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REALITY CHECK with Alex Fitch

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Ep. 3.03 – The Arthur C. Clarke Awards 2010

In the first of this year’s podcasts recorded at the most recent Sci-Fi London Graham Sleight and Alex Fitch talk to nominees for this year’s Arthur C. Clarke awards for SF literature and Graham also discusses this year’s short list with critic Niall Harrison. Authors discussing their work include China Mieville, Gwyneth Jones and Adam Roberts…
(More info at: www.clarkeaward.com)

Ep. 3.02 – Cynical love songs and Tiny Daleks

Alex Fitch discusses with Doctor Who writer and World Fantasy Award winner (for his collection Tiny Deaths) Rob Shearman the cruelty of Daleks, short stories in the style of Roald Dahl and the disappearance of Luxembourg!
(More info at www.robertshearman.net / buy Love songs for the shy and cynical at www.bigfinish.com)

Interlude: Greg Pak on “Panel Borders”

Alex Fitch talks to writer / director Greg Pak about his work, including Mister Green, the winner of this year’s best short film at Sci-Fi London, his feature Robot Stories which screened at SFL in 2004 and his work on Marvel Comics such as the Incredible Hulk which has recently been adapted into an animated film called Planet Hulk.
(More info on his website www.pakbuzz.com)

Ep. 3.01 – The City of Lost Children

In the last of our podcasts recorded at last year’s Sci-Fi London: a Q and A recorded before and an interview recorded after a screening of The City of Lost Children. Alex Fitch talks to Marc Caro about co-directing the film with Jean-Pierre Jeunet , the art of making children cry on screen and the risk of burning his actors with the lights of an over eager cinematographer! Please note: the show is in English and French with translation by Virginie Selavy.
(More info at wikipedia.org)

Interlude: Marc Caro on “Panel Borders”

Alex Fitch talks to director Marc Caro about working in comics and film, how his colleagues Jean Pierre Jeunet and Pitof fared in America making Alien Resurrection and Catwoman respectively and what it was like making his first film –Dante 01 – without his famous Delicatessen collaborator. The interview was recorded before and after a screening of The City of Lost Children at Sci-Fi London.
(More info at panelborders.com)

Ep. 2.26 – The Problem of SF film making part two

Continuing our podcasts of panels from last year’s Sci-Fi London Festival, this is the second half of a panel on The Problem of Science Fiction and Fantasy film making with 5 top genre directors – Marc Caro (The City of Lost Children), Cory McAbee (Stingray Sam), Gerald McMorrow (Franklyn), Stuart Hazeldine (Exam) and Richard Jobson (A Woman in Winter), chaired by Alex Fitch. The panel was sponsored by The Directors Guild of Great Britain and Mr Caro’s translator was Virginie Selavy. In this second part the panel discuss the importance of lighting and sound to low budget cinema and the need to double up crew members [Part 2 of 2]…
(For more info about the panel please click here)

Ep. 2.24 – Fall Out: The Prisoner in other media

Celebrating 42 years of the cult TV show The Prisoner – Alex Fitch talks to a couple of writers who have continued the adventures of Patrick McGoohan’s iconic character No.6 in other media. 1980s Doctor Who script editor Andrew Cartmel has written a new Prisoner novel ‘Miss Freedom’ while Sophia Cacciola from the band ‘Do not forsake me, oh my darling’ has written an album of songs based on each episode of the TV show. Also, Jessica Fostekew reads from the novel accompanied by sound effects and music from the show…
(More info about Andrew Cartmel’s The Prisoner: Miss Freeddom, Do not forsake me, oh my darling and The Prisoner on Blu-Ray)

Ep. 2.23 – Christmas ghosts and skeletons with Ray Harryhausen and Michael Punter

