SF DataLink

News from the World of Media Science Fiction

Edited by Dan Giese

Doctor Who News

Two classic episodes of Doctor Who - thought to be missing forever - have been returned to the BBC archive. Episode 3 of the William Hartnell adventure "Galaxy 4" and Episode 2 of Patrick Troughton's "The Underwater Menace" were purchased by film collector Terry Burnett at a village fete near Southampton in the early 80s. He had been unaware that the canisters contained material missing from the BBC.   <>   A lost radio script from the sixties, starring Peter Cushing as Doctor Who, was found in the BBC archives. In Journey into Time the Doctor and his grandaughter visit the American revolution. The series was rejected with the quote "as a piece of science fiction, however, it strikes me as extremely feeble".   <>   Amy & Rory are done for! Producer Stephen Moffat announced the couple will be back, but also will be leaving in the next series. Moffat has confirmed the series will have 14 episodes including a Christmas special. When asked about the 2013 50th anniversary special Moffat replied "Why talk in the singular?"   <>   Mark Gatiss and John Fay will write for the upcoming season, which is promised to be "completely stand-alone stories".   <>   Internet rumor spurred by BBC concept art teases the possible return of another Who foe - the Yeti.   <>   Internet rumors swirl that Sophia Myles (?) may be the next Who companion. It all started when Moffat wrote on twitter to "Follow the fireplace" on Myles' account. Her twitter feed increased 3000%. The actress has teased further info is coming, but also replied "ask Moffat". The rumors do not say whether she would play Madame du Pompadour or a new character.   <>   A new competition offers school-children the opportunity to write an Olympics- oriented Who adventure. Amy & Rory can be included.

Writer Russell T. Davies has created Aliens Vs Wizards, a new children's program about two 16-year olds, a scientist and a wizard, who find themselves forced to work together against an alien threat. The series premieres in the UK Fall 2012.   <>   David Tennant tied the knot with Georgia Moffett (daughter of Doctor Peter Davison) Dec. 30.   <>   Karen Gillan reportedly let slip that she is no longer an item with photographer Patrick Green. Gillan was promoting her role as supermodel Jean Shrimpton, who became the muse to a photographer, when she added, "we never did that". Too much to read into one past-tense slip-of-the-tongue? This also follows news that Matt Smith ended his relation with actress Daisy Lowe.   <>   Billie Piper has announced her second child, expected in 2012, will be a boy.   <>   Noel Clarke (Mickey) will head to space again for Star Trek 2, the J.J. Abrams remake of the franchise. The movie is unnamed, and scheduled for 2013.   <>   Eve Myles (Torchwood) will star in the play All New People starring Zach Braff (Scrubs).   <>   With the release of Invasion of the Dinosaurs Whovians learned one new thing - that Sarah Jane Smith was originally NOT Liz Sladen. April Walker (Fawlty Towers, Yes Prime Minister) was cast and worked with Jon Pertwee, but it was felt she was "too strong" and too tall, and the rest is Who-history.   <>   Crash of the Elysium promises a live Dr. Who experience for theatre goers in Ipswich. The story is by Steven Moffat and promises a familiar face, from June 15 - July 8.

Dr. Who will hit PC and PS3 as a game recreates the Matt Smith Doctor - a screen shot released shows him in the TARDIS. The game The Eternity Clock has already been rated as a top play for 2012. A trailer features Matt Smith's Doctor and River Song, as well as the Daleks, Cybermen, Silurians, and the Silence.   <>   Shada, the unfinished Tom Baker episode shelved in 1979 due to a writer's strike, will be re-released as a novel. The story is by legendary author Douglas Adams and deals with the Doctor, his mysterious friend Professor Chronotis, and the Ancient Law of Gallifrey (and I thought that was the rod of Rassilon). The book is available in March.   <>   Dark Horizons, a new BBC book has the Doctor investigate the Lewis Chessmen, more that 90 chess pieces found in the 1800's in a Lewis sand dune. The origin of the pieces has been a mystery. Author Jenny Colgan, an avid Who fan and Terrance Dicks fan, previously won a fan contest at age 11 and met Doctor Peter Davison.   <>   Paul McGann teams up with horror-author Mary Shelly in Gig Finish's audio-book Army of Death. The story finds the two against an army of undead.   <>   Big Finish is also set to release Destination: Nerva a new audio-book featuring Tom Baker and Louise Jameson, and is set on the space station popularized in Ark in Space.   <>   AudioGo has released Doctor Who - the Art of Death, a story with the Doctor, Amy and Rory narrated by Raquel Cassidy (Almost People). The story has the Doctor, Amy, and Rory fall into a crack in time and observe the paradox.   <>   Embarrassing married Whovians all over, Brantham's Gary Gibbons' Christmas gift for his wife included a life-sized TARDIS.

