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TV & Film

Filming for new First Dates series has begun at a Manchester restaurant

Know anyone who’d want to get involved?

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Channel 4

Popular Channel 4 show First Dates recently revealed it will be filming its next series at a restaurant in Manchester.

The dating show is usually shot at the Paternoster Chop House in London, but is moving Up North for its next outing.

The Paternoster Chop House is owned by restaurant group D&D, and while they also own 20 Stories in Spinningfields, apparently there wasn’t enough room in the back for the show’s production team.

It turns out the new series will be filmed in Spinningfields, but over at The Refinery, and some of the stars of the show started arriving in town at the backend of last week.

Work has officially begun on the series, and according to the Manchester Evening News film crews arrived on site last Thursday night, with production starting on Friday.

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Manc bound…. * What you saying? 🎥

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One of the waiting staff, Cici Coleman, took to Instagram to confirm she was on her way to Manchester to start filming, with a video on her Stories showing her walking through Spinningfields.

Star of the show and maître d’ Fred Sirieix also posted on Instagram over the weekend, writing: “The restaurant is about to open. Ready to go”.

And if you want to get involved, the applications for First Dates and First Dates Hotel are currently open.

Absolutely anyone can apply – as long as you’re over 18 – and you’ll be added to the show’s massive database of more than 350,000 singletons.

If you want to get involved, head over to the application page here.

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TV & Film

Stephen Graham’s wife stars alongside him in BBC drama Time

Couples who lead smash-hit crime dramas together stay together

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BBC

Fans have been delighted to find out that Stephen Graham is acting alongside his real-life wife Hannah Walters in the BBC’s hit new crime series, Time

The new show sees the Scouse actor take on the role of prison officer Eric McNally, while Game of Thrones star Sean Bean portrays Mark Cobden, a teacher, husband and father who is handed a four year sentence after killing an innocent man in an accident.

But when his own son is sent to prison, Eric and his wife, Sonia McNally, do whatever it takes to protect him from violence behind bars, with the officer even being forced to commit crimes after he is delivered a sinister threat from one of his own inmates.

BBC

And, when one of the most dangerous inmates identifies his weakness, Eric faces an impossible choice between his principles and his love for his family.

While the show, written by Jimmy McGovern, has proven to be a smash hit, viewers couldn’t help but notice one thing – Stephen’s on-screen wife was actually portrayed by his real-life wife, Hannah Walters.

Hannah, who has starred in a whole array of on-screen projects such as Whitechapel and even the 2011 Pirates of the Caribbean movie, On Stranger Tides, was put forward for the role by her husband, who is also an executive producer.

Though she wasn’t too pleased with him doing this, with her revealing on The Chris Moyles Show on Radio X: “I really told him off.

“I really told him off. [I said] ‘What are you doing? Why are you putting my name in there? You shouldn’t have done that.'”

Stephen then added: “And then she put herself on tape and obviously out of all the actresses that had put themselves on tape, he picked her because she was the best for the role.”

“Because, fortunately, we had quite good chemistry,” Hannah joked. “It would have been shocking if we didn’t!”

BBC

The couple met when they were in training at the Rose Bruford College of Theatre and Performance. 

They grew closer in 2006 while filming the British drama This Is England together, and they ultimately chose to tie the knot two years later. They now have two children together.

Episode 2 aired on BBC1 last night and the third and final part will be showing on June 20th.

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TV & Film

Line of Duty’s Martin Compston to star as serial killer in ITV drama starting tonight

Compston is back on our screens, though his role hasn’t been without controversy…

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ITV

Line of Duty star Martin Compston will be portraying the role of real-life serial killer Peter Manuel in a series set to air on ITV tonight.

In Plain Sight will see Compston as the evil Peter Manuel, who was convicted of seven murders back in 1958. Douglas Henshall stars as detective William Muncie who eventually brought the killer to justice.

Manuel, who had been dubbed ‘the beast of Birkenshaw,’ was born to Scottish parents in New York City before moving back to Scotland where he committed the string of horrifying attacks.

The three-part mini-series about Manuel’s exploits, arrest and eventual execution was first broadcast on STV, a Scottish channel part of the ITV network, in 2016 and was filmed in locations across Compston’s hometown of Glasgow. 

ITV

And this week, starting tonight, it is set to air once more for British audiences on ITV.

However, the series, written by Nick Stevens, hasn’t been without its controversy.

A relative of three of the women murdered by Manuel recently implored TV bosses not to show the ‘horrendous’ drama on the criminal again.

Stuart Reid’s father Robert was the brother of Marion Watt and Margaret Brown, who, along with Marion’s daughter, Vivienne, were all killed by Manuel. Upon hearing the plans to re-show the programme tonight, the seventy-six year-old spoke out, saying the remaining family ‘can’t believe’ the decision to re-air the show.

Stuart told the Daily Record: “They’re going to show this programme again from 2016 called In Plain Sight about the murderer Peter Manuel who murdered my dad’s two sisters and his cousin.

ITV

“All we want is for someone to stop this horrible decision. I was twelve at the time, I will be seventy-seven at the end of this month – it’s terrible that this is still going on. Me and my brother David are the last of my dad’s family. We don’t want to see it again.

“If my dad was alive today or any of his brothers he would certainly not be pleased to see this again on national TV.”

An ITV spokeswoman said: “Before the drama commenced filming, the production team set out to trace and contact as many surviving relatives of Manuel’s victims as they could, but unfortunately we were unable to find the Reid brothers, hence them learning about the drama from pre-tv publicity.

“At the time we spoke to the brothers to reassure them that we fully respect and understand their views.”

In Plain Sight is set to air tonight on ITV at 9pm. The second and third parts will be broadcasted on Tuesday, June 8th and Wednesday, June 9th.

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TV & Film

BBC looking for Greater Manchester couples getting married this year for new wedding show

Know anyone getting hitched this year?

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Olivia Buaso / Unsplash & Alasdair Elmes / Unsplash

The BBC is on the lookout for both couples and wedding planners in Greater Manchester to appear on its new TV show.

Producers are searching for couples who are planning to get married between August and October this year with the aim to match them with ‘incredible wedding planners’ to create ‘show-stopping events’.

The show will see the planners compete for a ‘money-can’t-buy prize and the opportunity to take their careers to the next level.’

Outlining the show, a spokesperson said: “BBC Studios want to shine the spotlight on the backbone of the industry who against the odds help to make the dreams of couples come true.

@jeremywongweddings / Unsplash

“A selection of event planners will be tasked with pulling off the dreams of some of Britain’s most deserving couples, producing precious memories which will last a lifetime.

“Each week they will be provided with a specific brief and budget to deliver an unforgettable masterpiece, whilst being judged by industry-leading judges and the couples themselves.”

The series also aims to give audiences some insight into the ‘remarkable skill set’ needed to plan a wedding.

Olivia Buaso / Unsplash

Applications for the show should be rife, with thousands of couples across the country having waited to tie the knot since the pandemic began last year.

Up to thirty people – including children – are currently allowed to attend a wedding ceremony or reception. But as it stands, big weddings with no cap on guest lists should be allowed to go ahead from June 21st, with confirmation expected in the coming weeks. 

This means couples taking part in the show should be able to craft their big day without any restrictions by the time production on the show begins.

If you’re eighteen or over and want to take part in the show, email weddings@bbc.co.uk.

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