HD Heads-Up: January 1 – 7

➢➢ Movies and specials will dominate the free-to-air schedules in the first week of January. First-run highlights include Call The Midwife Christmas Special (TVNZ 1, 8.05 Saturday), Doctor Who: Eve of the Daleks (TVNZ 2, 5.30 Sunday), The Royal Variety Performance 2021 (TVNZ 1, 7,00 Sunday), reunion special The Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts (TVNZ 2, 7.00 Sunday) and Mrs Brown’s Boys: Mammy’s Mickey (TVNZ 1, 9.05 Thursday) …

➢➢ Reports Bleeding Cool about the first of three movie-length Doctor Who specials: “Aisling Bea (This Way Up), Adjani Salmon (Dreaming Whilst Black), and Pauline McLynn (Father Ted) will be joining Team TARDIS for its New Year’s Day adventure. Following that, fans should expect the second special in Spring/Summer 2022 (while the date is still not known as of this writing if we had to guess we would say May or June), with the third & final special (when Jodie Whittaker regenerates into the new & still unannounced as of this writing Doctor) airing Autumn 2022 as part of the BBC’s Centenary celebrations” …

➢➢ Three will fast-track The Graham Norton Show New Year’s Eve Special (8.25 Sunday), with guests Jessica Chastain, Claire Foy, Cush Jumbo, Joe Lycett, Peter Dinklage and music from The Divine Comedy …

➢➢ There will be a handful of series premieres, including the launch of The Drew Barrymore Show (TVNZ 2, 1pm weekdays); new game show The Wall (TVNZ 1, 7.00 Saturday), in which everyday duos battle trivia questions and a 40-foot wall to win big; Great Escapes with Morgan Freeman (Duke, 8.30 Wednesday), in which the Oscar-winner explores some of the world’s most daring real-life jailbreaks; and Vintage Tech Hunters (Duke, 5.20 weekdays) …

➢➢ Four Hours at the Capitol (Three, 8.30 Thursday) sounds like the pick of the week. About the storming of the US Capitol on 6 January 2021, it was hailed as “fantastic” by The Times: “This excellent documentary showed that what we saw on TV then barely scratched the surface. It was like being dropped into the thick of the throng, among the gurning, malevolent faces and the terrible crush as people pushed and heaved to get inside the building then, horribly, succeeded” …

➢➢ Two network movies premieres will clash in the first week of January: Black and Blue (Three, 8.45 Saturday) and The Old Man & the Gun (TVNZ 1, 9.50 Saturday). Other HD coming attractions will include:

  • Home Alone 3 (TVNZ 2, 5.35 Saturday)
  • Wonder Park (Three, 7.00 Saturday)
  • Little Women (Maori TV, 7.00 Saturday)
  • SIX60: Till the Lights Go Out (TVNZ 2, 7.30 Saturday)
  • The Death of Stalin (Maori TV, 9.00 Saturday)
  • Pork Pie (Prime, 9.05 Saturday)
  • Shutter Island (Duke, 9.30 Saturday)
  • Ruthless Renegades (Three, 11.00 Saturday)
  • Dirty Dancing (TVNZ 2, 11.05 Saturday)
  • The Astronaut’s Wife (TVNZ 2, 1am Sunday)
  • Critters Attack! (TVNZ 2, 2.50am Sunday)
  • The Red Turtle (Maori TV, 8.40 Sunday)
  • CHiPs (TVNZ 2, 9.00 Sunday)
  • The Conjuring 2 (TVNZ 2, 10.50 Sunday)
  • The Specialist (Prime, 8.30 Monday)
  • Overboard (Three, 8.40 Monday)
  • A Secret to Keep (Three, 10.40 Monday)
  • Catch Me If You Can (Duke, 8.30 Tuesday)
  • The Girl in the Spider’s Web (Three, 8.40 Tuesday)
  • New Year’s Eve (TVNZ 2, 9.30 Tuesday)
  • Fools Rush In (Maori TV, 8.30 Wednesday)
  • Assassin’s Creed (TVNZ 2, 9.25 Thursday)
  • Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (Three, 7.30 Friday)
  • The Shawshank Redemption (TVNZ 1, 8.30 Friday)
  • Die Hard with a Vengeance (TVNZ 9.15 Friday)
  • Liar Liar (Duke, 9.25 Friday)
  • Call Me By Your Name (TVNZ 2, 2.40am Saturday).
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