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article imageUnquiet Christmas for Doctor Who

By Mathew Wace Peck     Nov 16, 2010 in Entertainment
The Official Doctor Who Site has confirmed the title of this year's Doctor Who Christmas special, which sees Matt Smith joined by Sir Michael Gambon.
The Yuletide episode of the BBC's long-running TV science-fiction drama is to be based on Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol – and, appropriately enough, is called . . . A Christmas Carol.
The announcement ends months of speculation about the story, which, at one time, was rumoured to be called Father Who.
During the summer, Digital Journal reported on (the BBC's Controller of Drama Commissioning) Ben Stephenson's enthusiasm for the 2010 Christmas Special – the first to be written by Steven Moffat (Sherlock). Stephenson said:
Matt Smith and Karen Gillan captivated audiences in their debut series and Doctor Who's clever twist on the much loved A Christmas Carol will thrill BBC One viewers this year with special guest stars Sir Michael Gambon and singing sensation Katherine Jenkins joining Amy and the Doctor for an unforgettable present!
Meanwhile, the BBC's Official Doctor Who Site reports:
Right now we don't know much about the special [other than it's] Doctor Who's clever twist on the much loved A Christmas Carol and now the title reflects that!
[However] earlier in the year, Lead Writer and Executive Producer, Steven Moffat, confirmed, "Oh, we're going for broke with this one. It's all your favourite Christmas movies at once, in an hour, with monsters. And the Doctor. And a honeymoon. And . . . oh, you'll see. I've honestly never been so excited about writing anything!"
A Christmas Carol was first published in 1843, by Chapman and Hall, when Dickens was 31. It was set in the London of its time, in the early Victorian era. The novella tells the story of Ebenezer Scrooge and his transformation from a miserable and stingy human being into a kind and benevolent one following supernatural visitations from Jacob Marley and the Ghosts of Christmases Past, Present, and Yet to Come.
Since its publication, it has been adapted on countless occasions – around the world and in many languages – for theatre, radio, television, film, television and opera.
Unquiet Dead
Previously, Doctor Who paid tribute to Dickens, in 2005, when the author, played by Simon Callow, appeared in a story entitled The Unquiet Dead, by Mark Gatiss (Crooked House). That episode – which also starred Eve Myles (Belonging)as Gwyneth – pitched the Doctor (Christopher Eccleston) and Rose (Billy Piper) against the ghost-like Gelth. Myles went on to play Gwyneth's descendent, Gwen Taylor, in the ongoing Doctor Who spin-off, Torchwood, a part especially written for her by the show's creator, Russell T Davies (The Second Coming).
A Christmas Carol will see Smith's eleventh Doctor and his companions, Amy (Karen Gillan) and Rory (Arthur Darvill), joined by Sir Michael Gambon (Dumbledore in the Harry Potter movies) and Katherine Jenkins, the Welsh opera singer, in her first acting role.
This will be the sixth Christmas special since the show's return in 2005, but the first to star Smith, and to have been written by Moffat. The previous ones were all written by Davies for David Tennant's tenth Doctor.
A preview of the Christmas adventure will be broadcast during BBC One's Children in Need, on Friday, 19 November, while the episode itself will be screened on BBC One on Christmas Day. There will also be a special edition of the TV documentary series, Doctor Who Confidential, which will include Smith and Gillan carol singing.
More about Doctor Who, Matt smith, Steven moffat, Charles dickens, Ebeneezer scrooge
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