STAR COPS Comes to Audio

Thirty years after it broadcast nine of ten planned episodes, Star Cops is coming back. Chris Boucher’s show is being updated as Big Finish imagines a big-budget second series and brings it to audio. The original show followed Nathan Spring (David Calder) as he took over as Commander of the International Space Police Force, non-affectionately … Continued

Check Out the NOW WE ARE SIX HUNDRED Podcast

National Poetry Day may have been last week, but you can still wax lyrical with poems inspired by Doctor Who with the recently-released book Now We Are Six Hundred: A Collection of Time Lord Verse. Plus you can go behind the scenes of the book with a free podcast available on Soundcloud.

Now We Are Six Hundred is a gentle collection of charming, funny and whimsical poems that celebrate the joys, sorrows and wonders of Time Lord life. Written by author James Goss, the book features illustrations by former Doctor Who Executive Producer Russell T Davies – his first role as an illustrator, using the comic artist skills he developed in his youth.

Listen to Russell T Davies and James Goss talk to Richard E. Grant about how they collaborated on Now We Are Six Hundred – an ingenious book of poetry, illustrated and inspired by Doctor Who. They also share their thoughts on the new Doctor as played by Jodie Whittaker, their top tips for writing in general, and their upcoming projects.

The poems are read by Jon Culshaw and music is composed by Blair Mowat.

Now We Are Six Hundred is available to buy: https://po.st/NowWeAre600.

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WHO TALK Releases Two Brand New Commentaries!

Who Talk, who specialise in providing alternative audio commentary for existing Doctor Who DVDs and episodes has announced two new additions to their catalogue.

These are: a brand new commentary for the 1971 serial The Claws of Axos featuring Katy Manning, Richard Franklin and Bernard Holley.
Adventures in Time brings together a variety of historical Hartnell-themed episodes featuring commentaries on The Aztecs, The Romans and The Crusades.
There is also a Special Edition Bundle also available – with covers autographed by the cast and bonus disc with exclusive material!

From the official press release:
Two new Who Talk CDs as we travel back in time for some historical escapades and battle some beautiful golden aliens with a nasty secret!

The first of two releases this month is called Adventures in Time, and is a collection of Hartnell themed historical stories including episodes from The Aztecs, The Romans and The Crusade, and features a number of cast and crew from these stories.


“This release sees a Who Talk debut for Maureen O’Brien, who really enjoyed the chance to look back some of her appearances as Vicki,” says producer Paul W T Ballard. “The resulting commentaries are a wonderful addition to the range.”

Joining Maureen O’Brien are William Russell, Julian Glover, Petra Markham, George Little, Kay Patrick, Ian Cullen, Clive Doig, Brian Hodgson, all once again under the watchful eye of Toby Hadoke.

We are also bringing you another classic from the Pertwee era…

The Claws of Axos might not have been the most obvious of choices to go for,” explains Paul, “but there were quite a few voices missing from the original commentary, recorded over a decade ago!”


“It was great to get the serial’s director Michael Ferguson, script editor Terrance Dicks, co-writer Bob Baker and Axos himself Bernard Holley to commentate on the serial for the first time. We were also thrilled to welcome back Katy Manning and Richard Franklin, although listeners will have to listen in to find out why Katy gets a telling off!”

We are also offering listeners a special edition bundle featuring both The Claws of Axos and Adventures in Time. Each set will come with the cover signed by an actor from each release, and Adventures in Time contains a both disc featuring exclusive additional commentaries on The Crusade and The Time Meddler.

Both sets are now available, you can purchase them direct from Who Talk at a discounted price of £10.99 each (RRP £12.99) or via download priced £9.99. The special edition bundle will be available exclusively via the website priced £39.99. The CDs are very limited, and exclusively available via whotalk.co.uk.

Please note: These commentaries contain no BBC copyrighted elements and do not feature audio from the episodes themselves.

