WE’RE already geared up for some serious changes when the Doctor Who 60th anniversary specials begin this Sunday – namely David Tennant and Catherine Tate returning.
But I can reveal that one of the biggest differences will be the special effects on the show which cost around £5million an episode to deliver.
And after watching the first of the three shows, The Star Beast, I can confirm we’ll be seeing every penny of the budget.
It’s all a far cry from when Tom Baker was in charge of the Tardis in the Seventies when the sets wobbled and the Doctor’s enemies were made a shoestring.
A TV insider said: “Doctor Who has, for a long time now, been seen as a bit of a laughing stock compared to other glossy fantasy and sci-fi shows – and it’s all down to the contrast in cash that’s been available.
“Naturally the BBC hasn’t been able to pump serious money into special effects but thanks to it being a co-production with Disney+ that’s not an issue.
“But even the most optimistic Whovian will be stunned by them spending £15m in this area alone on the anniversary specials.”
After leaving as showrunner of Doctor Who in 2017, Steven Moffat complained about the lack of money being put into the show.
He said: “That was the big challenge of Doctor Who . . . running the risk of looking as cheap now as it did (during the original series), compared to what the rest of TV is doing, unless they put a whole lot more money into it.
“A show that generates as much money as Doctor Who should be getting more of it back, frankly.”
Former Time Lord Pete Capaldi used to find it amusing how cheaply some of the production values were – and that was in some of the most recent episodes.
Complaining the programme “never had enough money” spent on it compared to the big Hollywood dramas he went on to star in, he added: “It’sto be somewhere where they do have enough money to make the monsters look scary.”
Well, we’d better all get behind the sofas again, because they don’t have to worry about that any more . . .
STEVEN’S FUNNY RETURN
WITH Hugh Bonneville and Karen Gillan in the lead roles, there’s already a lot to get excited about when it comes to ITVX’s new comedy, Douglas Is Cancelled, written by Steven Moffat.
But for those of us of a certain age, there’s also the prospect of some of the humour from Steven’s last sitcom – BBC Noughties hit, Coupling.
Steven went on to create much bigger things such as Sherlock, with Benedict Cumberbatch, then as showrunner of Doctor Who.
ITV has just announced Douglas Is Cancelled, which is all about a newsreader whose career is kiboshed by modern woke culture, and it’s unlikely to be on our screens untilyear.
But if it’s half as funny as Coupling – an underrated classic in my– Steven’s about to make an epic comedy comeback.
FANS of Nineties girl group Honeyz are still reeling from seeing one of the band on ITV1’s The Voice this weekend.
Mariama Goodman was part of the trio who sang Won’t Take it Lying Down . . . which was ironic as she seemed quite magnanimous when none of the four judges turned for her.
BIG BROTHER fans are no doubt disappointed that the show’s first outing on ITV is over, but for some of the team behind the programme it’s a chance to take a huge sigh of relief.
I am told that the people whose job it was to edit the comments on social media clips, photos and other information related to the reality TV show had their work seriously cut out.
Naturally the programme created a lot of differing views on the housemates, some of which were just a tad too near the knuckle to keep in the public domain.
So what seemed like something they had to “keep an eye on” became almost a full time job.
And by the time Jordan Sangha finally emerged as the winner on Friday night, most of the housemates were oblivious to all of the furore.
Top work ITV.
SUN Page 3 legend RHIAN SUGDEN and ex-Corrie hunk Oliver Mellor have revealed they are to become parents.
Talking to Hello! magazine the couple announced theafter six years and eight gruelling rounds of IVF – which cost them a staggering £130,000.
EMMERDALE star Louisa Jameson has revealed how she was frustrated with the way her EastEnders departure was handled by BBC bosses.
The actress currently plays Mary Goskirk on the ITV soap, but before that she was Rosa di Marco on EastEnders from 1998 to 2000 – mother to Teresa, Beppe and Gianni.
Talking to Inside Soap magazine, she said: “I was annoyed about the way it was announced.
“I was only told the night before it appeared in the papers. I thought they could have run it by me first so I could tell my family. It wasn’t respectful.”
Judging by EastEnders ratings compared to Emmerdale’s, they probably did her a favour in the long run.
BOXES SO SECURE ON DEAL
WHEN Deal Or No Deal returns this afternoon, there’ll be the inevitable questions over whether contestants could cheat their way to bagging the £100,000 jackpot.
But new host Stephen Mulhern isn’t worried.
Ahead of the ITV1 reboot he said: “Let me tell you now, I’ve never seen security like I’ve seen around these boxes.
“It goes into a holdall, that’s double locked, then it goes into a cage, that’s double locked.
“They’re taking no risks because it is so much money. Some people think they genuinely can feel what’s in the box.
“They think they’ve got a sense. I don’t think we could be hacked by AI or an algorithm, because the boxes are all random.”
Sounds like Stephen’s put a lot of thought into this . . .