In our Christmas special, Alex Fitch talks to two creators of excellent Seasonal entertainment. Oscar winning animator Ray Harryhausen has long been associated with Bank Holiday TV programming and Christmas wouldn’t be the same without an appearance of Jason and the Argonauts, Gulliver or Sinbad facing off mythological creatures. Elsewhere, the Hampstead Theatre in Swiss Cottage is the home of Michael Punter’s ‘Darker Shores‘, a new play in the style of M.R. James’ Ghost stories for Christmas, which stars Julian Rhind-Tutt as a spiritualist escaping the traumas of the American Civil War. Alex talks to Ray about his career and meeting a new generation of fans at the launch of the paperback edition of his coffee-table book “Ray Harryhausen: An Animated Life” and to Michael about using stage magic and cathartic laughter to haunt theatre-goers in the gentility of West London.
(More info about Ray Harryhausen and Darker Shores)

Ep. 2.22 – Sci-Fi Comics part two

Continuing our podcasts of talks and Q & As recorded live at this year’s Spring Sci-Fi London festival, this is the second half of a two part podcast in which Alex Fitch talks to four practitioners of Science-Fiction comic books about their work; these include Paul Cornell (Captain Britain and MI-13), Bryan Talbot (Grandville), Daniel Merlin Goodbrey (Iron Man 2020) and Paul Duffield (Freakangels). In this second half, members of the audience ask the panel about the future of comics post Google Digitization, their influences from SF literature and the cross-over between different audiences.
(More info about SFL8 day 4 can be found here)

Ep. 2.21 – Sci-Fi Comics part one

Continuing our podcasts of talks and Q & As recorded live at this year’s Spring Sci-Fi London festival, this is the first half of a two part podcast in which Alex Fitch talks to four practitioners of Science-Fiction comic books about their work; these include Paul Cornell (Captain Britain and MI-13 / Doctor Who), Bryan Talbot (Grandville / The Adventures of Luther Arkwright), Daniel Merlin Goodbrey (Iron Man 2020) and Paul Duffield (Freakangels). Alex discusses with the panel about using comics as an underated way of telling SF stories and the probable future of the medium via the internet.
(More info about SFL8 day 4 can be found here)

Ep. 2.20 – Time travelling Hobbits and other Cryptic paradoxes

Continuing our podcasts recorded in front of a live cinema audience at this year’s Sci-Fi London Film Festival, Alex Fitch talks to director Chris Bouchard and members of the cast and crew of The Hunt for Gollum about making an extended short film that stands up to the quality of the official Lord of the Rings movies. Alex also talks to producer / co-director Danny Kuchuck about his film Cryptic which mixes a murder mystery with time paradoxes to create an intriguing Sci-Fi drama.
(More info about The Hunt for Gollum and Cryptic)

Ep. 2.19 – Man vs. the Eyeborgs

Continuing our podcasts of talks and Q & As recorded live at this year’s Spring Sci-Fi London festival, Alex Fitch talks to the cast and crew of the new Science Fiction thriller Eyeborgs which sees surveillance cameras combined with miniature robots to create deadly machines that give Critters and Gremlins a run for their money! Featuring director Richard Clabaugh, producer John Rushton and stars Adrian (Highlander) Paul, Megan Blake and Luke Eberl…
(More info about Eyeborgs can be found at the official website www.eyeborgs.com)

Ep. 2.18 – Predicting the present with Cory Doctorow

Alex Fitch talks to writer Cory Doctorow about his work, focussing on his novel Little Brother and short story collection Over Clocked. Alex and Cory also talk about the latter’s interest in technology and disseminating information plus the kinds of science fiction that interested him as a developing writer from George Orwell to William Gibson. The podcast includes Jessica Fostekew‘s reading of his short story Printcrime….
(More info about Cory’s work can be found at his website www.craphound.com and at www.boingboing.net)

Ep. 2.17 – Supermarionation special: Gerry Anderson & Francis Matthews

In a special episode looking at two of the people most closely associated with classic Supermarionation TV shows, Alex Fitch and Robin Warren are talking to Francis Matthews about providing the voice of Captain Scarlet and playing cult detective Paul Temple on TV. Alex is also talking to Thunderbirds creator Gerry Anderson about some of his more obscure titles from Fireball XL5 to Lavender Castle…
(Buy Fireball XL5 and Paul Temple from play.com / find out more about the work of Gerry Anderson at his official fan club)

