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19 items from 2011


Letters: Great disappointment at Dickens rewritten as Dostoevsky

30 December 2011 4:06 PM, PST | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

BBC1's Christmas bicentennial version of Great Expectations (Last night's TV, G2, 28 December), despite several serious rivals, is the worst attempt to translate Dickens from page to screen. In the end it may make some sort of dramatic sense, although there are considerable sections of the plot missing. But it strikes me that Sarah Phelps has used the novel really to write a play of her own. Her focus is consistently didactic, with all traces of Dickens's pathos and comedy eliminated.

While working on its early stages Dickens wrote to John Forster: "…it so opens out before me that I can see the whole of a serial revolving on it, in a most singular and comic manner … You will find the hero to be a boy-child, like David. Then he will be an apprentice. You will not have to complain of the want of humour as in the 'Tale of Two Cities'. »

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My TV Christmas cracker: Great Expectations

27 December 2011 3:30 AM, PST | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

A fabulously dark and grownup adaptation of Charles Dickens' psychologically complex novel

Think of it as a late Christmas present: a new adaptation of Great Expectations running from the 27th over three nights. For me there is nothing in the festive schedules I am looking forward to more. It's aimed at kicking off next year's Dickens bicentenary. With a source text — the story of Pip, the blacksmith's boy and his mysterious legacy – that is probably the greatest novel written in English, the BBC is kicking off its 2012 Dickens bicentenary celebrations in some style.

It's not a very festive thought, but I'm most looking forward to the promised austerity, a very unChristmassy virtue of Sarah Phelps's adaptation of the book. I've only seen episode one, but it feels fabulously dark and grownup. It's bleak, raw and shines a sharp, cold light on what is one of Dickens' most complicated and psychologically complex stories. »

- Ben Dowell

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Dickens on screen: the highs and the lows

23 December 2011 4:05 PM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

There have been more than 400 film and TV adaptations so far, and counting, some brilliant, some memorably awful

The opening credits of BBC1's new three-part adaptation of Great Expectations (27-29 December) show a chrysalis cracking open to reveal a pair of trembling wings. A few seconds later this delicate emergence is replaced on screen by the escaped convict Magwitch (Ray Winstone) erupting from the stagnant waters of the Essex marshes. Covered in blood and slime, he is at once the monster of nightmares and a huge misshapen baby gasping its first breath.

In a single sequence, the director Brian Kirk gets to the heart of Dickens's novel as a fable of rebirth and renewal. Together with Sarah Phelps, the screenwriter, he has created a world in which characters are forever seeking to transform themselves – or each other. A spookily young Miss Havisham (Gillian Anderson), still cocooned in her tatty wedding dress, »

- Robert Douglas-Fairhurst

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Why Charles Dickens's novels make great TV

22 December 2011 4:35 AM, PST | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

As the BBC adapts Great Expectations and The Mystery of Edwin Drood, the writers and producers explain Dickens' appeal

2012 isn't just about the Olympics. It is also the bicentenary of Charles Dickens' birth and the BBC is kicking things off with two big Dickens drama adaptations – Great Expectations and The Mystery of Edwin Drood.

It's strange to think that nearly three years ago the BBC drama department signalled a move away from "bonnet" dramas" towards more "modern" period fiction. But you won't find me – or millions of others – complaining about excessive TV exposure when it comes to the work of a certain 19th century writer which seems uniquely made for the box.

"He knew how to work an audience and how to get them laughing their heads off one minute or on the edge of their seats and holding their breath the next," Sarah Phelps, screenwriter of the forthcoming Great Expectations, »

- Ben Dowell

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Phil Hogan's Christmas TV highlights

17 December 2011 4:54 PM, PST | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

Downton Abbey, Doctor Who and The Gruffalo's Child are among the highlights of 2011's Christmas TV schedule

There's much talk of who will blow whom off the screen over the coming season of peace, love and understanding, but who can honestly summon the enthusiasm for a "battle" between Strictly and Corrie when we have perfectly adequate digital recording or catch-up facilities to watch neither at our own convenience?