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DOCTOR WHO Movie Star Daphne Ashbrook’s Autobiography Out Now on Audiobook

Daphne Ashbrook’s autobiography has been released by Fantom as an audiobook on CD, read by the author herself.

From the press release:

Witty, self-effacing and painfully honest; the themes of life, death and laughter come together as Daphne Ashbrook recounts her many on-and off-screen scrapes with mortality. Packed with rich anecdotes from her career in TV, stage and film, this refreshingly candid and conversational memoir spans a childhood in a theatrical family to pulling back the curtain of Hollywood, revealing the glamour and ridiculousness of a business mired in a struggle between art and profit.


Known for both her comic timing and deep emotional portrayals, Daphne has appeared in many TV and film roles including the 1996 Doctor Who movie, in which she played the role of Dr. Grace Holloway and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine as the titular character in Melora. Reflecting on her life and her career, Daphne discovers the surprising patterns and hilarious absurdities that accompany being a modern-day professional actor. The result is an amusing, informative and intimate memoir.

Co-produced by Spokenworld Audio, Dead Woman Laughing is available now from the Fantom Films website or to pre-order from Amazon – unabridged – in a 5-CD set priced £15.99.

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Check Out THE FUTURE BOYS Online Now

Following a successful Kickstarter campaign at the beginning of 2017, the first 2 episodes of The Future Boys have been released online.

The show’s official synopsis is:
Having spent two years apart and taken up new identities, Tyler and Gary are unwittingly brought back together by Rik Sheringham, a galaxy-renowned treasure hunter, celebrity and old school friend/enemy of Tyler’s. Sheringham’s deal is simple – Tyler and Gary must undergo a series of daring and dangerous heists on his behalf, or be handed over to the authorities and forced to face the death sentence that has been looming over their heads for years. Can Tyler and Gary re-unite and stay on the same page long enough to complete the job? Or are they doomed to fail? Either way, there seems to be more to the jobs than a simple robbery, or Sheringham’s intentions may not be all they seem…

The Future Boys stars Cliff Chapman as Tyler and Adam Joselyn as Gary, with Emma Stirling and Robert Dearn supporting. Written, directed, and created by Steve Jordan, it was recorded in front of a live audience at the Leicester Square Theatre and is available for free download from iTunes and Soundcloud and to listen to on YouTube.

As well as being part of Bad Bat Productions (with Ellen Gallagher), creator Steve Jordan has just been commissioned to write a Doctor Who audio drama for Big Finish.

To find out more head over to www.thefutureboys.co.uk. Also, check out the awesome artwork by Chris Moore

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Mark Gatiss to Star in BLOOD ON SATAN’S CLAW from Bafflegab

Bafflegab Productions
has just announced the first day of recording has happened on a new audio
production of Blood on Satan’s Claw, starring Mark Gatiss and Reece Shearsmith.
The original film was released back in 1971 and starred (amongst others) Linda
Hayden, who also returns for this production. The new cast also includes Alice
Lowe (Sightseers, Prevenge), John Heffernan (Ripper Street, Jonathan Strange
and Mr Norrell), Ralph Ineson (The Witch, The Office) and Philip Hill-Pearson
(Shameless, Good Cop).

Although some recording has happened, Bafflegab will be
launching a crowdfunding campaign with details announced on their website and Facebook
pages.

Mark Gatiss is a big fan of the original, and says: “I
first saw Blood on Satan’s Claw in the Friday night horror slot on Tyne Tees
television, when I was a kid. I remember it vividly because it scared the life
out of me. It’s so distinctly different. The pitch for the film is so strange,
and it’s very much in that folk horror tradition: dark, bucolic, earthy and
genuinely disquieting. It’s a fabulous tale.”

Scriptwriter Mark Morris adds: “I was first captivated by its
unsettling, nightmarish atmosphere at the age of 12 or 13, since when it’s been
one of my favourite horror films. I leaped at the chance, therefore, to adapt
and expand the original screenplay for this new audio version, and from day one
this has been a real labour of love. The calibre of the cast we’ve been able to
attract to the project is phenomenal, and a testament to the film’s enduring
impact. Blood on Satan’s Claw is back – and I’m incredibly proud, this time
around, to be a part of it.”