Ep. 2.16 – Circling the Stargate

As one era of Stargate on TV comes to a close and before the next begins, we’re looking at the past of the franchise on DVD and CD. Guest interviewer Liz George talks to actress Rachel Luttrell about her experiences on Stargate: Atlantis and Alex Fitch talks to author James Swallow about his Stargate: SG1 & Atlantis talking books.
(More info at http://mgm.stargate.com and www.bigfinish.com)

Interlude: Kevin O’Neill on “Panel Borders”

Alex Fitch talks to artist Kevin O’Neill about his work with writer Pat Mills from his early days working on Nemesis the Warlock and A.B.C. Warriors in 2000AD to the hero hunting cop Marshal Law for various publishers. Alex and Kevin also talk about the film adaptations of his work from Hardware (based on the short story Shok!) to The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, loosely based on the comic he co-created with Alan Moore. Recorded live in front of an audience at Sci-Fi London.
(More info at www.panelborders.com)

Ep. 2.15 – Torchwood Novelists

In a panel discussion recorded live at a meeting of the British Fantasy Society, late 1980s Doctor Who script editor Andrew Cartmel talks to a quartet of Torchwood novelists, Mark Morris, Sarah Pinborough, Guy Adams and Joe Lidster about bringing the show to the printed page and expanding the adventures of Jack, Ianto and Gwen to the length of a hardback novel.
Recorded and edited by Alex Fitch.
(More info at …wiki/Category:Torchwood_novels and www.bbc.co.uk/torchwood)

Ep. 2.14 – Female action heroes

With new versions of the Terminator and Blood: The Last Vampire franchises currently in UK cinemas, Alex Fitch talks to experts on the previous instalments.
In an extract from a press conference at the ‘MCM Expo’, Alex talks to Linda Hamilton about playing Sarah Connor and becoming a feminist icon. Alex also talks to anime and manga expert Helen McCarthy about Blood+ and the various incarnations of Blood: TLV, that lead to the current live action film.
(More info at: www.londonexpo.com and www.bloodthelastvampire.co.uk)

Ep. 2.13 – For all Mankind

To coincide with the 40th anniversary of the Moon landing, we’re looking at space exploration in fact and fiction. Alex Fitch talks to Sir Patrick Moore about the Apollo 11 mission in July 1969, which saw man first take a small step onto another world, and about entering his sixth decade as presenter of The Sky at Night. Also, Chris Patmore talks to NASA advisor Dr. Kevin Fong about current research into keeping men and women alive on future space missions and how this is reflected in the depiction of such science in Battlestar Galactica.
(More info at www.sirpatrickmoore.com and www.britishscienceassociation.org
Buy the final season of Battlestar Galactica / The Sky at Night: Apollo 11 at play.com)

Ep. 2.12 – Phoenix Gamers

Alex Fitch talks to Hugh and Matt, members of The Phoenix Games Club, a group who meet at least once every week at the Black Lion pub in Plaistow to play board games, strategy games and RPGs together and Alex asks the guys about the type of games they play, the demographic of their membership and the social and intellectual aspects of gaming.
(More info at www.phoenixgamesclub.org.uk)

Ep. 2.11 – Genre (crossing) directors, Summer ’09

Continuing our series of twice annual looks at pairs of directors who combine genres on screen to beguiling effect, Alex Fitch talks to Academy Award winning screenwriter turned director Charlie Kaufman about his new film Synecdoche, New York and the processes of getting his previous scripts Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and Being John Malkovich to the screen. Alex also talks to Nacho Vigalondo, the director of the new Spanish film TimeCrimes / Los cronocrimenes which mixes the style of a 1970s psycho thriller with the tropes of a modern, cerebral time travel film.
(More info at www.sonyclassics.com/synecdocheny and www.loscronocrimenes.com + read a partial transcript of the Vigalondo interview at www.electricsheepmagazine.co.uk)

