Hello Kasterborites – welcome to this week’s news blast! Alas, the BBC has yet to announce the complete, full-colour edition of The Ice Warriors, in surround sound with interactive snow, but plenty more has been happening in the four corners of the Whoniverse…
Colin Baker Pays Tribute to Ray Lonnen
The Sixth Doctor has paid tribute to British actor Ray Lonnen, after he lost his battle with cancer at the age of 74. Pertwee fans may remember him as the space pilot Gardiner from 1973’s Frontier in Space, but Lonnen also made appearances in Z-Cars and The Sandbaggers, and stood in for James Bond during the leading ladies’ screen tests.
Colin Baker is among many others who have paid tribute to Lonnen, calling him “a really nice bloke and a good actor too.”
I guess this is as good a reason as any to dig out the Frontier in Space DVD; it’s an underrated classic in which Ray Lonnen is truly superb. Highly recommended!
Colin Baker Withdraws from Play Owing to Ill Health
Speaking of Colin Baker, it’s been reported that he recently withdrew from a play in Malvern “due to ill health.” Titled Mog Bridges, the play was a “bittersweet comedy” which closed last Saturday, with actor Peter Nolan standing in for Doctor Number Six.
Colin would have been playing the lead character of James Bridges, who missed his children growing up owing to overseas military service. As the synopsis puts it: “Divorced and now estranged from his family, he hasn’t seen them for years. Now, on his somewhat solitary 70th birthday, his son arrives to tell him that his daughter, Mog, is getting married. Is it too late to build bridges?”
This sounds like it would have been an amusing yet poignant role for Colin, so it’s a shame he was forced to bow-out. From all of us here in the constellation of Kasterborous – look after yourself Colin, and get well soon!
“You Need a Smith on Board…!”
If you’re more of a film fan, you may be interested to know that Doctor Who‘s own Noel Clarke (who played companion Mickey Smith), is back in the screenwriting business after a somewhat bizarre turn of events on Twitter.
Apparently, director Gary Moore took to the social media site with the trailer for his film about female football hooligans. He sent messages to all kinds of celebrities, and within weeks he was sitting having lunch with Noel Clarke himself, who was really taken with the idea.
Clarke is currently re-working the script, which is being co-produced by Jason Maza (Anuthahood) and will hopefully enter production towards the end of this year. Good luck to all involved!
Doctor Who Meets the Nerd
The TARDIS has made an appearance on the US comedy series Robot Chicken! The stop-motion sketch features a Dalek, the Tribe of Gum (possibly), a strange Matt Smith / Peter Capaldi / Tom Baker hybrid Doctor, and TARDIS doors which open outwards! It’s harmless, quirky stuff that’s well worth two minutes of your time. Go watch…
Cinematic Audio Coming to DVD
Elsewhere, Everybodyelse Productions has announced that it has finished recording the first two episodes of a “fun cinematic adventure on radio.” Titled Osiris, the full-cast audio adventure stars Christian Edwards from Big Finish’s Daleks Among Us, Robert Whitelock from The Bells of Saint John, Colin Macfarlane from Torchwood: Children of Earth, and The Tenth Doctor’s wife/daughter Georgia Moffett. Plus it’s directed by Bernice Summerfield herself, Lisa Bowerman! Our cups runneth over!
According to the synopsis, Osiris “tells the story of Nottingham graphic designer Jason Fox who stumbles upon a spaceship buried deep beneath the roots of the Major Oak tree in Sherwood Forest. Jason, his best friend William Tyler and his sister Melissa Fox are then taken on a dangerous adventure where they are chased by government authorities and then hunted by a ruthless alien assassin across the solar system.”
Intriguingly, Osiris is being released on a special limited edition DVD, with conventional CDs and digital downloads following later. The release dates are currently set for 15th August for the DVD, with the two CDs arriving on 12th September and 10th October, so get those pre-orders in!
The TARDIS Makes Appearance at School Ball
Finally, as you may have gleaned from the heading, an imitation TARDIS recently materialised at a Doctor Who-themed ball. Students at the Yeoman Park Special School were treated to the rare sight of a TARDIS-shaped phone box, which took centre stage among the academic revelry.
After all, the world doesn’t end because the Doctor dances! Sounds like it was a good night.