David Barry

Frankie Abbott from Please, Sir! and The Fenn Street Gang ...

 

David Barry came to televisual fame in the 1970s, when he starred as Frankie Abbott, the mummy's boy who thinks he's a hardcase, in the sitcoms Please, Sir! (a US version was known as Welcome Back Kotter) and The Fenn Street Gang. At this time he wrote his first broadcast TV script, and in the 1980s wrote regularly for the sitcom Keep It in the Family (US version: Too Close for Comfort), and also played a leading role in the feature film of "George and Mildred".

David was born and brought up in north Wales. At the age of 12 he worked as an actor, and his first stage appearance was at Theatre Royal, Windsor in "Life With Father", the longest running Broadway play. In the late 1950s he made a film with Tyrone Power, "Abandon Ship", then toured Europe with Laurence Olivier and Vivien Leigh in Peter Brook’s production of "Titus Andronicus", the most prestigious post-war tour, and one of the first to visit the Iron Curtain countries. As a teenager, he appeared in countless TV productions, including playing the part of Ginger in the first commercial television series of Just William.

He has enjoyed working in the theatre, in plays such as "Under Milk Wood", "Forget-Me-Not Lane", "Funny Money", and more recently in David Mamet's "Duck Variations". He has also played in 25 Christmas pantomimes, and these days usually plays the Dame.!

During the 1990s, he was very involved both as an actor and writer in producing diversity training workshops in public sector organisations, and wrote a full-length play "What Goes Around", which ran for a limited season in London theatres.

More recently he has turned to book writing, and his first novel, "Each Man Kills", was published in November 2002. It is located in Wales, and reached Number 8 in the Welsh bestseller list. He has also created and is writing an internet soap, "Careless Talk", located in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, the town in which he now lives. Visit www.carelesstalksoap.btinternet.co.uk to access the stories, and there are links on his website to his book at the publisher and at Amazon.

David has recently published his autobiography, "Flashback", which is also available at Amazon and most booksellers. We were delighted that David joined us for the Cult TV Festival in 2006.

 

Brian Grant

Award winning Director of the likes of Doctor Who, Hex, Bugs and Highlander, and co-creator of As If ...

Brian Grant has directed many a show that is considered a Cult TV series. You'll see his name on the credits of such programmes as Highlander – The Raven, The Hitch-hiker, She-Wolf of London, Mann and Machine, Red Shoe Diaries, Bugs, Second Noah, Lucy Sullivan Is Getting Married, Clocking Off, Queen of Swords, Love Bytes and Sky One's horror hit Hex.

He was the Co-Creator, Executive Producer and one of the Directors of Channel 4's As If, the tale of the lives and loves of six teenagers, set against the background of London in the 21st century that ran for four seasons. He also served as Producer and Director for the short-run American restaging of the series for the UPN network. Recently he has turned his attention to directing an episode of the new regeneration of Doctor Who, namely 'The Long Game'.

Brian started his TV and film career in the 1970s as a television cameraman. He worked on hundreds of productions, covering everything from drama to sport, light entertainment to news and current affairs. Projects included Edward the Seventh, The Strauss Family, Anthony and Cleopatra, Sapphire and Steel, Hamlet and The Muppet Show. He also shot a number of documentaries.

In 1979 he formed a production company with producer Scott Millaney. This led to him directing over 200 music videos for acts such as Whitney Houston, Rod Stewart, Tina Turner, Duran Duran, The Rolling Stones, Olivia Newton John, Queen, Dolly Parton, David Bowie, Aretha Franklyn, Liza Minelli, Elton John, Donna Summer, Sheena Easton, Jodey Whatley, The Bee Gees, Stevie Nicks, The Moody Blues, Spandau Ballet and Peter Gabriel (including 'Shock The Monkey'). He won many prestigious awards including the first Music Video Grammy for Olivia Newton John's 'Let's Get Physical'.

Brian has directed over 30 commercials, including ones for Chrysler, Pepsi, Sharp and Ford. Millaney Grant Productions eventually became MGMM Productions when directors Russell Mulcahy and David Mallet joined in 1984. The company grew and formed Initial Films with Eric Fellner, and produced a number of feature films including "Sid & Nancy", "A Kiss Before Dying", "The Rachel Papers" and "Hidden Agenda".

In true Hitchcock style, Brian has taken a couple of cameos in films he has directed - watch out for him as a Chef in "The Immortals" and a man outside a phonebox in "Bloodlines: Legacy of a Lord".

His most recent cinematic outing was directing the stars of Smack The Pony in a spoof of Xena-esque adventures, "Gladiatress". He has just wrapped production on series two of Hex, screening on Sky One from October 2005.

Brian was a guest at the Cult TV Festival 2005.

 

Andrew O'Day

Exploring the reality of television science fiction ...

 

Born in Birmingham of dual British and American nationality, Andrew O'Day spent his childhood in Washington DC, Oxford and Milton Keynes. A firm Doctor Who fan after the transmission of BBC2's "The Five Faces of Doctor Who" season in the Autumn of 1981 and Longleat's "20 Years Of A Time Lord" Convention two years later, he edited the fanzine "Doctor Who Times", then "Sci-Fi Times".