If you’re unfamiliar with the original, Blood on Satan’s Claw sits alongside Witchfinder General and The
Wicker Man
as one of the three films which make up the subgenre known as
folk horror. In it, a village in 17th Century England is overcome by a Satanic
plague after a hideous skull is found in the furrows of a farmer’s field. The
village youth fall quickly under the devil’s spell and retreat to the woodland
to conduct games of sexual violence and sacrifice.

Fans of the original should rest assured this new audio
adaptation is true to the film. As Linda Hayden concludes: “It’s lovely working with Reece
Shearsmith and Mark Gatiss, as they’re huge fans of the film. I’m really
honoured. It was always a really atmospheric piece, and the script to this new
audio really captures that.”

More details can be found at bafflegab.co.uk.

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Bafflegab Productions
has just announced the first day of recording has happened on a new audio
production of Blood on Satan’s Claw, starring Mark Gatiss and Reece Shearsmith.
The original film was released back in 1971 and starred (amongst others) Linda
Hayden, who also returns for this production. The new cast also includes Alice
Lowe (Sightseers, Prevenge), John Heffernan (Ripper Street, Jonathan Strange
and Mr Norrell), Ralph Ineson (The Witch, The Office) and Philip Hill-Pearson
(Shameless, Good Cop).

Although some recording has happened, Bafflegab will be
launching a crowdfunding campaign with details announced on their website and Facebook
pages.

Mark Gatiss is a big fan of the original, and says: “I
first saw Blood on Satan’s Claw in the Friday night horror slot on Tyne Tees
television, when I was a kid. I remember it vividly because it scared the life
out of me. It’s so distinctly different. The pitch for the film is so strange,
and it’s very much in that folk horror tradition: dark, bucolic, earthy and
genuinely disquieting. It’s a fabulous tale.”

Scriptwriter Mark Morris adds: “I was first captivated by its
unsettling, nightmarish atmosphere at the age of 12 or 13, since when it’s been
one of my favourite horror films. I leaped at the chance, therefore, to adapt
and expand the original screenplay for this new audio version, and from day one
this has been a real labour of love. The calibre of the cast we’ve been able to
attract to the project is phenomenal, and a testament to the film’s enduring
impact. Blood on Satan’s Claw is back – and I’m incredibly proud, this time
around, to be a part of it.”

If you’re unfamiliar with the original, Blood on Satan’s Claw sits alongside Witchfinder General and The
Wicker Man
as one of the three films which make up the subgenre known as
folk horror. In it, a village in 17th Century England is overcome by a Satanic
plague after a hideous skull is found in the furrows of a farmer’s field. The
village youth fall quickly under the devil’s spell and retreat to the woodland
to conduct games of sexual violence and sacrifice.

Fans of the original should rest assured this new audio
adaptation is true to the film. As Linda Hayden concludes: “It’s lovely working with Reece
Shearsmith and Mark Gatiss, as they’re huge fans of the film. I’m really
honoured. It was always a really atmospheric piece, and the script to this new
audio really captures that.”

More details can be found at bafflegab.co.uk.

Derek Jacobi Reprising the War Master for Big Finish

On the tenth anniversary of his appearance in the TV episode Utopia, Big Finish has announced a War Master box set: four stories available in December 2017, with Derek Jacobi returning to the role of the Master.

Doctor Who: The War Master Volume One follows the exploits of the Doctor’s arch-enemy during the course of the devastating Time War, featuring stories from acclaimed Doctor Who writers James Goss, Guy Adams and Nicholas Briggs – as well as new writing talent from Janine H Jones.