 

Television News

Fox president Kevin Reilly revealed Fringe is losing money for the network, inspiring show-runner J.J. Abrams to meetings to lower the license fees for the program. Execs are eager to finish the story, whether that be a shortened season, a TV special, or graphic novels.   <>   ABC has greenlit the supernatural 666 Park Ave. by Fringe writer David Wilcox. The series is based on books by Gabriella Pierce about a young couple in New York who find themselves against a "deal with the devil".

American Horror Story promises a mostly new cast for season 2, but also says that some fan favorites will return, albeit in different roles.

Grimm has shown an increase in ratings (the recent Of Mouse and Man rated 1.8) and is now thought likely to be renewed. Bree Turner (Raising Hope) will join the show recurring as a fox-like creature.   <>   The Secret Circle will add a variety of new faces. Alexia Fast (The 4400) will play a main guy's ex-girlfriend. Tim Phillipps (Once Upon a Time) will also play a preppy yacht-goer with a dark secret.   <>   Relative unknown Lindsey R. Garrett (Renegade) will appear on The Vampire Diaries. Cassidy Freeman (Smallville) will also appear.   <>   ABC has ordered a pilot for Beauty & the Beast. From Jericho's Jonathan Steinberg, the series is a fantastic tale where a beautiful tough Princess falls for a mysterious beast. The CW network has also offered a similar pilot more similar to the Linda Hamilton 1987 series.   <>   The CW has greenlit Arrow, a series about superhero Green Arrow. The Arrow was seen in Smallville although new casting is scheduled.

Matt Hastings (Eureka) will join the 2nd season of Alphas as exec producer. He is part of a team replacing Ira Steve Behr (DS9Eureka was not picked up after its current season, airing this year.   <>   Rewind a new SF series by Gail Berman (Star Trek) and Lloyd Braun (Lost) has greenlit a pilot. The series focuses on elite military team who travels back in team to stop history changing from terrorists.   <>   The Walking Dead returns in February, and features 2 new faces: actors Aaron Munoz and Michael Raymond James. Both play "guest-star" actors that may only be in one episode, but have been confirmed as new survivors. A 16-episode 3rd season has been commisioned.

 

Movie News

Disney is betting over $250 million on John Carter, the expected franchise starring Taylor Kitsch (Friday Night Lights). The 100-year-old Edgar Rice Burroughs story features a confederate Civil war soldier transported to Barsoom (Mars). He finds giant aliens, romance, and an interstellar war.   <>   Mirror Mirror stars Julia Roberts and Lilly Collins in one of two fairy tale inspired movies. Star Collins also announced she has passed on the Evil Dead remake.   <>   Wrath of the Titans is a sequel to Clash of the Titans set for March. Star Sam Worthington promises this one "gets right what was disappointing about the first". The movie also promises a generational drama as now the Titans observe their rebel children having rebel children of their own.

  <>   The Secret World of Arrietty is an anime opening in Feb. The story is a remake of The Borrowers, where the "little people" struggle to remain hidden from the human "beans".

Columbia has released info about The Amazing Spider-Man, opening in July. The new version features teen Peter Parker (Andrew Garfield) falling for his first love Gwen Stacey (Emma Stone) and finding his science mentor's tie to the savage Lizard.   <>   13-year-old Jadin Gould will play a young Lana Lang in Man of Steel, the Superman remake scheduled for 2013. Lang had appeared in Superman 3. Henry Cavill and Amy Adams star.

 

Other News

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This column promises not to sign with Detroit for millions of dollars - oh who am I kidding? If the millions come you are on your own ...

Sources: The Doctor Who News Page, Sci Fi Wire, Kryptonsite, Spoilerfix, Variety, Zap2It.com, SuperHype, Gateworld, and Aint It Cool News

SF DataLink November 2011

News from the World of Media Science Fiction

Edited by Dan Giese

This news column, in solidarity with our NBA comerades, will be on strike until we get millions of dollars - hey it worked for them, right?

