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Monday 29 January 2024

Unlocking the Legend: BBC Arts Presents "Elizabeth Taylor: Rebel Superstar"

Prepare to delve deep into the captivating life of one of Hollywood's most iconic figures as BBC Arts commissions an insightful new three-part documentary series, "Elizabeth Taylor: Rebel Superstar" (working title), produced by Academy Award-winning Passion Pictures. Executive produced by Kari Lia, Hamish Fergusson, and the renowned Kim Kardashian, the series promises unprecedented access to those who knew Elizabeth Taylor best, offering a fresh perspective on her multifaceted legacy.

Far from the tabloid narrative of scandal and excess, "Elizabeth Taylor: Rebel Superstar" aims to showcase the true significance of Taylor's impact, highlighting her roles not just as an actor and fashion icon, but as a trailblazing businesswoman and activist. Through exclusive interviews, never-before-heard audio recordings, and unseen TV footage, viewers will witness Taylor's evolution from child star to billion-dollar mogul, challenging conventions and reshaping the very nature of fame along the way.

The series will feature insights from a diverse array of personalities who crossed paths with Taylor, including Kim Kardashian, Dame Joan Collins, Margaret O'Brien, Carole Bayer Sager, Dr. Anthony Fauci, and more. Each contributor brings a unique perspective, shedding light on different facets of Taylor's remarkable journey.

Kim Kardashian, herself an executive producer on the project, reflects on Taylor's enduring influence: "Elizabeth Taylor was unapologetically herself, a fighter. She is proof that you can keep evolving and changing and have different chapters in your life - and she paved the way for all of us who came after her with that blueprint."

Alistair Pegg, Commissioning Editor at the BBC, anticipates that the series will offer viewers a fresh understanding of Taylor's artistry and resilience, while Hamish Fergusson, Creative Director at Passion Pictures, expresses excitement about exploring the legacy of a true luminary.

With international distribution by Fremantle, "Elizabeth Taylor: Rebel Superstar" promises to captivate audiences worldwide, offering a comprehensive portrait of a woman who not only conquered Hollywood but reshaped the very definition of stardom.

Produced for BBC Arts, the series is helmed by Series Director James House and Series Producer Jemma Chisnall, under the supervision of Commissioning Editor Alistair Pegg.

As production gears up, anticipation mounts for the premiere of "Elizabeth Taylor: Rebel Superstar" on BBC Two and BBC iPlayer, offering audiences an unprecedented glimpse into the life and times of an enduring legend.

You can also buy Elizabeth Taylor: The Grit and Glamour of an Icon Hardcover – 8 Dec. 2022

Get Ready for a Star-Studded Ride: Pointless Welcomes New Celebrity Co-Hosts

The 100 Most Pointless Arguments in the World: A pointless book written by the presenters of the hit BBC 1 TV show https://amzn.to/47ULPSV

Get ready to test your knowledge and laugh along with some familiar faces as BBC One's beloved quiz show, Pointless, introduces a stellar lineup of celebrity co-hosts joining the charming Alexander Armstrong on the upcoming series.

From household names to comedy favorites, the roster includes Mel Giedroyc, Liza Tarbuck, Chris Ramsey, Gok Wan, Anita Rani, Gabby Logan, Josh Widdicombe, Phil Wang, Hugh Dennis, Ellie Taylor, Rob Rinder, and Desiree Burch.

Excited about the upcoming series, Alexander Armstrong shared, "I can't wait to get my teeth into a new run of Pointless with all these brilliant people. I'm so enjoying glancing over to the desk to find so many fabulous faces looking back and furnishing me, and our lovely viewers, with facts."

Each co-host brings their unique flair to the iconic Pointless desk, with Mel Giedroyc expressing her privilege at being part of the show and Liza Tarbuck highlighting her love for quizzes and the brilliance of Pointless's concept.

Chris Ramsey humorously anticipates his role as the "game show Neo," ready to correct contestants' wrong answers, while Gok Wan sees his stint as a chance at redemption after a less-than-stellar performance as a contestant.

Anita Rani, Gabby Logan, and Josh Widdicombe are equally thrilled to step into the co-hosting chair, with Gabby Logan expressing her longtime fan status and excitement to cheer on the winning team.

Phil Wang, a former Pointless champion, is ready to dominate from behind the desk, while Hugh Dennis jokes about practicing his poker face for reading the answers.

