Ian McKellen

This week's top TV: 12 - 18 December

Ian McKellen Vicious ITV

Monday: David Blaine: Beyond Magic

Channel 4, 9pm

Following his critically acclaimed ratings for David Blaine: Real or Magic, Blaine returns with his most revealing performance yet. 

Magic meets documentary in the one-hour special, which has been two years in the making, as Blaine blows the minds of David Beckham, Johnny Depp and Patrick Stewart, along with others.

BBC to feature external content on iPlayer

BBC iPlayer

The plans are part of the BBC's aims to encourage the growth of not-for-profit creative institutions, and broaden its cultural offering online. Organisations in the deal are all involved in the Shakespeare Lives festival 2016. 

"We’re experimenting live with digital formats like never before," said BBC Director General Tony Hall. "For the first time, the BBC will be showcasing the great talent we have in our leading cultural institutions on BBC iPlayer. It’s another step towards an open BBC – something we all believe in.”

Tim Minchin and Al Murray to star at BBC Shakespeare Festival

Shakespeare, Benedict Cumberbatch,

The event is part of the BBC Shakespeare Festival which will take place in April to mark 400 years since the writer’s death.

The live television event will be hosted by David Tennant and directed by RSC Artistic Director Gregory Doran, and will feature Dame Judi Dench, Sir Ian McKellen, Joseph Fiennes, the English National Opera and more.