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Peter Sallis, voice of Wallace, dies at 96

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Peter Sallis, voice of Wallace, dies at 96
Aardman’s Nick Park pays tribute to ‘great storyteller and raconteur’.

Peter Sallis, the British actor who voiced Wallace from Aardman Animation’s Wallace & Gromit franchise and starred in TV show Last of The Summer Wine, has died. He was 96.

Sallis was born on February 1, 1921, in Twickenham, England. After a successful TV and stage career that had also brought great acclaim for the timbre of his voice, he signed on for his longest role as Norman Clegg alongside Brian Wilde and Bill Owen in the sitcom Last Of The Summer Wine. He appeared in all 295 episodes from 1973 until 2010.

He partnered with Bristol-based Aardman in 1993 and voiced Wallace for 15 years over various feature, short and video game iterations. He was awarded the OBE in 2007.

Sallis died at his home in London on June 2. Shortly after the news broke on Monday, Wallace & Gromit director and Aardman partner Nick Park (pictured at right with Sallis) led the tributes.

“I’m so sad
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Last of the Summer Wine stars planning new spinoff

Last of the Summer Wine may be revived in the form of a spinoff series.

Actors Ken Kitson and Louis Emerick are developing a pilot episode for a potential new comedy, along with former series producer and director Alan Jw Bell.

The duo paid hapless policemen Cooper Walsh for several years on the show, before it came to an end in 2010.

They are seeking funding to film either a feature-length film or a short series, and have hinted that other former stars may return.

Associate producer Terry Bartlam said: "When the BBC decided they didn't want to make any more episodes of Last of the Summer Wine it was a double blow for the two actors.

"People were anxious that the series should have a proper ending, with perhaps a feature-length episode to bring it all together.

"There is also thinking that in Cooper and Walsh there was scope for
See full article at Digital Spy - TV news »

'Last of the Summer Wine' tops UK TV show repeats

Last of the Summer Wine has topped a survey of UK comedy repeats.

A new poll has found that the former BBC series has been aired on UK screens 483 times in the first three months of 2013 alone, The Daily Telegraph reports.

The series starred the late Bill Owen and ran for 37 years between 1973 and 2010, with a total of 295 episodes aired. It topped the survey ahead of Robert Lindsay and Zoë Wanamaker's My Family, which ran for 11 series between 2000 and 2011.

My Family has been repeated 233 times. It was followed in third by Stephen Fry's Qi with 179 repeats and in fourth by Only Fools and Horses with a total of 161 repeats.

The 483 repeats of Last of the Summer Wine aired in January, February and March this year. This is an average of five episodes per day, and, in total, if aired continuously, they would last for just over ten days.
See full article at Digital Spy - TV news »

Digital Fury: DVD Essentials for February and March

Here's a Planet Fury-approved selection of notable genre DVD releases for the months of February and March 2013.

The Blob (1958) Criterion Collection Blu-ray & DVD Available Now

This entertaining low-budget favorite gets some well-deserved respect from the folks at Criterion. A gelatinous creature from outer space begins to devour the inhabitants of a small town. Each time it consumes a new body, it grows bigger. A couple of teens (including the wooden Steve McQueen) attempt to warn the town and save the population from certain blech! Irvin S. Yeaworth Jr. directs the mayhem with a sure hand while Bart Sloane's great special effects still pack a punch. Followed by the bizarre comedy sequel, Son of Blob, in the early ’70s (directed by Larry Hagman!) and a great, underrated remake in 1988 by Chuck Russell.

Special Features:

* New high-definition digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack

* Two audio commentaries: one by producer Jack H. Harris
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Last of the Summer Wine finally runs dry after 37 years and 31 series

BBC1's Last of the Summer Wine, believed to be the world's longest-running sitcom, to end this year

Last of the Summer Wine in pictures

The axe has finally fallen on what is believed to be the world's longest-running TV sitcom, BBC1's Last of the Summer Wine, after nearly 40 years and 31 series.

Jay Hunt, BBC1 controller, confirmed today that the show would come off air after the 31st and final series is broadcast this summer.

There had been speculation last year that the show, set in and around the Yorkshire town of Holmfirth, would be axed.

This seemed to have ended with a BBC announcement in June 2009 that a 31st series had been commissioned for this year – but it now turns out this will be the final outing.

The final series will feature the long-serving Peter Sallis as Norman Clegg, alongside Russ Abbot, Frank Thornton, Brian Murphy and Burt Kwouk.
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

BBC axes 'Last Of The Summer Wine'

BBC axes 'Last Of The Summer Wine'
The BBC has confirmed that it is axing comedy series Last Of The Summer Wine after 37 years. BBC One controller Jay Hunt promised that the last series, which will air this summer, will provide a "fitting farewell" for the Roy Clarke-penned sitcom. Following the adventures of characters such as Compo (Bill Owen), Nora Batty (Kathy Staff) and Edie Pegden (Thora Hird), the programme has survived for nearly four decades, despite a large number of the cast members passing away and frequent rumours that the show would be pulled off air. The final run will feature long-time cast member Peter Sallis as Norman Clegg, alongside Russ Abbott (Hobbo) and Brian Murphy (Alvin). "It is a testimony to the wit and warmth of the characters (more)
See full article at Digital Spy - Movie News »

Goodbye "Georgy Girl"

Actress Lynn Redgrave, part of the Redgrave acting dynasty, died May 2.

The sister of Vanessa Redgrave and Corin Redgrave, aunt to the late Natasha Richardson and "Nip/Tuck" actress Joely Richardson, Redgrave received her first Oscar nomination in 1967 for the British feature "Georgy Girl", her third film appearance, and went on to a long career in film, television and theater, earning three Tony nominations, an Emmy nomination, and a second Oscar nod in 1999 for "Gods and Monsters".

"Georgy Girl", the 1966 British film based on a novel by author Margaret Forster was directed by Silvio Narizzano, starring Redgrave as 'Georgy', with Alan Bates, James Mason, Charlotte Rampling and Bill Owen.

The title song, performed by Australian band The Seekers, became a hit single and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song (music by Tom Springfield, lyrics by Jim Dale).

Sneak Peek "Georgy Girl"...
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'Summer Wine' threatened by row

Last Of The Summer Wine star Peter Sallis has said that a row over politics almost ended the series before it even got started. Sallis told Radio 4's Desert Island Discs that his co-stars Michael Bates and Bill Owen were at odds with each other when they met because of their political alignments. "Michael was slightly to the right of Margaret Thatcher and Bill was slightly to the left of Lenin. Within minutes they were shouting at each other," he said. "Not (more)
See full article at Digital Spy - Movie News »

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