‘Carry On Screaming!’ was the twelfth film in the iconic British comedy series, released in 1966. This year, AUK Studios and Spiteful Puppet re-ignite the classic comedy in a brand-new digital audio adaption to greet modern audiences. Featuring the brilliant, Jim Dale who you may know from the classic ‘Carry On’ films and for narrating The Harry Potter books. With the fantastic actress Jessica Martin from Doctor Who, as wells as Wink Taylor who bring the words of Robert Ross to life in character alongside music by Abi Fox and soundscapes by Joseph Fox. It’s for the whole family to enjoy, and it will carry on a life long love of the iconic franchise, or perhaps it might start a new found craze for a family favourite comedy.
Who the heck is Jim Dale?
Words: Colleen Considine
You might think of Jim Dale as the as-British-as-British-can be Jim Dale, and you’d be right. You would of course know him as Dr Nookey from the classic British comedy films ‘Carry On’. However, he also took to the bright lights of Broadway with leading roles in Barnum, Candice and his title role Scapino in 1970. Just as you thought that must be it, for any Americans, he also narrated all seven of the Harry Potter audiobooks. So, encase you were wondering about the British bloke who read you to sleep at night, that’d be Jim Dale.
You probably won’t find someone as multi-talented as Jim, he’s done everything from music to acting, to Broadway and voice work. At the age of 17 Jim started his career as a comedian. You could find Jim as one of the youngest professional comedians in Britain, touring variety halls around the United Kingdom. With his first play at the National Theatre by the brilliant Peter Nichols, ‘The National Health’ in 1973. He’s gone on to star in a number of Broadway performances, and has been nominated for five Tony Awards, winning one for Barnum in 1980.
Jim Dale ventured into music at 22 when he became the first pop singer to work with the iconic George Martin, who produced all of his hit records. However, he is best known as the lyricist for the film theme Georgy Girl, for which he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Original Song. As well as the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song in 1966. His film debut came in 1958 in ‘Six Five Special’, a spin-off from the BBC TV series of the same name. However, he is best known in Britain for his eleven appearances in the classic ‘Carry On’ films. First playing small roles, with his first part as an expectant father in ‘Carry On Cabby’, 1963. However, from ‘Carry On Spying’ in 1964, his roles were larger, with his first principal role in the 1965 film ‘Carry On Cowboy’.
Jim Dale might best be remembered in Britain for his roles in the iconic ‘Carry On’ films, or for Americans it might be as the voice of the Harry Potters or his endless roles on Broadway. Whatever it is, Jim’s far from drawing in the curtains just yet, having appeared in the audiobook for Spiteful Puppet’s Jeepers Creepers in 2020, who knows what’s in store for him next!?
Words: Colleen Considine
Jessica Martin is a woman whose talent holds no bound, having first appeared in the 1988 episode of Doctor Who ‘The Greatest Show in the Galaxy’ as the Vulpanian werewolf Mags. She then returned in 2007 to voice Queen Elizabeth II for the Christmas episode ‘Doctor Who: Voyage of the Damned’. Jessica started her career as an impressionist on the fringe circuit, where she performed alongside Harry Enfield and Rory Bremmer. It was after this when she was given a regular slot on Spitting Image in 1985 until 1988. She also became the only female member of London Weekend’s comedy impressionist sketch Copy Cats.
Martin went on to play leading musical roles, in 1996 she portrayed Mabel in the production of Mack & Mabel at the Piccadilly Theatre. She also played Mrs Lovett in Sweeny Todd and Norma Desmond in Sunset Boulevard. It was in 2015 when she joined the cast of Eld: The Musical to play the role of Emily Hobbs at the Dominion Theatre. And in 2018 Martin played the role of Dame Shirley Porter in Shirleymander by Greg Evans at the Playground Theatre in 2018. A role for which she was nominated for Best Female Performance in the Off West End Awards in 2018.
As well as being an accomplished actress, in 2010 Jessica took up sketching, crossing over into the world of graphic novels. In the following year when touring in the musical Spamalot alongside Phil Jupitus she showed him one of her sketches and upon being praised, he suggested she should do a graphic novel. It was the “lightbulb moment” as Jessica mentions. Her ‘mentor’ Mark Buckingham illustrated her story which was published in the Thought Bubble Anthology in 2013. However, it was her first comic written and drawn by herself titled, ‘It Girl’, about silent film actress Clara Bow that she self-published in 2013. It was then selected in the “Ten Must Own Small-Press Comics 2013” by Broken Frontier. In 2014 her first full-length graphic novel Elsie Harris Picture Palace, set in the 1930s British film industry was shortlisted for the Myriad First Graphic Novel Prize in 2014.
As well as the leading lights of acting, Jessica’s career has taken her to the world of audio work for a one-off special for BBC Radio 2, ‘The Gossip Column Murders’, written by Mark Brisenden. Featuring a radio detective Cybil Liberty, including Judy Garland and Carmen Miranda, all played by Jessica. And it’s also seen her become an accomplished artist, having taken the graphic novel world by storm with her stories. She is also set to be in Spiteful Puppet’s ‘Jeepers Creepers’, an audio drama documenting the life of Marty Feldman, alongside Wink Taylor.