Cabin Pressure is a radio situation comedy series written by John Finnemore. Its first series was broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2008. The show follows the exploits of the oddball crew of the single aeroplane owned by “MJN Air” as they are chartered to take all manner of items, people or animals across the world. The show stars Stephanie Cole, Roger Allam, Benedict Cumberbatch and John Finnemore.
Critical reception to the series was positive and three series have currently been produced, the most recent broadcast in July, 2011, along with a special 2010 Christmas Day episode. Cabin Pressure will return for a fourth series in 2012. The theme tune of the series is the Overture to Ruslan and Lyudmila by Mikhail Glinka.
As part of her last divorce settlement, Carolyn Knapp-Shappey (Stephanie Cole) received a mid-size jet aeroplane named “Gertie” (a “Lockheed McDonnell 312”, registration G-ERTI). As a result, she founds her very own single plane charter airline, “MJN Air” (“My Jet Now”), which is crewed by an oddball mixture of characters who fly to various cities around the world, encountering a variety of odd situations.
The airline’s only Captain, Martin Crieff (Benedict Cumberbatch – except for series 3 episode 3, in which Tom Goodman-Hill stood in for Cumberbatch), has wanted to be a pilot since he was six years old (before which he wanted to be an aeroplane). He suffers, however, from a distinct lack of ability in that department. He was rejected by at least one flight school, and had to put himself through the required coursework, barely qualifying for his certification – on his seventh attempt. He took the job with MJN for no salary at all, as long as he could be Captain. He appears to have no outside interests beyond flying. He is a stickler for procedures and regulations, but is more prissy than pompous. At the end of series two he tells Douglas that he survives financially by running a delivery service using the van he inherited from his father (running two different jobs largely explaining the lack of hobbies). This was his only inheritance because his father believed he would waste any money he received trying to become a pilot.
First Officer Douglas Richardson (Roger Allam) is, on the other hand, a quite competent pilot who worked for Air England – until he was fired for smuggling. He chafes at his subordinate position to Martin, and misses no opportunity to flaunt his superiority in the younger pilot’s face. In later episodes, it is revealed that Douglas, ashamed of his second-rate job, dresses in Captain’s uniform for his wife Helena’s benefit, changing to First Officer’s uniform before he gets to work. Douglas is, however, something of a smooth operator who knows all of the dodges available to airline officers, and enjoys taking part in all of them.
Carolyn’s son Arthur (John Finnemore) is an eager dimwit aged 29, who is supposed to be the flight attendant but usually manages to get in everyone’s way. Arthur is a relentless optimist, whose biggest claim to fame is being the inventor (or at least discoverer) of fizzy yoghurt (the recipe for which is yoghurt plus time).
The cockpit crew frequently pass their time by engaging in word games, such as naming Brians [sic.] of Britain, making bets that Douglas always wins or playing ‘Simon says’. All crew members also make humorous cabin addresses, inserting e.g. limericks or titles of Hitchcock films, generally when there are no passengers on board.
This is the original press release, I believe.
Filming has begun on Mammoth Screen’s epic BBC Two drama and HBO miniseries Parade’s End which stars Benedict Cumberbatch (Sherlock, War Horse, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy) and Rebecca Hall (Vicky Cristina Barcelona, The Town, The Awakening) and heralds the return of Sir Tom Stoppardto British television.
Parade’s End is a flagship five-part drama adapted by internationally acclaimed playwright and screenwriter Tom Stoppard (Brazil, Empire Of The Sun, Shakespeare In Love) from a quartet of novels by Ford Madox Ford, considered by many to be one of the literary masterworks of the 20th century. It is directed by multi Emmy-nominated and Bafta award-winning film maker Susanna White (Generation Kill, Bleak House, Jane Eyre, Nanny McPhee and The Big Bang).
Parade’s End is set during a formative period of British history – from the twilight years of the Edwardian era to the end of the First World War. At its centre is English aristocrat Christopher Tietjens (Cumberbatch), his beautiful but wilful wife Sylvia (Hall), and Valentine Wannop, a young suffragette, played by Logie-nominated actress Adelaide Clemens (Silent Hill: Revelation 3D, Generation Um, Camilla Dickenson).
