10 October 2010

Doctor Who crosses the Atlantic…

That Doctor Who news then? Emails flashed out to journalists’ inboxes in the middle of a lazy Sunday offered up some juicy titbits about the start of the next series of the show…Then threatened us with all manner of pain if we blabbed about it early. So we’ve dutifully waited until the stroke of midnight to pass it on. We’re good like that…

Basically the show is off to shoot chunks of the opening story to next season in America. Things are going to kick off with a two parter “set in the late ‘60s in which the Doctor, Amy and Rory find themselves on a secret summons that takes them on an adventure from the desert in Utah - right to the Oval Office itself.”

Anyone else thinking Area 51? Thought so…

Personally we’re less excited that they’re going to America to film rather than just using the beach at Barry Island to double for the Utah desert than we are at the news that a) they’re hitting the ground running with a two-parter and b) the nugget – lower down in the press release - that informs us that Alex Kingston will be back as River Song for those episodes. Hello Sweetie…

The full press release is pasted below. Knock yourselves out…

Embargoed until midnight 10/10/10
The TARDIS crash lands in America

for Series Six of Doctor Who on BBC One

TX Spring 2011

Cardiff, Monday 11 October 2010: The BBC announced today that Series six of Doctor Who will open with a spectacular two-parter set in the USA and penned by ‘Who supremo’ Steven Moffat.

In the special two-parter co-produced with BBC America, key scenes will be filmed in Utah for a story set in the late ‘60s in which the Doctor, Amy and Rory find themselves on a secret summons that takes them on an adventure from the desert in Utah - right to the Oval Office itself.

Production on episodes one and two of the new series starts in Cardiff this month and Matt Smith, Karen Gillan and Arthur Darvill will then travel to America in mid November to shoot pivotal scenes. They will also be joined by Alex Kingston who reprises her role as River Song.

Showrunner and lead writer, Steven Moffat, said: “
The Doctor has visited every weird and wonderful planet you can imagine, so he was bound get round to America eventually! And of course every Doctor Who fan will be jumping up and down and saying he’s been in America before. But not for real, not on location – and not with a story like this one! Oh, you wait!

Piers Wenger, Head of Drama BBC Wales and Executive Producer, added: "
Steven's scripts generally inspire us to go that extra mile - this time we're going that extra four thousand. Thanks to our friends at BBC America and to the continuing ambition of our lead writer and production team, the first two episodes of Matt Smith's second series as the Doctor are going global and look set to become Doctor Who's most action-packed and ambitious season opener yet".

The new series follows on from the
Doctor Who Christmas special guest starring Katherine Jenkins and Michael Gambon which is due to TX at Christmas. Series six will start airing on BBC One in spring 2011 and has been split into two blocks, with the second block TXing in autumn 2011. By splitting the series Moffat plans to give viewers one of the most exciting Doctor Who cliffhangers and plot twists ever, leaving them waiting, on the edge of their seats, until the autumn to find out what happens.

The series was co-commissioned by Ben Stephenson, Controller, BBC Drama Commissioning for BBC One and Jay Hunt, Controller of BBC One and will be produced by Marcus Wilson (
Whitechapel) and Sanne Wohlenberg (Margaret). Steven Moffat is Lead Writer and Executive Producer (Sherlock Holmes) with Piers Wenger, Head of Drama, BBC Wales and Beth Willis (Ashes to Ashes), also Executive Producing.

Filming is taking place in Cardiff until March 2010.