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October 9th, 2019 107 comments

Re-created Lost Doctor Who Episode Now Live

54 years after the original BBC television broadcast, BBC Studios will premiere a new production of Mission to the Unknown, a missing Doctor Who episode that has been faithfully recreated by a team of students, graduates and staff of the University of Central Lancashire.

Mission to the Unknown will be premiered on the Doctor Who YouTube channel at exactly 5.50pm BST on the 9th October to mark the anniversary of the original broadcast of the episode, which was first aired on BBC One in 1965.

The episode will be followed by a making-of documentary short created by YouTuber Josh Snares featuring the cast and crew of Mission to the Unknown with voice of the Daleks, Nicholas Briggs, original cast member Edward de Souza and the classic Doctor Who companion Peter Purves (Steven Taylor) who played the companion to the First Doctor in the 1960s

Luke Spillane, Digital Publishing Manager for Doctor Who at BBC Studios, said: “I’m delighted that we will be bringing the story of Space Security agent Marc Cory to our 1.3 million subscribers on the Doctor Who YouTube channel as it is such a fantastic recreation, made lovingly with real craft and expertise by everyone at the University of Central Lancashire. I hope audiences around the world can imagine that it’s tea time on the 9th October 1965 as they rather excitingly watch a black and white episode of Doctor Who premiere on their television sets, mobile phones and tablets.”

The project was master-minded by Andrew Ireland, Pro-Vice Chancellor of Digital and Creative Industries at the university, and brought together a dedicated group of students from a wide range of disciplines including film and television, acting, fashion, music, design and dance to recreate the episode from the original script as authentically as possible, carefully researching and reproducing as faithfully as possible the original 1960s production techniques to re-create the classic look of the series.

Andrew Ireland, Pro-Vice Chancellor of Digital and Creative Industries at the University of Central Lancashire, said: “It is such a loss to our cultural heritage that so many episodes of 1960s Doctor Who are missing from the BBC archives. This project presented us with an exciting opportunity to address that, to explore a new way of bringing these missing slices of TV history to life, and in the process, help students learn their craft by comparing contemporary production methods with historical approaches. The project gave so many people great experiences, and it is wonderful to see the Daleks menacing a black and white jungle once more.”

The recreation caught the imagination of several Doctor Who luminaries including Nicholas Briggs, who has provided the Dalek voices for the recreated episode, and stars including Peter Purves, who played 1960s companion Steven Taylor, and Edward de Souza, who played Marc Cory in the original episode, visiting the new set to lend their support.


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107 comments

  • James Guthrie

    October 9th, 2019 - 9:57pm

    Oh my word! A pitch perfect recreation that was thrilling to watch. Bless all the wonderful people involved in making this happen.

    Reply
  • Mark Belsom

    October 9th, 2019 - 9:47pm

    I thought the recreated episode was brilliant,very true to classic series.

    Reply
  • Mrs Croot

    October 9th, 2019 - 7:54pm

    I know that there are haters out there that will bad mouth this masterpiece. How could anyone not like this?

    Reply
    • booboo

      October 9th, 2019 - 8:18pm

      i have watched it a few times now and as someone who watches Hartnell episodes regularly this looks exactly how it should be, the work and effort that’s gone into this can’t be underestimated.

      There will always be those who just don’t get it though.

      Fabulous production all round.

    • Anonymous

      October 9th, 2019 - 9:16pm

      Brilliant recreation just need it on DVD now.

    • Mrs Croot

      October 9th, 2019 - 9:55pm

      Unfortunately there is always the people who hate everything

    • Anonymous

      October 9th, 2019 - 10:22pm

      This is the perfect episode to recast as well as there are no regular cast members featured.

  • Anonymous

    October 9th, 2019 - 7:51pm

    Well done everyone involved, really really enjoyed it, felt like an original episode.

    Reply
  • TIM M

    October 9th, 2019 - 6:55pm

    I absolutely adored that version of ‘Mission to the Unknown’. Well done to everyone involved. ‘Mission to the Unknown’ complete at last!

