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Doctors to air special self-shot lockdown episode this June

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A special self-shot lockdown episode of Doctors is to air on BBC One this month.

The 45-minute episode, titled Can You Hear Me? will explore life in lockdown.

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It was written by Toby Walton and entirely self-shot by the cast at home on their mobile phones, described by the BBC as "the first of its kind for a British continuing drama series".

Teasing the episode, the BBC add: "Because the Mill is open to patients throughout the pandemic, the characters continue to work during lockdown. Therefore these scenes are set in the evening, when remote meetings are held, phone calls are made and even counselling takes place.

"As always everyone is working incredibly hard, but audiences soon discover the harsh realities faced by the characters, who suffer from inevitable anxiety and fear, withdraw from the world, and even (in one case) dramatically develop symptoms of the virus."

BBC Studios Series Producer Peter Lloyd said: "I wanted to capture the strange times we are experiencing and present it to our audience.

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"The very specific demands of producing an episode of this nature was a challenge for everyone involved, especially the cast as they were acting straight to camera, with only my voice performing all the other characters so that certainly required a lot of imaginative work on their part. It was a real team effort!"

Mike Hobson, BBC Studios Executive Producer, added: "We’re never afraid to push the format on Doctors, as our loyal viewers know, but this episode has been a challenge of a very different kind. To turn it around at this speed has meant coming up with new ways of working and totally rethinking how to make the programme.

"I’m incredibly proud of the work everyone has put into this episode, especially our brilliant cast who have had to learn new skills, while still giving outstanding performances."

Carla-Maria Lawson, Head of BBC Daytime and Early Peak, commented: "Doctors recently celebrated their 20th anniversary and this unique episode demonstrates why the programme continues to innovate, and remains so popular with viewers.

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"I think lockdown has presented challenges for everyone but it’s been wonderful to see the ingenuity within the creative sector and I’m delighted that Doctors is the first British continuing drama series to bring this very exciting format to fans."

The lockdown episode of Doctors will air on Friday 12 June at 1.45pm on BBC One.

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