Posts Tagged ‘big finish’

As the tenth anniversary of the revival of Doctor Who approaches Big Finish Productions have announced that for the first time they will be allowed to produce material based upon elements of the 21st century incarnation of the Doctor’s adventures.

UNIT Extinction starring Jemma Redgrave as Kate Stewart

Jemma Redgrave will appear as Kate Stewart in a new series of audio dramas entitled UNIT – The New Series beginning in November 2015. The full release from Big Finish reads:

Big Finish is delighted to announce that Kate Stewart and her UNIT team from the Doctor Who TV series will be starring in a brand new series of audio dramas, in a licensing deal with BBC Worldwide.

Kate is the daughter of Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart, and Head of Scientific Research at the Unified Intelligence Taskforce, which investigates and confronts alien attacks on the planet Earth. The role is portrayed by Jemma Redgrave (Dracula, Frankie, Cold Blood) who has appeared opposite Matt Smith and Peter Capaldi on television, and returns for the audio series.

“We’re thrilled that Jemma is on board for our brand new UNIT adventures,” says series producer David Richardson, “and we feel privileged to work within the universe of New Series Doctor Who for the first time. UNIT: Extinction will showcase all the excitement, drama and wit that viewers of Doctor Who love.”

“Having worked with the greatly missed Nicholas Courtney and his magnificent portrayal of the Brigadier since the early days of Big Finish, it is wonderful to see the return of UNIT under the Brig’s daughter,” says executive producer Jason Haigh-Ellery. “We are all very excited about bringing UNIT back to Big Finish with the next generation and look forward immensely to working with Jemma again, who appears in this month’s Doctor Who main range release Doctor Who – Mistfall.”

“I’m really excited to hear Jemma and her team battling to save the Earth,” says executive producer Nick Briggs. “They’ve been such an important part of the many exciting things to come out of the Doctor Who TV series in recent years.”

Additional cast members for the first box set, UNIT: Extinction, will be revealed later. This first box set release comprises four hours of adventure, in which Kate and her team confront an alien invasion by the Nestene Consciousness and its army of plastic Autons.

UNIT: Extinction will be released in November 2015, and is available for specially-priced pre-order, with all pre-orders getting a copy of Nicholas Courtney’s memoirs A Soldier in Time as a free download as Supplementary content in Big Finish accounts.

Three additional box sets will be available at six monthly intervals, with all four available for a Bundled pre-order. For many more details, watch this space in coming months.

The awarding of the licence for UNIT – The New Series is a massive step forward in the door being opened for Big Finish being permitted to make new adventures with the concepts and characters of the 21st century series, and without doubt would not have happened without the support of the current television production team headed up by Steven Moffat.

What odds a second spin-off in the form of The Paternoster Gang with Madame Vastra, Jenny Flint, and Strax within the next year or so? A crossover of these characters with Jago & Litefoot would undoubtedly set Doctor Who fandom afire.

David Tennant is a self-confessed fan of Big Finish (having appeared in several of their productions before being cast as the Doctor) so The Tenth Doctor Adventures come 2017?

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It’s time for Doctor Who to go “Into Dalekness” in an exploration of the alien hearts of darkness beating within the Doctor and the Daleks.

Clara, be my pal. Tell me… am I a good man?

When Doctor Who previously lifted inspiration from Fantastic Voyage the life form that the Fourth Doctor found himself inside of in The Invisible Enemy was himself. Now, in the second adventure for the Twelfth Doctor, the Time Lord and Clara found themselves miniaturised and sent Into the Dalek. A Dalek so badly damaged by internal radiation leakage that it’s core programming had been overridden to place it on the side of the angels. As their original “birth” as instruments of ethic cleansing was due to radiation there’s a certain irony in radiation taking “Rusty”, as the Doctor dubbed the damaged Dalek, to a new level of evolution.

Doctor Who S8 E2 Into the Dalek

It’s an intriguing concept and one explored to the full by co-writers Phil Ford and Steven Moffat. It’s the first time that Moffat has taken a co-writing credit on Doctor Who. Given the amount of uncredited rewriting he must do to other scripts as showrunner his work with Ford must have been significant. Ford’s previous contribution to Nu-Who was another collaboration, The Waters of Mars with then-showrunner Russell T Davies.

The examination of the Doctor’s morality vs. the hatred of a species bent on racial purity has been a key theme of Dalek stories in Nu-Who. But is the Doctor’s loathing of the Daleks tainting his soul? Is his view of the Daleks no better than their genocidal view of all other races in existence? Is it possible that his crusade to rid all of history of the influence of the Daleks has made the Doctor no better than his archenemies?

