psyche more deeply and what makes each a place of spirituality and sanctuary.

Complemented with spectacular drone footage, Ben will celebrate each island he visits, meeting the locals and learning of its secrets. Talking about his new series, Ben says, "Castaway changed me in so many ways. I was not the star of Castaway, the island of Taransay was, the Outer Hebrides was, Scotland was. I'm still fascinated by Scotland's islands. The remoteness, the peace, the wonder - I even named my daughter Iona after one. I'm lucky to have been to a lot of places but to me these islands are the most beautiful on Earth. This is where my roots really are, where I feel spiritually at home. This is my dream series. It's like a personal pilgrimage.'

The series will premiere on the BBC Scotland channel followed by BBC One Daytime. Steve Allen commissioned the series for BBC Scotland, he adds: "We are delighted to welcome Ben back to BBC Scotland's screens with this new series. It's hard to believe 20 years has passed since Ben captured the hearts of the nation in Castaway where we watched him fall in love with the island and the whole island experience. This series will be an authored piece which will give audiences an insight in to the profound effect Ben's 20 year love affair with Scotland's islands has had on him and what it is that draws him back."

Daisy Scalchi, BBC Commissioning Editor for Specialist Factual commissioned the series for BBC One, added: "It's fantastic to see Ben at the helm of this new series, taking a personal, insightful, spiritual journey through some of our most fascinating island communities"

Sacred Islands with Ben Fogle will be produced by Tern Television. Harry Bell, Managing Director, says: "'Islands pull at the soul. In this series we'll showcase the intoxicating beauty, wild places and astonishing people of Scotland's far-flung islands. Much more than pedestrian travelogues Ben's deep spiritual connection with island life will also reveal their sacred side."

Production begins on brand new digital Young Adult drama Float from BBC Scotland

Production has commenced on Float, an innovative digital drama produced by Black Camel Pictures for BBC iPlayer. Commissioned by BBC Scotland in partnership with Screen Scotland, the 6x10' drama forms part of BBC Scotland's multi-platform drive to develop and commission content for young under-represented audiences in Scotland.

Written by acclaimed Scottish playwright Stef Smith, Float follows Jade, a university dropout who has found herself back in her seaside hometown working as a lifeguard at the local pool. Jade is hiding the terrible truth of why she left Glasgow, and the rest of the motley crew of staff have troubles of their own. Set in a small town in Scotland, Float is a lesbian coming-of-age story about how the secrets you hide can consume you.

Commenting on the drama, Stef says: "I'm so very grateful to have had the opportunity to finally shine a light on the LGBTQ+ stories that exist outside of urban centres, and to lead this drama with two female queer characters, played with such honesty and complexity. Representation matters, and I hope that viewers might see some of themselves in this series and feel a little less alone in what makes their heart ache and what gives them hope."

Boasting a cast of young Scottish breakthrough acting talent, Float stars Hannah Jarrett-Scott (Trust Me), Jessica Hardwick (Snow Angel), Ben Presley (Doctor Who, Galavant), Jack Stewart (Outlander), Polina Sulim (Sweet) and Izuka Hoyle (The Outpost, Clique).

Hannah Jarrett-Scott adds: "It's so important to see characters like Jade on screen. I'm holding all the folk in her heart that wished they'd seen her before now. They make her who she is and they are keeping her afloat. It's a true privilege to feel a part of something that I know is the first of its kind in Scotland."

Cast announced for original new BBC One drama Showtrial, from the producers of Line of Duty

Filming has begun on Showtrial, a brand new BBC One drama from writer Ben Richards (The Tunnel, Strike, Cobra), produced by World Productions (Line Of Duty, Bodyguard, The Pembrokeshire Murders) for BBC One and BBC iPlayer. Zara Hayes (Poms, Dian Fossey: Secrets in the Mist) directs

Tracy Ifeachor (Quantico, Treadstone, The Originals); James Frain (Star Trek: Discovery, True Detective, Gotham) and Sharon D Clarke (Rocks, Doctor Who, Kiri) have been cast alongside Sinéad Keenan (Little Boy Blue, Care, Three Families); Celine Buckens (Warrior, Bridgerton); Kerr Logan (Strike, Alias Grace, Game of Thrones) and Lolita Chakrabarti (Vigil, Criminal: UK).