No. The only question is, what's worth watching? Actually, lots, as it turns out. I was impatient with the bizarre turns of fortune in Downton Abbey earlier this year, but it seems that whoever's in charge is back off the drugs with a gripping two-hour Christmas night special, which manages to be funny (cue Maggie Smith, baffled in the presence of a nutcracker) without being laughable. The story carries on where it left off, but with the corpses of flu and war »

- Phil Hogan

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David Suchet joins BBC's 'Great Expectations' drama

8 July 2011 8:37 AM, PDT | Digital Spy | See recent Digital Spy - Movie News news »

David Suchet has joined the cast of BBC One's new adaptation of Great Expectations. The drama, which is being penned by Oliver Twist scribe Sarah Phelps, is due to air at Christmas. The BBC has now announced that Suchet has signed up to play Jaggers, a lawyer who represents Pip's benefactor and Miss Havisham. The BBC also confirmed earlier reports that Gillian Anderson has joined the cast as Miss Havisham. Douglas Booth (more) »

- By Catriona Wightman

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David Suchet joins BBC's 'Great Expectations'

8 July 2011 8:37 AM, PDT | Digital Spy | See recent Digital Spy - Movie News news »

David Suchet has joined the cast of BBC One's new adaptation of Great Expectations. The drama, which is being penned by Oliver Twist scribe Sarah Phelps, is due to air at Christmas. The BBC has now announced that Suchet has signed up to play Jaggers, a lawyer who represents Pip's benefactor and Miss Havisham. The BBC also confirmed earlier reports that Gillian Anderson has joined the cast as Miss Havisham. Douglas Booth (more) »

- By Catriona Wightman

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The BBC's Great Expectations rounds out its cast

2 July 2011 8:14 AM, PDT | ScreenTerrier | See recent ScreenTerrier news »

Shooting is set to start this Monday on the BBC's three-part TV adaptation of Charles Dickens' classic novel Great Expectations.

Written by Sarah Phelps, and directed by Brian Kirk, it's billed as being "part thriller, part mystery, with a powerful love story at its heart and Dickens' trademark wit and characterisation throughout, Sarah Phelps' three-part adaptation embraces all of these qualities, delivering a vibrant, visceral, story."

Joining the already announced Ray Winstone (Magwitch), Douglas Booth (Pip), Gillian Anderson (Miss Haversham) and Izzy Meikle-Small (Young Estella) are:

24 year old Vanessa Kirby (represented by Ken McReddie), who this week made it on to Screen International's Stars of Tomorrow 2011 list, has been cast as Estella. After studying at Exeter University, Vanessa turned down a place at Lamda drama school last year after being offered the opportunity to appear in three productions at the Bolton Octagon: Arthur Miller's All My Sons, »

- noreply@blogger.com (ScreenTerrier)

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Ray Winstone and Gillian Anderson for BBC’s Great Sexpectations?

6 June 2011 11:00 AM, PDT | HeyUGuys.co.uk | See recent HeyUGuys news »

The Daily Mail is reporting that Ray Winstone and Gillian Anderson are set to star in a reworking of Charles DickensGreat Expectations for the BBC.

The perennial patrons of perspective that they are, the newspaper wastes no time in identifying the ‘sexually charged’ spin that this new production will have.

With Winstone attached as Magwitch and Anderson the preferred choice to play Miss Havisham, this “radical” retelling will also star one-time Boy George Douglas Booth as Pip.

Written from Pip’s perspective, the novel charts his ascension from orphaned blacksmith to gentleman, a transition he manages with the assistance of criminal benefactor, Abel Magwitch. Before leaving home, where he was raised grudgingly by older sister Mrs. Joe, Pip falls in love with Estelle, the daughter of a wealthy spinster who lives a sheltered life, having boarded up her windows and stopped all the clocks in order to haunt the »

- Steven Neish

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Gillian Anderson to join BBC's 'Great Expectations'?

6 June 2011 7:20 AM, PDT | Digital Spy | See recent Digital Spy - Movie News news »

Gillian Anderson is reportedly in talks to join the BBC's adaptation of Great Expectations. The X-Files star is in negotiations to play Miss Havisham in the Charles Dickens drama, The Wrap says. Ray Winstone and Douglas Booth have already signed up to star in the three-part series, which has been penned by Oliver Twist scribe Sarah Phelps. Anderson previously appeared in the (more) »

- By Catriona Wightman

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Another Pip

2 June 2011 10:47 AM, PDT | ScreenTerrier | See recent ScreenTerrier news »

With two new adaptations of Great Expectations about to go into production, one a feature film version and one a three-part BBC series, there's plenty of casting news coming up.