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For 15 years Big Finish Productions have been producing inventive, entertaining and award-winning officially licensed Doctor Who audio adventures. In over 400 stories the universe of the Doctor has been expanded by a talented family of actors, writers, directors, sound designers, and many other behind-the-scenes geniuses. And the lunches are legendary…

Happy 15th birthday Big Finish

The first that the world knew of this new chapter in the Doctor’s adventures in space and time came with an announcement in the Gallifrey Guardian news column in issue 275 of Doctor Who Magazine, dated 10 March 1999:

WORLD EXCLUSIVE! Doctors unite for “canonical” drama. BBC approves new Doctor Who audio plays. 
Big Finish Productions, the company behind the recent audio dramatisations of the Bernice Summerfield New Adventures novels, has secured a ground-breaking licence to produce all-new, full-length Doctor Who dramas.

Released in July 1999 Big Finish’s first Doctor Who adventure was The Sirens of Time, written and directed by Nicholas Briggs (now the voice of the Daleks in the revived TV series). Uniting three of the original actors who played the Doctor: Peter Davison (Fifth Doctor), Colin Baker (Sixth Doctor) and Sylvester McCoy (Seventh Doctor), the play was an immediate success and paved the way for Big Finish to redefine the possibilities offered by the Doctor Who universe.

Paul McGann’s Eighth Doctor joined the fold in January 2001 in Storm Warning and, after many years of reticence, Tom Baker finally reprised his role as the iconic Fourth Doctor, commencing in January 2012 with Destination: Nerva and The Fourth Doctor Box Set. All five of the living 20th century classic Doctors subsequently came together in 2013 for The Light at the End, a special audio event to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who. (more…)

The third entry in Big Finish’s award winning Eighth Doctor saga Dark Eyes will be released in November 2014. Eschewing Daleks, who featured in the first two box sets, for the time being, Dark Eyes 3 has a simple yet ultimately titanic theme: the Doctor vs. the Master. 

In The Death of Hope, The Reviled, Masterplan and Rule of the Eminence Paul McGann’s Eighth Doctor will once again team up with Molly O’Sullivan (Ruth Bradley) and Liv Chenka (Nicola Walker) to battle the machinations of the Master (Alex McQueen) and The Eminence (David Sibley).

In his quest for universal domination, the Master plans to exploit the terrifying Infinite Warriors of the mysterious Eminence. The Doctor’s friend, Molly, is key to that plan’s execution, and now, aided by corrupted genius Sally Armstrong, the Master is close to success.

Paranoid and perplexed after his recent experience, the Doctor skirts the fringes of the fifty-year conflict between humanity and the Infinite Armies. Wary of changing the course of history, he fears that to fight the Eminence would be to do the Daleks’ bidding. But when Time Lord CIA agent Narvin provides the impetus for the Doctor to act, Liv Chenka joins him in a desperate race to save their friend and stop the Master.

As the Doctor goes head to head with his oldest and deadliest rival, this war is about to get very personal indeed…

Dark Eyes 3 is available for pre-order now with Dark Eyes and Dark Eyes 2 already released. Dark Eyes 4, the conclusion to the epic Eighth Doctor adventure, will be released in February 2015.

Doctor Who - Dark Eyes

In July 1999 Big Finish Productions released The Sirens of Time its first full cast Doctor Who audio starring Peter Davison, Colin Baker and Sylvester McCoy. It was the launchpad for nearly 200 monthly releases to date and a whole host of spin-offs and specials, including Gallifrey, Jago & Litefoot and Counter-Measures. To mark this very special anniversary, Big Finish is planning a landmark release in October 2014, The Worlds of Doctor Who.

Christopher Benjamin and Trevor BaxterThe five-disc release will encompass many of Big Finish’s Doctor Who ranges, while telling one huge interlinking story. It begins with Mind Games, in which Henry Gordon Jago (Christopher Benjamin) and Professor Litefoot (Trevor Baxter) investigate a sinister stage magician who is working at Jago’s theatre in Victorian London. That magician, Mr Rees, will make his presence felt throughout these adventures, and he is played by none other than Jamie Glover, who portrayed William Russell in An Adventure in Space and Time.

The story shifts to the early 1960s in The Reesinger Process, as Rachel Jensen (Pamela Salem), Group Captain Gilmore (Simon Williams), Allison Williams (Karen Gledhill) and Sir Toby Kinsella (Hugh Ross) set Counter-Measures in motion when a number of high profile public figures die in strange circumstances.

