Theatrical screenings of ‘Doctor Who’ episodes have become somewhat common over the last few years, with events including the 50th anniversary special and Peter Capaldi’s debut in ‘Deep Breath’. Typically, a theatrical screening accompanies some sort of momentous event for ‘Doctor Who’, and for longtime fans there are few events more momentous than the recovery or restoration of a lost episode.
In conjunction with Fathom Events, BBC America has announced a special, one night only theatrical screening of ‘The Power of the Daleks’. The serial, of which all six episodes are among the 97 currently missing from the BBC archive, first aired in 1966 during the show’s fourth season. It is arguably the most noteworthy (and sought after) of the missing serials, as it featured the introduction of Patrick Troughton as the Second Doctor. Because the original episodes remain missing, the serial has been restored in its entirety through the use of animation. The BBC has previously animated individual episodes missing from otherwise complete serials for release on DVD (an example being the DVD release of ‘The Tenth Planet’, which includes the three extant episodes and an animated version of the fourth), but this represents both the first time this has been done for a full serial and the first such effort to be screened in cinemas. The animated restoration has been produced and directed by Charles Norton, and features character designs by artists Martin Geraghty and Adrian Salmon. All of this is based on surviving clips, still images and the intact audio track.
The theatrical screenings of ‘The Power of the Daleks’ will take place at 7:00pm on November 19, 2016. According to the press release issued by BBC America and Fathom Events, the screenings will be accompanied by exclusive bonus material, including interviews with cast members.
Tickets will be available for purchase at participating theater box offices or online at FathomEvents.com beginning at 10:00am Eastern Time on Friday, October 14, 2016.
Beyond the theatrical release, the animated version of ‘The Power of the Daleks’ is scheduled for digital release at a rate of one episode a day for six days, beginning at 5:50pm on November 5th (fifty years to the minute from the episode’s original broadcast) through the BBC Store with a wider digital release close behind. This will be followed by a BBC America broadcast of the entire serial on November 19th, and a UK DVD release on November 21st. There has not yet been any official word on a DVD release of the serial in the US or other territories, but based on the pattern followed with the 2013 releases of ‘The Enemy of the World’ and ‘The Web of Fear’, it would be surprising if such a release did not happen sometime in 2017.