    Reply
  • prototype dalek

    October 9th, 2019 - 6:25pm

    Just finished watching it, must say I did enjoy it. Loved how they kept to the way it would have been filmed in the 60’s than doing a modern take on it

    Reply
  • Mrs Croot

    October 9th, 2019 - 4:18pm

    Looks great. I know the trailer off by heart. The one thing I’m upset about is Celation the spiney face. He looks nothing like the original

    Reply
  • prototype dalek

    October 9th, 2019 - 3:27pm

    Will this be a live thing or a general upload to the doctor who YouTube channel?

    Reply
    • booboo

      October 9th, 2019 - 3:34pm

      general upload, was recorded a while ago

    • prototype dalek

      October 9th, 2019 - 3:50pm

      Ah cool, thanks booboo

  • Anonymous

    October 8th, 2019 - 9:02pm

    Tomorrow!

    Reply
    • Tim M

      October 9th, 2019 - 11:10am

      Today! 🙂

  • simonhanlon77

    October 6th, 2019 - 11:12am

    I THINK ONCE IT’S AIRED ON YOUTUBE THAT WILL BE IT. I DON’T THINK THE BBC HAVE ANY PLANS TO RELEASE IT ON DVD…I THINK THIS FREE DVD WITH THE DWM WILL BE JUST BE SOMETHING A LOT OF FANS HAVE ALREADY SEEN OR GOT ON SOME FORM OF FORMAT. IE AUDIO/DVD. BUT I AM LOOKING FOWARD TO SEEING IT ON YOUTUBE AND I HAVE JUST LOOKED AT THE TRAILER IT LOOKS REALLY GOOD!!!

    Reply
  • anonymus

    October 5th, 2019 - 11:09am

    As you know, this remake was filmed in black and white or is there a possibility that it will also be released in color in the future (as they do for animations)?

    Reply
    • Andrew Ireland

      October 5th, 2019 - 12:29pm

      Hi, it was filmed technically in colour although designed and lit for black and white. So a colour version for interests sake is technically possible but the black and white one would always be the default (studio floor more obvious in colour, for starters!)

    • anonymus

      October 5th, 2019 - 12:51pm

      I see. Thanks Andrew!

    • TIM M

      October 5th, 2019 - 2:20pm

      Black and White and alternate Colour versions of the recreated ‘Mission’ would be perfect for a single DVD release. Alongside commentary from the makers of the recreated ‘Mission to the Unknown’, and a short documentary on the making of the production. Also included could be a basic photo reconstruction of ‘Mission to the Unknown’ alongside original audio soundtrack (with option to listen to narrated Peter Purves version or not). That would make for an ideal and relatively decent DVD release methinks.

    • Anonymous

      October 5th, 2019 - 4:49pm

      No telesnaps for mission so very little photo material. If it synched enough I’d put the original soundtrack over the new version or just the narrated audio version on as a standalone audio section.

    • Tim M

      October 5th, 2019 - 5:32pm

      That’s why I said a ‘basic’ photo recon. Something like the ‘loose cannon’ recon.

  • Mrs Croot

    October 4th, 2019 - 2:01pm

    If we do get Mission with Doctor Who magazine, here is potential features to fill the gap of space:
    Colour version of Mission to the Unknown. Recon of Mission to the Unknown. Unknown, Unlost (making of documentary). Council of the Unknown, A look at which delegate is which. Dalek cut-away, A look at the argument about what Mission to the Unknown is really called. Radio Times and other magazine/ newspaper bulletins. Easter Egg.

    Only the first three are likely yo get put on the DVD but there’s potential…

    Reply
    • Anonymous

      October 4th, 2019 - 2:48pm

      If we get mission as the dwm free DVD (don’t get over excited though because it is unlikely as much as I’m hoping for it) I doubt it will be packed with extras. One point in favour of it potentially being the DVD is the fact that dwm did give mission away as a free CD just before the CD release of masterplan way back in 2000 and whatever it was!