When Talitha Campbell, the estranged daughter of a wealthy property developer, is charged with conspiring to murder fellow university student Hannah Ellis, the trial that follows places victim and accused - and their families - in the eye of a media storm. Into that storm enters Cleo Roberts, the duty solicitor on the night of Talitha's arrest. Refusing her father's help, Talitha wants Cleo to lead her defence against a prosecution weaponising Talitha's gender as well as her social privilege against her.

From arrest to verdict, Cleo and defence vie with the prosecution to convince us of the truth about Talitha: Damaged scapegoat? Or cold-blooded killer?

Filmed and set around Bristol, Showtrial explores how prejudice, politics and the media distort the legal process, in a timely legal drama full of dark humour.

Wednesday, 21 April 2021

First Look Clip - We Are Lady Parts

The first-look clip released for Nida Manzoor's anarchic, joyful and irreverent music comedy We Are Lady Parts

 We Are Lady Parts is an exuberant music comedy following a Muslim female punk band – called Lady Parts – who are on a mission to find a lead guitarist and maybe, just maybe, get a proper gig.

 The series is written, created and directed by Manzoor, who has drawn on her own experiences and taken inspiration from the rich and diverse cultural collectives and artists in London; and boasts an exciting ensemble cast of new British acting talent and stars Anjana Vasan ("Amina Hussain"), Sarah Kameela Impey ("Saira"), Juliette Motamed ("Ayesha"), Faith Omole ("Bisma"), Lucie Shorthouse ("Momtaz"), Zaqi Ismail ("Ahsan") and Aiysha Hart ("Noor").

Tuesday, 20 April 2021

Shaun Evans and Roger Allam return for eighth series of Endeavour

Shaun Evans and Roger Allam make a welcome return to Oxford to film the eighth series of the critically-acclaimed detective drama Endeavour

Filming has begun on the eighth series of critically-acclaimed detective drama, Endeavour, with lead actor Shaun Evans directing the first of the three new films.

Shaun Evans reprises his role as DS Endeavour Morse, alongside Roger Allam as DCI Fred Thursday for a new set of compelling cases written and created by Russell Lewis.

Filmed on location in Oxford the strong ensemble cast reunited with Shaun and Roger includes Anton Lesser (Game of Thrones) who 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, Caroline O'Neill (Last Tango In Halifax) as Win Thursday and Sara Vickers (Watchmen) as Joan Thursday.

Opening the series in 1971, a death threat to Oxford Wanderers' star striker Jack Swift places Endeavour (Shaun Evans) and his team at the heart of the glitz and glamour of 1970s football, exposing the true cost of success and celebrity, and with it, a deep-rooted division that is soon reflected much closer to home.  

Series seven of Endeavour averaged 6.1m viewers across all devices across its three episodes. This rose to 6.8m when we include viewing up to 28 days. The series has had 2.3 million programme streams on ITV Hub since it launched back in Feb 2020.

Commented series creator, writer and executive producer Russell Lewis:

""After our longest suspension, all at #TeamEndeavour are delighted to have been returned to duty.  If anything, the delay has made us all determined to make Series 8 everything it can be.  Happily, it looks as if our timeline has endured the hiatus and that we will still be delivering our vision of 1971, albeit through an Endeavour glass darkly, exactly half a century on.  Social distancing and strict insurance regulation with its bubbles and cohorts mean that backroom boys like me and the other execs haven't been able to get out to set as usual, but all the same we're very fortunate to be back in business at all and count our blessings daily. It's truly lovely to be back telling new stories with Oxford's Finest. I hope the audience finds they've been worth the wait."

