Doctor Who: Regeneration (Dr Who)

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9780007120253: Doctor Who: Regeneration (Dr Who)

Finally in large-format paperback, the first full behind-the-scenes investigation of the BBC’s attempts to resurrect their most enduring drama series in the 1990s.

Doctor Who was voted in 1998 as the most popular drama series ever produced by the BBC, a result which shocked its critics and embarrassed the corporation which had cancelled the 35-year-old series nearly ten years before. In its time it enjoyed enormous popularity and was sold to 87 different countries. Today it retains a hugely loyal cult following, even amongst children who are too young to remember Saturday teatimes before the age of the home video.

But in the wilderness years of the 1990s, there had been one glimmer of hope – the TV movie starring Paul McGann as the eighth Doctor which it had been hoped would spawn a new era for the programme.

Doctor Who: Regeneration chronicles the BBC’s seven-year struggle since cancelling the series in 1989 to develop it as a US co-production. It offers a fascinating glimpse in microcosm of the politics of television and the BBC in the 1990s, as well as the creative development hell of making what turned out to be only a one-off TV movie with Fox in the States. Most of the issues remain pertinent to the debate which rages both within broadcasting and the hugely loyal fan-following around the world – how can a programme like Doctor Who be made in today’s commercial television market?

The book includes a wealth of pictures, including sketches, storyboards and screen-tests none of which have ever been seen. It examines a number of aborted story treatments and scripts which have also never been published.

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Review:

‘The best non-fiction Doctor Who book for years. Beautifully designed, full of rare photographs, sumptuous design sketches and concept art... a fabulous look at a turbulent time in the history of a classic television show. * * * * * ’ SFX

‘Every so often a book comes along which almost defies expectations. Doctor Who: Regeneration is such a book. Fascinating and enthralling, for anyone interested in television history, this is a landmark book. 10/10’ Starburst

From the Back Cover:

In 1996 over nine million people in Britain alone tuned in to watch the rebirth of a television legend – the 'Doctor Who' television movie starring Paul Mcgann as the eighth incarnation of BBC Television's famous Time Lord.

Broadcast on the BBC every year since 1963, loyal viewers were perplexed when, one day in 1989, it stopped. Rumours abounded about the show's viewing figures, its production costs and even a mysterious phone call from an American television producer keen to remake the show in Hollywood.

Seen through the eyes of the only man who can tell it as it really was, Philip Segal,' Doctor Who: Regeneration' offers a fascinating insight into the politics of television in the 1990's. Charting the project from its conception, it tells the story of one man's fight to bring the world's longest running and most popular science fantasy series back to the television screens of the world.

With additional views from a variety of key players, including the director Geoffrey Sax and the stars of the movie itself, 'Doctor Who: Regeneration' is a strikingly detailed account of an adventure into a previously unexplored part of the 'Doctor Who' universe.

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Philip Segal, Gary Russell
Published by Harper Collins (2001)
ISBN 10: 0007120257 ISBN 13: 9780007120253
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Segal, Philip; Russell, Gary
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