    • Tim M

      October 4th, 2019 - 3:47pm

      ‘Mission to the Unknown’ would be great to have as the free DVD in the next Doctor Who magazine. Somehow I don’t reckon it will be though. Unfortunately.

  • Andy Robins Kirby

    October 4th, 2019 - 1:12pm

    I’ve seen the trailer, I think it’s brilliant, congratulations to the students of Lancashire University – awesome
    I used to belong to a society called ‘Dalek World’ based in Worthing West Sussex, it was run by Ashley Nealfuller, some people will have heard of him. He did the sets for Comic Relief ‘Curse of Fatal Death’
    When fans make a film about Dr Who, I love it.
    I think this should be put on DVD, I know every whovian will want to own a copy. Again – well done

    Reply
    • Tim M

      October 4th, 2019 - 1:30pm

      Definitely! I reckon a lot of fans would buy this version of ‘Mission to the Unknown’ on DVD. I know I would. I’ve got a week off work next week. Watching ‘Mission to the Unknown’ on October 9th will certainly be a highlight of my week off!

  • J45ON96

    October 4th, 2019 - 9:37am

    My University, and my School! I can’t wait to see this!

    Reply
    • Watching it right now

      October 9th, 2019 - 6:02pm

      You university sounds great!

  • Anonymous

    October 3rd, 2019 - 9:32pm

    DWM said “exclusive Doctor Who DVD”. If it’s not this, I don’t know what else it could be

    Reply
    • Mrs Croot

      October 3rd, 2019 - 9:44pm

      I really want it be mission, but the DVD doesn’t necessarily have to be an episode of Doctor Who. It could be some wick documentary for all we know. It could even be something like a comic done in still images with a narration, like they did with the Zarbi annual story.

    • Mrs Croot

      October 3rd, 2019 - 9:47pm

      Another thing is what would you put on to fill space. Maybe a colour version, recon and the documentary. Or I guess it could be a budget release like Sontaran Experiment.

    • Steven taylor

      October 3rd, 2019 - 9:59pm

      Yeah like its a 25 minutes long with probably extras so i doubt it be longer then half an hour and i cant imagine them doing a dvd documentary about 40th anniversary of dr who magazine If all the info will be in the magazine its self, also i doubt the bbc will release as a standalone dvd so yeah hopefully mission to the unknown is the dvd

    • Anonymous

      October 4th, 2019 - 7:58am

      The wording “exclusive Doctor Who DVD” means it’ll probably be an actual Doctor Who DVD

    • The Flying Shark

      October 4th, 2019 - 8:05am

      It must be something that is wanted/needed on DVD, otherwise they could have given it out as a download, which would be cheaper and more environmentally friendly. As I’ve said before, I’m guessing this or a preview of an extra from the Blu-Ray sets (i.e. a full documentary or a Behind the Sofa from Season 26, maybe?)

  • Anonymous

    October 3rd, 2019 - 7:57pm

    Doctor who series12 needs to be perfect and sinister

    Reply
  • Type 40

    October 3rd, 2019 - 12:38am

    A labour of love that was also educational for those making it? A total win already.

    Reply
  • Andrew Ireland

    October 2nd, 2019 - 10:20pm

    Hi, I always really liked this website so thought I’d take a look to see if there was any comment on this project. I directed the episode, and I hope you like it!

    Reply
    • Anonymous

      October 2nd, 2019 - 11:50pm

      Try and persuade someone to release a DVD!

    • Jack Oates

      October 3rd, 2019 - 7:16am

      What was it like?

    • booboo

      October 3rd, 2019 - 8:00am

      It all looks fabulous

    • David H

      October 3rd, 2019 - 8:59am

      It looks amazing! Great job to all who were involved!

    • Chris Howarth

      October 3rd, 2019 - 9:18am

      Looks great, congratulations to all concerned in its making. At some point I would love to own it on a shiny disc.