Ellie Taylor jokes about finally sitting behind the Pointless desk without being removed by security, while Rob Rinder sees his role as the gatekeeper to all the obscure trivia the show loves.

Desiree Burch reflects on her journey from being dumbfounded as a contestant to standing alongside the hosts with all the answers, ready for a chance at redemption.

Neil McCallum, BBC's Commissioning Editor, Daytime & Entertainment, expressed excitement over the star-studded lineup and hopes to continue surprising audiences with more great names in the future.

Laura Turner, Executive Producer at Remarkable Entertainment, shared her excitement about the new era for Pointless, promising a treat for viewers with Xander at the helm and the new co-hosts delivering top-notch facts.

Don't miss the fun as Pointless airs on weekdays on BBC One from 5.15 pm, with all episodes available on BBC iPlayer. Join the laughter, learn some new facts, and enjoy the company of these fantastic celebrity co-hosts as they make Pointless more entertaining than ever before.

The 100 Most Pointless Arguments in the World: A pointless book written by the presenters of the hit BBC 1 TV show https://amzn.to/47ULPSV

Unveiling a Shocking Reality: Patient 11 Podcast Exposes Sexual Abuse in NHS Mental Health Units

Prepare to embark on a gripping journey as Sky News and The Independent join forces to unveil the harrowing tale of Patient 11. This groundbreaking four-part podcast series delves deep into the story of Alexis Quinn, shedding light on the dark reality of sexual abuse within NHS mental health trusts across England.

Narrated by Nicholas Pinnock (known for his roles in "Top Boy" and "For Life"), Patient 11 follows Quinn's traumatic experience—a young mother and former GB swimmer whose three-day admission to a secure mental health hospital spiraled into a three-year nightmare of isolation, restraint, and sexual assault. Through her courageous testimony, Quinn unveils a systemic issue that has long remained hidden from the public eye.

In Quinn's own words: "They locked me up for three-and-a-half years and were prepared to throw away the key. They had no hope for me. And then I learned how prolific it was…I thought it was just me, but it's not just me, there are thousands of people (like me)."

David Rhodes, Sky News Executive Chairman, expressed the organizations' commitment to bringing this vital story to light, emphasizing the power of collaborative journalism in addressing pressing social issues.

Geordie Greig, Editor-In-Chief of The Independent, echoed the sentiment, stressing the urgent need for governmental action and reform in mental health hospitals to protect the most vulnerable members of society.

The podcast series serves as the culmination of an extensive 18-month investigation by Sky News and The Independent, revealing shocking findings that have sparked national outrage and calls for immediate intervention. With over 19,000 recorded complaints of sexual assault and harassment in NHS England mental health trusts, the scale of the issue is nothing short of alarming.

Despite these alarming figures, the investigation has uncovered significant gaps in safeguarding measures, with only a fraction of incidents being reported to the police and a concerning lack of adherence to government-backed sexual safety standards.

As Patient 11 exposes the grim truth lurking within the walls of mental health institutions, it ignites a crucial conversation about accountability, transparency, and the urgent need for reform.

All episodes of Patient 11 are available now on the StoryCast feed and across all major podcast platforms. Brace yourself for an eye-opening journey into the heart of a national scandal.

Deal or No Deal Returns to ITV1 and ITVX: What's in Store for Fans?

You can also play at home with the Deal or No Deal - Special Edition DVD & Card Game at https://amzn.to/3uaNQws

Prepare to hold your breath and brace yourselves for the return of the beloved game show, "Deal or No Deal," as it gears up for another thrilling season on ITV1 and ITVX. Following its triumphant launch, the series, which drew nearly 14 million viewers across all platforms and garnered over 5 million streams, is back with a bang.

Mark your calendars as host Stephen Mulhern once again takes the reins, guiding contestants through nerve-wracking moments as they battle against the infamous Banker. ITV has greenlit not only a regular season but also four exciting celebrity specials, promising more suspense, more surprises, and undoubtedly, more nail-biting moments.

Produced by Remarkable Entertainment, a Banijay UK company, each episode will see contestants face the iconic red boxes in pursuit of a life-changing cash prize. But lurking in the shadows is the cunning Banker, ready to challenge, entice, and outsmart the players at every turn.

Stephen Mulhern shared his excitement about the show's return, expressing his eagerness to dive back into the thrilling atmosphere of the studio. With emotions running high and fortunes on the line, who will emerge victorious against the odds?