Ep. 2.10 – The Arthur C. Clarke Awards 2009

In the first of our podcasts recorded at this year’s Sci-Fi London Festival, guest presenter Graham Sleight talks to a nominee and two former judges of the Arthur C. Clarke awards. In case you don’t know who won, why not listen to the podcast and hear the opening of the envelope and the winner’s reaction! Authors interviewed include Niall Harrison, Tanya Brown and Ian R. Macleod, with the award ceremony presented by Dr. Marek Kukula (Royal Greenwich Observatory) and Tom Hunter. Edited and recorded by Alex Fitch.
(more info at: www.clarkeaward.com)

Ep. 2.09 – Gentlemen in Flight

In a special episode looking at two of the great gentlemen of the sky, who first found fame in the 1960s with their piloting of classic Sci-Fi air/spacecraft, Chris Patmore talks to George Takei about being the helmsman of the Starship Enterprise in Star Trek in both the classic TV series and beyond while Alex Fitch talks to Wing Commander Ken Wallis about building and flying the gyrocopter ‘Little Nellie’ in You only live twice and its stablemate in The Martian Chronicles
(For more info please visit www.georgetakei.com and www.startrek.com for more info about George and the re-release of the classic series on Blu Ray plus www.kenwallisautogyro.comand www.bfi.org.uk for more info about Ken and the BFI’s current Bond and Beyond season…)

Ep. 2.08 – Red Dwarf / Robot Zoo

In a special Easter episode looking at ways you can entertain kids and adults alike over the Bank Holiday, Alex Fitch talks to Craig Charles about playing Dave Lister again after a ten year hiatus in the new Red Dwarf mini-series Back to Earth. Alex also talks to Jo Hatton, keeper of the Robot Zoo at the Horniman Museum in Forest Hill which presents a collection of robotic and animatronic animals to the public and mixes education with the feel of a traveling carnival.
(For more info about Red Dwarf: Back to Earth please visit http://dave.uktv.co.uk and for more info about The Robot Zoo, please visit www.horniman.ac.uk
We also have a a transcript online of Alex’s interview with Craig)

Ep. 2.07 – Have you heard the one about the vampire, the ghost and the werewolf…?

Alex Fitch talks to Toby Whithouse, writer of BBC3’s excellent horror / dramedy series Being Human about his writing and acting career, the slow process of turning an ordinary series about a flatshare into a supernatural drama and writing the episode of Doctor Who (School Reunion) which brought back Sarah Jane Smith and K-9 to the series…
(For more info about Being Human please visit www.bbc.co.uk/beinghuman)

Ep. 2.06 – The Invisible art of acting on radio

Alex Fitch talks to actor Rupert Degas about his various roles in genre radio and audio dramas such as playing David Warner’s sidekick “Rizla” in the BBC7 adaptation of Robert Rankin’s The Brightonomicon and playing the father of a cyrogenically preserved child in Kim Newman’s Cry-Babies which was recently broadcast on Radio 4. Alex and Rupert also talk about his roles in Dan Dare, Dirk Gently and The Hitch-Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy plus his uncredited role voicing the devil in Exorcist: The Beginning
(For more info about BBC radio’s SF season, please click here and for more podcasts about The Brightonomicon, click here)

Ep. 2.05 – State of the Art adaptation

Alex Fitch talks to writer Paul Cornell about dramatising Iain M Banks’ novella “The state of the Art” for the afternoon play on Radio 4 with a cast including such luminaries as Anthony Sher and Patterson Joseph… Alex and Paul also discuss the author’s adaptations of his own work – novelising the internet cartoon Doctor Who: Scream of the Shalka and conversely dramatising his novel Doctor Who: Human Nature for TV.
(For more info about BBC radio’s SF season, please click here and for Paul’s blog, please click here)