Gemma Whelan takes the lead role in ITV crime thriller, The Tower

Gemma Whelan takes the lead role in ITV crime thriller, The Tower, written by Patrick Harbinson and produced by Windhover Films and Mammoth Screen

Gemma Whelan will star in the lead role of Detective Sergeant Sarah Collins in ITV's three-part series The Tower, adapted by Homeland writer and executive producer Patrick Harbinson.

The Tower is based on Post Mortem, the first in Kate London's Metropolitan series of novels featuring Sarah Collins and rookie cop Lizzie Griffiths.

Harbinson (Fearless, 24, ER) will executive produce alongside Mammoth Screen's founder and CEO Damien Timmer (The Serpent, Endeavour) and Karen Thrussell (Poldark, And Then There Were None).

Gemma is most recognised for her role in Game of Thrones and her portrayal of Karen Matthews in The Moorside. Her other recent credits include White House Farm for ITV, Emma, and Killing Eve. Gemma is currently shooting Gentleman Jack.

The Tower has been commissioned for ITV by Head of Drama Polly Hill, who will oversee the three-part drama for the channel and is produced by Windhover Films and Mammoth Screen in association with ITV Studios.

Kate London is a former Met Police Officer who finished her career working as part of a Major Investigation Team on the Homicide and Serious Crime Command.

Paul Testar (The Serpent) is producer, Sherie Myers (I May Destroy You) is co-producer, and Jim Loach (Save Me Too) is director.
 
In The Tower's breath-taking opening sequence, a veteran beat cop and a teenage girl fall to their deaths from a tower block in south-east London. Left alive on the roof are a five-year-old boy and rookie police officer Lizzie Adama. Within hours, Lizzie has disappeared, and Detective Sergeant Sarah Collins is charged with leading the investigation. She not only has to track down Lizzie before she comes to serious harm, but also to uncover the truth behind the grisly deaths. What chain of events took two police officers and two children to the roof of that tower block - why did two of them die? Why did two of them survive?

The antagonistic relationship between the experienced Sergeant Sarah Collins and the novice cop Lizzie Adama is at the heart of London's novels and The Tower.  What happened on the roof of the tower is the mystery that Sarah must uncover. When it's finally revealed, the truth will cast its shadow over Sarah and Lizzie's relationship and their lives.  

Clara Amfo to become new host of BBC Radio 1’s Future Sounds

Clara Amfo has been named as the new host of BBC Radio 1's flagship new music show, Radio 1's Future Sounds (Monday – Thursday, 6pm- 8pm), with Rickie, Melvin and Charlie to take on Radio 1's iconic Live Lounge show.

Clara landed her first show on Radio 1 in 2015 as host of The Official Chart, and took on the Live Lounge slot shortly after. During her time at Radio 1, Clara has cemented her reputation as a key tastemaker in the music industry, playing host to some of the world's biggest artists, from Jay-Z to Ariana Grande. Her breadth of expertise and unrivalled passion for music discovery make her the perfect fit for the station's flagship new music show, Radio 1's Future Sounds. She will be taking over from current host Annie Mac from September 2021.

Clara Amfo says: "Presenting mid mornings and The Live Lounge on Radio 1 has been one of the most edifying and special times of my career and personal life. As a nation of music lovers, the experience of it live is nothing short of magical and to have had the honour of welcoming some of the world's most beloved and emerging artists in to The Live Lounge has created unifying moments that I and the listeners will never forget!

"I am beyond honoured and ready to start this exciting new chapter on Radio 1. I'm such a fan of this show, the artists that is has championed and to be receiving the baton from Annie who I love and respect makes it extra special for me. Massive big up to every single one of my daytime producers and The Live Lounge/smug life listener crew, I have loved hearing your stories and enjoying keeping you company with tunes in daytime and look forward to continuing that in September, so see you a few hours later!"