Tamara Gilder, Joint Managing Director of Remarkable Entertainment, expressed her enthusiasm for bringing back the show, emphasizing the overwhelming love and support from fans. However, she couldn't resist a playful jab at the enigmatic Banker.

Katie Rawcliffe, Head of Entertainment Commissioning at ITV, echoed the sentiments of excitement, praising the show's heartwarming and captivating format, coupled with Mulhern's charismatic hosting.

For those daring enough to take on the challenge, casting will open soon, offering a chance to become a part of the "Deal or No Deal" legacy.

With its global success spanning over 80 territories, "Deal or No Deal" continues to captivate audiences worldwide, proving that the thrill of the game knows no boundaries.

So, are you ready to face the Banker and seize your chance at fortune? Stay tuned for more updates and prepare for the ultimate game of risk and reward as "Deal or No Deal" returns to ITV1 and ITVX.

You can also play at home with the Deal or No Deal - Special Edition DVD & Card Game at https://amzn.to/3uaNQws

Thursday 25 January 2024

COMPETITION: Win London Kills: Series 1 to 4 on DVD

Following the success of the first three series, crime TV virtuoso Paul Marquess (The Bill, Crime Stories, Suspects) brings us the latest instalment of the hit show that has become a firm fan favourite. London Kills Series 4 is available along with London Kills Series 1 to 4 Complete Box Set now!.

And to celebrate we have a great competition and a copy of Series 1 to 4 on DVD to give away.

London’s crack team of detectives – DI David Bradford (Hugo Speer – Marcella), DS Vivienne Cole (Sharon Small – The Inspector Lynley Mysteries), DC Rob Brady (Bailey Patrick – Bodyguard) and DC Billie Fitzgerald (Tori Allen-Martin – Unforgotten) – return to our screens to tackle the capital’s multitude of monstrous murders. Set against the backdrop of one of the most electrifying cities in the world, this slick and gritty show sees the savvy team face some of their toughest cases yet.

David has consistently displayed a rebellious nature, but his actions have now reached a perilous tipping point. When Vivienne confronts him about his behaviour, David abruptly declares an end to their professional partnership before disappearing without a trace... Determined to uncover the truth, Vivienne hunts him and down and demands an explanation, but nothing can prepare her for what she’s about to hear and the revelation knocks her sideways...

Visit the mean streets of London Kills for enthralling and compelling mysteries that will reel viewers in from the get-go with its edge-of-seat action.

Buy from Amazon at - https://amzn.to/3SPcgoZ

Enter now for a chance to win.


Quick Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 12-02-24
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.

"Death in Paradise" Returns: Sun, Sand, and Crime-Solving in the Caribbean

Get ready for another thrilling season of sunshine, murder mysteries, and quirky detectives as the beloved BBC crime drama "Death in Paradise" returns with its new series on Sunday, 4th February. Produced by Red Planet Pictures, the show has become a fan-favorite, offering a perfect blend of captivating cases, stunning Caribbean landscapes, and a touch of humor.

The core cast, featuring Ralf Little as DI Neville Parker, Don Warrington as Commissioner Selwyn Patterson, Shantol Jackson as DS Naomi Thomas, Tahj Miles as Officer Marlon Pryce, Ginny Holder as Trainee Officer Darlene Curtis, and Élizabeth Bourgine as Catherine Bordey, is back to solve a fresh set of ingenious cases on the fictional island of Saint Marie.

The series kicks off with its milestone 100th episode, celebrating Commissioner Selwyn Patterson's fifty years of police service. However, the festivities take a dark turn when the Commissioner is shot by a mysterious assassin, leaving the team and the island in shock. The landmark episode features guest stars including Sean Maguire, who returns to reprise his role since the show's first-ever episode in 2011.

As the series unfolds, viewers can expect a mix of joy and drama, with Marlon facing decisions about his future, Naomi enjoying a double date with Darlene, and Catherine getting entangled in a murder case involving an old friend. New and returning faces grace the shores of Saint Marie, and Neville faces a pivotal decision in his life. The season promises a deadly game of bingo, a poisoning at a cookery competition, death during a blackout, and a mystifying murder in a lift.

"Death in Paradise" continues its tradition of bringing in an array of guest stars, adding to the excitement. The thirteenth year welcomes talents like Hayley Mills, Ellie Haddington, Kate Robbins, Pearce Quigley, Ronni Ancona, Richard Fleeshman, and many more. The series maintains its reputation for delivering magnificent murder mysteries, mind-boggling puzzles, and unexpected plot twists that keep audiences guessing.