Studying at William Shatner's Alma Mater, McGill University in Montreal where the Students' Union building was named after him, Andrew met Forbes March who was staying in the same Hall of Residence. Best known for playing Jesse Kilman in Mutant X, Forbes helped him get a job researching aspects of culture for The Professor's Page in the Halifax newspaper "The Chronicle Herald".

Awarded a BA in English Literature from McGill, Andrew returned to Oxford to take an MA in Text and Performance Studies at King's College, London in association with the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. One of his instructors at RADA was Gregory de Polnay, best known to Doctor Who fans for his role as D84 in the highly acclaimed 1977 story "The Robots Of Death" starring Tom Baker.

Andrew has since completed a PhD thesis at Royal Holloway, University of London on science fiction television. Entitled "Borderline Discourses: Meta-Textuality in Television Science Fiction", the thesis provides a thorough investigation of reflection on genre, ideology, and narrative structure in The Twilight Zone, Star Trek, Doctor Who and Douglas Adams' The Hitch-Hiker's Guide To The Galaxy.

 

He has also co-written the book Terry Nation, with Dr Jonathan Bignell, Reader in Television and Film and Director of the Centre for Television Studies at the University of Reading. Published by Manchester University Press in 2004, the book focuses primarily on Nation's science fiction work for Doctor Who, Survivors, in which civilisation is decimated by a deadly viral strain, and Blake's 7.

 

Annette Badland

From Bergerac to Margaret The Slitheen in the new Doctor Who, here's an excellent actress who joined the fun at Cult TV 2005 ...

 

Annette’s breakthrough television performance was as Charlotte in the early seasons of Bergerac, although the performance more recent Cult TV audiences will have latched on to was her role as Margaret Blaine, one of the Slitheen, in three episodes of the new series of Doctor Who.

She has also become very recognisable from her role as Brawdie Henshall in the BBC’s Cutting It, and has a role in the new movie "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory".

This year she also featured in Coronation Street as Thelma Clegg, and as Pauline in the Russell T Davies adaption of Casanova. Guest roles over the years have include 2.4 Children (as Dawn in one of a couple of episodes that included the Star Trek homage "Beam Me Up, Scotty"), Shoestring, The Gentle Touch, Nanny, Minder, Frank Stubbs Promotes, You Must Be The Husband, Love Hurts, The Demon Headmaster, Holby City, Doctors, The Bill, Judge John Deed, Twisted Tales, and several episodes of The Worst Witch (as Mrs Tapioca).

An early TV appearance was as a Tap Dancing Pupil in The Naked Civil Servant, and she later appeared in the mini-series Lace and Lace II, as well as the critically acclaimed The Old Men At The Zoo. She starred as Christine in the series Trouble and Strife, Willow in Making Out (alongside Keith Allen) and as Dolly Buckle in Blackhearts In Battersea. She played Shine in Archer’s Goon, and featured as a Nurse in Inside Victor Lewis-Smith.

Film credits include "Jabberwocky", "Beyond Bedlam", "Twenty Four Seven", "Little Voice", "Honest", "Beautiful People", "Club Le Monde", and the voice of Elsa in "Valiant". She also starred alongside Patrick Stewart as Mrs Fezziwig in the 1999 adaption of "A Christmas Carol".

Annette Badland was kindly sponsored by the League Of The Non-Aligned (LOTNA) when she appeared at Cult TV 2005.

 

William Russell

The star of The Adventures of Sir Lancelot and Doctor Who ...

 

William Russell has been part of the film and TV world since 1940, when he had an uncredited role as a Field Judge in the film "God Gave Him A Dog" (aka "The Biscuit Eater"). An early television role as the star of St Ives, based on the book by Robert Louis Stevenson, led to him gaining the leading role in ITC/Sapphire Films' The Adventures of Sir Lancelot, all 30 episodes of which are about to be released by Network DVD.

Other early TV appearances included Sword of Freedom, Assignment Foreign Legion, Triton, Suspense, and the 1963 adaptation of Jane Eyre. Over the years, he has also adopted the stage names of Russell Enoch and Enoch Russell.

It was in 1963 that he took on the other role that most Cult TV fans associate him with – that of schoolteacher Ian Chesterton in Doctor Who, a part that he played from until 1965.

He has been a regular face on television ever since, appearing in series such as The Professionals, Black Adder (as the Duke of Winchester), Shoestring, Strangers, Van der Valk, Father Brown, Disraeli, David Copperfield, Nicholas Nickelby, Boon and Heartbeat. He even spent a year in Coronation Street in 1992, playing Ted Sullivan, who married Rita Fairclough before meeting his demise!

His film credits include "The Gift Horse", "Malta Story", "Appointment in London", "Intimate Relations", "They Who Dare", "The Saint Returns", "Always a Bride", "One Good Turn", "Above Us the Waves", "The Gay Dog", "The Man Who Never Was", "The Big Chance", "Breakaway", "Blind Spot", "Duellists", "Deathwatch", and "Mark Gertler". He played Sorren in "The Great Escape" and was the Eighth Elder in the first Christopher Reeve "Superman" movie.

William held a senior post in actors’ union Equity for a time. He has considerable theatrical experience, having been part of the Old Vic, the Royal Shakespeare Company, and the National Theatre, and has toured the likes of Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Ireland, Sweden and Romania.

We were delighted that William agreed to join us for Cult TV 2005.

 

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