Rickie, Melvin and Charlie will become the new hosts of Radio 1's Live Lounge (Monday-Thursdays, 10.30am-1pm), bringing their trademark high-energy dynamic to daytimes after first joining the station in 2019 as hosts of a new late evening entertainment show.

Rickie, Melvin and Charlie say: "To be given the opportunity to present the Live Lounge is just an absolute dream, a show we all adore and have so much love, passion and respect for. Celebrating great artists playing their new and live music on Radio 1 is a huge honour and we can't wait to put our RMC twist on it! Much love to Clara who has done an amazing job over the years and thank you for passing the baton - we promise not to break it!"

Aled Haydn Jones, Head of BBC Radio 1, says: "Clara has long been one of the most influential voices in the music industry. She has an incredible affinity for discovering new music, which makes her perfect to be the face of it for the industry and for Radio 1. We know our listeners will love what she brings to the show. I'm delighted that we'll have Rickie, Melvin and Charlie taking on the late morning slot: their energy, knowledge and passion is going to make for an exciting new sound for the Live Lounge."

Radio 1's Future Artists with Jack Saunders will move forward into a new, earlier slot (8pm-10pm, Monday-Wednesdays) as will Radio 1's Indie Show on Thursdays. Meanwhile, Radio 1's Powerdown Playlist (previously a weekly fixture in Radio 1's Future Sounds) will become a standalone show for the first time, with Sian Eleri at the helm. Sian will present the Radio 1's Powerdown Playlist (Monday-Wednesday, 10pm-11pm) in addition to her current role as host of Radio 1's Chillest Show (Sundays, 7pm-9pm).

Danny Howard, who joined Radio 1 after winning the station's Superstar DJ talent competition back in 2011, will take over as host of Radio 1's Dance Party (Fridays, 6pm-8pm). Jaguar will land her own show on Radio 1, taking on the 10pm-11pm slot on Thursdays with Radio 1 Dance Introducing while brand new presenter Sarah Story will join Radio 1 to take on the Friday 8pm-10pm slot with Radio 1 Future Dance. Sarah hosted her first show on the station on New Year's Day 2021, covering Radio 1's Dance Party as part of the station's guest presenter takeover.

Jack Saunders says: "I can't believe the journey keeps getting more exciting. I love being on Radio 1 and to be given an earlier slot is so sick. I live and breathe this show and the music around it so to be on at 8pm-10pm is only going to empower the music I play and the energy I give it. Thank you to Aled and Lorna for believing in me. I can't wait for September!"

Sian Eleri says: "Doing the Chillest Show and getting to know the Radio 1 listeners every Sunday is such a privilege, so I'm thrilled to keep the chilled sounds coming Monday - Wednesday too. Bring on September - can't wait!"

Danny Howard says: "I'm beyond excited to say these words... 6pm, every Friday will be home of the hottest dance and electronic music on the planet, think superstar guests and festival-sized bangers on the world's biggest dance floor, providing you with all the energy you will ever need to get your weekend started properly!

"Thank you to everyone who's listened to my radio shows so far, your support is amazing and I'm absolutely honoured to be taking the reins of this legendary slot. We're gonna have some party, every single Friiiiiiiday!"

Jaguar says: "I love that over the past year BBC Introducing Dance has become a centrepiece for emerging dance talent to be discovered. I'm proud to give these artists a bigger platform to grow, and I can't wait to discover the next big dance acts of the future!"

Sarah Story says: "'I'm so excited to join the Radio 1 family on Friday nights with a brand new show, Future Dance! Friday nights on Radio 1 are iconic and they have not only influenced me as a broadcaster but as a music lover. It's an honour to be able to showcase the incredible dance music talent that we have coming through and I cannot wait to get started!'

