The 50th anniversary special Doctor Who: The Day Of The Doctor grossed $10.2 million worldwide from Saturday through Monday, BBC Worldwide said today. The episode was No. 1 in the U.S. on Monday, bringing in $4.7 million at more than 650 sites, selling 320,000 tickets. That made it the second biggest film of the day after The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. In the U.S., the 75-minute special had an estimated $7,155 per-location average, according to BBC Worldwide. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, which played in 4,163 U.S. locations, posted a $2,623 per-location average. The anniversary episode is also being screened in Australia, the UK, Ireland, Canada, New Zealand, Germany, Russia, Brazil, Mexico, Ecuador, Spain, Sweden, Norway and Iceland.
The BBC has outlined its holiday programming with yet more clues about Matt Smith’s last outing as Doctor Who. The series’ Christmas episode has been titled The Time Of The Doctor, following the Season 7 finale, The Name Of The Doctor, and last weekend’s The Day Of The Doctor (along with online mini-ep, The Night Of The Doctor). The episode will air December 25th and mark Smith’s departure as it introduces Peter Capaldi as the 12th Time Lord. It will also feature Fringe‘s Orla Brady in a new role. The BBC synopsis goes like this: “Orbiting a quiet backwater planet, the massed forces of the universe’s deadliest species gather, drawn to a mysterious message that echoes out to the stars… Rescuing Clara from a family Christmas dinner, the Time Lord and his best friend must learn what this enigmatic signal means for his own fate and that of the universe.” The Day Of The Doctor smashed records on Saturday for BBC America which traditionally airs the Christmas special in step with the UK.
Showrunner Steven Moffat’s other series, Sherlock, also returns to the BBC over the holidays. (It starts on PBS on January 19th). The first episode of the new three-part series, titled “The Empty Hearse”, will pick up two years after the titular high-functioning sociopath jumped from a building in “The Reichenbach Fall”. With London under the threat of a huge terrorist attack, Holmes will make his return from the dead.
Related: Hot TV Teaser: ‘Sherlock’ Season 3
Look out Lionsgate, BBC America‘s after a slice of your box office glory. The network scored a per-screen average of $13,607 on Saturday with its Doctor Who: The Day Of The Doctor REALD 3D screening event, besting The Hunger Games: Catching Fire‘s $12,300 average in the U.S. according to Rentrak (Catching Fire opened on 4,163 screens last weekend on its way to a $307M global take on the weekend, compared to Doctor Who‘s limited 11-screen run.) NCM Fathom Events will screen the Day Of The Doctor 3D again tonight in 650 theaters nationwide.
BBC‘s Sherlock returns for its 3rd season on January 19 on PBS in the U.S., picking up after Season 2′s “Reichenbach Fall” finale. Here’s Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman in the 30-second teaser for Sherlock‘s return that was unveiled during today’s 50th Anniversary Doctor Who special:
But wait, there’s more! BBC also dropped a new teaser for its Doctor Who 2013 Christmas Special:
‘Anchorman 2′ PR Blitz Rolls On: Ron Burgundy Lands Gig With Canada’s TSN, Ponders ‘Doctor Who’: Video
Paramount‘s marketing team must be working overtime brainstorming PR stunts for their Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues; now they’ve landed Ron Burgundy (AKA Will Ferrell) a gig on Canada’s The Sports Network. “Legendary broadcaster Ron Burgundy will join the network’s team of broadcasters beginning in December,” TSN announced Friday, with details of Burgundy’s new post to be revealed live during Sunday’s Grey Cup. Paramount’s got just under a month to pack in the promo gags before Anchorman 2‘s December 20 bow. Earlier this week Burgundy stopped by Conan to riff on Toronto mayor Rob Ford’s recent headline-making news. Today Paramount released a brief Burgundy video to capitalize on this weekend’s Doctor Who 50th Anniversary mania:
Internally, it’s being referred to as a ‘Whodle.’ The interactive Google doodle that’s gracing the search giant’s homepage the world over today is to commemorate the 50th anniversary of cult BBC sci-fi series Doctor Who. Earlier this year, some 4,000 fans signed a Change.org petition requesting a doodle in the Time Lord’s honor. Their wish has been granted with a game that incorporates all 11 Doctors, a bunch of Daleks and the TARDIS. (Play it here.) The goal of the multi-level game that travels to different areas and eras, is to collect all the letters that spell out ‘Google’ while avoiding patrolling Daleks who are keen to exterminate any Doctor in their path — although regeneration is an option. According to The Guardian, the Whodle and the game are the product of a team of five Google employees led by transplanted Brit Matthew Cruickshank, the mastermind behind last May’s Saul Bass birthday doodle.
