Tuesday, 3 November 2020

National Séance Live - 31st October 2020

Greetings, Ghostwatchers!

Thanks so much once again for joining us for National Séance Live. Such was the planning & build-up this year, not counting the deep sleeps that followed, that our usual next-day write-up has taken a little longer to put together.

Well, 2020 has been a challenge for most of us, to be fair. It's heartening to know that with great obstacles can come extraordinary workarounds. 

Friday, 30 October 2020

National Séance Live - YouTube Links

Greetings, Ghostwatchers!


Right, now that that's taken care of, if you'd like to take part in this year's special 10th Anniversary, National Séance Live event, all you need is a DVD or VHS copy of Ghostwatch, and the following YouTube links...

  • The first is the ORIGINAL CONTINUITY ANNOUNCEMENT as recorded and shared by long-time supporter and friend of the project, Stephen Freestone. For 'added authenticity', play this approximately ONE MINUTE before we start (21:24). As soon as it's finished, HIT PLAY on your DVD or VHS copy of Ghostwatch.

  • The second video is/will be the EMBEDDED NATIONAL SÉANCE LIVE YOUTUBE STREAM. We expect to start the proceedings at 21:00 with the main presentation commencing at 21:25, as always. Why? That's exactly the same time Ghostwatch aired 28 years ago - which also happened to be a Saturday.

If you don't have a copy of Ghostwatch handy, don't worry. You're more than welcome to watch the live stream with the show's creators, and send in your questions for them to answer to @Ghostwatch on Twitter - though we will likely be referring to specific points in the film, throughout.

For reasons beyond our control, there will be anywhere between a 10-20 SECONDS delay on the live stream. This shouldn't be a problem, and isn't a prelude to any hoax-like developments. Or, is it? No. We will count-down exactly when to start, live on-air, but as long as you start playing your copy at 21:25, the chances are you'll be able to follow with us, just fine. The atomic clock remains your friend.

Ten years. Crumbs. Look forward to seeing you, later! Just try not to have sleepless nights...


Monday, 26 October 2020

"Ghost Watch" - The Original Series Outline

Greetings, Ghostwatchers!

To mark the upcoming, special anniversary edition of National Séance, writer-creator, Stephen Volk has very kindly shared his original Series Outline for Ghostwatch [sorry, better make that, "Ghost Watch"] to check out, and it's a fascinating, if inescapably eerie read.

Not only that, but Stephen has kindly written a few words to accompany the pages, below...

So this, arguably the distilled concept for the first iteration of the programme – then envisioned as a five-part serial – largely came about due to the then-soaring response to Martin Campbell & Troy Kennedy Martin's seminal 1985 eco-thriller, Edge of Darkness. Famously, Stephen's agent suggested to him at the time that the BBC might be receptive to a 'darker' mode of storytelling, and this is what he produced.

Wednesday, 21 October 2020

They're just a sign of the times...

Greetings, Ghostwatchers!

In anticipation of this year's National Seance Live event, I was fortunate enough to speak with Rob from the Hidden Britain Sign Co, regarding their exciting new creation, now available to pre-order... a real-life Foxhill Drive street sign!

Ironically, despite the now-iconic nature of the film's fictitious locale, such a prop never appears during the programme, itself. Given the many opportunities, as there always are, you'd be forgiven for thinking there was time to sneak-in a quick shot during the opening titles, or even a fleeting glimpse when Craig wanders up the road to speak with Yvonne Etherley... but, alas not.

Even so, that hasn't stopped Rob from expertly crafting something striking and evocative - so much so that you'd be forgiven for thinking that it came straight from the 1992 BBC Props Department.

Friday, 2 October 2020

National Séance Live – The Tenth Annual Event

Greetings, Ghostwatchers!

On Saturday, 31st October 2020, the annual Behind the Curtains Tweet-cast, National Séance will have been haunting, cheese'n pickling, and otherwise glory-holing your Twitter feeds for no less than a decade. How time flies, even when your watch stops.

We've all heard the same captivating anniversary speech a thousand times before, but when I first imagined the idea of a virtual 'repeat' of Ghostwatch in 2010 as potentially being a fun way to celebrate Hallowe'en, and the programme's eighteenth birthday, alongside some like-minded fans, I had no idea it would become a kind-of phenomenon in its own right.

