Tag Archives: Web Of Fear

Philip Morris, the Pandorica Convention and the Web of Fear Mystery

On the weekend of 26th and 27th September, Philip Morris was amongst the guests at the Pandorica convention in Bristol. This is the man who found and returned nine previously missing episodes from the stories Enemy of the World and The Web of Fear, part of the Patrick Troughton era, just ahead of the programme’s 50th anniversary in 2013. But it now appears it should have been ten episodes!

One of the things Mr Morris revealed over the convention weekend was that despite what was said at the time of the return, that episode three of Web had not been on the shelf with the other episodes, it actually was there when he discovered the lost gems. Web 3 went missing while he was negotiating for the return of all the episodes to the UK, taken by the manager of the TV station in the city of Jos, Nigeria, where they were found. The manager later denied knowing anything about “missing episodes”, a phrase that had not previously been used in his presence.

It appears that Philip Morris shared his discovery with a handful of people he trusted, one of whom alerted someone else who seems to have got in touch with the manager at Jos, leading him to take one of the film cans and investigate further. It also seems that he passed on the can. It was said at the convention panel that the episode was now in private hands and could be in Australia and that inquiries about it were ongoing.

Now Philip Morris has shared a photograph he took of the film cans in situ  with the Doctor Who Missing Episodes Discussion Group on Facebook. Looking at the cans there are twelve, all obviously of the same type and style, one of which (the fourth one down) clearly displays the production code PP (Enemy of the World) on its side. These are the two episodes that were already in the BBC archives, Enemy 3 and Web 1, and the ten episodes of the two stories that were missing at that time. Sadly, one still remains missing. This statement was released by the Facebook group, along with the image…

12 Doctor Who film cans, sitting in a storage room in Jos, Nigeria (Photo: Philip Morris)
12 Doctor Who film cans, sitting in a storage room in Jos, Nigeria (Photo: Philip Morris)

“On the second anniversary of the release of the newly-recovered and restored “Enemy Of The World” and “Web Of Fear”, Philip Morris, Executive Director of TIEA has authorized us (The Doctor Who Missing Episodes Group on Facebook) to release this photograph of the twelve film cans which he originally discovered in Jos, Nigeria.

“This photo was taken immediately after Phil had discovered the film cans and verified that the film reels inside matched what was on the labels.

“As you are no doubt aware, one of these film cans – the one containing Episode 3 of “The Web Of Fear” – went missing in between when this photo was taken (in late 2011) and when the cans were delivered to the central collection point in Abuja, Nigeria. The location and disposition of this film can and its contents is currently unknown.”

Philip Morris at Pandorica, with Facebook admins Tony Chamberlain (left) and Wyn Lewis (right) (Photo: Tony Chamberlain)
Philip Morris at Pandorica, with Facebook admins Tony Chamberlain (left) and Wyn Lewis (right) (Photo: Tony Chamberlain)
Philip Morris at Pandorica with Facebook admin Jason Clifford (Photo: Jason Clifford)
Philip Morris at Pandorica with Facebook admin Jason Clifford (Photo: Jason Clifford)

There were some other interesting items discussed in the two panels attended by Philip Morris. He told the audience that he had been to every country that had officially bought Doctor Who in the 1960s and 70s, and was now following up information on audition prints. These were episodes sent out to countries that were not currently buying the series, as a ‘taster’ of what was available to them. It is known that a couple of episodes of Marco Polo were sent to Iran, and four episodes of The Reign of Terror were found by Paul Vanezis in Cyprus in the 1980s, a country that never bought that serial. And the first time he found a film can marked as an “audition print” was an episode of The Goodies, though he did not say where this was.

He also confirmed that any finds and returns would be dealt with through BBC Worldwide and that BBC Cardiff and the New Series team were not involved on any level. Back catalogue stuff is not part of the Cardiff remit, they just concentrate on the production of new adventures for the Doctor. Also discussed was the omni-rumour, which was ‘a load of nonsense’ and that the return of all 97 currently missing episodes was ‘unlikely’. Though interestingly he did say he was ‘pretty sure’ that The Feast of Steven, the seventh episode of the epic Dalek Master Plan and the one episode never sold abroad, was copied to film. It has always been thought this episode was never copied.

