Doctor Who: Scream of Shalka (Animated)

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  • The TARDIS lands in a small English village in 2003, where the population is living in fear from a malevolent alien force. With the help of UNIT and his new friend Alison, the Doctor discovers that a race called the Shalka are residing underground, preparing to strip away the earth's ozone layer and embark on a full-scale invasion of the planet.

    In 2003, Doctor Who was about to celebrate its fortieth anniversary with little fanfare. But then BBC producer James Goss pitched the idea of a special animated tale to bring a brand new story to the masses – screened exclusively on the BBC’s official website.

    Previous Doctor Who webcasts were little more than a series of static illustrations, but Scream Of The Shalka would be a much more ambitious project. Goss recruited novelist Paul Cornell to pen the script, and in a casting coup engaged Richard E Grant to portray the Doctor. Sophie Okonedo, Craig Kelly and Derek Jacobi (foreshadowing his triumphant portrayal of The Master in 2007’s Utopia) rounded out a talented cast, along with a then-unknown David Tennant in a minor role

    Screening in six weekly episodes through November and December 2003, Scream Of The Shalka was intended to be a continuation of the cancelled TV series, however the announcement soon after that Christopher Eccleston would be returning to BBC One as Doctor Who relegated Grant’s Doctor to unofficial status.

    The story exists now as something of a curio, and is often regarded as a sideline to ‘proper’ Doctor Who, but the fact remains that this was the first BBC commission of new episodes since Survival in 1989 (disregarding Comic Relief/Children In Need specials). It was a labour of love for those involved and paved the way for more animations –BBCi’s Shada in 2003 (starring Paul McGann), 2007’s Dreamland (starring David Tennant) and reconstructions of missing episodes on DVD

    Special Features

    • Commentary with writer Paul Cornell, director Wilson Milam and producer James Goss.

    • Carry On Screaming Behind-the-scenes personnel discuss the making of Scream Of The Shalka.

    • The Screaming Sessions Cast & crew interviews recorded at the time of production in 2003.

    • Interweb Of Fear A brief history of the BBC website and the important role that Doctor Who has played over the years.

    • Soundtrack Album

    • Programme Subtitles