The British Film Institute (BFI) celebrates the 25th birthday of Missing Believed Wiped this year. At the event a new animation of a Doctor Who missing episode will be screened; Episode 1 of ‘The Wheel in Space‘.

The BFI celebrates Missing Believed Wiped (MBW)’s 25th birthday on 15th December at BFI Southbank with a treasure of television riches. The initiative has seen many successes over the last 25 years, tracking down and screening rediscovered ‘lost’ television classics. The event will present newly discovered material including top-quality music, comedy and variety titles, plus welcome repeats of much-requested items. Also in attendance will be a number of special guests including the Indiana Jones of lost archival television Philip Morris. The event will take place across two sessions.

Doctor Who: The Wheel in Space – Animated Episode 1

The Wheel in Space

The Missing Believed Wiped event will see the premiere of a Doctor Who animated mini-episode based on the missing first part of the 1968 Doctor Who story, ‘The Wheel in Space‘, starring Patrick Troughton. ‘The Wheel in Space‘ is a six part Cybermen story. It also featured the debut of Wendy Padbury as astrophysicist Zoe. Sadly only episodes 3 and 6 remain in the archives. This means that episodes 1, 2, 4 and 5 require animation to complete the story. If a DVD release is confirmed, then BlogtorWho will bring you that news. However, currently the animation is intended only for the Missing Believed Wiped event.

Zoe and the Cybermen - Doctor Who - The Wheel in Space (c) BBC
Doctor Who: The Wheel in Space – Zoe (Wendy Padbury) and the Cybermen (c) BBC

Missing Believed Wiped

The BFI National Archive has grown to become one of the largest and most important collections of British television in the world. This special anniversary edition of Missing Believed Wiped offers a chance for reflection, looking back at some of the success stories and achievements from the last 25 years. These have deepened our understanding of British TV heritage.

Missing Believed Wiped has been spearheaded by Dick Fiddy, BFI Archive Television Programmer. Commenting on this milestone he says, “Over the last 25 years our events have showcased some of the most important finds to have been located and returned to official archives. Tracking down these ‘lost’ treasures has been a joint effort between the BFI, many individuals and organisations. One of our most impressive discoveries in recent years consisted of 100 hours of very important missing single UK plays, including the 1965 version of Orwell’s 1984, and now held by the BFI National Archive. Such finds energise the quest and inspire us to continue the search to plug more gaps in the British television archives.”

Session 1: ‘Music and More’ 15:15, NFT1, BFI Southbank

Session 1 will feature the premiere of a brand new 10 minute animated Doctor Who mini-episode. Based on the now lost first episode of the 1968 Doctor Who story, ‘The Wheel in Space‘, starring Patrick Troughton as the Doctor and Frazer Hines as Jamie. This mini-episode, produced by Charles Norton and directed by AnneMarie Walsh who will introduce the BFI Southbank screening, will be included on a future BBC DVD release next year. Additionally, pop star and songwriter Vince Hill will reflect over his distinguished 60+ year career in music. Plus a rare performance on British television by Aretha Franklin will also be shown.

Session 2: ‘Philip Morris Presents’ 17:45, NFT1, BFI Southbank

For Session 2 the BFI will be joined by the CEO of Television International Enterprises Archives (TIEA), Philip Morris. He will be presenting some of the rare television gems recently unearthed, including missing episodes of Morecambe and WiseSid James’ sitcom Citizen James. Additionally, children’s television favourite Basil Brush including the only surviving live performance of The Kinks performing their hit ‘Days’.

Tickets for both Missing Believed Wiped sessions on 15 December go on sale to BFI members on 6 November and the general public from 13 November, with joint ticket option available for both sessions.


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