After an incredible 17 years at the station, broadcasting legend Annie Mac has decided to leave. Annie joined Radio 1 as an assistant producer before hosting her first show on the station in 2004. Annie has since fronted some iconic moments on Radio 1, from live sessions to landmark interviews with the biggest acts on the planet.

Annie Mac says: "After 17 wonderful years I have decided it's time to leave Radio 1. This second home has been the thread that has run through nearly my whole adult life; I have grown up, fallen in and out of love, moved homes, climbed up the career ladder, got married and become a mother twice over. I have done this alongside you, my listeners, who have done your own versions of the same. I will be forever grateful to you all for welcoming me into your days. I have never not walked out of the studio feeling lighter and happier than when I walked in and that is all down to you. Working at Radio 1 has been like being at the best party ever and it is a wonderful feeling to be leaving with a huge smile on my face. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!"

Radio 1 will also be saying goodbye to Diplo, who currently occupies 11pm-1am on Saturday nights with Diplo and Friends, delivering exclusive mixes featuring some of the hottest names in Dance. Radio 1's Soundsystem will move to occupy the slot on Saturday evenings, 11pm-1am, while Radio 1's Residency will move to Thursdays 11am-1pm.

Diplo says: "After nearly a decade of showcasing the world's best new music, I'll be wrapping up Diplo and Friends on Radio 1 in September. Big thanks to everyone at the BBC - stay close for more projects during 2021 and into next year."

Aled Haydn Jones (Head of BBC Radio 1) says: "Annie Mac is quite simply a legend, and has been a hugely important part of the station for the past 17 years. Diplo has brought some of the biggest names in dance to our listeners on Diplo and Friends, showcasing some now iconic mixes during the show's run. I'd like to thank both Annie and Diplo for all they've done for the station, and I wish them all the very best for the future."

Monday, 19 April 2021

COMPETITION: Win Deutschland '89 on DVD


Deutschland '89 is released on DVD 25th of April

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

Synopsis: 
Following the unparalleled success of Deutschland ’83 and ‘86, which critics hailed as the start of a golden age for German TV, comes the hugely anticipated third instalment of the gripping series, Deutschland ’89. Alongside programmes like the much-lauded Babylon Berlin, a fourth series of which is in the making, the timing is perfect for the next instalment of this cool, super stylish thriller. It is set to arrive on digital from 24 April and on DVD on 26 April 2021 from Acorn Media International alongside a stunning Deutschland ’83, ’86 & ’89 Complete DVD Box Set.

Deutschland ’89 takes us to the era-defining fall of the Berlin Wall on 9 November 1989 and the return of superspy Martin Rauch (Jonas Nay ­– Line of Separation) who must deal with the consequences it brings. The peaceful revolution has thrown his world into turmoil. He and his fellow agents at the HVA (East German Foreign Intelligence) are reeling. Their government has collapsed, their organisation is in chaos and their futures are uncertain, at best. How to play the next hand? Join Big Brother at the KGB? Go West and work for an enemy agency? Use international contacts to begin a new career? Or run off to paradise with hoarded gold? Our heroes need to reinvent themselves in the face of a new world order.

Buy From Amazon at
https://amzn.to/3x8Y4tK

For your chance to win just answer the question below.

COMPETITION CLOSED

Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 03-05-21
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.

Saturday, 17 April 2021

Davood Ghadami joins the cast of BBC Studios’ Holby City

Davood Ghadami joins the popular long-running medical drama as Eli Ebrahimi, Holby City's new Consultant Cardiothoracic Surgeon.

New character Eli is a talented, if slightly idiosyncratic surgeon. Excitable, passionate and exploding with energy, Eli puts work above everything.

Davood says: "I am absolutely thrilled to be joining such a brilliant show. Holby City is renowned for its quality storytelling and I'm excited for the audience to meet Eli and watch the drama that unfolds on his arrival!"

