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TV & Film

First Dates is looking for people to star in new series as it returns to film in Manchester

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Channel 4

Hit dating show First Dates is returning to film in Manchester, and they’re on the lookout for couples as well singletons to star in the new series.

Producers want to find some local couples to be extras in the new series, and you’ll even get £50 chucked in.

They’re also on the lookout for singletons to take part, so if you’re looking for love then now’s your chance.

While the popular Channel 4 show already began filming back in March, lockdown put a stop to it, as it did to everything else.

The new series is being filmed at The Refinery in Spinningfields, after moving up North from its traditional location in London.

But now they need some ‘background daters’ for the series as they begin production again, with producers casting for couples.

They want to find some 18 to 21-year-old couples for the background to help create an atmosphere, and you’ll even get £50 towards the cost of your meal.

Producers posted on Instagram: “The First Dates restaurant is coming to Manchester, and we’re looking for couples aged 18-21 from the local area to join us in the restaurant as background daters when the cameras arrive in the coming weeks.

“Each couple will receive £50 towards the cost of their meal and will get to enjoy the atmosphere of the First Dates restaurant during filming without the pressure of being a featured dater on a blind date!”

Things are set to be very different when the series does return, with social distancing in place and a strict no kissing policy. 

To apply as a singleton, head over to the casting page here – and good luck!

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TV & Film

Viewers left baffled at ITV’s The 1% Club’s final question as contestants ‘give up’

Did you know the answer?

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@1PercentClubITV / X

The latest episode of ITV’s The 1% Club issued a final question which left viewers baffled as the last two contestants ‘gave up’.

The hit entertainment quiz show which is presented by comedian Lee Mack is known for its notoriously difficult last question – which it claims only 1% of the nation can answer correctly.

After smashing through a series of questions, the last two standing contestants, Maisie and Alex, made it through to the final 1% question, where they had the chance of walking away with the £100,000 prize money or risked losing it all.

@1PercentClubITV / X

But when the question was delivered, the pair were left completely baffled as 30 seconds on the clock ticked away.

Fans watching at home said they didn’t even bother trying to answer the difficult question and were left completely stumped.

Both Maisie and Alex made the decision not to take a gamble and answer the question for a chance to walk away with the £100,000 prize money as they chose to play it safe and take their £5,000 each instead.

Magnum Media / ITV

The question was: “Given that: 0+100 =100, 1+99 = 100, 2+98 =100, What is the sum of all the whole numbers between zero and 100?”

Maisie and Alex both guessed 5,000 – which was the wrong answer.

Contestants only have 30 seconds to lock in their answer but even allowing themselves a little longer, viewers still struggled to work it out.

The correct answer was actually 5050. 

Lee explained why as he revealed the answer, saying: “There are 50 pairs that total 100 (0 and 100, one and 99, two and 98, etc.). That makes 5000, but there is also the number 50 in the middle, that is not in a pair but also needs to be counted, giving a total of 5050.”

Fans of the show who were watching at home took to X to express how difficult they found the question. One viewer said: “I still have the last question on pause, trying to work out the question… never-mind the answer.”

Another wrote: “Hard questions this week. Last week, I got all the way. First time ever this week I was out at the beginning.”

While a third added: “I didn’t even try with that one. Maths is hard enough on a calculator for me, never mind doing it in my head in 30 seconds.”

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TV & Film

BBC detective drama Shetland to return for two new series 

There’s plenty more in store for viewers as we head back to the Isles

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BBC / Silverprint Pictures

Popular BBC detective drama Shetland is returning for two new series.

The long-running crime drama will return with Ashley Jensen and Alison O’Donnell reprising their roles as Detectives Ruth Calder and Alison ‘Tosh’ McIntosh.

Filming on the next season, its ninth, will get underway later this month.

BBC / Silverprint Pictures

The broadcaster said Shetland was the biggest drama of the year across Scotland and all channels and streamers in 2023, after Yorkshire crime drama Happy Valley. 

Last season averaged seven million viewers and was the first to see Ashley Jenson take the lead role after taking over from Douglas Henshall as Jimmy Perez – a role he played for a decade.

Ms Jenson said she was ‘thrilled’ to be coming back as Detective Calder.

BBC / Silverprint Pictures

She said: “The reaction to the last series was incredible and I’m excited at the prospect of unravelling more intrigue.

“The Shetland Isles are breath-taking – without a doubt one of the most memorable and unique filming locations I’ve been to.”

Ms O’Donnell also expressed that she ‘could not be happier’ about returning to film another series. She added: “Ashley and I just scratched the surface of our dynamic in Series 8 and I am delighted that we now have the opportunity to build on that.”

BBC / Silverprint Pictures

Fans of the programme will be delighted to know Steven Robertson (Sandy), Lewis Howden (Billy) and Anne Kidd (Cora) are also confirmed to return.

Lindsay Salt, director of BBC Drama, said the news showed the corporation was ‘further strengthening’ its commitment to the show, which first aired in 2013.

The latest series will be written by Paul Logue and Denise Paul and produced by Silverprint Pictures, with filming scheduled to take place throughout this year and next.

We can’t wait for this!

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TV & Film

New Netflix true crime docuseries leaving viewers ‘disturbed’

‘one of the wildest most disturbing docs I have seen’

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Netflix

A new true crime docuseries on Netflix is leaving viewers traumatised and ‘disturbed’ after bingeing it in a night.

The three-part show delves into the world of ‘cons, cults and kidnappings’.

And of course, it’s called The Program: Cons, Cults, and Kidnapping, and details the traumatic events a group of school kids experienced.

The true story highlights serial abuse at Ivy Ridge, a disciplinary school in rural Ogdensburg, New York.

Netflix

Imagine being at school and suddenly you’re called to the principal’s office and then put in handcuffs or solitary confinement. It may sound like a horror story but this was real life for Katherine Kubler and a number of survivors of this troubled youth academy.

Kubler, who directs this docuseries, was sent to Ivy Ridge for acting out as a teenager.

At first glance, it seemed like a regular high school, but behind closed doors something a lot more sinister was going on.

It features interviews from former students who expose what happened while they were there.

Netflix

The series reveals how students were prohibited from speaking to, or looking at each other. They were mostly not allowed to go outside and the school was run on a points system – which determined how long they would remain there, according to former students.

Ivy Ridge closed down in 2009, but Kubler decided to make this documentary, as she explains ‘there really was nothing out there to help explain what had happened to [her], to [her] friends and family to warn them about these places, The Times reports.

“So, now that resource exists,” she said.

A former student, Kubler found video footage and files on students lying around in the abandoned building.

Netflix

On her return visit to Ogdensburg, she spoke with a former staff member who said she was just carrying out orders.

Kubler said: “These programs destroy families, and it’s very hard, so I wanted [viewers] to see what it’s done to my family.”

The Program: Cons, Cults, and Kidnapping has captivated audiences with its three episodes and many have even binged the series in just one night.

On X (formerly Twitter) one viewer said: “The Program on Netflix is crazy from the start but about 7 minutes into episode 2 the level of f**ked up psychological warfare reaches another level. No idea how so many parents bought into this s**t.”

Netflix

Another said: “Twisted AF. ‘The Program’ on Netflix is one of the wildest most disturbing docs I have seen.”

After sharing her harrowing story, Kubler hopes that the troubled teen industry will be exposed and shut down.

She adds: “This industry exists because there are not many good resources out there for families in a crisis, so we need to figure out alternate solutions,” she explained.

“Ultimately the goal is to expose these places and to get this industry shut down.”

You can stream The Program: Cons, Cults, and Kidnapping on Netflix now.

 

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