As part of the 50th anniversary Doctor Who celebrations, BBC America will premiere the new biopic, An Adventure In Space And Time, on November 22nd (it airs the day before on BBC Two in the UK). The film documents the genesis of the character and hails from Sherlock co-creator Mark Gatiss. David Bradley stars as William Hartnell, who played the first Doctor in 1963. Brian Cox, Jessica Raine and Sacha Dhawan also feature. Meanwhile, BBC America has unveiled a spoiler-y seven-minute Night Of The Doctor mini-episode, a prequel to The Day Of The Doctor 50th anniversary special that will be globally simulcast on November 23rd. It’s after the jump, but once again, beware of spoilers. The BBC further announced today that there will be a live Afterparty on the 23rd following the Day Of The Doctor airing. Outgoing Time Lord Matt Smith will appear as will other previous Doctors and companions. Boy band One Direction will appear on the show live from LA. No word yet on BBC America’s plans for the live London event. Here’s the Adventure In Space And Time teaser and the mini-episode follows on the next page:
SPOILER ALERT… SPOILER ALERT… SPOILER ALERT:
With just 15 days to go before the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who, BBC America has unveiled plans for a week of programming that will lead up to the global simulcast of the anniversary special, Doctor Who: The Day Of The Doctor. Starting on November 18th, and in a similar move to the UK’s BBC, the channel will run marathons and primetime specials including a look into the science behind the series, a look back at departing Time Lord Matt Smith‘s tenure, and Smith and David Tennant guesting on The Graham Norton Show. On November 22nd, BBC America will premiere the new Who film, An Adventure In Space And Time, which documents the genesis of the character and hails from Sherlock co-creator Mark Gatiss, and is directed by Breaking Bad‘s Terry McDonough. In the meantime, the full trailer for Day Of The Doctor, which stars Smith, Tennant, Jenna Coleman, Billie Piper and John Hurt, will be released tomorrow. Here’s a 14-second teaser:
With its Day of the Doctor celebration just around the corner, BBC has released a 50th anniversary trailer for its upcoming Doctor Who special. The program will be simulcast in the U.S. and UK and 75 countries on November 23. Glimpse the previous incarnations of the Doctor in the newly released promo:
The BBC has confirmed the recovery of nine Doctor Who episodes which had long been thought missing. Reports of the trove first surfaced earlier this week, to the delight of the Tardis faithful, and BBC Worldwide has now made the re-mastered episodes available for download via iTunes. Back in the fold are five installments of 1967 story The Enemy Of The World, and four installments of 1968’s The Web Of Fear which sees the Time Lord battle a robot yeti in the London Underground. All of the episodes feature Patrick Troughton as the 2nd Doctor. Many of the original transmission tapes were destroyed by the BBC, so it’s often copies made for foreign broadcast that turn up to fill in the gaps. According to the BBC, there are still 27 Doctor Who stories that are missing or have incomplete episodes. Here’s a video for the re-mastered Web Of Fear:
Global Showbiz Briefs: Emily Watson Joins ‘Theory Of Everything’; BBC Expected To Unveil Found ‘Doctor Who’ Episodes; More
Emily Watson, David Thewlis Join ‘The Theory Of Everything’
Emily Watson, David Thewlis, Charlie Cox, Simon McBurney, Maxine Peake and Harry Lloyd have joined the cast of Working Title’s The Theory Of Everything, which has begun shooting in the UK. The film follows the story of physicist Stephen Hawking (Eddie Redmayne) and Jane Wilde (Felicity Jones), the arts student he fell in love with while studying at Cambridge in the 1960s and later became his wife. James Marsh is directing the Anthony McCarten-scripted film, which is produced by Working Title’s Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner and Lisa Bruce and Anthony McCarten.
BBC Expected To Announce Discovery Of Lost ‘Doctor Who’ Episodes
The BBC is expected to end months of speculation by announcing this week that several early episodes of Doctor Who that were thought to be lost have been returned to the pubcaster. More than 100 early episodes featuring stars William Hartnell and Patrick Troughton are missing, and the BBC destroyed the original transmission tapes. But prints made for foreign broadcasters sometimes turn up, including all four installments of the Troughton adventure The Tomb of the Cybermen, which were found in Hong Kong in 1991. The latest discovery as Doctor Who is celebrating its 50th anniversary.
A musical adaptation of American Psycho is tuning up for a December launch in London’s West End. Almeida Theatre Artistic Director, Rupert Goold, will direct the take that has a book by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (Spider Man: Turn Off The Dark, Glee) and music and lyrics by Duncan Sheik (Girls, Glee). Now in his last year as the 11th Doctor Who, Matt Smith will play Patrick Bateman, the serial-killing investment banker originally portrayed by Christian Bale in Mary Harron’s 2000 film adaptation. The London musical will run from December 3rd to January 25th next year. It’s an Almeida Theatre and Headlong co-production in association with David Johnson and Jesse Singer for Act 4 Entertainment by special arrangement with Edward R Pressman, who produced the movie. Pressman is also executive producing FX and Lionsgate’s American Psycho drama series project that catches up with Bateman decades later, but as outrageous and lethal as ever – and taking on a protégé.