DOCTOR WHO: THE WAR MASTER VOLUME ONE WILL BE CONQUERING THE UNIVERSE FROM DECEMBER 2017 IN FOUR HOUR-LONG EPISODES:

Beneath the Viscoid by Nicholas Briggs

The Good Master by Janine H Jones

The Sky Man by James Goss

The Heavenly Paradigm by Guy Adams

Writer James Goss explains what makes this Master unique, “What was exciting about this was that normally the Master loses. He puts in the hours, he works through all these elaborate plans and yet it all goes wrong. It’s not fair! What did Sir Derek do in the Time War? It’s thrilling to have helped find out.

The cast includes Jacqueline King (Sylvia Noble – Doctor Who), Mark Elstob (Number 6 – The Prisoner), Deirdre Mullins (Naomi – Man Down), Rachel Atkins (Vicky Tucker – The Archers), Jonny Green (Torchwood), Hannah Barker (Harriet Sloane – Holby City), Jake Dudman, Emily Barber (Gwendolen Fairfax – The Importance of Being Earnest), Robert Daws (Dr. Choake – Poldark), Nerys Hughes (Brenda Williams – Torchwood), Jonathan Bailey (Olly Stevens – Broadchurch) and Nicholas Briggs as the Daleks.

 
Scott Handcock, Derek Jacobi. Nicholas Briggs

Writer/editor/producer Nick Briggs had this to say:

I was lucky enough to have directed Sir Derek fourteen years ago in Deadline (one of our Doctor Who Unbound releases), so I was delighted to be able to work with him once again. The thrill for me has been just how fascinating and exhilarating it is to write a series when the leading character is a bad guy. Writing my own script and working on the others with Scott has been such a rewarding challenge. I’m really keen to do it again, and further explore exactly what the Master did get up to in the Time War.

 

The War Master Volume One is available for pre-order from bigfinish.com on CD (box set) £23 and download £20. It is also available for pre-order in a bundle with upcoming releases Gallifrey: Time War and Tales of New Earth on CD for £63 and download for £54.

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Duchovny and Anderson Return for THE X-FILES: COLD CASES

The waves made by The X-Files upon its brief return early last year showed that fans were still eager to see the antics of Mulder and Scully, and now comes word that you’ll be able to keep up with further new adventures for this fan favourite duo thanks to Audible and their upcoming X-Files audio series.

While the guys from Audible have a massively impressive track record with their audio shows and releases over the years, what will get fans particular excited here is that so many of The X-Files’ key players are on board for this new project. Adapted by Dirk Maggs and with creative direction from creator Chris Carter, The X-Files: Cold Cases will see the likes of David Duchovny, Gillian Anderson and Mitch Pileggi all returning to action.

The full press release on this exciting new project reads as below:

The series that had a generation looking to the skies gets a breathtaking audio revival in an original, full cast dramatization, featuring David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson as FBI Agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully.

Based upon the graphic novels by Joe Harris – with creative direction from series creator Chris Carter – and adapted specifically for the audio format by multi-award-winning Dirk Maggs (best-known for his adaptations of Douglas Adams’ Hitchiker’s Guide To The Galaxy and Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere for the BBC), The X-Files: Cold Cases marks yet another thrilling addition to the X-Files saga.

Set after the events of The X-Files: I Want To Believe – providing additional backstory to the incidents that pulled Mulder and Scully out of reclusion prior to 2016’s miniseries revival – a database breach at FBI headquarters allows an unknown group to access and capitalize on those investigations left unsolved by the secret department once known as The X-Files. As friends and foes of the agency long-thought gone begin to inexplicably reappear, former agents Mulder and Scully come out of anonymity to tackle a growing conspiracy involving their former department, the US government and forces not of this world.

Here, fans are treated once again to Mulder and Scully’s irreplicable chemistry as only the series’ leads could deliver; Duchovny’s deadpan and cynical aloofness finding its natural counterpoint in Anderson’s unwavering intelligence and rigidity. Appearances from series regulars and the actors who made them fan-favorites round out this must-listen arc: the gruff, no-BS righteousness of Walter Skinner (Mitch Pileggi); the distinctive click-puff of ‘The Cigarette Smoking Man’ (William B. Davis); and the stooge-like hijinks of three beloved conspiracy theorists called the ‘Lone Gunmen’ (Tom Braidwood, Dean Haglund, and Bruce Harwood).

