Tag: bbc

Silly Old Bear: ‘Winnie the Pooh’ Was Published On This Day!

Winnie the Pooh
Winnie the Pooh
Tubby little cubby all stuffed with fluff
He’s Winnie the Pooh
Winnie the Pooh
Willy nilly silly old bear

Sorry, didn’t mean to get that stuck in your head. But its a good introduction to what was doubtlessly a massive childhood memory for us: Winnie the Pooh. The silly old bear has made quite the impact on children across the world, universally beloved by young and old alike. Although Winnie the Pooh’s books have been overshadowed by the Disney adaptations, they’re still lovely and cherished by millions for their warmth and simplistic yet surprisingly complicated philosophical musings.

 

image via Disney

First published on October 14th, 1926, the children’s book introduced the world to Winnie the Pooh and his colorful cast of companions: Piglet, Eyeore, Kanga and Roo, Owl, and Rabbit. Tigger is the sole exception, not being introduced until the book’s sequel, The House at Pooh Corner. The book was written by A.A. Milne, who drew inspiration for the character from his son, Christopher Robin, who was also put into the books more or less as himself. Winnie the Pooh was named after Christopher’s toy bear, who was named ‘Winnie’ for the Canadian black bear he saw at the London zoo and ‘Pooh’ a swan the family had met while on holiday. On the character’s name, the author was quoted as saying:

 

But his arms were so stiff … they stayed up straight in the air for more than a week, and whenever a fly came and settled on his nose he had to blow it off. And I think – but I am not sure – that that is why he is always called Pooh.

image via wikipedia 

Winnie the Pooh became a bestselling phenomenon upon release, with its sequel following its publication shortly after. It has been translated into dozens of languages, including Latin (the Latin translation made the New York Times bestseller’s list). The rights were licensed by Disney in the 60s, where Winnie the Pooh and his cast were featured in several cartoon features by Disney, before Disney acquired full rights from Milne’s estate in 2001.

In the stories, Pooh is characterized as being a bear of very little brain, being often slow witted but also thoughtful, kind, and steadfast to his friends. Overall, his main motivation is often honey, which he spells as ‘hunny’. Overall, he is kindhearted and very loyal to his friends, even the perpetually grumpy Eyeore.

image via Disney

Happy birthday to our favorite bear, with the publication of his very first book. What fond memories do you have of the bear of little brain and his friends? Tell us in the comments and maybe you can help introduce Pooh to the next generation as well!

Featured Image Via BBC

The Game Is Afoot! Celebrate the Publication of A ‘Sherlock Holmes’ Book Today!

You know the name. Sherlock Holmes is a pop culture icon, someone who everyone knows even if they haven’t read his books, seen his movies, or watched his numerous tv shows. He’s a focal point of British history and literature, having influenced dozens of fictional and even real detectives throughout his literary life. On this day (Oct. 14th), one of the seminal Holmes collections was published, entitled The Adventures of Sherlock Holmesa collection of twelve short stories.

image via wikipedia

First featured in The Strand magazine, the stories were very popular and boosted the subscriptions to the magazine, allowing Sherlock Holme’s author, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, to demand increased payment with each story published. Sidney Paget illustrated all twelve of the stories that came to be featured in the Adventures collection, in time coming to best known for his artwork accompanying the series. The collection includes numerous famous Sherlock Holmes tales, such as A Case of Identity, The Red-Headed League, The Adventure with the Speckled Band, and A Scandal in Bohemia. The last one was especially notable for featuring the character of Irene Adler, who although only made on appearance in the Holmes canon nevertheless became a feature of numerous adaptations, such as the BBC show Sherlock starring Benedict Cumberbatch.

Image via Wikipedia

The stories were well received upon their serialization, with critics describing them holding a ‘unique power’ and some even saying Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was the best short story writer since Edgar Allen Poe. The stories themselves had been adapted frequently in other media, with many of the stories being featured in the Granda Television adaptation of the Holmes canon, which ran from 1984 to 1995. They were also adapted on the BBC Radio 4 program, which ran from 1990 to 1991. Elements, such as the previously noted Irene Adler, have of course being taken out and used as an overall influenced over numerous Holmes adaptations as well without specifically adapting a single story.