Filming will take place across the UK and Belgium until December with a supporting cast including such acting luminaries as Roger Allam (The Queen, The Woman In Black) Anne-Marie Duff (The Virgin Queen, Nowhere Boy), Rupert Everett (The Importance Of Being Earnest, Hysteria), Stephen Graham (Boardwalk Empire, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy), Clare Higgins (A Fantastic Fear Of Everything, The Golden Compass), Janet McTeer (The Woman In Black, Albert Nobbs) and Miranda Richardson (Made In Dagenham, The Lost Prince).
Also starring are Freddie Fox (The Shadow Line), Jack Huston (Boardwalk Empire), Tom Mison (One Day), Geoffrey Palmer (The Lost Christmas), Jamie Parker (The Hour) and Steven Robertson (Red Riding).
Ben Stephenson, Controller, BBC Drama Commissioning, says: “It’s great to be working with HBO again on this ambitious project which further demonstrates BBC Two’s ongoing commitment to original British drama in 2012. The stellar cast assembled simply confirms the buzz and excitement around Sir Tom Stoppard’s return to British television.”
Kary Antholis, president, HBO Miniseries, says: “The marriage of Tom Stoppard’s extraordinary scripts and Susanna White’s singular cinematic vision presented us with an irresistible opportunity. As we find ourselves approaching the centennial of the First World War, this work will resonate with contemporary audiences as a touchstone for the human effects of global social transformation.”
Parade’s End was commissioned by Janice Hadlow, Controller, BBC Two and Ben Stephenson, Controller, BBC Drama Commissioning. It will join a raft of new drama series on the channel including Jed Mercurio’s Line Of Duty, Paula Milne’s White Heat, Stephen Poliakoff’s Dancing On The Edge, and a major new cycle of Shakespeare’s four most acclaimed historical works as part of a season based on the Bard’s life and works.
Parade’s End is produced by Oscar and Bafta-winning David Parfitt (The Madness Of King George, Shakespeare In Love, My Week With Marilyn) and twice Bafta-winning Selwyn Roberts (Longitude, Shackleton). Michele Buck, Damien Timmer and Tom Stoppard are executive producers for Mammoth Screen, Piers Wenger for the BBC.
It is a Mammoth Screen production for the BBC in association with HBO Miniseries and Trademark Films and BBC Worldwide and Lookout Point co-produced with BNP Paribas Fortis Film Fund and Anchorage Entertainment. Filmed with the support of the Belgian federal government’s Tax Shelter scheme.
Benedict Timothy Carlton Cumberbatch (born 19 July 1976) is an English actor. His most acclaimed roles include Stephen Hawking in the BBC drama Hawking (2004); William Pitt in the historical film Amazing Grace (2006); protagonist Stephen Ezard in the miniseries thriller The Last Enemy (2008); Paul Marshall in Atonement (2007); Bernard in Small Island (2009); Sherlock Holmes in the modern BBC adaptation series Sherlock (2010); and Peter Guillam in the spy thriller Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011).
In February 2011, he began playing both Victor Frankenstein and his creature opposite Jonny Lee Miller in Danny Boyle’s stage adaptation of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. The play had a three-month run at the National Theatre. In late 2011, he played Major Stewart in Steven Spielberg’s War Horse (2011). The film received five BAFTA nominations and six Academy Award nominations, including the Best Picture nomination in 2012. He also played Peter Guillam, one of the pivotal roles in Tomas Alfredson’s Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy (2011), which was nominated for three Academy Awards and 11 BAFTA Awards. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy was also nominated for Best Picture in 2012.
He reprised the role of Sherlock Holmes in the second series of the BBC’s Sherlock, which aired in the United Kingdom in January 2012 and was broadcast on PBS in the United States in May 2012. He also stars as Christopher Tietjens in the BBC/HBO co-production television miniseries Parade’s End, which is expected to be released in 2012. He will portray Smaug the Dragon through motion capture and voice the Necromancer in Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit: There and Back Again. He will also portray the antagonist in J.J. Abrams’s sequel to Star Trek, which is scheduled to be released in May 2013.
This year’s Emmys could be a very big deal indeed for US network PBS’s two big British imports Sherlock and Downton Abbey, as the shows have received a total of 29 nominations from the prestigious annual American television awards this year.