The truth is out there. You just have to listen.

The X-Files: Cold Cases is available to pre-order now at www.audible.co.uk.

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Find your local STARBURST stockist HERE, or buy direct from us HERE. For our digital edition (available to read on your iOS, Android, Amazon, Windows 8, Samsung and/or Huawei device – all for just £1.99), visit MAGZTER DIGITAL NEWSSTAND. {jcomments on}

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Audible Releases ALIEN: RIVER OF PAIN

Here at Moonbase Alpha, we love a good audio adventure. We’re also eagerly anticipating Ridley Scott’s Alien: Covenant later this year. So, that means we’re all kinds of excited to hear that Audible has released an audio adaptation of Alien: River of Pain as of today.

Based on Christopher Golden’s 2014 novel, the action is set between Alien and Aliens, and serves as an origin story for Newt. From Dirk Maggs, the award-winning director of Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and Neverwhere, the impressive cast for Alien: River of Pain is made up of impressive cast are Anna Friel, Alexander Siddig, Bill Hope, Colin Salmon, Philip Glenister, Marc Warren, and Michelle Ryan.

For the full details, find the official press release below:

Ahead of the May theatrical release of Alien: Covenant (directed by Ridley Scott, starring Michael Fassbender and Katherine Waterston), Audible today debuts Alien: River Of Pain an audio-exclusive adaptation of Christopher Golden’s 2014 novel for 20th Century Fox by the same name. Taking place between Alien and Aliens, the drama tells the story of the destruction of Hadley’s Hope, a research and mining colony established on LV-426 in 2157. Central to the narrative is the birth and backstory of Newt, one of the lead characters in the 1986 film Aliens (starring Sigourney Weaver and Carrie Henn).

Directed by the multi-award winning Dirk Maggs, best-known for his adaptations of Douglas Adams’ Hitchiker’s Guide To The Galaxy and Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere for the BBC, this audio-exclusive drama brings together a powerhouse of sci-fi and fantasy talent. Lead performers include Anna Friel (Golden Globe nominated, Limitless, Pushing Daisies), Alexander Siddig (Game Of Thrones, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine), William Hope (Aliens), Colin Salmon (Alien VS Predator, Resident Evil, Arrow), Philip Glenister (Outcast, Life On Mars), Marc Warren (Hustle, Green Street Hooligans) and Michelle Ryan (Bionic Woman, Dr Who, EastEnders).

With rich and detailed sound-design, this new production immerses listeners in a dark and dangerous world that’s as thrilling as it is desolate.

Alien: River Of Pain is the second collaboration between Audible and 20th Century Fox Consumer Products on the Alien franchise. In April 2016, Audible debuted Alien: Out Of The Shadows starring Rutger Hauer, Matthew Lewis and Corey Johnson, directed by Dirk Maggs. Based on Tim Lebbon’s 2014 novel of the same name. Alien: Out Of The Shadows has been nominated for Best Audio Drama of 2017 at this year’s Audies.

Anna Friel, who plays Anne Jorden, said: “I’ve been a huge fan of the Alien films ever since I first watched Sigourney Weaver battle her way to safety in Alien.  I think she must have been one of the first strong female leads that proved to writers that women could hold a film on their own. It was that, that helped pave the way for other Ripley-like roles, i.e. strong, forceful, relentless and heroic women.  It’s an incredible saga to be a part of, and I think this audio production will give new and old fans alike a gripping backstory to dig their teeth into.”

Tracey Markham, UK Country Manager at Audible, said: “Audio offers enormous potential for creators, performers and listeners alike to explore the expanded universe of their favourite sagas. We’re always looking for ways to support original audio storytelling and have relished the opportunity to work with 20th Century Fox on a second narrative set in the Alien world. Our director, producers and actors have created a rich and atmospheric world which completely immerses the listener in the dark and dangerous environs of Hadley’s Hope.”