Image via Wikipedia

Happy birthday to this seminal collection of Sherlock Holmes tales! Crack open your volume if you own one and give these stories another read together. What’s your favorite short story featured here? Tell us in the comments!

Featured Image Via BBC

‘His Dark Materials’ “Perfect for TV Adaptation”, Says Star Ruth Wilson

His Dark Materials is coming to HBO this fall. The show is a joint effort between HBO and the BBC, and stars Ruth Wilson, Dafne Keen, James McAvoy, and Lin-Manuel Miranda. In an interview with The Guardian, Ruth Wilson spoke highly of the show, noting:

His Dark Materials is perfect for television.

 

She went on to say that with Game of Thrones, HBO has proven that television is no longer film’s poorer sister. In fact, she noted books are inherently better for the small screen, saying you can really take your time with a book’s content as opposed to rushing through its contents in an hour and a half on the big screen.

There’s no difference anymore and in a way, if you’re going to tell a drama – which this is, as well as being fantasy – you’ve got more time. You have eight hours to explore that, rather than an hour and a half.

 

Image via the Guardian
 

She says the show ‘feels special’ and she is very hopeful about how it will be received by general audiences. The scale of it would have been impossible years ago but nowadays, fantasy can look just as epic, if not more so, on the small than in film. Having more time to explore the world and get to know the characters are huge pluses as well.

His Dark Materials is a trilogy of epic fantasy books by Philip Pullman. It is a coming-of-age tale centering around two children in a strange alternative Oxford. While magic, witches, and giant armored polar bears exist in this universe, themes of spirituality and physics are also explored. The books have attracted controversy for their criticism of religion, but this hasn’t stopped them from being enormously popular, garnering numerous awards and reaching bestsellers lists. The iconic series will see its debut this fall on HBO and we cannot wait. 

 

Image via BBC
 

Are you excited for this classic fantasy series to finally get its well-deserved TV adaptation? Below, you can watch the official trailer for the show. Let us know what you think in the comments!

 

 

 

Featured Image Via Collider

 

First Look At Netflix’s Upcoming ‘Dracula’ Adaptation!

Sink your teeth into this, vampire fans. A new Dracula tv series, based on the original novel by Bram Stoker, is coming to Netflix and the BBC. While not airing for quite a while (the supernatural drama is expected to air in late 2019 or early 2020), what details have been revealed are quite salivating. According to The Radio Times  the series will be a collaboration between the BBC and Netflix, with the two corporations working together to air the series. Dracula will be helmed by the creators of SherlockSteven Moffat and Mark Gatiss. Dracula himself will be played by Claes Bang, a Danish actor who said he would be ‘thrilled’ by the opportunity. He was further quoted as saying:

 

“I am thrilled to be taking on the role of Dracula, especially when the script is in the hands of the incredible talents of Steven Moffat, Mark Gatiss and the team responsible for Sherlock.”

 

Bang will be joined by a wide ensemble of actors to help bring the bloody world of Dracula to life. Actors Joanna Scanlan, Chanel Cresswell, Matthew Beard, Lydia West, Dolly Wells, John Heffernan, Lujza Richter and Morfydd Clark, Paul Brennen, Sofia Oxenham, John McCrea, Phil Dunster and Millicent Wong will be joining the drama in as-yet unknown roles. Mark Gatiss himself will also be in the cast, having expressed an interest in playing Dracula’s mad henchman Renfield. But nothing is set in stone yet.