The show's success isn't confined to the UK; it has garnered a massive international fan base, being licensed to over 230 territories across the globe. Recently, the franchise expanded its reach with the announcement of an Australian spin-off series titled "Return to Paradise," combining the original's global appeal with a unique Australian twist.

Colin Firth to Star in Gripping Limited Series "Lockerbie" – A Search for Truth and Justice Unveiled

Academy Award-winning actor Colin Firth is set to grace our screens in the upcoming limited event series "Lockerbie," a collaboration between Sky and Peacock Original. Firth, known for his remarkable performances in "The King's Speech" and "A Single Man," takes on the challenging role of Dr. Jim Swire in this compelling narrative based on real-life events.

"Lockerbie," a five-part series co-produced by Carnival Films (a part of Universal International Studios) and Sky Studios, promises a riveting exploration of justice, grief, and the aftermath of one of the most tragic aviation disasters in history. The series revolves around the Pan Am Flight 103 bombing over Lockerbie on December 21, 1988, where 259 passengers and crew lost their lives, along with 11 residents of the Scottish town.

Colin Firth's portrayal of Dr. Jim Swire, who tragically lost his daughter Flora in the Lockerbie bombing, adds depth to a story that delves into the aftermath of the tragedy. Driven by grief and the quest for justice, Swire becomes the spokesperson for UK victims' families, leading a charge for truth that spans continents and political landscapes.

Renowned Scottish playwright David Harrower, celebrated for works like "Blackbird" and "Knives in Hens," takes on the role of lead writer for "Lockerbie." The series boasts a talented lineup of directors, with Otto Bathurst, known for his work on "Peaky Blinders" and "The Winter King," leading the way, joined by Jim Loach, director of "Save Me."

"Lockerbie" promises an intimate portrayal of Dr. Jim Swire's relentless pursuit of truth and justice, unraveling the impact of the disaster on his stability, family, and life. As the narrative unfolds, viewers will witness the shifting truth beneath Swire's feet, leaving an indelible mark on his perception of the world.

The series, set to commence production in early 2024, brings together a stellar team of executive producers, including Gareth Neame and Nigel Marchant for Carnival Films, and Sam Hoyle for Sky Studios. David Harrower, Liz Trubridge, Jim Sheridan, Kirsten Sheridan, and Oskar Slingerland also contribute their expertise as executive producers, with Brian Kaczynski serving as the producer and Maryam Hamidi as the associate producer.

"Lockerbie" is not just a television series; it is a profound exploration of grief, resilience, and the unwavering pursuit of justice. Based on the book "The Lockerbie Bombing: A Father's Search for Justice" by Jim Swire and Peter Biddulph, along with multiple other sources, the series is poised to captivate audiences with its powerful narrative.

Fans can anticipate "Lockerbie" on Sky and NOW in the UK, Ireland, Italy, Germany, Switzerland, and Austria, as well as on Peacock in the US. International audiences will also have the opportunity to experience this poignant series, as NBCUniversal Global TV Distribution takes charge of international sales. As production gears up, "Lockerbie" is poised to become a gripping and thought-provoking addition to the realm of limited event series.

Previewing the BRIT Awards 2024: A Night of Records, Woke Nonsense, and New Partnerships

The excitement is building as the BRIT Awards with Mastercard approaches, set to take place on Saturday, 2nd March at The O2 arena. The nominations were unveiled in a special 30-minute streaming event, 'Bring on The BRITs with Mastercard: The 2024 Nominations,' hosted by Yinka Bokinni and featuring appearances from nominated artists and broadcaster Jack Saunders.

This year promises to be exceptional, with several changes to enhance representation and recognition within the British music industry. The number of nominees for Artist of the Year and International Artist of the Year has increased to ten, a move aimed at fostering inclusivity. Over half of the 2024 BRITs nominations (55%) feature women, either as solo artists or part of all-woman or mixed-gender groups, rising to 57% when including women in mixed-gender groups.

A notable addition to the awards is the introduction of the R&B Act category, reflecting the diverse musical landscape in the UK. Other genre awards include Alternative/Rock Act, Dance Act, Pop Act, and Hip Hop/Grime/Rap Act, showcasing the versatility and creativity of British music.

