Archive for ‘Ep 5. The Girl Who Died’
November 20th, 2015
Warning! This article and its comments may contain spoilers...
exclusive-interview-ian-conningham

WhovianNet recently caught up with Series 9 guest star Ian Conningham to find out more about his role as Chuckles in The Girl Who Died.

The actor kindly gave us an exclusive insight into how he landed the part, his memories of sharing the screen with Peter Capaldi, Jenna Coleman and Maisie Williams, and what it was like to take on the guise of a Viking.

You can read our full Q&A with Ian below and don’t forget to follow him on Twitter, @IanConningham.

Q. Hi there, Ian! When did you first realise that you were interested in acting?
A. I became interested during GSCE Drama, so I decided to take it as an A level subject. I was incredibly lucky to have a brilliant and inspiring teacher on that course who suggested that I thought about applying to Drama Schools and consider acting as a realistic career option, instead of it being out of reach, or something that other people did.

Q. And how did your role as Chuckles in The Girl Who Died come about?
A. It was via my agent. Usually if the director or producers haven’t made a direct offer to a particular actor they have in mind, the casting director puts out a breakdown of what they’re looking for. Agents then submit clients they think are right for the parts. In this instance they felt I was right, so I went along for a meeting with the director Ed Bazelgette, producer Derek Ritchie and the casting department. We had a lovely chat and read a few scenes which were filmed. There was a really friendly atmosphere in the room, which helps massively. Not long after that my agent called to say is been offered the part.

Q. Were you already a fan of Doctor Who before you landed the part?
A. Absolutely, yes. Like a lot of people I may have taken refuge behind a sofa every now and then over the years (I’m not saying how recently, though). I can vaguely remember Tom Baker at various points running round, being charismatic and wonderfully mysterious. But it was his regeneration into Peter Davison that really mesmerised me. I can remember thinking it was one of most amazing thing I’d ever seen.

Q. When did you film the episode and how long did filming last?
A. It was around the end of April. I was filming on and off over a three week period.

Q. Did you do any research into the Viking era before you began filming?
A. A little bit, yes. Nothing too strenuous, though. Kept growing my beard. Had a little Google browse. Practised shouting. What I find so brilliant about Doctor Who, is that no matter where the episode in question is set, it’s the relationships between characters that are always most important, and so well written. Also, the big heroes of programmes like Doctor Who are the Art Department and Wardrobe. They create incredible worlds for us to tell our story in. So for me, the majority of my preparation was to look for clues in the script to establish Chuckles’ attitude towards, for example, being a Father of a teenage daughter, a member of a working community, and what he wanted when faced with strangers like the Doctor and Clara telling him what to do in his environment given the circumstances and threat.

Q. What are your favourite memories from your time on set?
A. I’ve got lots of great memories, from when the cameras were rolling to in between set ups and takes. Actors and crew on the whole are a social bunch, so it’s great to sit and chat, swap stories and discover mutual friends. But I do have to say that taking the TARDIS for a spin one lunch time, as suggested by the Doctor himself, was off the scale… and I promise that isn’t a lie!

Q. Speaking of the Doctor, what was it like to work alongside Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman?
A. It was fantastic. They both shoulder the responsibility of the show with huge care and love, and are superb to work with. Maisie Williams was also brilliant and great fun, as were our fellow Vikings. It’s so apparent that everybody working on the show in all departments really care about it. It’s so engrained in our popular culture. I don’t think I was the only one on set thinking, “Blimey, I’m definitely working on Doctor Who”. It’s a great place to work.

Q. Based on your own experiences, what advice would you give to any aspiring actors reading this?
A. Follow your heart. Work hard. Read. Grow some thick skin. Trust your instincts. Have a sense of humour. Read. Listen. Work hard. Go to the theatre. Try to surround yourself with positive people. Don’t be late. Work hard. Take direction. Be kind. Ignore the bullies. Be brave. Read. Show respect. Take risks. Don’t forget to breathe. And enjoy it.

Q. Finally, have you got any upcoming projects you can tell us about?
A. There are various things that are coming up next year. An episode of “Musketeers” for BBC1. “Grantchester” for ITV. A comedy called “The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret”. And I’ve just spent a couple of days shooting a part in a feature film, with a brilliant script by Alice Birch, called “Lady Macbeth”.

