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8 items from 2016

Porridge, Motherland, A Brief History of Tim: BBC Orders New Programming

12 October 2016 4:32 PM, PDT | | See recent TVSeriesFinale news »

The Beeb is amping up the laughs. The BBC has commissioned three new comedy TV programs. BBC One has ordered the Porridge TV show revival from creators Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais. The original prison-set series, starring Ronnie Barker and Richard Beckinsale, ran on BBC One from 1974 to 1977. The Porridge reboot stars Kevin Bishop as Nigel ‘Fletch’ Fletcher, grandson of Barker’s iconic Norman Stanley Fletcher.BBC Two ordered the Motherland TV series, written by Graham Linehan and Sharon Horgan, Helen Linehan, and Holly Walsh, the show features the the trials and traumas of motherhood. The pilot, which aired as part of The BBC's "Landmark Sitcom Season," starred Anna Maxwell Martin, Lucy Punch, Diane Morgan, Paul Ready, Margaret Cabourn-Smith, and Oliver Chris.Meanwhile, BBC Three has commissions the first season of the A Brief History of Tim TV show, »


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BBC orders full series of Motherland and Porridge reboot

6 October 2016 12:52 AM, PDT | Den of Geek | See recent Den of Geek news »

Louisa Mellor Oct 6, 2016

Brilliant! The BBC has ordered a full series of new comedy Motherland, and of its rebooted Porridge starring Kevin Bishop...

Two new comedies are coming to the BBC: Motherland, written by the winning combination of Graham Linehan, Sharon Horgan, Holly Walsh and Helen Linehan, and a rebooted version of Porridge, from original creators Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais

Both part of the BBC's recent Landmark Sitcom season, the pilot for Motherland took an acerbic look at modern middle-class parenting. Starring Anna Maxwell Martin--an absolute treat to see in a comedic role--as harassed working mother of two Julia, it showed her dealings with playground queen bee Amanda (Lucy Punch), chaotic social outcast Liz (Diane Morgan) and eager-to-please stay at home dad Kevin (Paul Ready). 

Sharp, well-observed and caustic about the smug, competitive cliques that form in the world of play dates and PTA committees, it was »

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The Commitments 25th Anniversary special edition review

18 September 2016 12:58 PM, PDT | The Hollywood News | See recent The Hollywood News news »

Time for people of a certain age to start feeling old. It’s been a quarter of a century since director Alan Parker introduced us to an unlikely soul combo whose legacy still lives on via a hit stage show and countless concerts. So while their onscreen fortunes turned out to be mixed, The Commitments place in popular culture is absolutely assured.

Opening with a bustling Dublin street market with second hand goods, fiddle players and horses, this marks itself out from the blockbusters of the time as a gritty take on Roddy Doyle‘s source novel. Fast-talking wannabe music mogul Jimmy Rabbitte (Robert Arkins) has a simple idea: reasoning that the oppressed Irish are “the blacks of Europe”, he wants to assemble a world class soul outfit from local talent. But like the best band stories the road to success is paved with false starts, egos and copious amounts of drink and swears. »

- Steve Palace

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Dick Clement, Ian La Frenais To Pen ‘Hatton Garden Story’ – The Arthur Sarkissian/Bruno Wu Version

2 August 2016 12:36 PM, PDT | Deadline | See recent Deadline news »

Exclusive: There are currently three competing Hatton Garden projects about the elderly London thieves who pulled off what’s billed as the biggest burglary in English legal history. One of them hails from producer Arthur Sarkissian and Chinese producing partner Bruno Wu. That version has now set Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais to pen the script for a UK fall shoot under the provisional title The Hatton Garden Story. The partners, who are producing under their Peak Time… »

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Super Mario Bros movie: director looks back on what went wrong

7 June 2016 10:25 PM, PDT | Den of Geek | See recent Den of Geek news »




Co-director Rocky Morton on where he thinks 1993's Super Mario Bros movie, starring Bob Hoskins, went wrong...

Nintendo is only now cautiously exploring bringing more of its characters to the movies, and part of the reason is arguably given how it got its fingers burnt with 1993’s notorious Super Mario Bros movie. It would be fair to say that Nintendo was not happy with the movie. At all.

But then even through some form of rose-tinted specs, Super Mario Bros is not a good film, and time, if anything, has been unkinder to it. In a new interview with SciFi Now, co-director Rocky Morton – who made the film with Annabel Jankel - has been looking back at why he think it went wrong.

Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais’ [original] script was the script that Annabel and I wanted to make”, he said. “It was a different script, »

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Why The Super Mario Movie Was So Awful, According To The Director

7 June 2016 1:10 PM, PDT | | See recent Cinema Blend news »

For years, Hollywood has had an incredibly arduous time figuring out how to properly bring a video game to life on the silver screen. The results of these efforts range from mediocre to downright awful. One of the worst offenders of the cinematic video game genre came in the form of Super Mario Bros. in 1993. The film’s low quality has become nothing if not iconic, and now the director of the film seems to have a reason for why the project fell so flat.   In a recent interview with SciFiNow, Super Mario Bros. director Rocky Morton explained what he thinks went wrong with the infamously bad video game movie. He said: Yeah, because Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais’ script was the script that Annabel and I wanted to make. It was a different script, and the actors were all brought onboard for that script, and »

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The director of 'Super Mario Bros.' just gave a delicious tell-all interview about making the infamous flop

7 June 2016 12:08 PM, PDT | Hitfix | See recent Hitfix news »

In the summer of 1993, Super Mario Bros. was greeted by awful reviews and grossed just $20 million at the box office on a budget of $48 million. Though the film was praised by many critics for its visual flair, the script was almost universally panned. Wrote James Berardinelli: "As everyone knows, arcade-style diversions are not known for strong, original narratives or well-developed characters. In that sense, this film is worthy of its inspiration." Ouch! Now, co-director Rocky Morton (who helmed the film alongside his creative partner and future wife Annabel Jankel) has spoken out on the "harrowing" experience of directing the video game adaptation in an interview with SciFiNow (via Uproxx). He's not kidding! Here are a few highlights from the conversation, which you can and should read in full here. 1. They cast Bob Hoskins as Mario because he was "available" (but really wanted Danny De Vito). "Danny De Vito turned us down. »

- Chris Eggertsen

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Berlin: Beloved British Biker to be Revived in ‘Sheene’

12 February 2016 7:00 PM, PST | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Celebrated British screenwriting duo Ian La Frenais and Dick Clement will write the script of “Sheene,” a feature film biopic about charismatic motorcycling ace Barry Sheene. The film, a U.K.-Australian co-production is based on the book “Barry: The Story of Motorcycling Legend Barry Sheene” by Sheene’s team mate Steve Parrish and MotoGP commentator Nick Harris.a

Sheene was a cockney playboy who twice won the world motor cycling championships and survived a couple of near-fatal bike crashes, before dying of cancer at age 52.

La Frenais and Dick Clement previously scripted “The Commitments,” “The Bank Job,” “Flushed Away” and TV series “Auf Wiedersehen Pet” and “Lovejoy.”

Production is by by Will Stoppard of the U.K.’s Deep Springs Pictures, and Rod Morris of Australia’s I. O. Films. The pair is currently handling rights ahead of the appointment of an international sales agent.

“To have a British sporting icon who cheated death, »

- Patrick Frater

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