Get ready for summer on ABC1 and ABC2.
There’s plenty to tempt you. Including Doctor Who, Torchwood, Red Dwarf, John Safran’s unaired pilot in which he confronts Ray Martin, a new series from Jonathan Welch, Andrew Denton’s Elders series, Scarlett Johansson and Helen Hunt in A Good Woman, a two part Oliver Twist tale -and much, much more.
It all begins as early as November 15.
The Red Dwarf: Back to Earth reunion will screen in the week beginning November 29th on ABC2, Doctor Who: The Waters of Mars will screen on ABC1 in the week beginning December 6th and Torchwood: Children of Earth will begin the week of January 3rd 2010 on ABC2.
2009 (*denotes ABC2):
In local series there is Jailbirds, the new series from choirmaster Jonathan Welch, Andrew Denton in Elders, plus dramas including the film Samson and Delilah and indigenous short films The New Black.
In international drama there is the 8 part drama on 1920’s Liverpool Lilies, Scarlett Johansson and Helen Hunt in A Good Woman, a third series of Wild at Heart*, a 2 part Oliver Twist tale and Doctor Who: The Waters of Mars.
Factual and interview series include Joanna Lumley in the Land of the Northern Lights, Ken Burns’ The National Parks: America’s Best Idea, Pamela Stephenson and Billy Connolly in a second series of Shrink Rap*plus profiles on Doris Day* and Audrey Hepburn*.
In Documentaries there is Prince Charles’ Other Mistress, Willie’s Wonky Chocolate Factory*, Snowdon & Margaret: Inside the Royal Marriage, No Way San Jose*, Backstairs Billy: The Queen Mum’s Butler, Hitler’s Favourite Royal and Jack Osborne: Celebrity Adreneline Junkie*.
The Schools Spectacular has a 90min version on ABC1 and an extended version on ABC2.
Comedies include John Safran: The Lost Pilot, Martin Clunes in The Man Who Lost His Head, Robson Green in Clash of the Santas, and the Red Dwarf: Back To Earth reunion*,
At Christmas ABC1 will feature the annual Queen’s Christmas Message and Christmas specials of favourite comedy series, while ABC2 has a Father Ted Christmas Special, A Very Specky Christmas, Doctor Who: The Next Doctor, Ideal Christmas and The Peter Serafinowicz Show Christmas Special. On Boxing Day the Australian film Bush Christmas premieres on ABC2.
New Year’s Eve on ABC2 premieres the concerts U2 Live in Concert and Seal Soul Live. Graham Norton will welcome in 2010 with The Graham Norton Show ‐ NYE Special.
2010 will begin with poetry series Bush Slam with HG Nelson, Seven Ages of Rock, series 3 of Eataholics*, Secrets of the Forbidden City, Hindenburg, The Great Wall of China, Torchwood: Children of Earth*, Gavin & Stacey series two*, and the comedy series Taking the Flak*.
There will also be summer films including Richard E. Grant’s Wah Wah, The Proposition, Oyster Farmer, Lucky Miles and Romulus My Father.
Natural History programmes include Operation Jumbo, Penguin Adventure with Nigel Marven, Badgers: Secrets of the Sett, Hyena Queen, Killer Whale Island with Nigel Marven and Whale Shark.
In this new four‐part Australian documentary series, choirmaster Jonathon Welch of The Choir of Hard Knocks fame tries to build a choir out of a varied group of female prisoners who are inmates at a low security Victorian prison. Can Jonathon’s help prepare them for a new life ‘going straight’ on the outside?
This new six‐part series of the interview program Elders features Andrew Denton speaking intimately with American actor Alan Alda; Australian TV personality and writer Clive James; British human rights campaigner Helen Bamber OBE; Bangladeshi economist Muhammad Yunus; Indigenous actress Rosalie Kunoth‐Monks and British evolutionary biologist, author and outspoken atheist Richard Dawkins.