Both are being made to celebrate Charles Dickens's upcoming bicentenary in 2012.

The BBC TV version, written by Sarah Phelps and directed by Brian Kirk, will hit our screens first, it's due to start filming in July in London for transmission at Christmas 2011. Rising star Douglas Booth (represented by Curtis Brown) is to play Pip, the young man of great expectations who learns he will inherit a fortune from a mystery benefactor when he becomes twenty-one. Douglas starred as Boy George in Mad About They Boy, and was last on our screens as Heinz in Christopher and His Kind. He also spent last year filming Lol, alongside Miley Cyrus. Douglas will be joined in the TV version by Ray Winstone as Magwitch, »

- noreply@blogger.com (ScreenTerrier)

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Ray Winstone joins BBC's 'Great Expectations'

31 May 2011 1:57 AM, PDT | Digital Spy | See recent Digital Spy - Movie News news »

Ray Winstone and Douglas Booth have signed up to appear in the BBC's new adaptation of Great Expectations. The Charles Dickens drama, which will air at Christmas, is being penned by Oliver Twist scribe Sarah Phelps. Booth, who recently starred in Worried About The Boy and Christopher And His Kind, will take on the lead role of Pip. Winstone is expected to play Magwitch, the escaped prisoner who meets Pip near his home. "Great Expectations is my favourite novel, and I'm thrilled to be playing Magwitch," Winstone said. "I've wanted to play (more) »

- By Catriona Wightman

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Ray Winstone set to return to BBC in adaptation of Great Expectations

30 May 2011 4:04 PM, PDT | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

Winstone will play Magwitch in the Christmas drama to celebrate the bicentenary in 2012 of the birth of Charles Dickens

Ray Winstone is to star in a television adaptation of Charles Dickens's Great Expectations, the BBC has announced. The three-part drama will be part of BBC1's Christmas programming.

Sarah Phelps's adaptation will form the centrepiece of the BBC's celebration of the 2012 bicentenary of Dickens's birth.

In his first BBC television appearance in five years, Winstone will star as Abel Magwitch alongside Douglas Booth, who is to play Pip. Filming will begin in July in London.

"Great Expectations is my favourite novel and I'm thrilled to be playing Magwitch," Winstone said. "I've wanted to play him for ages, I'm really excited about Sarah Phelps's take on the story and I can't wait to get stuck in."

Ben Stephenson, controller of BBC drama commissioning, said: "Sarah's adaptation is both »

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Ray Winstone set to return to BBC in adaptation of Great Expectations

30 May 2011 4:04 PM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Winstone will play Magwitch in the Christmas drama to celebrate the bicentenary in 2012 of the birth of Charles Dickens

Ray Winstone is to star in a television adaptation of Charles Dickens's Great Expectations, the BBC has announced. The three-part drama will be part of BBC1's Christmas programming.

Sarah Phelps's adaptation will form the centrepiece of the BBC's celebration of the 2012 bicentenary of Dickens's birth.

In his first BBC television appearance in five years, Winstone will star as Abel Magwitch alongside Douglas Booth, who is to play Pip. Filming will begin in July in London.

"Great Expectations is my favourite novel and I'm thrilled to be playing Magwitch," Winstone said. "I've wanted to play him for ages, I'm really excited about Sarah Phelps's take on the story and I can't wait to get stuck in."

Ben Stephenson, controller of BBC drama commissioning, said: "Sarah's adaptation is both »

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Great Expectations

15 April 2011 9:28 AM, PDT | ScreenTerrier | See recent ScreenTerrier news »

Screenterrier reported back in August 2009 on the plans for a new feature film adaptation of Great Expectations, written by Rowan Joffe, to be produced by Stephen Woolley for Number 9 Films and directed by Mike Newell.