Ep. 2.04 – Being Bruce Campbell

Alex Fitch talks to legendary ‘B’-movie actor Bruce Campbell about his new film My name is Bruce which features the actor directing, producing and playing a fictionalised version of himself on screen. My name is Bruce sees Campbell kidnapped by a fan and taken to the small town of Gold Lick, Oregon (pop. 333) to save the locals from an ancient Chinese demon prefaced by his own country and western musical numbers… Alex and Bruce also talk about the actor’s career so far, appearing in memorable films by Sam Raimi such as The Evil Dead and Spider-man, his directorial debut Man with the Screaming Brain and his experience of dealing with fandom over the years…
(For more info about all things Bruce please visit www.bruce-campbell.com)

Ep. 2.03 – Michael Winterbottom’s Code 46

During a special Architecture foundation screening of Code 46 at the Barbican centre, Alex Fitch caught up with director Michael Winterbottom in the foyer of the cinema and discussed issues of British Science Fiction, unreliable narrators and the importance of location in Sci-Fi films. Alex and Michael also look at issues of psychogeography, breaking the fourth wall in 24 hour party people and A cock and bull story and why Spielberg’s Minority Report (which also starred Samantha Morton) was an interesting attempt to make realistic SF…
(with thanks to the Barbican and the Architecture Foundation – next screening: Los Angeles plays itself on 21st Jan 2009. Originally broadcast 11/12/08 on Resonance FM)

Ep. 2.02 – Life during Wartime

Alex Fitch introduces a pair of interviews about modern Science-Fiction takes on warfare which have a classical, yet prescient feel to them: Duncan Nott talks to Garth Ennis about working on the new Virgin Comics version of the classic British sci-fi comic strip Dan Dare which sees Dare called out of retirement as Britain and Earth enter new hostilities with the Mekon due to a corrupt Prime Minister running the country. Also, Tripwire Magazine editor Joel Meadows presents and takes part in a brief press conference with actor Michael Hogan about playing the long suffering character Colonel Tigh in the 21st century reimagining of Battlestar Galactica, which is about to return to our screens shortly for the second half of its final season. (with thanks to the MCM Expo for their help arranging this recording)
(More info at www.scifi.com/battlestar/ and www.2000ad.nu/spacefleet/virgin)

Ep. 2.01 – Genre (crossing) directors, Autumn ’08

To kick off the second series of our fortnightly podcasts, it’s the second of our twice yearly looks at directors who mix a variety of genres in their work with intriguing results. Chris Patmore talks to Tarsem Singh, director of The Cell, about The Fall, his stylish homage to silent movies which combines elements of Wuxia, cowboy films and the Arabian nights to dazzling effect… Also, Alex Fitch talks to Paul W.S. Anderson about his reimagining of Roger Corman’s Death Race which sees the original satirical road race relocated to a futristic prison yard.
(More info at www.thefallthemovie.com and www.deathracemovie.net + read a transcript of the Anderson interview at www.electricsheepmagazine.co.uk)

 

Ep. 26 – John Reppion’s Haunted Liverpool

Alex Fitch talks to author John Reppion, about his book 800 years of Haunted Liverpool and the many issues it raises. Alex and John talk about the nature of hauntings, the variety of other phantasms seen in Merseyside from Witches to Mermaids and the phenomenon of “Time Slips” observed in various parts of the city.
(more info at www.thehistorypress.co.uk and http://moorereppion.blogspot.com)

Ep. 25 – The Truth is (still) out there

Alex Fitch talks to the creators of two new science-fiction dramas that deal with issues of body augmentation, morality, religion and new technology: first, we have writer / director Chris Carter and producer Frank Spotnitz on their new film The X-Files: I want to believe. (Interview recorded by Oli Smith)
Secondly we have an interview with Rachel Welch, the writer of the new play Involution, which is set in the near future and deals with human rights and themes of identity in a post-genome world.
Involution is on at The Pleasance Theatre in Edinburgh every day at noon from 31/07/08 to 25/08/08…
(more info at www.xfiles.com and www.pleasancepages.co.uk)

Ep.24 – The Sound of Wall•E

A specially edited version of the press conference for Pixar’s newest (and apparently greatest) movie Wall•E, featuring a Q & A with voice actress Sigourney Weaver, writer / director Andrew Stanton, producer Jim Morris and Star Wars alumni, Ben Burtt, who did the sound design and the voice of the lead character in the movie…
(more info at www.meetwalle.co.uk)