Sources: The Doctor Who News Page, Blastr, IO9, Variety, SuperHype, SciFiCool, and Aint It Cool News

Doctor Who News

Amy & Rory return! Steven Moffat, in his The Brilliant Book 2012, confirmed the duo are NOT in the Christmas special but will be included in the next series. Alex Kingston - "that is dependent on Alex Kingston".   <>   Doctor Who Confidential has been canceled. Over 30,000 online signatures have pushed a Save Doctor Who Confidential, including writer Neil Gaiman.   <>   The season is just over, but already there is news that Amy and Rory will return. And Matt Smith will stay "until the 50th anniversary" in 2013.   <>   Matt Smith won as "Best Science Fiction actor" at the 2011 Spike Scream awards, over Daniel Craig, Chris Evans, and Harrison Ford. Karen Gillam lost to Milla Jovovich for Best Actress. However at the TV Choice awards Doctor Who won best family drama and Karen Gillan won best actress.   <>   Doctor Who has been included in a number of current shows, including a story about a TARDIS on Grey's Anatomy, a Criminal Minds suspect found at a Who convention, and Supernatural where a woman hid using the name "Amy Pond". Community also included a Who parody including fake daleks.   <>   Claire Smith and Matt Smith have been filmed shooting the upcoming christmas special. This year the Doctor arrives in war-torn London and takes children to a magical journey, ala Narnia.   <>   Matt Smith stopped at Oakley Junior School, Basingstoke. Students there penned Death is the Only Answer, which aired early October.

David Tennant will play Robert Louis Stevenson in a two-part radio biography.   <>   Karen Gillan will play Shirley in Inadmissible Evidence at the Donmar Warehouse. The play is sold out.   <>   Arthur Darvill will star in Sixty Six Books, which now will also feature Catherine Tate as a high-heeled, high tech, and high spirited Almighty in a reinterpretation of Genesis (the bible, not the band).   <>   Catherine Tate also has hit the rumor mill, claimed to be in a secret romance with UK rocker Jason Orange. Tate met him after mocking his band Take That (her Fake That appeared in a comic relief sketch).   <>   Tom Baker made a rare signing appearance at St. Michael's Hospice (UK) Oct 30. As a show of support, Baker signed photos and personal items for a 5-pound donation (per item).   <>   Jean Marsh (Sara Kingdom) pulled out of the new Upstairs Downstairs due to a mild stroke.   <>   George Baker (Full Circle, I Claudius) died at the age of 80.

The current season is over, but the BBC has announced a free adventure game with Matt Smith, Karen Gillan, and Arthur Darvill going to the British gunpowder plot.

 

Television News

Chuck has announced comic legend Stan Lee will be a guest on a episode (the 7th). Also Cheryl Ladd has signed on as Sarah's mom. Bo Derek will also guest on (what else?) the 10th episode this season.   <>   Chuck co-producer Josh Schwartz will adapt Misfits for American TV. The British series is about a group of delinquents in community service who gain super powers.   <>   Lev Grossman's The Magicians has been optioned for FOX. The novel focuses on young New Yorkers learning magic. The adaptation is by Ashley Miller and Zack Stentz (X-Men: First Class).   <>   Supernatural star Jared Padelecki and wife Genevieve Cortese are expecting their first child.

Fringe promises continuing changes, even once Peter Bishop returns. The man is a mystery to everyone around him.   <>   Terra Nova will go out just like it came in - with a 2 hour episode, scheduled for Dec. 19. With a high price tag and low ratings, it is doubtful to return.   <>   Falling Skies has started filming season 2, which airs summer 2012. Brandon Jay McLaren (Power Rangers) has joined the cast.

Fox and Sony are working on Zombieland, brought to TV by the movie producers. It appears they wanted a regular TV series, with features like "Zombie kill of the week".   <>   True Blood has announced 2 new regulars - Salome: the Salome from the Bible, who is a very ancient vampire with much madness. Also Nora, a "vampire sibling" of Eric but also dedicated to a higher purpose.   <>   SyFy promises Being Human, Merlin, and a succubus thriller Lost Girl returning in January. In addition, the channel has renewed Haven.

 

Movie News

Transformers may look to shoot 2 more movies back-to-back (similar to Back to the Future) to save money. Shiaf LaBeou will step down, and rumor is the studio will back Jason Statham to star.   <>   Johnny Depp and Gore Verbinski (Pirates of the Caribbean) look to reunite in The Lone Ranger, which was saved from the scrapheap by the stars' dropping their high salaries to drop to whopping $600 million price-tag. Now Disney promises a $215 million western.   <>   The Muppets promises a telethon to return the group to fame - ironic because the last Muppet movie was in 1999. Jason Segel and Amy Adams star. While mostly tame, the movie promises some potty humor - literally. Also InStyle magazine has designed a photo layout of Miss Piggy to tie-in to the film.   <>   MMA star Gina Carano will play a female spy in Haywire.   <>   After panels at NYCC, Underworld: Awakening and Total Recall, both scheduled for 2012, look to "push the limits" of a 3-D experience. Both showed 3-D trailers.