Sean Gleeson, Series Producer of Holby City says: "We're delighted that Davood has joined us. We are more than excited to welcome Davood from EastEnders to Holby and know that he is going to be a fantastic addition to our cast."

Prior to joining Holby City, Davood is well known for his role as Kush Kazemi in EastEnders. Davood starred in the BBC One show from 2014 and set pulses racing when he joined as Albert Square's latest ladies' man. His first TV appearance was in 2005 on The Bill and his other TV work includes Doctor Who, The Omid Djalili Show, Taggart, Silent Witness, Life's Too Short, Law & Order, Top Boy and Skins Redux. On stage, Davood has played Amir in 13 at the National Theatre, as well as working extensively for York Theatre Royal and Pilot Theatre.

Davood will make his on screen debut as Eli later in the year.

Holby City is a BBC Studios production for BBC One and continues on Tuesdays.

Friday, 16 April 2021

Channel 4 commissions Secret Spenders from South Shore

The  4x30  series will be presented by Anita Rani.  It will surprise families across the UK who are secretly spending too much money and, whilst they're away from home, will send in a team of experts to transform their finances.

From Amazon addicts to take-away junkies, thousands of us wonder where our money has gone at the end of each month. In Secret Spenders we'll secretly film the spending habits of four families. Is Mum's Zara addiction to blame or should the finger be firmly pointed at Dad's fixation with football? After gathering evidence of the families spending habits Anita will stage an intervention, taking them out of their home and confronting them with our findings.

While they're away a team of financial experts will go through every detail of their lives to give them a full financial makeover. From downsizing the gas guzzling car to renegotiating their Sky subscriptions, the Secret Spenders team will leave no stone unturned in their quest to save our families hard earned cash. 24 hours later how much money could they save and will they agree to make the changes they need?

In addition to the families stories Secret Spenders will also feature topical VT's giving consumer advice about the best deals available in the market that week alongside money saving tips and practical ways of cutting costs.

Adam Vandermark, Channel 4 commissioner, News and Current Affairs said:  "How many of us regularly wonder where has the money gone? And who at home is spending too much? This exciting format will not just expose the secret spenders, but look forensically at how we all can get better deals. At a time when many families finances are under pressure, this series is perfectly timed to help everyone save more than they thought possible."

Melanie Leach, Executive Producer, South Shore added: "From daily Deliveroo to on the hour Amazon arrivals, the explosion in home delivery has made it even easier to lose track of the family finances. This timely series, packed full of money saving advice, will show us how to make the most of our hard earned cash.

Tuesday, 13 April 2021

Sky Sports reveals talent line-up for The Hundred

With 100 days to go until the launch of The Hundred on 21st July, Sky Sports has today revealed a star-studded talent line up to complement the existing cricket team.

Sky regulars such as Nasser Hussain, Ebony Rainford-Brent, Rob Key, Ian Ward, David Lloyd, Nick Knight, Mike Atherton and Mark Butcher will be joined by cricketing stars from around the world including Dinesh Karthik, Stuart Broad, Kevin Pietersen, Tammy Beaumont, Daren Sammy, Mel Jones, Wasim Akram, Lydia Greenway and Kumar Sangakkara alongside presenters Andrew Flintoff, Kass Naidoo, Zainab Abbas and Jacqueline Shepherd.

Bringing you the best build-up, live action and post-match analysis, the Sky Sports team will offer viewers sensational coverage of The Hundred tournament, with all the action, drama and entertainment live from cricket grounds across the UK.

Fans will be able to tune in to all 68 games live on Sky Sports' dedicated channel Sky Sports The Hundred as well as on Sky Sports Mix. All women's matches and a significant number of men's games will be streamed live on the Sky Cricket YouTube channel.

Director of Sky Sports Cricket Bryan Henderson said: "We are so excited to help launch this fantastic new tournament this summer. It's going to be an incredible standard of cricket played at some of the best grounds in the world and everyone's invited. Hopefully the competition will inspire many girls and boys to pick up a bat and ball. We've put together an amazing line up of presenters and commentators; there's a completely fresh graphics look and some exciting new broadcast technology. We very much hope you enjoy the coverage."