The winners of the genre awards will be determined by a public vote exclusively through Instagram, providing fans with the opportunity to have their say in celebrating their favorite artists. Voting opens on 1st February and closes on 15th February.

Raye leads the nominations with an impressive seven nods, making her the most nominated artist in a single BRITs year. Dua Lipa follows closely with three nominations, and both artists are confirmed to perform on the main show.

The Artist of the Year category features an array of talent, including Arlo Parks, Dave, Jessie Ware, and Little Simz. The Mastercard Album of the Year category boasts nominees like Blur, Little Simz, and Young Fathers.

International Artist of the Year is a global showdown with nominees such as Burna Boy, Kylie Minogue, Miley Cyrus, and Taylor Swift. This category also includes International Song of the Year nominations for Olivia Rodrigo, Miley Cyrus, and SZA.

The 2024 BRITs also marks the return of The Rolling Stones with their first nomination in over a decade. Other nominated artists include Billie Eilish, Ed Sheeran, Stormzy, and many more.

The BRITs continue to champion new talent with the Rising Star award, won by The Last Dinner Party. Additionally, the awards celebrate excellence in songwriting and production, with winners to be revealed in the coming weeks.

The BRITs Voting Academy, composed of approximately 1300 individuals from various sectors of the music industry, ensures a balanced and diverse selection of nominees. This year, the academy achieved a balanced split of men and women, with a quarter of members identifying as Black, Asian, or ethnic minority.

In partnership with Music Declares Emergency, The BRITs are supporting the NO MUSIC ON A DEAD PLANET campaign, encouraging music fans to take part in monthly climate action challenges and music giveaways.

Mastercard returns as the headline partner for the 26th year, offering cardholders exclusive BRITs experiences. The BRITs also welcomes new partners for 2024, including Hilton as the Official Hotel Partner and TRESemmé as the Official Haircare Partner.

With an evening filled with performances, awards, and new partnerships, The BRIT Awards 2024 promises to be a memorable celebration of the diverse and thriving British music industry. Tune in on Saturday, 2nd March, as the stars align at The O2 arena for this highly anticipated event, broadcast live on ITV1 and ITVX.

Monday 22 January 2024

Pep Guardiola: Chasing Perfection - A Pioneering Journey Through Football

Check out Pep Guardiola Attacking Tactics - Tactical Analysis and Sessions from Manchester City's 4-3-3

In the world of football, Pep Guardiola stands as a revolutionary force, transforming the game with his relentless pursuit of perfection. The upcoming documentary, accompanied by a captivating podcast series, delves deep into the hows and whys behind Guardiola's ability to leave an indelible mark on the beautiful game.

The film features fascinating interviews with Pep's inner circle, comprising friends, former colleagues, and players who have been part of his extraordinary journey. Mikel Arteta, Txiki Bergeristan, Carles Puyol, Ilkay Gundogan, Kyle Walker, and Phil Foden offer insights into Guardiola's methods and motivations. Through these intimate conversations, viewers gain a unique perspective on the man behind the football genius.

The narrative unfolds, tracing Guardiola's trajectory from a small-town in Catalonia to the iconic Camp Nou, underscoring the significance of his pivotal relationship with managerial guru Johan Cruyff. Spanish World Cup winner Carles Puyol provides a behind-the-scenes look at Guardiola's innovative approach to managing Barcelona's first team, navigating intense rivalries, including the one with Jose Mourinho.

Following his dramatic departure from Barcelona, Pep's closest confidants shed light on his unyielding quest for self-improvement, detailing a transformative New York sabbatical that ultimately led to his appointment at Bayern Munich. Star players Robert Lewandowski and Manuel Neuer reveal the leadership challenges Guardiola faced as he applied his football philosophy to a club steeped in history.

The documentary doesn't shy away from exploring Guardiola's current tenure at Manchester City. Phil Foden and Kyle Walker, two of the club's key players, vividly portray Guardiola's tireless work ethic. Former Oasis singer Noel Gallagher reflects on the remarkable journey that saw Guardiola elevate Manchester City from a fourth-place finish to a stunning 100-point title-winning season within a year.

From his humble beginnings as the boss of Barcelona B to the crowning moment in the 2023 Champions League, this documentary serves as the definitive origin story of a once-in-a-generation footballing mind. Viewers are invited to witness Guardiola's transcendent managerial journey across Europe's top leagues, understanding the evolution of a footballing genius who has forever altered the landscape of the sport.