    • Tim M

      October 3rd, 2019 - 1:37pm

      The trailer looks superb! It’s great the episode will be shown on YouTube. I hope it gets a DVD release also. ‘Mission to the Unknown’ is finally complete! 🙂
      Thankyou to everyone involved in bringing this missing classic back to life.

    • DPHill

      October 3rd, 2019 - 2:22pm

      There could well be enough material to do a small release, 25min of the main feature, 6min making of, few minutes behind the scenes and perhaps a small documentary leading to how and why they did it, coupled with the Levine animated version and why that was never released and a making of of that would be enough on one disc I’d say – though it’s very unlikely

    • Gordon

      October 3rd, 2019 - 2:30pm

      Bbc aren’t anyway intrested in Ian’s version.

    • Andrew Ireland

      October 5th, 2019 - 10:46am

      Thanks for the comments, Jack it was great fun and a great experience for everyone. I hope we can do more at some point! And yes it would be nice for it to have a physical release at some point but I’m not aware of any plans at present. At least being on YouTube means everyone can see it, wherever they are! I have to say I’m quite nervous, I hope people see it for what it is and enjoy it!

    • Tim M

      October 5th, 2019 - 5:35pm

      That pretty much rules out the possibility that the DVD released with Doctor Who magazine is ‘Mission to the Unknown’. It clearly won’t be.

  • dazzleshell

    October 2nd, 2019 - 4:44pm

    Looking forward to watching this. I think it looks great and hope it will feature on the Season 3 set eventually.

    And in an ideal world an animated Masterplan.

    Reply
    • Anonymous

      October 2nd, 2019 - 6:08pm

      Masterplan will never be animated unfortunately

    • Anonymous

      October 2nd, 2019 - 8:21pm

      Never say Never…

    • Anonymous

      October 2nd, 2019 - 8:59pm

      That came from the people who do the animations

    • Anonymous

      October 2nd, 2019 - 9:16pm

      Yeah theres too many sets, costumes, characters and locations let alone episodes for it ever to be economically feasible.

    • Bobby Davros

      October 2nd, 2019 - 10:57pm

      It’s an inevitability. What is achievable now wasn’t once. Thirty years ago believable colourisation wasn’t possible. 10 years ago deepfake software was a fantasy. Now you can do it on a smart phone.

    • Gordon

      October 2nd, 2019 - 11:14pm

      “Nothing is impossible but it’s extremely unlikely at present. Too many episodes and too expensive on the current budget”.

      Going by the production of the macra terror each animation has to be produced completed and released within the end of the same fiscal year. Doing 12 episodes (bbc America who have a major part in financing will want all 12 done) In a 12 month period to the same standard as macra terror is pretty much impossible on current budget

    • SamWho

      October 3rd, 2019 - 1:12pm

      Do you think for instance in say 10 years time if they have animated most other stories they then might be able to spend 2 years making a new master plan animation

    • Anonymous

      October 3rd, 2019 - 2:27pm

      Trouble is people keep saying after they have animated most other stories but there are several stories that the animators have said will not be done.

  • Mrs Croot

    October 2nd, 2019 - 4:31pm

    I can’t wait. I wonder if the delegates names will be given in the credits as there’s a big mystery about some of them. Sentreal is the only one I know (Black tree neck guy)

    Reply
    • The Ergon

      October 2nd, 2019 - 6:05pm

      Don,t you mean celation?

    • EvanMarshall

      October 2nd, 2019 - 6:24pm

      Celation only joined the delegates in Masterplan. It’s all *very* confusing though. Great article by Jay Rayner about it here: https://delegatedetective.wordpress.com/2013/11/17/mission-to-find-the-unknown/comment-page-1/

    • The Ergon

      October 3rd, 2019 - 12:20am

      Celation was the ‘Black Tree Neck Guy’ though , the one with the raspy voice and a hiss at the end of every sentence, even though he appeared in a couple of later episodes which i guess was confusing and didn,t appear at the delegates table along with Zephon and the others in Day of Armageddon.