The Hundred is an action-packed, unmissable, new 100-ball cricket tournament created by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) and set to kick off on 21st July 2021. By simplifying the format and creating a new never-before-seen type of cricket, The Hundred's aim is to open up the game to everyone, everywhere, with the winning combination of world-class sport and entertainment.

The Hundred will offer equal prize money for the men's and women's tournament and will be the first major UK team sporting competition in history to launch with a standalone women's fixture.

Aside from the two opening games, the women's and men's teams will play back-to-back on the same day, same venue with the ambition to elevate women's cricket through The Hundred.

Domina - New Trailer released ahead of 14 May launch

Sky today released the official trailer and art for brand new Sky original, Domina, and confirms the series will debut on 14 May on Sky Atlantic and streaming service NOW.

The epic historical drama series brings to life the power struggles of Ancient Rome from a different perspective; that of the women. It follows the life and extraordinary rise of Livia Drusilla, who overcame adversity to become the most powerful woman in the world.

Kasia Smutniak plays Livia Drusilla, with the young Livia played by Nadia Parkes (The Spanish Princess).  They are supported by an international stellar cast including Liam Cunningham (Game of Thrones) playing Livius, Livia's father, and Colette Tchantcho (The Witcher) as Antigone, Livia's best friend, ex-slave and closest ally.

The ensemble cast also includes Matthew McNulty, Christine Bottomley, Ben Batt, Enzo Cilenti, Claire Forlani and Alex Lanipekun. Isabella Rossellini makes an appearance as Balbina, an early enemy of Livia.

Domina is produced by Fifty Fathoms (Fortitude), Tiger Aspect and Sky Studios, with Cattleya providing executive production services. The series is created and written by Simon Burke with acclaimed Australian filmmaker Claire McCarthy as lead director.


ITV announce compelling new crime drama, Redemption

Acclaimed actress Paula Malcomson (The Hunger Games trilogy, Ray Donovan, Deadwood) will take the lead role in Redemption, a six part drama jointly commissioned by ITV and Virgin Media Television, Ireland in association with Fís Éireann/Screen Ireland.

Filmed in Ireland, Redemption will be produced by leading independent production company, Tall Story Pictures, part of ITV Studios and producers of successful returning ITV drama The Bay. The project is being co-produced by Metropolitan Films, one of Ireland's leading film and television production companies.

Created by Sean Cook (The Last Ship, The Code, Holby City) and executive produced by Tall Story Pictures' Creative Director Catherine Oldfield (The Bay, Sticks and Stones, Trauma) and Executive Producer Patrick Schweitzer (Bancroft, Save Me, SSGB), the drama introduces plain speaking, no nonsense DI Colette Cunningham, whose fearless approach to policing has earned her the respect of her Merseyside Police Serious Crime Squad colleagues.

Career driven and dedicated, Colette is unflappable and an absolute force of nature. Until she takes a call from Garda Sergeant Luke Byrne in Dublin.  The body of a young woman has been found and Colette is listed as the next of kin.

The name of the victim means nothing to Colette so she continues to efficiently go about her day job.  Persisting with his enquiry, the young officer calls again and begins to describe the young woman rendering Colette speechless.  She takes the next ferry to Dublin to identify the body of her missing daughter, Kate.

She's experienced this exact situation a million times, but never from this side.  Kate left home 20 years ago aged 16, and clearly didn't want to be found.

Always a police woman and with 30 years of experience kicking in, Colette has some searching questions.   But is she prepared for what she finds?

With her life turned upside down, and grief consuming her every thought, Colette resolves to stay in Ireland to work for the Garda.  But what will she unearth about the events leading up to Kate's death, and the life that her daughter chose to build for herself?  Consumed by feelings she may have failed Kate in life, Colette is determined to do right by her now.

