Graeme Harper in Dr Who
Doctor Who star Graeme Harper
Harper's first Doctor Who serial, "The Caves of Androzani", was the last Doctor Who story to feature Peter Davison in the title role. Produced in late 1983, it was broadcast in March 1984. It is widely regarded by fans of the programme as one of the finest instalments of the series.In 1985 he worked again on the programme, directing "Revelation of the Daleks", starring Colin Baker. In 1989 he was approached to direct the Sylvester McCoy-starring Doctor Who serial "Battlefield", but he was committed to episodes of the Central Television drama series Boon. In 1993 he was attached to the potential Doctor Who thirtieth anniversary special "The Dark Dimension", but this was abandoned at the pre-production stage.
Harper's other work has included episodes of Bergerac (1985 & 1987), Star Cops (1987), The New Statesman (1987), The House of Eliott (1991–93), The Bill (1993), The Detectives (1995–97), Casualty (1997, 2004–05), EastEnders (2000–02) and Robin Hood (2006). In 1999 his work on the television adaptation of David McRobbie's novel See How They Run was nominated for an Australian Film Institute Award for "Best Direction in a Television Drama", and in 2001 he shared in a BAFTA Children's Award win in the category of "Best Drama" for Custer's Last Stand Up.
Return to Doctor Who
In 2005, twenty years after his last work on Doctor Who, he was invited to direct four episodes of the 2006 series, starring David Tennant. Having previously worked with the new series' executive producer Russell T Davies on the programmes On the Waterfront and The House of Windsor,Harper had contacted Davies soon after the announcement of Doctor Who's revival in September 2003, to say that he would very much like to work on it. Scheduling conflicts meant that he was unable to work on the first series of the revival in 2005, but for the second series in 2006 he directed two two-part stories featuring the Cybermen; "Rise of the Cybermen" / "The Age of Steel", and the series finale "Army of Ghosts" / "Doomsday". His work on the episode "Doomsday" saw him awarded the BAFTA Cymru Award for Best Drama Director in April 2007.
Harper directed two episodes, "42" and "Utopia", for the 2007 series of Doctor Who, as well as the mini-episode "Time Crash", part of the 2007 edition of the BBC's annual Children in Need charity telethon. He also directed Whatever Happened to Sarah Jane?, a two-part serial for spin-off series The Sarah Jane Adventures.
He directed five episodes of the 2008 series of Doctor Who, "Planet of the Ood", "The Unicorn and the Wasp", "Turn Left", "The Stolen Earth", and "Journey's End" and the second of the 2009 specials, "The Waters of Mars", broadcast in November 2009. He directed the last two stories for the second series of The Sarah Jane Adventures: The Temptation of Sarah Jane Smith and Enemy of the Bane