Saturday, 12 September 2020

I tell you what, why don't we put it up somewhere, where everyone can see it?

Greetings, Ghostwatchers!

Well, another fact has become a news. By now, we all know, the longer you wait around these here Foxhillian parts, invariably, yet another post-obvious hidden gem shall rear its head, compelling us all to ask why we didn't happen to notice it earlier.

On the 11th of September 2020, Twitter user @MailerJon reached out to share something that certainly hadn't registered with me, even after the best part of 28 years of loyal Ghostwatching.

Monday, 3 August 2020

Seb Patrick RIP

It’s around 18:00, on 2nd August 2020 when my phone finally recovers its much-needed signal-strength to receive data. As those blocky antenna pixels unconsciously stack-up, the few bytes that have been waiting to download, sent by an old, mutual friend some 99 minutes earlier, almost entirely sap my own.

Within moments, I realise this digitised message concerns the increasingly-inevitable news that one always hopes shall arrive much later down the road, but once more, has filtered down far too soon — another mate has passed away.

Thursday, 30 April 2020

National Séance 2020 — 6 Month Countdown To Our Tenth Annual Event!

Greetings, Ghostwatchers!

Understandably, we’ve been receiving just one or two more messages than usual lately regarding the long-hoped return of the documentary in some shape or form, after its inaugural run on DVD quickly sold-out, so long ago.

Not one to get your hopes up, as there currently remains No News On This As Yet, but seeing as I'm also not one to give-up either, I can also assure you, that regular efforts have been ongoing since the film was completed, in terms of seeking distribution [this year marks close to seven years' worth]. As you probably already know, the doc was not crowd-sourced, instead fuelled by happy little clouds, life savings, puppy dreams, glitter, kindness, and the like, and as such, the process of getting the film physically out there to be watched, wasn't/isn’t as easy, as it might sound.

Friday, 10 April 2020

Red Dwarf: The Promised Land

Greetings, Ghostwatchers! #CraigsInIt #Spoilers

Well, you know you're a Red Dwarf fan, when towards the tail-end of an unprompted review, you notice that you're randomly drinking a tin of fizzy mango & chilli craft pop, and realise the only place to mention it, is to cram it in, somewhere near the start. You know, drinking fresh mango juice..? Oh, forget it.

Now, typically, I find it remarkable just how much a live recording or screening can differ from its subsequent broadcast. When I was fortunate enough to catch the first and final episodes of Series X being performed, a few years back, compared to their inaugural airings, the difference to me was almost night & day. Perhaps, after the mind has initially filled in those blanks otherwise set aside to be supplemented by movie magic, any other interpretation is naturally met with unconscious resistance.

Even so, having now finally caught this completed, brand-spanking, feature-length instalment of old favourite/emotional crutch, Red Dwarf, as lovingly enabled by UKTV channel, Dave, I'm somewhat happy to report, that as experienced on the night of filming, there were several pleasing aspects to be found that I've been waiting patiently for the series to revisit, since its undeniable heyday of the early-90s.

Sunday, 12 January 2020

It's cold outside... Pinewood.

Greetings, Ghostwatchers!

As I begin to write this, through tightly-twisted, thoroughly-tired tonsils scorched with excessive laughter, it is the evening of January 11th, 2020. I wonder, if the reason this date has the suitable ring of a rather futuristic-sounding preface, is actually due to the fact that earlier today, I was incredibly fortunate-enough to take a trip, 3,000,000-ish years into Deep Space to catch-up with some loveably, scuzzy, space-bums, at Pinewood Studio's second audience screening for the upcoming, as-yet untitled, Red Dwarf Special.

For anybody who missed-out, this time around, on those randomly-allotted, astatine-like tickets, I hope the following helps paint somewhat of a useful picture of the event, as one glorious whole. Why am I talking about the show again, around these here Foxhillian parts? #CraigsInIt, of course.

To pointlessly recap... Big fan since I was a kid, still identify with the characters, enjoy researching Lister's leather jacket, etcetera.