Ep.22.5 – Terrance Dicks: 40 years of Doctor Who part 2

The second half of a two part ‘feature length’ podcast in which former Doctor Who producer and script editor Terrance Dicks talks about his career in conversation with Tim Phipps (Strange Horizons) at a meeting of The British Science Fiction Association. The podcast picks up with Tim and Terrance talking about the latter’s Doctor Who books in the 1990s and includes questions asked by Paul Cornell, Graham Sleight and Alex Fitch.
(more info at www.fantasticfiction.co.uk and at www.imdb.com)

Ep.22 – Terrance Dicks: 40 years of Doctor Who part 1

The first half of a two part ‘feature length’ podcast in which former Doctor Who producer and script editor Terrance Dicks talks about his career in conversation with Tim Phipps (Strange Horizons) at a meeting of The British Science Fiction Association. Tim and Terrance talk about the latter’s sojourn on Doctor Who from The War Games to The Five Doctors, introduced by Tony Keen.
(more info at www.fantasticfiction.co.uk and at www.imdb.com)

Ep. 21 – James McAvoy & Timur Bekmambetov’s Wanted

A special presentation of the press conference for the new action movie Wanted based on the cult comic book by Mark Millar… Star James McAvoy and director Timur (Night Watch) Bekmanbetov talk about the challenges of making the movie, working with co-star Angelina Jolie and fun of working in the genre…
(more info at www.wantedmovie.com)

Ep. 20 – Joe Lidster and the Whoniverse

Alex Fitch talks to Joe Lidster, writer of half a dozen Big Finish Doctor Who audio plays starring the cast of the classic TV series such as Sylvester McCoy and Geoffrey Beevers in Master and Paul McGann and Terry Molloy’s Davros in Terror Firma. Joe also wrote one of the best episodes of Torchwood on TV this year and an episode of the forthcoming series of The Sarah Jane Smith Adventures.
(more info at www.bigfinish.com, www.bbc.co.uk/sja & www.bbc.co.uk/torchwood)

Ep. 19 – The Saga of Darren Shan

Guest presenter Robert Grant (SFL’s book reviewer) talks to Darren Shan, reknowned fantasy and horror author whose work is enjoyed by adults and young adults alike. Darren’s best known work includes The saga of Darren Shan a.k.a. Cirque du freak, The Demonata and The City trilogy which is currently being re-edited for children.
(more info at www.darrenshan.com)

Ep. 18 – Julian Doyle’s Chemical Wedding

In the last of our podcasts recorded at this year’s Sci-Fi London Film Festival, guest presenter Chris Patmore talks to Julian Doyle, the director of the new sci-fi / black comedy horror film Chemical Wedding. Julian and Chris talk about the challenges of adapting the script, Julian’s interests in outré magic, science and religion and his experiences of working on films such as Brazil, Time Bandits and Monty Python’s Life of Brian.
Edited and introduced by Alex Fitch.
(more info at www.chemicalweddingmovie.co.uk)

Ep. 17 – Zombies at Sci-Fi London

In the third of our podcasts recorded live at this year’s Sci-Fi London Film Festival, we’re looking at the new American Indie zombie comedy Wasting Away. Louis Savy introduces a screening of the film and then Alex Fitch conducts a Q & A with director / producer team and co-writers Sean and Matthew Kohnen and lead actress Julianna Robinson.
(more info at www.wastingawaythemovie.com)

Ep. 16 – Humour at Sci-Fi London

In the second of our podcasts recorded live at this year’s Sci-Fi London Film Festival, we’re looking at the more humourous aspects of the festival – a new French kids film Dragon Hunters and a visit by a couple of comedians. Louis Savy introduces a screening of Dragon Hunters and then Alex Fitch conducts a Q & A with directors Guillaume Ivernel and Arthur Qwak. Following that, Alex talks to Rich (The Mighty Boosh) Fulcher and Dean (X-Files / Lone Gunmen) Haglund about their love of the genre.
(more info at www.dragonhuntersdvd.com, www.xfilesimprov.com & myspace.com/richfulchercomedy)