Don't miss "Pep Guardiola: Chasing Perfection" premiering on BBC One and iPlayer at 10.40 pm on Wednesday, January 24. It promises to be an enlightening exploration of the mind and methods behind one of football's most exceptional minds.

Dead and Buried - Starring Annabel Scholey and Colin Morgan

Filming has kicked off on the much-anticipated four-part psychological thriller, "Dead and Buried," penned by the acclaimed writer Colin Bateman. This gripping series, commissioned by BBC Northern Ireland and Virgin Media Television in collaboration with All3Media International, promises to delve into the twisted realms of obsession, revenge, and psychological warfare.

Headlining the cast are the talented Annabel Scholey (known for "The Split," "The Serial Killer's Wife," and "The Salisbury Poisonings") and Colin Morgan ("Humans," "Belfast," and "Dead Shot"). The ensemble also features Kerri Quinn ("Hope Street"), Waj Ali ("Carnival Row"), Owen Roe ("Vikings"), and Niamh Walsh ("The Sandman").

Produced by Three River Fiction and Vico Films, with support from Screen Ireland, Northern Ireland Screen, and Coimisiún na Meán, the series is set against the backdrop of the border and will be shot in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland in the coming months.

The plot unfolds when Cathy (Annabel Scholey) comes face to face with Michael (Colin Morgan) outside a supermarket – the man convicted of her brother's brutal murder two decades earlier. Disregarding her best friend's counsel, Cathy delves into social media, discovering the seemingly idyllic life Michael has built for himself post-prison release, while she mourned her brother.

Haunted by her past, Cathy initiates a clandestine relationship with the man she despises, embarking on a campaign of harassment and deceit. As her obsession intensifies, the lines between dark revenge fantasies and reality blur, leading Cathy down a path of psychological warfare to dismantle Michael's life.

Colin Morgan expresses his enthusiasm, stating, "I'm delighted to be embarking on Colin Bateman's dark, funny and compulsive new drama Dead And Buried." The show promises a thrilling journey, and Morgan can't wait for audiences to experience its twisted path.

Annabel Scholey, portraying the complex character Cathy, shares her excitement about bringing the role to life. She praises the director, Laura Way, with whom she has a wonderful shorthand, expressing eagerness to work together on such a compelling story.

Colin Bateman, the writer and executive producer, reflects on the evolution of "Dead and Buried" from a short story to a one-woman stage show and now into a riveting four-part drama. He poses universal and timeless questions at the core of the narrative, leaving viewers pondering how they would react in the face of meeting someone who thrived after committing a heinous crime against a loved one.

Eddie Doyle, Head of Commissioning at BBC Northern Ireland, emphasizes the masterful concoction of twisted plots and black comedy by Colin Bateman, combined with a stellar cast. He expresses delight in having Virgin Media Television and All3 Media on board for the series, ensuring audiences across the UK, Republic of Ireland, and beyond can savor this thrilling drama later this year.

Anthony Nilan, Head of Content Strategy at Virgin Media Television, hails "Dead and Buried" as a confident, intense, and ridiculously fun thriller. The collaboration with BBC Northern Ireland and All3 Media promises to deliver a home-produced drama with a distinct voice, captivating viewers with its unique storyline.

In the words of Ben McGrath, Executive Producer for Three River Fiction, "Dead and Buried" is a gripping noir thriller that will keep audiences on the edge of their seats. The blend of dark comedy, intimate portrayals of grief and obsession, and the stellar cast led by Annabel Scholey and Colin Morgan makes this series a thought-provoking and compelling watch.

Cormac Fox, Executive Producer for Vico Films, expresses delight in bringing Colin Bateman's adaptation to life on screen. With a brilliant cast and crew, supported by dedicated commissioners and funding partners, "Dead and Buried" promises to be an unforgettable journey into the depths of the human psyche.

Thursday 18 January 2024

"Bring the Drama" - A Gateway to Aspiring Actors' Dreams

READ Bill Bailey's Remarkable Guide to Happiness https://amzn.to/47G68mI

Embark on a transformative journey into the world of screen drama with "Bring the Drama," a compelling six-part series brought to you by BBC Arts and Wall to Wall Media for BBC Two and iPlayer. Hosted by the versatile actor and comedian Bill Bailey, the show opens the door to the acting dreams of eight individuals who have always aspired to become professional actors but never had the opportunity.