Alien: River Of Pain is available to pre-order now at www.audible.co.uk/RiverOfPain (one credit for Audible members, £19.79 for non-members or free with Audible’s 30-day trial).

Synopsis

Alien: River Of Pain is set on the planetoid LV-426 – now renamed Acheron – where some fifty years before the ill-fated crew of the Nostromo discover the derelict ship which contains the Alien eggs. Now a group of hopeful colonists try to build a new, and more prosperous life for themselves, in the settlement Hadley’s Hope.

Anne Jorden gives birth to the colony’s first newborn, Rebecca Jorden, known to her family as ‘Newt’. The colony grows and expands over the next few years, and there are political and personal struggles as its detachment of Colonial Marines under Captain Demian Brackett are assumed by the Weyland-Yutani scientists posted on Acheron. Willing to overlook their orders in order to serve the Company’s interests, these scientists look to covertly capture a living Alien.

When Newt is old enough, Anne and her husband Russ take Newt and her older brother Tim prospecting. They discover a vast, derelict spaceship – an enormous horseshoe-shaped vessel – that looks like a promising find, but as they explore deeper they stumble across what remains of the ship’s original crew and their sinister cargo of eggs. Russ is attacked by one of the ‘facehuggers’ that similarly latched onto Executive Officer Kane from the Nostromo. When he is taken back to Hadley’s Hope, the worst happens. The ensuing story chronicles how the infestation of Xenomorphs overruns the colony. It’s a desperate tale of survival featuring characters we have grown to know and (sometimes) love.

Character Biographies

Anna Friel as Anne Jorden

Anne Jorden, married to Russ Jorden, is a laid back but tough woman. Russ and Anne are wildcat prospectors who have taken their family out to terraform a brand new world. They’re hardy colonists, seeking a fortune. Anne’s relationship with her husband is strong, but his jealousy of Captain Demain Brackett endangers it. Anne fights to the very last to save her kids.

Alexander Siddigg as Doctor Reese

Doctor Reese is detached, cultured and ruthless. He is completely single minded about his job – to collect an alien specimen.

William Hope as Lieutenant Gorman

Despite being out of boot camp for a mere 5 months, Gorman has been promoted to lieutenant thanks to his political ties at the company. Gorman has only done simulations and seen no actual combat action. This is generally known throughout the platoon, as such, Gorman is not well respected by his fellow marines.

Colin Salmon as Captain Demain Brackett

Captain Brackett is a professional Space Marine, serious about his job but sensitive and with a sense of humour. Brackett once had a relationship with Anne Jorden and having been posted to the colony where she is raising her family, is very careful not to let their history derail her marriage. Brackett falls foul of a group of marines in his new command under Sgt. Draper who think he’s weak. He isn’t, but has to prove it to them.

Philip Glenister as Sergeant Draper

Draper is no-nonsense, a ruthless tyrant. He walks over others to get what he wants, and he respects no one.

Marc Warren as Russ Jorden

Russ Jorden is a wildcat prospector who has taken his family out to terraform a brand new world. Russ’s daughter, Newt, is an iconic and pivotal character in the Alien universe. In the film Aliens, we don’t see much of Russ and Anne Jorden, except that we know they were sent out by the company man on a mission that ended up wiping out them – and the entire colony. The film mainly picks up when the marines enter the colony on a rescue mission (or bug hunt) and they find Newt, hiding. That’s exactly where our drama ends. This drama tells the story of what happens in the colony, and of Russ – it gives us insight into the sort of man who’d take his family out to such a wasteland, and the lengths he’ll go to, to seek his fortune.

Michelle Ryan as Lieutenant Julisa Paris

Julisa is Brackett’s second-in-command, and she can certainly hold her own with the Squad on Acheron. They respect her and she definitely gives as good as she gets. When the colony is overrun by Aliens, Paris proves that she is more than able as a commander in her own right, having to think quickly to outsmart the ultimate opponent.

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