Thor 2 will be the first Marvel movie directed by a woman. Patty Jenkins (Monster) will bring the movie - now moved to Nov, 2013 - to screen. The movie returns Chris Hemsworth and Natalie Portman.   <>   Warner has greenlit a live-action Akira adaptation. Garrett Hedlund ( Tron Legacy) is rumored to star.

 

SF DataLink May 2011

News from the World of Media Science Fiction

Edited by Dan Giese

Doctor Who News

Sarah Jane Smith, Elisabeth Sladen, one of the longest duration Doctor Who companions, has died due to complications related to cancer. Sladen is the only companion chosen for two spinoff series, the latest being Sarah Jane Adventures, in which she starred currently until her passing. Sladen worked with Doctors Jon Pertwee, Tom Baker, Pat Troughton & Richard Hurndall (briefly in The 5 Doctors, and David Tennant and current Doctor Matt Smith. The latest series won an award by the Royal Television Society for best Children's drama. Elisabeth is survived by her husband Brian Miller and her daughter Sadie.   <>   The BBC has revealed the Cybermen will return in A Good Man Goes to War, the mid-season finale.   <>   The BBC has arranged premiere parties in New York & Chicago for the new season of Dr. Who. In Chicago it is at the Landmark Theatre and is fully booked.   <>   John de Lancie (Star Trek TNG) has been confirmed in the cast for Torchwood: Miracle Day.   <>   The Starz network has started advertising Torchwood, including listing its premiere date as Friday July 8. Due to a change in rights Netflix viewers will wait up to 90 days before having streaming access.   <>   In preparation for Who's first US filming, the cast (the Doctor, Amy, and Rory) filmed their best American accents on an internet video. Let's just say I wouldn't want any one of them to plead my case to immigration.   <>   Steve Clark, a 52-year-old lifelong Who fan, has sued the BBC over the creation of Davros, head of the Daleks. Clark claims in 1972 he participated in a "create a monster" contest judged by Jon Pertwee, Barry Letts, and Terrance Dicks. Though he had lost the original drawing he recently discovered a sketch proving his story. He claims he would not have gone ahead with legal matters until the new Who series brought the character back over Clark's written objection. The BBC has filed for a legal extension, and the case will not be heard until May at the earliest.

David Tennant will star as coach Jimmy Murphy in United the true-life story of the youngest Manchester footballer champions, who suffered 8 casualties in a 1958 Munich air crash.   <>   David Tennant also stars on a new stamp which features 50 years of the Royal Shakespeare Company. Tennant appears as Hamlet, in which he starred in 2008.   <>   Karen Gillan will play Jean Shrimpton, a 1960's model who had a scandalous love affair with photographer David Bailey.   <>   Helena Bonham Carter (Sweeney Todd) is the fan choice to play the first female Doctor. The actress was called a mix between Tom Baker and bits of Troughton, Tennant, and Smith.

Gareth Roberts (The Lodger) will write a new Who novel based on the unaired episode Shada. Originally written by Douglas Adams, the episode featured Tom Baker's Doctor who with Romana search for the notorious Gallifrey criminal Salyavin. The episode was previous released, incomplete, on VHS.   <>   Doctor Who: A Fairytale Life is a new comic series that hit off in April. A four issue series, the story focuses on the Doctor & Amy in a medieval fantasy with knights and a dragon.

 

Television News

NBC's Chuck led USA Today's "Save this show" campaign, scoring 45%.   <>   Fringe's season finale will reportedly kill one of the "main four", with a plan to add a new cast member next season. One suggestive but probably false promo lists Olivia as dead. Brad Dourif (Deadwood) will tar in the finale.   <>   Jeri Ryan recently came forward on the planned (or in this not well planned) romance between herself and Chakotay on Star Trek Voyager. You missed it too? Ryans claims the producers consistently denied the two were a couple, only to suddenly insist in a later episode that the two were always a couple.   <>   Early news on possible new series? These are the current pilots the networks will choose form: (ABC) Hallelujah: Terry O'Quinn (Lost) is the big bad man in a small town where a new stranger challenges the status-quo in a seemingly supernatural fight of good vs. evil (i.e. think American Gothic). Once Upon a Time stars Jennifer Morrison (House) as a troubled yound woman who is drawn into a land where fairy tales may just be real. 17th Precinct stars Tricia Helfer (Battlestar Galactica) and Esai Morales (Caprica) and is written by Battlestar exec Ronald Moore. The show is a cop show, set in a land where magic - not science - rules. Wonder Woman will star Adrianne Palicki (Friday Night Lights) and will chronicle the super-heroine whose mission is to fight crime and also be a beacon to women. Alcatraz: An ensemble including Jorge Garcia (Lost) star as a group of Alcatraz prisoners and guards who vanish for 30 years.