Variety is reporting that the new young star of Steven Spielberg's War Horse, Jeremy Irvine is in talks to take on the lead role of Pip, an orphan who rises up through society to become a gentleman thanks to an unknown benefactor. Through most of his life, he’s also obsessed with the cruel and beautiful Estella, who he’s first introduced to via her guardian, Miss Havisham. Helena Bonham-Carter is being mooted for the role of Miss Havisham. The film is eyeing a September shoot.

Jeremy is now represented by Creative Artists Agency in the Us, in addition to agents Hatton McEwan in the UK. He has also been reported to be »

- noreply@blogger.com (ScreenTerrier)

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Zen could survive after being sold abroad

2 March 2011 8:44 AM, PST | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

Axed drama proves popular at the BBC's international sales conference boosting chances of it being picked up by a UK broadcaster

Axed BBC1 Italian detective drama Zen has been sold abroad to five countries, boosting hopes a new series could be picked up by another UK broadcaster.

Although MediaGuardian.co.uk revealed last week that the show, starring Rufus Sewell, has been canned by new BBC1 controller Danny Cohen, it is proving popular at the BBC's international sales conference BBC Showcase in Brighton this week.

The three-part series has been sold to broadcasters in Australia, Denmark, Holland, Japan and Sweden.

Left Bank, the independent producer of Zen, which is part-owned by the BBC's commercial arm BBC Worldwide, has been in talks with other broadcasters about recommissioning Zen.

BBC Worldwide invested money in the show, along with Ingenious Broadcasting and international co-producers Zti, part of Silvio Berlusconi's Mediaset, Us broadcaster PBS and Germany's Zdf. »

- Tara Conlan

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Being Human Returns Next Month on BBC America With Season Three; Spoilers Inside!

28 January 2011 11:00 AM, PST | ScifiMafia | See recent ScifiMafia news »

Fans of the original BBC series Being Human, you won’t have to wait that much longer for the third season to come to us! BBC America has announced that Being Human will return as part of Supernatural Saturdays on Saturday, February 19, 2011.

Check out the official press release below and don’t miss the listing of episode titles and their writers with a spoilery section containing the synopses of the first two episodes below!

Original UK Series, Being Human, Returns Next Month On BBC America’S Supernatural Saturdays For A Monster Third Season

New York, NY – Being Human, BBC America’s original hit supernatural series about a group of friends trying to live normal lives despite their unusual afflictions, is back – and, says creator and writer, Toby Whithouse, “It is, without doubt, our best season yet.”

“A third season is a unique opportunity because it allows you to take all »

- Lillian 'zenbitch' Standefer

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Being Human: Season Three Takes The Best Bits of Seasons One and Two

21 January 2011 4:00 PM, PST | ScifiMafia | See recent ScifiMafia news »

The original British series, Being Human, premieres in the UK with season three on Sunday, January 23, 2011 on BBC3. According to show creator Toby Whithouse, season three takes the “best bits” of the first two seasons for a brand new look into the supernatural lives of Mitchell, George, Annie, and Nina. Read the official press release along with Whithouse’s comments about season three below:

Being Human, BBC Three‘s hit drama series about supernatural friends trying to live normal lives despite their unusual afflictions, is back – and, says writer creator Toby Whithouse: “It is, without doubt, our best series yet.

“A third series is a unique opportunity because it allows you to take all the best bits of series one and series two,” he says. “What we took from series one is the domestic element and very strong stories of the week with very strong guest characters. Series two »

- Lillian 'zenbitch' Standefer

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BBC One announces five new dramas

13 January 2011 3:34 AM, PST | Digital Spy | See recent Digital Spy - Movie News news »

BBC One has announced that it has commissioned five new dramas. Among the programmes is a three-part adaptation of the Charles Dickens novel Great Expectations, which is expected to air at Christmas. The project has been written by Sarah Phelps, who previously penned the BBC's Oliver Twist. Meanwhile, Spooks and Hustle producers Kudos will work on a new eight-part drama called Morton, which focuses on a spy called Sam. Sam has been pursued all of her life but eventually decides to confront her past. Elsewhere, Upstairs Downstairs and Cranford scribe Heidi Thomas has adapted Jennifer Worth's memoir Call The Midwife for a six-part series. The show follows new midwife Jenny (more) »

- By Catriona Wightman

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2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011

19 items from 2011


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