Interlude: SFL on “I’m ready for my close-up”

In an interview originally broadcast live on Resonance 104.4 FM, Alex Fitch talks to Electric Sheep Magazine editor Virginie Sélavy about this year’s Sci-Fi Festival which was held over the May Bank Holiday in London. This year’s festival sees premieres of award-winning Argentinian film La Antena, Marc Caro’s directorial debut Dante 01 and a variety of other intriguing cult films.
Broadcast at 5pm, 25/04/08 on Resonance 104.4 FM, as an episode of “I’m ready for my close-up”
(more info at: www.electricsheepmagazine.com)

Ep. 15 – 2008 Arthur C. Clarke awards

In the first of our podcasts recorded at this year’s Sci-Fi London Festival, guest presenter Graham Sleight talks to two nominees and the winner of this year’s Arthur C. Clarke awards. In case you don’t know who won, why not listen to the podcast and hear the opening of the envelope and the winner’s reaction! Authors interviewed include Stephen Baxter, Ken MacLeod and Richard Morgan, with commentary by Paul Raven, Adam Roberts and Tom Hunter. Edited and recorded by Alex Fitch.
(more info at: www.clarkeaward.com)

Ep. 007+7 – Ian Fleming and James Bond

Alex Fitch talks to James Taylor, head researcher at the Imperial War Museum about the museum’s new exhibition For your eyes only: Ian Fleming and James Bond. The exhibition puts Fleming’s writing into a historical and military perspective, from his days working for Naval Intelligence to his later life living the life of Bond in far flung locations from Las Vegas to Jamaica. Alex & James talk about Fleming’s career and legacy plus the public’s fascination with the glam and the gadgets of the Bond movies, some of which are represented in the exhibition in the form of Little Nellie and props from Thunderball.
(more info at www.iwm.org.uk)

Ep. 12.5 – Eastercon ’08, part two

The second of two shows looking at this year’s Sci-Fi literary convention Orbital ’08 which was held last month in Heathrow. Alex Fitch is talking to Graham Sleight about the BSFA, Jetse de Vries & Aliette de Bodard about Interzone, John Coxon about ZZ9 – the Douglas Adams appreciation society and author Neil Gaiman about why he loves conventions (with a brief cameo by Paul Cornell)…
(more info at www.orbital2008.org)

Ep. 12 – Eastercon ’08, part one

The first of two shows looking at this year’s Sci-Fi literary convention Orbital ’08 (which was on at Easter weekend in Heathrow) and features interviews with professional writers and fans. In this week’s episode Alex Fitch is talking to Nickey Barnard, an SF fan who has moved from being a member of the audience at panels to one of the hosts, Christopher Teague, publisher of Pendragon Press which offers a place for first time genre writers to release their books, comic book creator Bryan Talbot (Alice in Sunderland), and science-fiction writer James Swallow (Star Trek: Voyager, Blake’s 7 audio). (more info at www.orbital2008.org)

Ep. 11 – Genre (crossing) directors

Alex Fitch talks to the directors of two recent genre crossing movies – Garth Jennings and Park Chan-Wook – about their films Son of Rambow and I’m a Cyborg (but that’s okay). Alex and Garth also talk about low-fi and hi-fi approaches to special effects making, plus hitting Mos Def with a plank of wood on the set of the Hitchhiker’s Guide of the Galaxy while Alex also talks to Park (via translator Sinae Lew and actor Philip Hayden) about themes of pop culture in the latter’s movies, such as Oldboy, and how the suppression of freedom in Korea influenced his subject matter.
(more info at www.im-a-cyborg.co.uk and www.sonoframbow.com)

Ep. 10 – The Martian Museum of Terrestrial Art

What links Douglas Adams, “The Day the Earth Stood Still“, Andy Warhol and Damien Hirst? To try and answer this question, Alex talks to Lydia Yee, one of the curators of “The Martian Museum of Terrestrial art“. “The Martian Museum…” is an exhibtion of modern art which is currently on display at The Barbican in London and presents esoteric examples of fine art from the last 50 years in an anthropological style with a sci-fi twist.
(more info at http://www.barbican.org.uk)