Lex Luthor, along with others (Chloe, Jonathan, and likely Martha Kent & others) will appear in the Smallville finale. The final episode, called The Finale, promises surprises which are rumored to lead to a Superman project, likely a movie. The episode's premise is the wedding of Lois & Clark.   <>   Game of Thrones has only had 1 episode on HBO, and yet the network has already renewed the show for a second season. The premiere pulled in 4.2 million viewers, more than True Blood's 1.7 million. (True Blood later took off.)   <>   In addition Tom Hanks' Playtone production company has bought the rights to American Gods, the Neil Gaiman (Coraline) book. The best-seller describes how "old gods" like Odin and Anansi have battled new American gods like Media and Technical Boy.   <>   TNT's Falling Skies fields Steven Spielberg with Noah Wylie (ER) and Moon Bloodgood (Terminator Salvation) in a "realistic" look at an alien invasion. The show has submitted a 5 minute teaser on the internet.

 

Movie News

  <>   J.J. Abrams has signed on for Zanbato, a secret project by Paramount. The zanbato is an extremely large Japanese samurai sword, designed to cleave a horse and rider in one swing. The story appears to involve Japanese history and robots.   <>   Matt Reeves (Cloverfield has signed on for a somewhat sequel to They Live. None of the glasses, or the fights will make it into the new movie, but the idea, from "Eight O'Clock in the Morning" by Ray Nelson, that a man wakes up to find a conspiracy of aliens controlling every move on the earth, is being produced.   <>   Kate Beckinsale (Underworld) has been added to the Total Recall remake. Beckinsale will appear as the first wife, originally played by (then unknown) Sharon Stone.

David Hayter (X-Men will adapt Dragonriders of Pern a classic fantasy literary setting, to movies. The first movie will reportedly cover Dragonflight, which is the first 22 novels produced in 1968 by writer \ Anne McCaffrey. <\p>

The X-Men franchise will see many more movies. Two sequels to the lackluster and misleadingly named X-Men: The Last Stand have been greenlit. In addition, a sequel to X-Men: First Class, the origin movie of the team with different actors and in some cases different characters forming the team, has been approved. Meanwhile Hugh Jackman is still eager for a Wolverine solo movie, set in Japan. That movie is beset with a look for a new director.   <>   The Dark Knight Rises is the title of the final Christopher Nolan Batman movie. It has added Inception stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Marion Cotillard as well.   <>   Zac Snyder has cast a villian for Man of Steel the latest Superman revival. With a cast including Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, Kevin Costner, and Diane Lane, now Michael Shannon (Boardwalk Empire) will play General Zod, a villian for the second Superman movie.   <>   Warner Bros. has apologized for a previous Green Lantern trailer, saying the the cosmic FX in the movie were not ready to go head-to-head with Thor and Captain America. Now they are, so what will WB apologize for next?

Bruce Campbell has confirmed Evil Dead will suffer a remake. "The remake is going to kick ass", according to Campbell, but "there isn't much to talk about" right now.

 

Other News

LucasFilm Animation has revealed its plan for a new eight-story office in Singapore. The building is designed to look like a Sandcrawler. The inside is reported to be "Star Wars decor, with a 100-seat theater and state-of-the-art facilities".   <>   Joss Whedon (The Avengers) has confirmed has is nearly finished with the songs for the second Doctor Horrible production. The show, which was on the internet, will star Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother), Nathan Fillion (Castle), and Felicia Day (The Guild). The title is Dr. Horrible and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.   <>   In a brief sanity move by government, $14,000 dedicated by the state of Florida for red super-hero capes designed to fight "Dr. Evil Unemployment" has been scrapped. For $2.33 a cape, maybe the club could spring one for certain members (you know who you are :).   <>   The SyFy channel and ABC have revealed a new cosmetic trend - plastic surgery for Elfin ears. The procedure, which is reportedly extremely difficult to reverse, invloves splitting cartiledge in the ears and sewing them into a point.

 

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Sources: The Doctor Who News Page, Blastr, Kryptonsite, IO9, Variety, SuperHype, SciFiCool, and Aint It Cool News