On the subject of damaged prints he repeated something he originally said on the message board of the Facebook group last year, that the only time he has ever found a Doctor Who print with advanced damage beyond saving was a monochrome copy of episode two of The Ambassadors of Death, thankfully not something that is missing. This totally scotches a recent rumour doing the forum rounds that while lots of missing episodes were found, many were suffering with vinegar syndrome.

One of Philip Morris' panel sessions, with Anneke Wills at front left (Photo: Wyn Lewis)
One of Philip Morris’ panel sessions, with Anneke Wills at front left (Photo: Wyn Lewis)

Philip Morris was once contacted by a private individual wanting to buy any and all episodes of Doctor Who he had found to that point, which he flatly refused. He does not get paid by the BBC for what he finds, funding comes from contract work done by TIEA. When asked about social media he said that the work was more important than what anybody says on a twitter account, though he did highlight that some libellous comments were ‘in the process’ of being investigated. It was also stated that for everything someone makes up, he has to answer for it!

The search is still going on, but will not last forever. He loves surprising people and has some surprises in store, which everybody will learn about in time. Feedback from fans is positive on the whole and he repeated a favourite phrase, ‘believe it when you see it’.

The Philip Morris panels were very well received on the weekend and audio recordings have made it onto the forums now, along with transcripts, which have been well received by many.

***

STOP PRESS – Full statement on Web 3 by Philip Morris himself, as sent to the DWME Group this evening.

Hi Guys, the picture you see is one I took after checking the 12 Doctor Who film cans in Jos in 2011. All film leaders were checked to ensure cans matched their contents, this is a practice we follow in fine detail with due care shown. All programmes held at this station were physically checked by myself and my own team. No undue attention was drawn to the Doctor Who prints by myself or any of my staff, however I instructed one of my trusted team to ensure the Doctor Who prints were hidden until authorisation for retrieval could be obtained.

However two prints, one QQ3 Web of Fear 3 and another spare print were taken from one of my guys by a guy at the station who took the two prints to his office. This was reported to me within hours. I was not unduly concerned I knew their location. I have to admit I was really excited and told somebody I thought would not leak any sensitive information – big big mistake. Within 4/5 days the station had been named online. Fortunately by this time our job was done, however what of Web 3? I physically searched Jos again, asked the guy who took the films where they were. Initially he denied all knowledge until I produced the picture-he just looked at the floor and said he put them back on the shelf.

I didn’t believe a word, and took the pictures and with one of my colleagues and went straight to the top of the NTA, however the guy simply denied it. That is until earlier this year when I returned to Nigeria. I met the same guy again so I asked him directly – he just laughed and said “I don’t know anything about missing episodes”.

I firmly believe this episode is in the hands of a fan and we will trace it. I hope this goes some way to explain why I must maintain a certain level of security around TIEA and its work.

Advertisements

The Son of “Staff” Interview

Every once in a while the stars align and something magical happens. One of my favourite moments as a Doctor Who fan was this past October when the Doctor Who Missing Episodes Discussion Group on Facebook celebrated the 1 year anniversary of the miraculous return of Enemy Of The World and Web Of Fear by Phil Morris. There was a lot of planning and preparation put into the event. We held a week long contest, had a cavalcade of random facts each day and votes on the episodes. The whole thing culminated in a comment a long to the final episodes of Web and Enemy.

As a part of the event I had come across a website about Jack Woolgar, the actor who played Staff Sergeant Arnold.  The website was run by his son Tim. I invited Tim to join our group and informed him about the comment a long. He graced us with his presence for both and the result was truly magical. Over the 22 odd minutes that Web was running, we had an online love in where Who fans got to express their gratitude. The praise wasn’t just for Phil Morris, who’s hard work and dedication allowed us to see these wonderful episodes that had been lost for 45 years, but also to Tim for the fantastic performance his father had given.

I recently had a chance to talk with Tim about the website and his father.

 

TIMD: Why did you decide to start the website?

Tim Woolgar: I thought that a website would make a great memorial to dad as at the time we hadn’t done anything with his ashes and there was no memorial to him except of course the hours of footage that must exist and that he regularly turns up on the TV screen – so the 25th anniversary of his death seemed a fitting point to make a web site. It’s a place to collate photos and writing about him for me and the family and of course fans of his work. I have always intended to grow it regularly and for others to contribute but life just gets in the way. I did do some finishing and editing some years in and have every intention of rebuilding the site… soon

TIMD: Have you had many visitors?