Sherlock will contest 13 separate categories, with stars Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman up for Outstanding Lead and Supporting Actor in a Miniseries, respectively.
Along with a nomination in the Outstanding Miniseries or Movie category, Sherlock is also recognised for its costuming, writing, directing, casting, cinematography, editing, music, sound mixing, sound editing, art direction and cinematography.
Downton is up for 14 different awards, not least the Outstanding Drama Series gong, while the show’s leads Hugh Bonneville and Michellle Dockery will compete for the Outstanding Lead Actor and Actress in a Drama Series gongs.
Maggie Smith and Joanne Froggatt are also up for awards for their work on the show, vying for the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series gong, while Brendan Coyle and Jim Carter find themselves in similar competition for best supporting actor.
The popular ITV period drama has also received nominations for everything from best writing and direction to Outstanding Hairstyling.
BBC series Luther is another British programme that’s earned a fair bit of stateside recognition and is also up for best writing, direction and miniseries, with star Idris Elba facing off against Cumberbatch in the Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries category.
And Armando Iannucci’s Veep will go up against Curb Your Enthusiasm, Girls, The Big Bang Theory, Modern Family and 30 Rock for Oustanding Comedy Series, while its lead player Julia Louis-Dreyfus is up for best lead actress in a comedy series.
A full list of this year’s nominations is available at the Emmys website. The ceremony itself will be held on Sunday 23 September at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles.
Sherlock is a British television series that presents a contemporary update of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes detective stories. It stars Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes and Martin Freeman as Doctor John Watson. After an unbroadcast pilot in 2009, the first series of three 90-minute episodes was transmitted on BBC One and BBC HD in July and August 2010, with a second series of three episodes first broadcast in January 2012. A third series has been commissioned and is scheduled to begin production in early 2013. The series has been sold to over 180 territories.
The series was conceived by Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss during train journeys to the Doctor Who production base in Cardiff. Credited as co-creators, Moffat and Gatiss each write one episode per series, with the other written by Steve Thompson. Hartswood Films produced the series for the BBC and co-produced it with WGBH Boston for its Masterpiece anthology series. Filming took place at various locations, including London, Merthyr Tydfil, Swansea, Dartmoor and Cardiff. Other cast members include Rupert Graves as DI Greg Lestrade, Andrew Scott as Jim Moriarty, Mark Gatiss as Mycroft Holmes, and Una Stubbs as Mrs. Hudson, as well as Vinette Robinson and Louise Brealey playing recurring roles.
Critical reception was overwhelmingly positive, with many reviews commending the quality of the writing, performances and direction. Sherlock has been nominated for many awards, including BAFTAs and Emmys, winning several across a variety of categories. The first series won the BAFTA Television Award for Best Drama Series. All six episodes have been released on DVD and Blu-ray Disc in the UK, alongside tie-in editions of some of Conan Doyle’s original books. Soundtrack albums from each series have also been released.
I don’t own the rights to the video.
Sherlock is a British television series that presents a contemporary update of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes detective stories. It was created by Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss, and stars Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes and Martin Freeman as Doctor John Watson. After an unbroadcast pilot in 2009, the first series of three 90-minute episodes was transmitted on BBC One and BBC HD in July and August 2010, with a second series of three episodes first broadcast in January 2012. A third series has been commissioned and will reportedly air in 2013. The series has been sold to over 180 territories.
Hartswood Films produced the series for the BBC, and co-produced with WGBH Boston for its Masterpiece anthology series. Filming took place at various locations, including London, Merthyr Tydfil, Swansea, Dartmoor and Cardiff. Other cast members include Rupert Graves as DI Greg Lestrade, Andrew Scott as Jim Moriarty, Mark Gatiss as Mycroft Holmes, Una Stubbs as Mrs. Hudson, as well as Vinette Robinson and Louise Brealey playing recurring roles.
Critical reception was overwhelmingly positive and the first series won the 2011 BAFTA Television Award for Best Drama Series. All six episodes have been released on DVD and Blu-ray Disc in the UK, alongside tie-in editions of some of Conan Doyle’s original books. Soundtrack albums from each series have also been released.
I don’t own the rights to the video.