The big rumour de jour is that a teaser trailer for one of the Missing Episodes, now returned, will appear on the end of September’s release of Doctor Who: Terror Of The Zygons DVD.
But first, regarding the Missing Episodes rumours, this is what I have now in its fullest form, from multiple senior sources, whittled down to its core. Remember now, Philip Morris has denied any involvement, or knowledge that such episodes still exist, the BBC have been non committal and I have no actual evidence for anything detailed below at all.
But this is the rumour, as has been passed around by BBC producers, members of the Dr Who production office and prominent professionals in Doctor Who circles. Which is why I’m reporting it, now in more details than I have been able to before.
As part of a larger cache of recovered films sold by the BBC to other broadcasters, around ninety missing episodes of Doctor Who have been returned to the UK over the last two years. Doctor Who Magazine has an cover set up in preparation to announce the finds for quite some time.
But how did it come about?
The rumour stands that whoever hold the films wants the films to be properly treated, with full restoration, the use of vidFIRE and the like, while BBC Worldwide wanted to release them quickly in the format they arrived in. And that has caused the delay, in negotiation and release.
Caroline Skinner, the then-producer of Doctor Who was assigned as chief negotiator, considered a senior enough figure. Earlier this year, after a major public falling out between showrunner Steven Moffat and Skinner, Private Eye reporting Moffat shouting “you are erased from Doctor Who”, she left the show.
Russell T Davies’ first response to that news was, apparently, “who is going to negotiate now?” Apparently Moffat is not in favour with whoever has these films, and initial demands involved Moffat’s departure from the show. Clearly this did not happen.
Contracts have, however, been agreed with all concerned parties for BBC Worldwide for the return and release of Marco Polo, Enemy Of The World and Web Of Fear missing episodes. This would account for seventeen missing episodes, verified and in releasable condition.
But to the rest of the reported returned ninety missing episodes? They’re on hold for now. As are the many episodes that the BBC already hold, but that could exist in better condition in this recovered cache.
If it’s true, it is possible our first glimpse will be a clip of Enemy Of The World on the Terror Of The Zygons DVD release.
And if it’s not true? Then it’s not true. Bleeding Cool has not been able to verify the truth of any of these rumours to our satisfaction.
BBC, BBBC Worldwide and TIE did not respond to e-mails this morning.
“They will be full of tremendous surprises. But they wouldn’t be surprises if I accidentally said them now, would they? No, we’re not telling you. But I promise you, we’re going to take over television. Trust me.” – Steven Moffat