Tim: Web counters were de rigeur in the early days of web sites but I never put one on this site so who knows – there are probably some google analytics to be had but it’s one thing I don’t seem to have a need to count !

TIMD: Have you learned anything surprising about your father as you were doing research for the site?

Tim: Nothing in a BBC “Who do You Think You Are?” way; all the family skeletons were well out of the cupboard but it is interesting to realise that the adage ‘it’s not what you know but who you know’ is very true. A lot of dad’s work was for the same producers or directors. You get to work with one or two and then they use you for different projects. He did a lot of work for Pamela Lonsdale for instance. The web is great for finding new stuff I found a film I never knew he was in and only last week found a drama he did in Sardinia on Vimeo that I’d never seen.

TIMD: How does the rest of your family feel about your endeavor

Tim: They like it I think but aren’t involved in the upkeep.

TIMD: What role of your dad’s stands out most in your memory?

Tim: The ones that stand out to me are

Lion the witch and the wardrobe – enabled us to go on a family holiday

Professor Branestawm – lots of excitement “a bomb of my own invention’

The Borrowers (radio) – lots of tiny stuff

Barlow of the Car park – produced the line ‘Choc- o- lates for meee?’

Dr Who – of course well it was dr who

TIMD: Do you know which role was his favourite?

Tim: He liked the drama work on 30 Minute Theatre and Play for Today I think like Barlow and The Discharge of Trooper Lusby. I think he just liked working so may be Carney in Crossroads

TIMD: He did a lot of work, but he will probably be best remembered (at least by my readers) as Staff Sergeant Arnold from Web Of Fear. That story was lost for 45 years, but returned a year and a half ago by Philip Morris. How did it make you feel to hear the news?

Tim: Very very excited. I had heard that some lost episodes had been found and had that sort of oh it might be web of fear feeling you get like oh I might win the lottery but you know you won’t. But it was – when it was released I downloaded it straight away from iTunes and watched the first couple of episodes but then saved the rest as a treat.

TIMD: What was your reaction to seeing the story for the first time in all those years?

Tim: Honestly it feels a bit wooden in places and the story quite simple but it was simpler back then and a kids’ show and only watched once and once a week. We have higher expectations now and tv shows have to stand repetition. There were some great performances and it felt quite theatrical.

TIMD: Jack sure acted his pants off in that one, especially the final episode. How did he feel about that story? Was it one that he was proud of or just another job?

Tim: It’s always nice to play the character with the twist and therefore have good lines and scenes. I can’t honestly say how he felt I was only 7 years old but the feeling at home was good and exciting and he brought home a rubber death mask which was great to play with!! I’m sure he was pleased with his performance, he watched everything very critically, he wanted to be the best that he could be.

TIMD: You joined the Doctor Who Missing Episodes Discussion Group on Facebook during their anniversary celebration for a comment- a- long of episode six. How did it feel to watch the outpouring of love and respect from the members for your father and his performance?

Tim: I was very touched and surprised at the interest in a very old black and white TV show. You’re all mad !!

TIMD: On the website you refer to his story telling and there is a wonderfully evocative passage where he tells us in his own words about running a W.H. Smith stall at the train station, and later on you reveal that he was a published poet.  Jack had a great way with words, didn’t he?

Tim: He was very proud of his self- education and loved words. I wish he had written more prose and more of his life story. He was doing it but didn’t expect to drop off the twig at 64.

 

Thanks to Tim for taking the time to talk to me and please take a moment to check out the website www.jackwoolgar.org.uk it’s incredibly interesting.

 

 

Celebrate Web and Enemy With the Facebook Group!

October 10th will mark the one year anniversary since Enemy Of The World and Web Of Fear were announced. What an amazing day that was, breathlessly waiting for the embargo to lift so the world could find out just what missing episodes had come back!