A few decades later, the UNIT vault is in lockdown in The Screaming Skull, and Mike Yates (Richard Franklin) brings operatives Ruth Matheson (Daphne Ashbrook) and Charlie Sato (Yee Jee Tso) out of isolation in order to break inside.

Finally, in Second Sight, the Sixth Doctor (Colin Baker) is on the scene – and so are agents from Gallifrey, in the form of Romana (Lalla Ward) and Leela (Louise Jameson). And the final battle with Rees commences…

The Worlds of Doctor Who can be pre-ordered now.

In November 2012 Big Finish Productions released the audio adventure box set Dark Eyes, which took Paul McGann’s Eighth Doctor from World War One to 1970s London and onto the outer reaches of the universe in an epic confrontation with the Daleks.

Dark Eyes - BBC Audio Drama award for Best Online or Non-Broadcast Drama

In January 2014 the first episode Dark Eyes: The Great War won the BBC Audio Drama award for Best Online or Non-Broadcast Drama. The judges deemed the story to be:

People’s history, fantasy and high drama. The winning entry was outstanding in every respect: a complex, gripping narrative made visible through three-dimensional characters in believable relationships, some fine acting, and a superbly orchestrated soundscape which never overdoes the atmospherics or signposting of changes in time and place. Above all, it manages its historical and fantastical elements seamlessly and, for a brief period, time is suspended for the listener.

In February 2014 comes the next stage in the Eighth Doctor’s journey through space and time: Dark Eyes 2. Consisting of The Traitor, The White Room, Time’s Horizon and Eyes of the Master:

When the Doctor defeated the Dalek Time Controller and its Time Lord ally, the timelines shifted and events changed… but the danger is far from over. And new threats to the continued safety of the universe are emerging.

Molly O’Sullivan carried on with her life as a nursing assistant in World War One. She probably thought she would never see the Doctor in his ‘Tardy-box’ again…

From the Dalek occupied planet Nixyce VII through Earth’s history and to the very edge of the universe, the Doctor’s footprints across eternity are being tracked by foes old and new. But when did it all begin and when will it end? Living his life through the complexities of time travel, the Doctor can never be quite sure if he’s experiencing his life in the most helpful order. The only certainty appears to be the advance of the powers of evil and the oncoming threat of a fight to the death against forces that would destroy everything the Doctor holds dear.

Dark Eyes 2 is available for pre-order now. And the Eighth Doctor has many adventures to come before facing his destiny in The Night of the Doctor.

Dark Eyes 2 packshot

Every so often Doctor Who pulls off an instance of shock that leaves the viewer gasping like a floundering fish and barely managing to utter “What? What?! WHAT?!”. The Doctor’s first regeneration in The Tenth Planet; the Cybermen slamming into shot for the cliffhanger ending to part one of Earthshock; and the Doctor’s seemingly unannounced regeneration at the close of Journey’s End. All moments of unheralded surprise that befuddled, delighted and provoked national and global discussion in their wake. Now added to this list of joyful occurrences comes Paul McGann’s onscreen return as the Eighth Doctor in The Night of the Doctor.

I’m a Doctor. Probably not the one you were expecting.

The Night of the Doctor - I'm a Doctor

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For the 50th Anniversary of Doctor Who Big Finish will be releasing The Light at the End, a 100 minute celebratory tale featuring all five surviving Doctors from the original 20th century era of the television series

November 23rd 1963 proves to be a significant day in the lives of all eight Doctors…

It’s the day that Bob Dovie’s life is ripped apart…

It’s also a day that sets in motion a catastrophic chain of events which forces the first eight incarnations of the Doctor to fight for their very existence. As a mysterious, insidious chaos unfolds within the TARDIS, the barriers of time break apart…

From suburban England through war-torn alien landscapes and into a deadly, artificial dimension, all these Doctors and their companions must struggle against the power of an unfathomable, alien technology.

From the very beginning, it is clear that the Master is somehow involved. By the end, for the Doctors, there may only be darkness.

Written By: Nicholas Briggs
Directed By: Nicholas Briggs

Cast

Tom Baker, Peter Davison, Colin Baker, Sylvester McCoy, Paul McGann (The Doctor), Louise Jameson (Leela), Sarah Sutton (Nyssa), Nicola Bryant (Peri), Sophie Aldred (Ace), India Fisher (Charley Pollard), Geoffrey Beevers (The Master) with special guest stars!

The Light at the End

The Fourth Doctor Adventures Season 2