 

Image via The Radio Times

The show will last approximately three episodes, each of undisclosed length but since this is from the creators of Sherlock, we’re guessing each episode will be movie length in runtime, an hour or more to get their money’s worth of the material. The show’s plot will be, naturally, an adaptation of the Dracula novel but offering a new spin to make it relevant to modern audiences. Moffat said the show will re-centre Dracula as the hero of his own story, as opposed to the antagonist he was in the book and most other adaptations. He will be at the center of the action, as opposed to a more shadowy figure who makes fleeting appearances to menace the heroes. Moffat and Gatiss described the process as difficult, keen to give Dracula center stage but also not take away from his evil at all. They hope their hard work pays off and say they ‘handled’ making Dracula both the main character and truly evil. But we’ll have to wait to see how that plays out onscreen.

 

 

Image via The Radio Times

 

The series is currently in production, having recently completed its second episode. The show is currently filming at Bray Studios, Maidenhead, which was also the location of many classic vampire films starring Christopher Lee as the titular Count, made by Hammer Film Productions. Not much else is known about the show at this time, how closely it will adapt the book or even what the plot will be but the BBC released a short synopsis as a little teaser:

‘Three feature length episodes will re-introduce the world to Dracula, the vampire who made evil sexy. In Transylvania in 1897, the blood-drinking Count is drawing his plans against Victorian London. And be warned: the dead travel fast.’

We can’t wait to see this adaptation of a classic horror novel coming to television. We’ll keep our eyes and ears peeled for further developments. Until then, watch the shadows and keep your garlic close!

 

 

Featured Image Via SyFy 

Queen of Crime Agatha Christie’s Witch Mystery ‘Pale Horse’ to Be Adapated!

The 1961 novel The Pale Horse, written by The Queen of Crime herself Agatha Christie, is getting adapted for the small screen to teamwork by the BBC and Amazon Prime!

 

"Pale Horse" Cover

Image Via Amazon

Published 1961, Pale Horse is about how a police investigation looking into the deaths of Father Gorman, a Catholic priest, who was struck dead in a fog. Interestingly, Father Gorman died directly after hearing the last words of a dying woman where she gave him a list of names of people who had died under mysterious circumstances. Why was Father Gorman killed? What did the dying woman tell him besides the list of names? And who was this dying woman?

Well, the investigation leads the police to the The Pale Horse, the home of a trio of witches living in a small village who, rumor has it, can do away with people using dark arts.

 

Agatha Christie

Image Via Star Tribute

Anthony Berkeley Cox, writing under the pen-name ‘Francis Iles’ praised the novel in The Guardian, saying:

The Pale Horse is in fact the best sample from this particular factory for some time, and that is saying plenty. The black magic theme is handled in a masterly and sinister fashion, and to give away what lay behind it would be unforgivable. This is a book which nobody (repeat, nobody) should miss.

I too won’t spoil the story, I will only say this: Agatha Christie isn’t Stephen King, she’s the writer of murder mystery novels.

Now according to Variety this new adaptation of Christie’s work has been given the green light by the BBC and Amazon. The plan, thus far, is that BBC will produce a two-part adaptation while Amazon Prime Video will co-produce and to show it in the U.S.

 

Mammoth Screen

Image Via Vimeo

ITV-backed British producer Mammoth Screen is making the two-part series.

 

Leonora Lonsdale

Leonora Lonsdale.com

Leonora Lonsdale, of Beast fame, will direct.

 

Ado Yoshizaki Cassuto

Image Via Casting Networks.com

Ado Yoshizaki Cassuto, of City of Tiny Lights fame will produce.

 

Sarah Phelps

Image Via Agatha Christie.com

BAFTA-nominated Sarah Phelps, who won wide acclaim for her TV version of the Christie classic And Then There Were None will be writing this series as well. In a statement she said:

“Written in 1961, against the backdrop of the Eichmann trial, the escalation of the Cold War and Vietnam, ‘The Pale Horse’ is a shivery, paranoid story about superstition, love gone wrong, guilt and grief…It’s about what we’re capable of when we’re desperate and what we believe when all the lights go out and we’re alone in the dark.”

Will you be watching this new series in the dark? I will, although it won’t be doing any favors for my insomnia.

 

 

Featured Image Via Audio Editions.com