Lilies is a new eight‐part drama series from the UK premiering on ABC1. The drama centres around the Moss family – Dadda, Billy, Iris, Ruby and May – as they try to make their way in the working class world of 1920’s Liverpool. CAST: Brian McCardie (Rob Roy), Leanne Rowe (Jane Eyre), Scot Williams (Lock Stock & Two Smoking Barrells)
A GOOD WOMAN (ABC1)
One of Oscar Wilde’s most popular plays is given a new screen interpretation in this period comedy film starring Scarlett Johansson and Helen Hunt. Set in New York and Italy in the early 1930s, Mrs. Erlynne is a widow who lives comfortably through the largesse of several married men, and when she runs out of wealthy suitors in Manhattan, she decides to find greener pastures among the wealthy elite of Italy’s Amalfi coast.
WHAT A DIFFERENCE A DAY MADE: DORIS DAY SUPERSTAR (ABC2)
This is an endearing account of the life of American actress and singer Doris Day. As cute and wholesome as Doris herself, this 52 minute documentary offers a fascinating insight into the actress’s Germanic roots, her Hollywood days and her twilight years.
RED DWARF: BACK TO EARTH (ABC2)
A decade since the cast of this hugely popular comedy last appeared together, the Red Dwarf’s crew is reunited and finally returning to Earth in this new four‐part series premiering on ABC2. But Earth in 2009 is not what the boys expected. Discovering they are destined to die, the Dwarfers – in true Blade Runner style – track down those responsible for their creation to plead for their lives…
THE NEW BLACK (ABC1)
Margaret Pomeranz presents The New Black – a series of ten short, seven minute films featuring Indigenous stories, authored and crafted by Indigenous film‐makers, and told in innovative and compelling ways. The series features some well‐known names, including Leah Purcell and Warwick Thornton (Samson & Delilah), and Deborah Mailman in her first turn as a director. The films are Aunty Maggie & the Womba Wakgun; Bourke Boy; Jacob; The Farm; Nia’s Melancholy; The Party Shoes and Ralph.
JOHN SAFRAN: THE LOST PILOT (ABC1)
The ABC will at last show one of the controversial John Safran pilots – his short one‐off documentary investigating TV presenter Ray Martin ‐ as a TV half‐hour special. It will feature as part of Safran’s return to the ABC, following on from his new ABC TV series John Safran’s Race Relations.
DR WHO SPECIAL: WATERS OF MARS (ABC1)
In this Australian premiere of this brand new 75 minute Dr Who sci‐fi special, the inhabitants of a Mars base are being infected by a mysterious water creature which takes over its victims. Dr Who (David Tennant) is thrust into the middle of this catastrophe knowing a larger one is waiting around the corner, and his skills as a Time Lord are tested once again.
OLIVER TWIST (ABC1)
Born the illegitimate son of an unwed mother, Oliver Twist is condemned to an early life in the work house and then as a pickpocket on the streets of 1830s London. This new two‐part drama starring Timothy Spall breathes new life into Dickens’ much loved classic, Oliver Twist, faithfully portraying the original text in two 90 minute Sunday night episodes – without the classic musical numbers.
BUSH SLAM WITH HG NELSON (ABC1)
Six episodes, three days, two poets, one town…sharpen your pencils for a television series like no other. Hosted by HG Nelson, Bush Slam visits six quintessential Australian towns over six half‐hour programs, finding the heartbeat of the nation in verse and discovering the true spirit of the country. Our host is at the helm of the Bush Slam bus, each week taking two very different artists to explore a rural community and meet its people. Each is given just three days to capture the heart of the town in verse – and then perform their work before the locals in a live head‐to-head poetry slam! Together, their writing covers a vast spectrum of styles, from bush poetry to country to hip hop. The series features some of Australia’s leading poets and songwriters, including John Kinsella, Geoff Goodfellow, Sam Wagan Watson, Emily Ballou, Joel Ma, Melinda Schneider and James Blundell.
TORCHWOOD: CHILDREN OF EARTH (ABC2)
In this latest Captain Jack five‐part special, Torchwood: Children of Earth, our hero is faced with his fiercest threat to date ‐ one that sends the future of Torchwood and the entire human race spiralling into danger. Over five one‐hour episodes the Torchwood team battle against the odds, but do they stand a chance of saving mankind?