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October 17th, 2015
Warning! This article and its comments may contain spoilers...

Captured by Vikings, the Doctor and Clara must help protect their village from Space Warriors from the future: the Mire. Outnumbered and outgunned, their fate seems inevitable. So why is the Doctor preoccupied with a single Viking girl?

Two fandoms collided tonight as Maisie Williams joined forces with the Doctor and Clara in a valiant Viking escapade with Space Warriors from the future. Because why the hell not?!

In The Girl Who Died, the Game of Thrones star well and truly left her mysterious mark on the Doctor Who universe as the enigmatic Ashildr who wasted no time in challenging our leading Time Lord in an unexpected way. We’ve known that she’d be full of surprises from the get-go, of course, since her character has previously been billed as a “significant role”, but was it worth the wait and did your own theory about her prove to be correct?

Meanwhile, the latest episode introduced us to a brand new and terrifying monster, in the form of the murderous Mire, but is the story itself destined to go down in history? Let us know what you made of Series 9’s latest offering by voting, rating and commenting below.

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NOTE: This discussion will NOT be spoiler monitored so please do not read the comments if you haven’t seen The Girl Who Died. You have been warned!

October 17th, 2015
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who-is-ashildr-your-last-minute-theories

One of the biggest mysteries surrounding Series 9 will finally be resolved later this evening as Maisie Williams prepares to leave her mark on the Doctor Who universe.

The Game of Thrones actress will guest star in tonight’s episode, The Girl Who Died, as a mysterious Viking girl called Ashildr. It all sounds simple enough, but since her casting was announced back in March, we’ve repeatedly been told that she’s actually a particularly “significant” figure – “cosmic”, in fact – “who will challenge the Doctor in unexpected ways”. Whatever that means!

Hell, it’s even been foretold that she could be “good or bad”, so it’s safe to say that the heightened ambiguity of the situation has sent our fevered minds into a speculative frenzy. All of our questions will finally be answered tonight but you can while away the remaining hours by leaving your last minute theories in the comments section below. Who is Ashildr?

Who - or what - is Ashildr?

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The Girl Who Died will air TONIGHT at 8:25pm on BBC One. Click here to watch the trailer!

October 16th, 2015
Warning! This article and its comments may contain spoilers...
maisie-williams-teases-interesting-dynamic

Maisie Williams has revealed that fans will get to see an “interesting dynamic” between her character and the Doctor and Clara in this weekend’s episode.

The Game of Thrones star will share the screen with the Time Lord and his companion in The Girl Who Died and, although she remained tight-lipped about the true identity of her mysterious alter ego, recently named as Ashildr, she did affirm that she will “work closely with the Doctor” as he becomes embroiled in a deadly mission to protect a Viking village from futuristic Space Warriors.

Her casting was announced back in March when it was also revealed that she’d play a “significant role” who will “challenge the Doctor in unexpected ways”. Nothing else has been unearthed since, apart from the fact that she could be “good or bad”. The answers will all be revealed when The Girl Who Died airs tomorrow night on BBC One at 8:20pm…

Click here to go back to Before the Flood and rate & discuss this week’s episode…

October 10th, 2015
Warning! This article and its comments may contain spoilers...
next-time-the-girl-who-died

Series 9 continues next Saturday – hurrah! – and, if you’re a fan of Game of Thrones, this is probably the one you’ve been waiting for.

Maisie Williams joins the Doctor and Clara in The Girl Who Died when the TARDIS team are captured by Vikings in a village threatened by Space Warriors from the future. Their fate seems inevitable, but why is the Doctor so distracted?

The Girl Who Died airs on Saturday 17th October at the slightly earlier time of 8.20pm on BBC One.

Click here to go back to Before the Flood and rate & discuss this week’s episode…

August 2nd, 2015
Warning! This article and its comments may contain spoilers...
steven-teases-maisies-significant-role

Steven Moffat has dropped some intriguing hints about Maisie Williams’ “significant role” in Series 9 – by revealing nothing about who she’ll be playing. Classic, Moff!

