Sunday, 1 June 2008
BBC Drama Productions acquires rights to develop 1970s series Survivors for BBC One
Category: TV Drama; BBC One
BBC Drama Productions has acquired the rights from the Terry Nation Estate to develop the Seventies drama series Survivors, it was announced today by Jane Tranter, BBC Controller, Fiction.
Set in the present day, the new series will be written by Adrian Hodges (Ruby In The Smoke, Shadow In The North, Charles II and Primeval) for transmission on BBC One.
Launched in April 1975 on BBC One, Survivors ran for 38 episodes over three series.
The cult series focussed on a post-apocalyptic world, in the aftermath of a devastating plague which wipes out over 99% of the world's population, and how a group of individuals grappled with the trials of day-to-day survival.
Kate Harwood, Head of Series and Serials, BBC Drama Production, says: "The opportunity to remake Survivors for a modern generation proved irresistible.
"After months of negotiations, I am delighted that one of British television's great cult series will return with original stories packed with adventure and spirit set against the backdrop of our own recognisable world."
Adrian Hodges says: "Survivors was one of the bravest and most exciting programmes of its time and I'm thrilled to be involved with re-imagining it for a new audience.
"I remember its original impact vividly and I hope we can make a similar impression with the new version.
"Its themes remain as relevant as ever and while we will be staying faithful to many aspects of the original, we will also be bringing the story into the 21st Century and make it accessible to contemporary audiences."
BBC Drama Productions is a world leader in producing much loved and critically-acclaimed dramas, from classic adaptations such as the much-loved Cranford starring Dame Judi Dench and Jane Eyre, to last year's tense thriller The State Within, and next year's long-awaited adaptations of Lark Rise To Candleford and Sense And Sensibility.
A BBC Drama Production for BBC One, the executive producer of Survivors is Susan Hogg.
The cast for the Remake of “Survivors”, Originally made by Terry Nation, has been Announced. The BBC Press Office has confirmed that filming is taking place in Manchester and will continue until September for Transmission in Autumn 2008. Three Actors from the New Series of Doctor Who have been Confirmed to star in Survivors;
* Freema Agyeman - Martha Jones
* Shaun Dingwall - Pete Tyler
* Paterson Joseph - Roderick - Contestant on The Weakest Link - Bad Wolf
Original Series Details:
As the world's population is almost annihilated by a mysterious pandemic, accidentally unleashed by an unknown Asian scientist, the crisis is first seen through the eyes of two characters - Jenny Richards, a young working woman in London and Abby Grant, a middle-class corporate wife living a privileged existence in a nearby commuter village. As Abby goes in search of her son Peter, Jenny wanders aimlessly through the countryside. Other major characters introduced in the first few episodes are the resourceful engineer Greg Preston, the shifty Welshman Tom Price and two children, John Millon and Lizzie Willoughby. Abby, Jenny and Greg eventually come together and realise they must start again from scratch now that civilisation as they once knew it has been destroyed. After several adventures on the road, they find a property called the Grange which they can use as a base and, joined by other survivors, they form a potted community of disparate individuals all united by a shared purpose - to relearn the old skills of farming and tool-making, and to try to live in this strange new world.
Having received word that her son is still alive, Abby has left the Grange to resume her search while the community is devastated by a fire, killing several of their number. The survivors join another community, Whitecross, run by Charles Vaughan, whom they briefly encountered in the previous series. New major characters that make up the Whitecross band are Charles' partner Pet Simpson, medical student Ruth Anderson who works as a travelling doctor and farmyard labourer Hubert Goss. Jenny gives birth to Greg's child Paul, while the survivors are once more focused on the everyday practicalities of post-Death life. Frequent visitors to Whitecross, both friendly and hostile, act as catalysts for various dramatic situations. Finally, the arrival of Norwegian survivors brings the possibility of re-establishing worldwide contact and technology. To achieve this, Greg departs Whitecross in a hot air balloon bound for Norway.
Having received word that Greg has returned from Norway, Charles, Jenny and Hubert set out on horseback to find him. It is a journey that will take them right across what is left of the United Kingdom as their search leads them to various dead ends. However, they meet a broad spectrum of other survivors along the way, and the series continues to explore alternative reactions to the Death and what it takes to survive. The third series juxtaposes the more personal story arc of the search for Greg with a wider narrative of society appearing to establish itself again with federated communities, market bartering and rudimentary railway travel. This culminates in the tentative return of law and order and the quest to restore power through hydroelectricity.