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How Peter Cushing’s Dalek movies inspired Doctor Who in 2005

A new featurette unpacks the lasting legacy of the films.

Dr Who and the Daleks
SEAC
Published: Saturday, 4th June 2022 at 11:15 am

Interviews from the upcoming 4K Ultra HD re-release of Peter Cushing's Doctor Who movies reveal how the cult favourites went on to influence the revival of the television show in 2005.

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Dr Who and the Daleks and Daleks' Invasion Earth 2150 AD both received negative reviews from critics when released in cinemas in the 1960s, but both proved valuable to showrunner Russell T Davies when plotting his first series.

Model unit supervisor Mike Tucker revealed that the It's A Sin writer wanted the show to have its "most Dalek-y Daleks" ever, borrowing design elements from multiple sources to achieve that – including the often overlooked movies.

"Mainly, the bigger base to raise them up that little but and longer lights on the dome; up to that point, the TV versions had had quite a shallow relief for the lights and Russell really responded well to having these much more prominent lights on the dome," he explained in a featurette.

It wasn't just Daleks that the films had a direct impact on, either, with Dalek writer Robert Shearman recalling that Invasion Earth 2150 AD also helped inspire the vehicle of another iconic baddie.

"In the same way that Russell T Davies was keen on pulling design elements from the films into the TV series, there were other elements that made it into the revival of Doctor Who on television and a lot of those do come from the second film," he began.

"In Aliens of London, the Slitheen spacecraft comes crashing into Big Ben and Bryan Hitch's design for that ship references the counter-rotating windows from the Daleks' saucer and that was very deliberate."

Shearman added: "Both Bryan and Russell really liked that design feature in the film."

Both films are being restored for release on the 4K Ultra HD format, with Dr Who and the Daleks coming later this month and Invasion Earth 2150 AD hitting store shelves in July.

Dr Who and the Daleks is released on 4K Ultra HD on 20th June 2022. Check out more of our Sci-Fi coverage or visit our TV Guide to see what's on tonight.

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