Ep. 9 – Brent Spiner’s Dreamland

Alex Fitch talks to popular Star Trek actor Brent Spiner about his new album ‘Dreamland’ which mixes performances of classic musical numbers with dramatised scenes that take place in a film noir dreamland
(more info at http://www.therealbrentspiner.com)

Ep. 8 – Manufacturing Cloverfield

Alex Fitch presents an edited version of the Cloverfield press conference – director Matt Reeves talks about bringing the giant monster movie genre up to date, the challenges of shooting an entire movie on ‘handycam’ and the pressures of living up to the hype generated by the ambiguous teaser trailer.
(More info at http://www.cloverfieldmovie.com

Ep. 7 – Producing genre shows on the radio

Alex talks to Dirk Maggs about his various genre and science fiction programmes on BBC radio from the recent revival of Hitchhikers guide to the Galaxy to Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective agency, An American Werewolf in London & Independence Day UK.
(More info at www.dirkmaggs.dswilliams.co.uk

Ep. 6 – Lisa Bowerman is Professor Bernice Summerfield

Alex talks to Lisa Bowerman about playing a popular space and time travelling archaeologist in radio style dramas for the best part of a decade. Professor Benny Summerfield started off as a Doctor Who character in the novels published by Virgin in the 90s and then became the first human companion to get her own solo series, first in print and then on CDs sold in specialist shops.
(More info at www.bigfinish.com)

Ep. 5 – Escape Pod

Alex talks to Steve Eley who runs the weekly sci-fi podcast Escape Pod, which features readings of new and classic SF stories written by the likes of Neal Asher, Cory Doctorow, Robert Silverberg and Isaac Asimov.
(More info at www.escapepod.org)

Ep. 4 – M. R. James’ Ghost stories at Christmas

Alex talks to Dexter O’Neil, head of Fantom Films, a new company that have been producing cult CD and DVD releases over the last year or so, including a new range of M.R. James audio books featuring the best of his “Tales of the Supernatural” read by the likes of Geoffrey Bayldon. Includes an extract from “There was a man dwelt by a churchyard” read by Gareth David Lloyd (Torchwood).
(More info at http://www.fantomfilms.co.uk)

Ep. 3 – Other Cinema

Alex talks to Noel Lawrence, founder of the “Other Cinema” DVD label about their range of esoteric / underground movies and collections of short films such as ” The Net – The Unabomber, LSD and the internet”, “Experiments in Terror”, “Decasia” and “Dial H-I-S-T-O-R-Y”…
(More info at http://www.othercinemadvd.com)

Ep. 2 – Cult TV

Two interviews recorded at last summer’s Cult TV Weekender: Alex talks to actor Philip Glenister (DCI Gene Hunt) and writer Matthew Graham about “Life on Mars” / “Ashes to ashes” and to Alan Shubrook, writer of the coffee table book “21 Century FX” about his time working on “Thunderbirds” in the 1960s.
(More info at http://www.cult.tv)

Ep. 1 – The Smoking Cabinet

Alex Fitch talks to curators Claire Cook, Simone Pyne and Kate Grove about the Curzon’s Burlesque season of silent cinema, live acts and talks which featured an eclectic mix of Edwardian titillation, melodrama (The Blue Angel) and circus performers.
(More info at http://thesmokingcabinet.com)

Each episode we will bring you news from the grooviest capital city on the planet (well in this dimension!), in-depth interviews with filmmakers, comic artists, writers and... well, anyone we think is interesting enough to talk to.

As always with SFL, let us know what you think and drop us any ideas on who to give a 'reality check' to.

And finally, just to add some extra salsa to the sci-fi downloads, try a few 1950's Old Time Radio favourites of ours - the fantastic X-MINUS-ONE (wiki here) show.

Here are 4 to get to grips with.

xminusone

Out.