Guided by renowned casting director Kelly Valentine Hendry, known for her work on shows like "Bridgerton," "Gangs of London," and "Broadchurch," the series takes the aspiring actors through a six-week mentorship program. Each episode immerses them in the real-life sets of celebrated UK dramas, such as "Peaky Blinders," "EastEnders," and "Silent Witness," challenging them to recreate iconic scenes with authentic scripts, cameras, and the time pressures faced by professional actors.

The aspiring actors receive valuable advice and guidance from established actors including Natalie Cassidy, Genesis Lynea, Charles Venn, Ed Speleers, and Rochenda Sandall. Additionally, they work closely with industry experts, from Peaky Blinders' fight coordinator to the intimacy coordinator from Sex Education.

As the participants discover, the path of a screen actor is far from easy, presenting new challenges and learning opportunities with each production. The series aims to unveil whether these individuals possess the talent and skills needed to step into the professional industry. At the end of the intensive learning process, casting director Kelly selects three actors deemed industry-ready to present their showreel at a major industry showcase, providing them with the chance to secure representation from a leading agent.

All eight actors earned their spots through an open casting call process, selected from nearly 2000 amateur actors across the UK based on their raw talent. None have attended drama school or found a way into acting professionally due to various factors and access issues.

In addition to direct guidance from industry professionals and specialist coaches, the participants leave the process with a professionally shot showreel and follow-up sessions with industry experts.

Bill Bailey expresses delight at witnessing the growth of the actors and highlights the series' unique insight into the TV-making process. Casting director Kelly Valentine-Hendry underscores the importance of breaking industry barriers and emphasizes the challenging nature of bringing great drama to the screen.

Suzy Klein, Head of Arts TV at the BBC, notes that "Bring the Drama" aims to spotlight the complexities of being an actor, showcasing the expertise, skills, and challenges of breaking into the fiercely competitive industry. The series not only offers a behind-the-scenes look at major TV dramas but also sets the stage for the Bring the Drama Festival, providing a gateway for aspiring creatives to explore offscreen roles in theatre, film, and TV.

Don't miss the opportunity to witness the captivating journey of these aspiring actors as "Bring the Drama" premieres soon on BBC Two and iPlayer, promising an insightful exploration into the world of acting and the relentless pursuit of dreams. Transmission details will be unveiled in due course.

READ Bill Bailey's Remarkable Guide to Happiness https://amzn.to/47G68mI

Paddy & Molly: Show No Mersey - A Ringside Pass to the UFC Stars' Lives

CAGE FURY: Unleashing the "Paddy the Baddy" Phenomenon https://amzn.to/47KYOq6

Prepare for an exhilarating ringside journey with the upcoming BBC Three series, "Paddy & Molly: Show No Mersey," shining a spotlight on the lives and careers of Ultimate Fighting Championship's (UFC) dynamic duo - Paddy Pimblett and Molly McCann. Commissioned by BBC Three, this 8-episode, 30-minute series delves into the personal and professional realms of Liverpool's charismatic MMA fighters.

Best friends and native Scousers, Paddy and Molly, have become formidable forces in the fast-growing world of UFC. The series promises an up-close and personal look at their lives both inside and outside the cage. Viewers will witness the duo tackling the most significant fights of their careers, ones that will define their legacies in the world of Mixed Martial Arts (MMA). Balancing personal relationships with the demands of their high-stakes careers adds an extra layer of complexity to their already intense lives.

Known for his brash and full-of-bravado persona, Paddy is set to reveal a more intimate side, while Molly, introspective and emotionally raw, brings her unique personality to the forefront. Both fighters share an unyielding hunger for victory and a deep commitment to supporting each other, not just professionally but also on a personal level.

The series extends beyond the cage, providing a vibrant exploration of Merseyside, celebrating the region's rich culture. From the sandy beaches of Crosby to the bustling Baltic Market, the show offers a unique look at the day-to-day lives of Molly and Paddy, showcasing their connection to the vibrant part of the UK they call home.

Paddy Pimblett and Molly McCann express their anticipation for viewers to witness the intricacies of their daily lives, emphasizing the challenges that come with their careers and the real, unfiltered experiences that shape their journeys.

Steve Regan, Executive Producer for Hello Mary, remarks on the excitement of creating a series with such brilliant and entertaining characters, while Nasfim Haque, Head of Content for BBC Three, highlights the network's commitment to uncovering extraordinary talent for young audiences.

