BBC's season of two halves
Wednesday 04 December 1996
The BBC has bought Jurassic Park from Hollywood director Steven Spielberg for showing on Christmas Day at 7pm. Spielberg insisted that no cuts be made and BBC1 controller Michael Jackson has scrutinised the film, which shows humans being hunted by dinosaurs, and says it has been carefully scheduled to avoid scaring young children. It will compete with the Oscar- nominated Remains of the Day on ITV, starring Sir Anthony Hopkins and Emma Thompson.
The fortnight of programmes contains almost 200 hours of BBC-originated material, with 37 drama and entertainment specials and 12 television network film premieres.
Comedian David Jason returns for a three-part mini-series of Only Fools And Horses and Dawn French stars in The Vicar of Dibley. Films include The Firm, starring Tom Cruise as a lawyer desperate to escape his new bosses, whale movie Free Willy, Cliffhanger, starring Sylvester Stallone, and Shadowlands with Sir Anthony Hopkins as the writer CS Lewis.
Richard Gere and Jodie Foster come together for Sommersby - the Hollywood adaptation of the Return of Martin Guerre. Woody Allen's Manhattan Murder Mystery and Glengarry Glen Ross starring Al Pacino and Jack Lemmon are BBC2 highlights. Drama includes The Mill On The Floss starring Emily Watson and James Frain, while Inspector Morse star Kevin Whately plays a civil servant trapped in a food scare in the Screen One comedy Gobble.
Last year the BBC switched the broadcasting time of EastEnders because of a clash with ITV's Coronation Street, and Mr Jackson has not ruled out last-minute adjustments this year. "We will tinker with the schedule right up until the last minute. We want to make sure we have the best programme combination," he said.
- 1 Finland schools: Subjects scrapped and replaced with 'topics' as country reforms its education system
- 2 The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew
- 3 #FreeTheNipple: Women in Iceland bare breasts in solidarity with trolled student
- 4 Scientists have discovered a simple way to cook rice that dramatically cuts the calories
- 5 Zayn Malik quits One Direction: Hundreds of workers request compassionate leave following band member's exit
Germanwings captain Patrick Sondenheimer tried to break into locked cockpit door 'with an axe' as plane was descending
Amanda Knox murder conviction: Italian court overturns verdict for US student and Raffaele Sollecito in the killing of Meredith Kercher
Saudi Arabia says it won't rule out building nuclear weapons
The battle for the Middle East's future begins in Yemen as Saudi Arabia jumps into the abyss
#FreeTheNipple: Women in Iceland bare breasts in solidarity with trolled student
Nigel Farage brands LGBT activists 'filth' and 'scum' and accuses them of scaring away his children after they invade his local pub
Ukip supporters are 55 or older, white and socially conservative, finds British Social Attitudes Report
JK Rowling responds to fan tweeting she 'can't see' Dumbledore being gay
Russia threatens Denmark with nuclear weapons if it tries to join Nato defence shield
Jeremy Clarkson sacked live: Alan Yentob 'wouldn't rule out' ex Top Gear host's BBC return
Germanwings plane crash live: Co-pilot Andreas Lubitz wanted to 'do something people would remember him for'
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