    • The Flying Shark

      October 3rd, 2019 - 8:09am

      Malpha’s the one with the pattern on his face, isn’t he? No clue on any of the others.

    • Mrs Croot

      October 3rd, 2019 - 5:41pm

      “For actors, that leaves Doctor Who regular Pat Gorman as Mr Christmas Tree. As the character ‘Sentreal’ doesn’t reappear in The Dalek Master Plan and the Christmas Tree is by far the most outlandish of the aliens, we could assume they are one and the same – but again we just don’t know.
      But by a process of elimination we’ll go for MR CHRISTMAS TREE = PAT GORMAN = (almost certainly) FACT! = SENTREAL = ASSUMPTION”
      Just incase you got confused, here’s the article, as this is a very confusing thing.

  • Chrisp

    October 2nd, 2019 - 3:31pm

    Looks great. Have been looking forward to seeing this!

    Reply
  • Demdike@CultLabs

    October 2nd, 2019 - 3:31pm

    I wonder if this might be the exclusive dvd given away with the next Doctor Who magazine?

    Reply
    • booboo

      October 2nd, 2019 - 3:33pm

      it had been mentioned, would like to see an “official looking” DVD insert for it as well if so.

    • the 14th doctor

      October 2nd, 2019 - 6:10pm

      that would be so cool! i just want a dvd of this in any shape or form!

    • Tim M

      October 3rd, 2019 - 1:44pm

      I would really like an official DVD release of ‘Mission to the Unknown’. Just like the gradual animated releases, It will help fill another gap in the DVD collection.

  • Alex

    October 2nd, 2019 - 2:27pm

    I can’t wait to see this production! Very exciting to see the final product after following its development from tweets!

    Reply
  • the 14th doctor

    October 2nd, 2019 - 1:15pm

    looks AMAZING, needs a dvd release!!!!

    Reply
    • Anonymous

      October 2nd, 2019 - 2:29pm

      Totally agree! And not just part of a bluray set but a standalone release

    • Gordon

      October 2nd, 2019 - 2:55pm

      At 25 mins it’s probably Not long enough to be a stand alone release. If it’s going to be released outside of the blu ray sets it will be an extra on an animated release (galaxy 4 or evil is my thoughts on a potential home)

  • The Flying Shark

    October 2nd, 2019 - 1:13pm

    Spoilers-I’ve already seen this, and you’re all in for a big treat!

    Reply
  • 70’s

    October 2nd, 2019 - 12:59pm

    OMG this looks brilliant. Wow!!!! Well done to everyone involved!!!

    Reply
  • The Ergon

    October 2nd, 2019 - 12:51pm

    If one university can achieve this, imagine what a full budget BBC production could do. Now would be a good time for them to contemplate remaking some of those lost B/W classics for Doctor Whos 60th Anniversary. This looks so good.

    Reply
    • Anonymous

      October 2nd, 2019 - 9:00pm

      This is a unique episode though featuring no main cast members.

  • Thetruth

    October 2nd, 2019 - 12:47pm

    Bluray extra? At somepoint in a future bluray set

    Reply
    • Gordon

      October 2nd, 2019 - 12:57pm

      Season 3 when it comes. Though if they ever animate galaxy 4 fully it’s a good chance it will be included there as it’s the next episode along

    • Bobby Davros

      October 2nd, 2019 - 3:21pm

      By the time Season 3 is out (surely years away)I think we might even have the current realfake software to a time and cost effective level to make the new actors look like the originals for recreated episodes containing Doctors and companions.

  • Alan

    October 2nd, 2019 - 12:18pm

    Wasn’t too sure about this recreation when I first read about it but the trailer looks great. YouTube premiere is a nice surprise. CNt wait to see this now

    Reply
  • Gordon

    October 2nd, 2019 - 12:14pm

    Great news and it’s in black and white going by the trailer. Looks good

    Reply

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