As viewers delve into their personal lives, meeting Paddy's wife Laura and Molly's fiancée Ellis, the series promises a multifaceted look at their worlds. Paddy, facing the unique challenge of balancing training and fighting with impending fatherhood, adds a layer of complexity, while Molly juggles her dedication to training with quality time at home with Ellis.

"Paddy & Molly: Show No Mersey" offers exclusive access to the behind-the-scenes dramas, challenges, and laughs of the mixed martial arts world. Get ready to witness a side of Paddy and Molly that goes beyond the octagon.

The series is set to premiere soon on BBC Three and BBC iPlayer. Transmission details will be unveiled in due course. "Paddy & Molly: Show No Mersey" (8x30') is produced by Hello Mary, with Executive Producers Steve Regan and Sharyn Mills. It was commissioned by Nasfim Haque, Head of Content for BBC Three, and Catherine Catton, Head of Popular Factual and Factual Entertainment, with Ricky Cooper as the BBC Commissioning Editor.

CAGE FURY: Unleashing the "Paddy the Baddy" Phenomenon https://amzn.to/47KYOq6

Q&A with David Jason - Touring Toolshed

A Del of a Life: The hilarious #1 bestseller from the national treasure https://amzn.to/3tXGn3H

Get ready for a crafty escapade as Sir David Jason and Jay Blades MBE take their skills on the road in the exciting new series, "David & Jay's Touring Toolshed." Presented by Hungry Jay Media, this 15-episode journey on BBC Two invites members of the public, professional makers, and enthusiasts to join the iconic duo in elevating their craft to new heights.

While Sir David Jason is widely known for his television roles, this heartwarming series unveils a lesser-known facet – his lifelong passion for creating and fixing things. Collaborating with Jay Blades MBE, they embark on a journey that celebrates the spirit of hands-on creativity ingrained in the British culture.

The "Touring Toolshed" travels to the heart of the action, making stops at the UK's air shows, steam rallies, county fairs, and vintage festivals. Here, they meet the country's most talented crafters, makers, and tinkerers, as well as those seeking guidance and assistance with their projects.

What can you tell us about David and Jay's Touring Toolshed?

It's a light-hearted way of being able to witness people's hobbies and interests around the country, as Jay and I tour the UK visiting various county shows.

Why did you want to make a show about tinkering?  

I think it's really great to be able to encourage people of all ages to try their hands at different skills and past times as we are hearing so much more about being mindful and having different hobbies to help with our mental health.

When did your passion for tinkering and restoring begin?

I've always been interested in building models and tinkering with anything mechanical. As a teenager, I started to gain some knowledge about motorbikes and so I went about saving and buying a BSA B31 vintage motorbike. On its first outing, the frame broke and so I had to learn how to fix it and my passion kind of grew from there. Over the years, I've restored motorbikes and penny arcade machines amongst other things.

What are you most excited for viewers to see on the show?

That anyone can have a go, and everyone is learning all the time. Even the experts learn something new every day. I also like to think that it is a gentle roam around the country with Jay and I just enjoying the journey.

What made you want to team up with Jay for the show?

I met Jay after I made a surprise video for the Strictly Come Dancing team to play to him after he had jived to the theme tune from 'Only Fools and Horses'. He was so blown away that we organised to meet up and we got on like a house on fire. We said it would be great if we could find a project to work on together and the rest, as they say, is history or, I would like to think, the future.

Tell us about a memorable 'problem project'?  

A couple of projects involved aircraft which I was particularly interested in, especially the guys who dismantled old planes at the end of their flying life and turned the parts, large and small, into pieces of furniture or ornaments.

What was the most memorable part about filming or one of your favourite memories?

I enjoyed it all and enjoyed seeing so many different parts of the country. I also enjoyed the location for the Midland Air Show and seeing all the different air displays go over whilst we were filming.

You and Jay appear to get on really well. Do you have any fun anecdotes from filming you can share?

Jay is such a genuine and warm fella, so it was good to get to know him more and hear about his journey to where he is now. I enjoyed coming up with ideas for 'comedy businesses' with him and trying to get him to do a bit of acting. He's got such a gift of the gab, so every day was fun. During one quiet period he decided to ring up the Head of the BBC and inform them that he thought we were doing a great job and to standby for a second series.

A Del of a Life: The hilarious #1 bestseller from the national treasure https://amzn.to/3tXGn3H