Wednesday, June 18, 2008


Lots of new competitions and giveaways at the moment over at mission control with a chance to win Framed photos from the archives of Warner Bros, Weeds and Secret Diary of a Call Girl goodies, as well as DVD's featuring Gumby, Spooks and Gordon Ramsay, plus lots more...


Michael Palin combines his passion for travel and art in three fascinating films on great forgotten artists in a new 2 disc DVD set Michael Palin on Art.

The set features Michael Palin on The Colourists, Palin on Redpath and Michael Palin and The Mystery of Hammershøi. Coinciding with the first EVER Hammershøi exhibition to go on public display in the UK, Palin On Art is released on DVD from 7th July 2008.


Danny Cohen and Lucy Lumsden have commissioned a pilot for BBC Three featuring Japanese silent comedy sensation Gamarjobat. The half hour show will be shot in September after their Edinburgh Fringe run and will be co-produced by Komedia Entertainment and Baby Cow (producers of the highly acclaimed The Mighty Boosh and Gavin and Stacey).

The Life of A Long Distance Writer: The Authorised Biography Of Alan Sillitoe

Peter Owen Publishers publish their lead non-fiction title for 2008 on September 15th. Written with the close co-operation of Alan Sillitoe himself, The Life of a Long Distance Writer is not only the definitive work on the legendary writer in his 80th birthday year, it promises to be perhaps the most controversial literary biography of the last decade.

Turner Classic Movies to Pay Tribute To Musical Star Cyd Charisse

Turner Classic Movies (TCM) will devote its Friday, June 27, primetime lineup to a three-film tribute to legendary dancer and musical star Cyd Charisse. The tribute will include Singin’ in the Rain (1952), in which she joins Gene Kelly for the famed “Broadway Melody Ballet” sequence; The Band Wagon (1953), Vincente Minnelli’s colorful backstage musical that pairs Charisse with Fred Astaire; and Silk Stockings (1957), a musical remake of Ninotchka that features another sterling Charisse-Astaire collaboration. Charisse died in Los Angeles on Tuesday at the age of 86.

“Cyd Charisse was one of the few who managed to have it all: a great career, a place in movie history, respect from her peers and a husband who adored her,” said TCM host Robert Osborne. “My last time seeing her just a few months ago in New York said it all, with photographers snapping pictures of the movie star while she smiled brightly on the arm of her husband of 60 years, Tony Martin.”

The following is the complete schedule for TCM’s June 27 memorial tribute to Cyd Charisse:

8 p.m. Singin’ in the Rain (1952) – starring Gene Kelly, Debbie Reynolds and Donald O’Connor.

10 p.m. The Band Wagon (1953) – starring Fred Astaire, Oscar Levant and Jack Buchanan.

Midnight Silk Stockings (1957) – starring Fred Astaire, Janis Paige and Peter Lorre.

Billy Wilder's classic movie The Apartment gets cinema re-release

Billy Wilder's bitter sweet comedy classic The Apartment (1960) is making a welcome return to cinema screens in a newly restored version.

Jack Lemmon stars as C.C. Baxter, an office clerk who carries favour with the executives in his office by giving them the key to his small apartment for the odd afternoon dalliance. Among them is his callous boss, J.D. Sheldrake, who Baxter eventually learns is using his place to sleep with Miss Kubelik, the sweet elevator operator the clerk has loved from afar. Lemmon and MacLaine both give career performances and Fred MacMurray is memorable as the blandly smiling snake. The Apartment was nominated for 10 Academy Awards and won 5, including Best Picture.

The Apartment will be opening from 11 July at Curzon Mayfair, Screen on the Green, Screen on the Hill, Filmhouse Edinburgh, IFI Dublin and key cities.

USA 1960, 125 minutes, BBFC Certificate: PG


HBO Documentary HARD TIMES AT DOUGLASS HIGH: A No Child Left Behind Report Card Premieres Monday, June 23 at 9 p.m. ET/PT

The No Child Left Behind Act was created to boost academic levels of American schoolchildren by setting standardized goals across the nation – and holding states, districts and schools accountable for performance. For urban schools in high-poverty areas, reaching these goals has proven to be a daunting task, and many now face the real possibility of being taken over by the state – or being shut down altogether.

Produced and directed by Oscar-winners Alan and Susan Raymond, Hard Times at Douglass High: A No Child Left Behind Report Card reveals troubles and triumphs in the classrooms, hallways and offices of Frederick Douglass High School in Baltimore, MD – from the celebrations of drum lines and debate teams to the worries of faculty who know that 50% of their freshman will not return for their sophomore year. This immersive documentary cautions that education is inevitably an achievement of people, not policy.


Network is releasing ROBIN’S NEST – THE COMPLETE FOURTH SERIES on 21st July 2008. This humorous ITV sitcom from the 1970s tracks the ups and downs - both personal and professional - of married couple Robin and Vicky. Included are all seven episodes from Series 4 plus a Christmas special, complete and uncut.

Spitting Image Series 2 On DVD 28th July 2008

Network have announced the release of the entire second series of SPITTING IMAGE on 28th July 2008 for the first time. Many critics argue that this is when the show really found its feet.

All eleven episodes of SPITTING IMAGE – THE COMPLETE SECOND SERIES will be available in a two-disc set.

Other upcoming Network releases include a third volume of episodes from Pipkins, all 13 episodes of Doctor At Sea, the third and final volume of episodes of the Fenn Street Gang and the complete series of Jason King.