Friday, 2 November 2012

Doctor Who: The Daleks' Master Plan – investors wanted for unofficial animation

Talk of animation is somewhat common in Doctor Who fandom at the moment. In January of next year, the six-part William Hartnell story The Reign of Terror will be released on DVD, with its two missing episodes animated using the original soundtracks. This will be the first time since 2006 that animation has been used in this way in the Doctor Who DVD range, but other things have been going on elsewhere.

Last year, Ian Levine (Doctor Who mega-fan if there's one person who warrants that title, it's him) directed a project to complete the unfinished Season Seventeen Tom Baker serial Shada, by animating the unfilmed scenes and recording the dialogue with as many of the original cast as possible. Sadly, this production was not picked up by BBC Worldwide for the forthcoming DVD release of Shada, so it must remain under wraps for the time being. But Ian has another big project on the horizon...

In 1965/66, an epic was broadcast. Consisting of a mammoth twelve episodes, The Daleks' Master Plan remained the longest-ever Doctor Who story until 1986. (Or on the other hand, it's still the longest story. Depends on your viewpoint.) But tragically, only three of these episodes are currently known to exist the second, fifth and tenth. The other nine episodes fell victim to the BBC's purging of its archives to make way for new programming in the sixties and some of the seventies.

This is where Ian comes in.

As with every other missing episode of Doctor Who, the soundtracks of the missing parts of The Daleks' Master Plan survive, recorded off-air by dedicated fans. Ian's plan is to hire a team of animators to recreate the lost visuals, and he has kindly granted permission for a selection of character shots to be reproduced in this article. He has also allowed me to publish his two Facebook posts about the project.

21 October 2012: Okay this is an important and serious request. Once we finish the current private Doctor Who projects (Yellow Fever, Gallifrey etc) we are going to properly animate the entire Daleks' Master Plan. But I need to find a few serious people who can chip in and help, or it's not going to happen. The standard will be as good as anything you have ever seen. Please please no public replies, only by private message. It's in a very worthwhile cause, despite the letdowns over our wonderful Shada. And please remember that one day, eventually, there will be someone different and more receptive at the BBC.

30 October 2012: We can honestly genuinely make The Daleks' Master Plan work, fully animating the remaining nine episodes. We finished animating Shada, Mission to the Unknown, and reconstructing Lost in the Dark Dimension and loads more. We proved we can do this. We can do it to a better standard than The Invasion or The Reign Of Terror. But we need genuine sincere investors to pull off such a major coup. If you can help, PLEASE get in touch.

So, that's basically what this is all about. If you have any money to spare, it would be really worthwhile to contact Ian. His Facebook profile is at There's no guarantee that this will see an official release, but in any case, you'd be helping to recreate a lost classic.

Source: Ian Levine

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