Well the Doctor Who Missing Episodes Discussion Group on Facebook is having a week long event to celebrate those stories and the man who found them, Phil Morris. Starting October 5th, the group will be discussing those seminal stories and the return their impact has had on fandom.  The week long celebration will culminate in a special Comment A Long, the “Double 6’s” as it’s been dubbed. On October 12th at 7PM UK time (2PM Central NA) group members will have the opportunity to watch episode 6 of Enemy of the World simultaneously and talk about it live as it happens via a facebook thread. There will be a short break after Enemy and at 7:45PM Web of Fear 6 will be watched and discussed.

But the fun and good times don’t end there. After the dust has settled from the double 6’s there will be a draw for some extremely exclusive and unique prizes. More details to come as they are announced!

f you are already a member of the Facebook group you will get an invite real soon and if you aren’t a member, now would be the perfect time to get on board!

Monday Morning News Round Up

Your Monday Morning News Round Up is a little late today, but it’s a holiday in Canada and we are taking advantage of it. Here’s a collection of what made the news last week. Follow us on twitter @troughtonsmydoc to get all the news as it happens!

 

Restoring the Classics

The RT released a YouTube video last week showing some of the restoration work being done on Enemy Of The World and Web Of Fear. Worth noting is that the video was shot before the omnirumour even broke in June last year.

Photo Credit: Radio Times
Photo Credit: Radio Times

Capaldi Gets The Cover

Peter Capaldi was on the Cover of Radio Times this week and Steven Moffatt had an interview inside as well.

 

Doctor Who Comes Full Circle?

With an older Doctor in charge of the tardis, have we come full circle towards a more Hartnell-ish dynamic?

Dark Journey

Doctor Who Dark Journey- New Preview

There’s a new clip online from the fan produced Doctor Who audio Dark Journey. The teaser has a few quotable clips, so be sure to check it out.

Matt and Karen Calgary Interview

If you were unable to attend the Calgary Comic Expo earlier this month, you can still see their panel thanks to this YouTube video!

Help Wanted

Finally we have a help wanted add for TIMD. We are looking for someone who follows news for the new series and would be interested in contributing small write ups as it happens.

An Easter Omni-Musing…

Is Easter without a Marco Polo announcement a fixed point in time, or can we go back and change it, do something different and somehow make everything turn out perfect?

Here we are on Good Friday and there hasn’t even been a whisper of an announcement regarding more missing episodes. Those with sources set Easter as a potential date way back in January, or even before, but obviously it failed to materialize. In their defense, none of them ever promised us anything (at least to my knowledge), simply stated that this holiday weekend was a target that they were trying to hit.

Still I, like many others, saved the date, counting down the days in desperation. We hung onto every rumour, every twist, every denial feeling like we were on a rollercoaster, hoping that this was the last big frightening downward plunge before the ride came to an end. It would all be worth it, if only we get an announcement, was the prevalent thought.

Here we are though, with no announcement.

Interest on the fora was already waning a few weeks ago when just about everybody who had source information started backpedaling on the Easter date. People were starting to think about abandoning the threads en masse and returning to their real lives.

Then Phil Morris went retweet and like crazy. His actions suddenly sparked the lethargic beast of fandom, and the frenzy began all over again. Add to that the Underwater Menace details posted on facebook and then quickly removed. Andrew Cartmel had some comments taken way out of context and used to stir things up. Phil released a photo of himself in Sierra Leonne, that many would have thought a fake if it hadn’t been shared through his twitter account. Then there was an absolute denial by Restoration Team member Steve Roberts on Gallifrey Base. He even told the world what each and every member of the team was working on to try and prove that he wasn’t hiding anything.

Let’s do some math. Take all the positive news, now subtract all the negative stuff and what are we left with… Nothing. Zero. Right back where we started.

So what should we do now?

All the talk about Underwater Menace the past couple of days, made me think a little and simplify my hopes and expectations. There has been too much said about Marco Polo for me to ever give up hope that it will be returned. Other than that? Underwater Menace will be out sometime and it should be fully animated, at the very least. What about The Crusade? Give me an animation on that and I will be happy. So there are three stories that you could reasonably expect to be out sometime, one of them, UWM, all but guaranteed.

Other than that? I’m still reaping the rewards from Phil’s search. I’ll be purchasing Web Of Fear on Tuesday when it finally get released here in Canada. I also found an awesome sale online and bought 15 Tom Baker stories, the last ones that I needed to complete my entire collection of classic Doctor Who, so that will keep me busy for a while.

Maybe something will have happened before I get through them.