Drama

Himesh Patel and Ewen Leslie join BBC Two’s new drama The Luminaries

(Credit: BBC)

Set in New Zealand during the 1860s, the series follows British adventurer Ana Wetherell (Eve Hewson) who falls in love with fortune hunter Emery Staines (Himesh Patel), and is plunged into a world of tragedy, mystery and revenge.

The couple must overcome numerous barriers put in their way, particularly from the spiteful Lydia Wells (Eva Green) and rich boy Francis Carver (Marton Csokas).

Bill Malone delivers Dan Gilbert Memorial Lecture

Adrian Dunbar (Jim Hogan) & Carolina Main (Cat Hogan) in Blood (Credit: Channel 5)

Virgin Media Television’s director of programming said: “We’re constantly being told that linear TV is dead, but the facts actually present a different picture.”

In Ireland, Virgin Media is “bucking the trend and showing continual growth in audiences”, a result, he claimed, of a “notable step up in [the] scale, ambition and quality” of programming.

RTS Student Masterclasses: Drama with Sophie Petzal

Sophie Petzal (Credit: Paul Hampartsoumian)

She shared the pleasure and pain of writing drama with EastEnders boss John Yorke at this year’s RTS Student Programme Masterclasses. 

Script editing “was an invaluable way to learn about television production and writing … Having that ‘production head’ gave me an advantage in writing [my] first episode [of Wolfblood) …but I was still very much learning the ropes.”

A TV Christmas Carol: Lord Grade, Kate Phillips, Kate Russell and Anita Singh join the RTS for a seasonal take on Christmas TV

Do you remember waking up to Noel Edmonds on Christmas morning, as you searched for a tangerine in your stocking? The Queen’s SpeechThe Sound of MusicChristmas Celebrity Squares and over 20 million people watching Eric and Ernie?

Or what about today, with Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, The Alternative Queen’s Speech, Coronation Street and EastEnders but also perhaps a box set.

Is the future of Christmas TV a barren land of declining audiences as we all spend Christmas day asking Alexa?

Filming begins on BBC One's Noughts + Crosses adaptation

The six-part series will follow the love story between two teenage protagonists Sephy Hadley (Baduza) and Callum McGregor (Rowan) who are divided by the colour of their skin in a dystopian world. 

Childhood friends Sephy, a member of the black ruling class the 'Crosses' and the daughter of the Home Secretary, and Callum, a member of the white underclass the 'Noughts', must overcome violent forces trying to tear them apart as their relationship becomes more complex and romantic as they grow up. 

Emma Thompson to star in Russell T Davies drama Years and Years

Emma Thompson DBE (Credit: BBC)

Set in a Britain rocked by political, economic and technological changes, the six-part drama follows the Lyons family as their busy live converge one night in 2019.

Over the next fifteen years, the drama tracks the twists and turns of everyday life to find out if this ordinary family can change the world.

Starring in the family saga is two-time Oscar winner Emma Thompson (Love Actually) as Vivienne Rook, an outspoken and controversial public figure whose rise to power brings an uncertain future.

Elen Rhys and Julian Looman lead new BBC One daytime crime drama The Mallorca Files

Elen Rhys and Julian Looman (Credit: BBC)

Set on the Spanish Island of Mallorca, introverted British cop Miranda Blake (Rhys) clashes with her German partner Max Winter (Looman) who is unashamedly unconventional and wears his heart on his sleeve.

Their opposing personalities play out in their crime-solving endeavours while the Police Chief Inez Villegas keeps them busy with cases her own team don’t want.

Written by Dan Sefton (The Good Karma Hospital), the new series is directed by Bryn Higgins (Black Mirror).