Speaking at the Television Critics Association’s press tour, the showrunner remained tightlipped about the Game of Thrones star’s involvement in the upcoming series, revealing only that it’s “a clever idea” and one we won’t see coming. “It’s a great part and she’s terrific in it,” he affirmed. “All I will say is that she’s not playing a returning character. She is someone brand new and not a character from the Doctor’s past.”

So, there goes our generic River Song theory! Who do YOU think she’ll be playing? Discuss!

Got something to say about Series 9? Get it off your chest in our new discussion…

July 4th, 2015
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peter-on-maisie-williams-cosmic-character

Peter Capaldi has revealed some interesting new tidbits about Maisie Williams’ involvement in Series 9.

The Game of Thrones actress will star in Episodes 5 and 6 – The Girl Who Died and The Woman Who Lived – as a mysterious character who looks set to “challenge the Doctor in unexpected ways”. While Peter remained tightlipped about what lies in store, he told Entertainment Weekly that “she shifts in cosmic ways”. “Maisie is fantastic,” he said. “A sharp, talented tornado. As an 18 year old, she has taught me many new words and expressions.”

What’s your theory about Maisie’s role? She could be “good or bad”, which doesn’t help…

Got something to say about Series 9? Get it off your chest in our new discussion…

April 11th, 2015
Warning! This article and its comments may contain spoilers...
maisies-s9-role-could-be-good-or-bad

Maisie Williams was a guest on Alan Carr Chatty Man last night (Friday) where she briefly discussed her role in Series 9 of Doctor Who.

It has recently been confirmed that the Game of Thrones actress will be appearing in an upcoming episode called The Girl Who Died as a mysterious character “who will challenge the Doctor in unexpected ways”.

“There’s speculation about whether she’s a younger Clara or someone new,” she said. “I’m not going to say which one!”

While she remained tight-lipped about her identity, she did tease that she’s going to “put the Doctor to the test”. She added: “It’s the sort of dynamic that we’ve never seen before.”

Who or what do you think Maisie will be? Share your weird and wonderful theories below…

The Doctor returns in The Magician’s Apprentice… Click HERE for the latest news!

March 30th, 2015
Warning! This article and its comments may contain spoilers...
new-series-9-episodes-confirmed

The BBC has today (Monday) released more intriguing details about Series 9 of Doctor Who.

This week filming has commenced on the third block which consists of two period adventures, The Girl Who Died by Jamie Mathieson and Steven Moffat, and The Woman Who Lived by Catherine Tregenna.

Jamie’s previous episodes include Mummy on the Orient Express and Flatline while Torchwood writer Catherine Tregenna is contributing to Doctor Who for the first time.

The episodes are being helmed by Poldark director Ed Bazalgette and guest stars for the block include Game of Thrones star Maisie Williams, whose unnamed character will “challenge the Doctor in very unexpected ways”, comedian Rufus Hound, Tom Stourton, Ariyon Bakare, Simon Lipkin, Ian Conningham, Murray McArthur, Barnaby Kay, John Voce and Struan Rodger. Further casting for Series 9 is expected to be announced in due course.

The Doctor returns in The Magician’s Apprentice… Click HERE for the latest news!

March 30th, 2015
Warning! This article and its comments may contain spoilers...
maisie-williams-joins-series-9

The BBC has today (Monday) confirmed that Maisie Williams will be guest starring in Series 9 of Doctor Who.

The Game of Thrones star will play a mysterious character who “is going to challenge the Doctor in very unexpected ways” when he returns to our screens this autumn.

The actress has started filming in Cardiff today as production begins on two period adventures, The Girl Who Died by Jamie Mathieson and Steven Moffat, and The Woman Who Lived by Catherine Tregenna.

The stories are being directed by Ed Bazalgette whose most recent work includes Poldark.

“I’m so excited to be working on Doctor Who as it’s such a big and important part of British culture,” Maisie has commented. “I can’t wait to meet the cast and crew and start filming.”

Steven Moffat added: “We’re thrilled to have Maisie Williams joining us on Doctor Who. It’s not possible to say too much about who or what she’s playing but this time the Doctor may just be out of his depth. We know Maisie is going to give him exactly the right sort of hell.”

What do you think of these developments? Join the conversation in the comments below…

The Doctor returns in The Magician’s Apprentice… Click HERE for the latest news!

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