BBC confirm full line-up for Eurovision 2021

Graham Norton will return for the Grand Final on BBC One, produced by BBC Studios, where he will be commentating live from Rotterdam. While Ken Bruce will continue his long-running coverage over on BBC Radio 2.

Grammy-nominated singer songwriter and presenter, Chelcee Grimes will be joining Rylan Clark-Neal and Scott Mills for the semi-finals live on BBC Four. Presenting live from London, they will oversee proceedings as 33 countries compete for their place in the Grand Final. The semi-finals will air on 18 and 20 May on BBC Four, with UK viewers able to vote in the second semi-final on 20 May.

Graham Norton returns for his 12th Eurovision Song Contest on BBC One. After commentating last year on Eurovision: Europe Shine a Light, he will return to his coveted post for this year's live Grand Final.

Actress and singer, Amanda Holden will be taking the reins of the Eurovision Spokesperson, where she will be delivering the results of the UK professional jury vote live from London. She follows in the illustrious footsteps of Nigella Lawson, Mel Giedroyc, Richard Osman, Alex Jones, Cheryl Baker, Katrina Leskanich from Katrina & The Waves, and Lorraine Kelly.

The last Eurovision Song Contest Grand Final to be broadcast on BBC One in 2019 was the most watched music programme on the BBC that year and it was the most popular music TV show of the year amongst 16-34s.

Multi-platinum selling, Brit award-winning and Grammy nominated singer-songwriter James Newman will be representing the UK with his single Embers, released by BMG after the renewed collaboration with BBC Studios for the contest.

This year the Eurovision Song Contest will be broadcast live from Rotterdam, after the competition was cancelled in 2020 because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Graham Norton says: "I'm so excited for Eurovision to return, after the past year we've had it's exactly the kind of joy the world needs. The UK have a great entry with James Newman and Embers, it's a banger and represents everything that Eurovision is. It's arguably the best night of the year and I can't wait - bring it on!"

Ken Bruce says: "Radio 2 is getting right behind Eurovision 2021 with shows galore to delight all the fans. We're all so delighted the competition is back this year. On the night I'll be presenting the live show from my hot seat at Wogan House - bringing listeners all the entries, all the drama and, of course, the ultimate winner! Will it be the UK's year to finally win again? I can't wait to find out!"

Rylan Clark-Neal says: "There was a big Eurovision shaped hole in my life last year, so I am super excited to see what everyone brings to the table for 2021 - it's the best time of the year! I am looking forward to being reunited with Scott for the semi-finals and to welcome Chelcee to the team! Plus Embers is an absolute tune - I can't wait!"

Scott Mills says: "Eurovision week is my favourite of the year and I cannot wait for the biggest entertainment show on the planet to return! Although we won't be in Rotterdam ourselves, Rylan, Chelcee and I will definitely make sure we're still throwing the ultimate can't miss celebration for this year's semi-finals"

Chelcee Grimes says: "I am super excited to be joining the Eurovision family, I can't wait to host the semi-finals alongside Scott and Rylan, it's going to be awesome. I have always been a fan of Eurovision, and I can't wait to be a part of it. I'm looking forward to seeing all the weird and wonderful performances, as well as cheering on my mate James who is waving the flag for the UK! James and I have written together for a previous Eurovision winner and we've also penned some songs for the Romanian entrant so he is the best person for the job. JAMES TO WIN!"

Amanda Holden says: "What an honour to announce the UK's votes this year. I'm utterly thrilled. It's an ambition ticked after 45 years of watching it! Now, what to wear…"

The 65th Eurovision Song Contest will take place in Rotterdam, Netherlands. The Semi Finals will be broadcast on 18 and 20 May on BBC Four. The Grand Final will be broadcast on 22 May on BBC One and also on BBC Radio 2 and BBC Sounds.