Doctor Who is taking its anticipated 50th anniversary festivities global. BBC America announced today that the previously announced November 23 broadcast of its Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Special, The Day of the Doctor, will be a worldwide affair when the special airs simultaneously in the UK and U.S. and across the globe in 75 countries including Canada, Colombia, Brazil, Botswana, Myanmar, and Mexico. Matt Smith (the Eleventh Doctor), Jenna Coleman (companion Clara), David Tennant (the Tenth Doctor), Billie Piper and John Hurt star in the special which highlights a week-long BBC America Doctor Who celebration including the new film An Adventure in Space and Time, marathons, and additional special programs. BBC America will also host 3D screenings of the 50th anniversary episode in the U.S., details to be announced.
In what is its biggest content deal since it was taken off the auction block, Hulu has partnered with BBC Worldwide North America to bring some iconic TV shows to the service. Included in the multi-year package are programs like Doctor Who, Torchwood, Sherlock and Luther. For the time being, this will be library, rather than current, content. Doctor Who launches today, while Sherlock, Luther, Blackadder, Top Gear and others will be available starting in the fall. The deal will bring some 144 titles to Hulu in the first year; many will be accessible via subscription service Hulu Plus. In all, there are more than 2,000 episodes with a few hundred available from this week. The non-exclusive arrangement follows the July announcement that Hulu owners Disney, 21st Century Fox, and Comcast would not sell the company and instead would supply $750M to accelerate its growth. Of the BBC deal, acting CEO Andy Forssell told The Wall Street Journal, “We’re kicking back into action. This is us doing a bunch of stuff that we’ve really wanted to do and had been put on hold for a while.” Last month, Hulu gave a 10-episode series order to Deadbeat, a subversive half-hour comedy from co-creators Cody Heller and Brett Konner, Lionsgate TV and Brad Pitt‘s Plan B Entertainment.
The BBC is going all out for Doctor Who‘s 50th birthday, unveiling a list of programs to mark the occasion and revealing the poster that goes with November 23rd BBC One special, The Day Of The Doctor. The 75-minute movie will star exiting Time Lord Matt Smith, as well as Doctor Who No. 10 David Tennant, along with John Hurt, Jenna Coleman and Billie Piper. It’s also airing in the U.S. on BBC America that same night. The special is written by Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffat. Mark Gatiss, his collaborator on Who — and Sherlock — has penned a separate film, An Adventure In Space And Time, which stars David Bradley as William Hartnell, who played the first Doctor in 1963. Brian Cox, Jessica Raine and Sacha Dhawan also feature. That special will air on BBC Two which is also playing host to a one-hour look at the science behind the show, as well as an examination of the Time Lord’s cultural significance in Me, You And Doctor Who. BBC Three is running a countdown to the top Doctor Who monster of all time and, for folks less familiar with the show, will air Doctor Who: The Ultimate Guide. Over on BBC Four, the first four episodes of the original series will be shown in a restored format.
It spread like wildfire on the web this weekend that Peter Jackson will direct an episode of Doctor Who. I can tell you with 100% certainty that there are no plans for Jackson to do any such thing. What has happened is this: Jackson has been given an open-ended invitation to direct an episode of the series if he was ever available. It did not progress beyond that. The director is completely engrossed in the second and third installments of The Hobbit trilogy, and he will not be emerging from Middle Earth for the better part of two years. Now, Jackson is a devoted fan of the series: I saw him two Comic-Cons ago and, when my son mentioned he was headed to a Doctor Who event, Jackson stopped him in his tracks – and they spent most of my interview time talking about their love for the series.
Global Showbiz Briefs: ‘Generation War’ On BBC2; Ha Ji-won Signs With UTA; ‘Doctor Who’ Writer; ‘Exodus’ In Spain; More
‘Generation War’ Is Rare BBC Two Pickup To Air In Foreign Language
BBC Two has picked up the three-part German miniseries Generation War. The drama will air in its original language, the first time BBC Two has premiered a foreign language series since 2001′s The Kingdom. (BBC Four, on the other hand, airs such subtitled shows as Borgen and Wallander.) Generation War traces the fate of young men and women who fought in World War II. The Band Of Brothers-like story is from ZDF, teamWorx and Beta Film and scored record ratings on ZDF with a 24% market share. It also triggered a local debate about personal guilt in WWII. Music Box took U.S. rights at MIPTV in April.
South Korean Star Ha Ji-won Inks With UTA
South Korean actress Ji-won Ha is readying for a Hollywood crossover. The Asian TV and film star has signed with UTA for representation in all areas and has been taking meetings stateside. Ha’s UTA reps are looking at domestic and international film roles, TV, and digital media and endorsements. They are also focusing on developing Korean and American co-productions around the award-winning performer known for the popular romantic comedy Secret Garden as well as horror pics Nightmare and Phone, period drama Damo, disaster blockbuster Haeundae and action film Sector 7. Ha continues to be represented by HaeWaDal Entertainment Co.