Q: What is the status of the British series "Torchwood"? It was being shown on the Starz channel. Is it going to be continued or what?
A: Starz carried "Torchwood: Miracle Day," set partly in the United States and continuing the characters from the British series that had previously aired on BBC America. There has been much talk about another round of "Torchwood" for 2012, but that has seemed less clear in recent weeks. Starz Chief Executive Albrecht has reportedly said that the network is interested in more if there's an idea that appeals to series creator Russell T. Davies. But in early December, Davies put all work on hold to take care of his partner, Andrew Smith, after Smith was diagnosed with brain cancer. Davies and Smith even moved from Hollywood back to England, the BBC reported, and took up residence near a major cancer hospital in Manchester. Davies told the BBC: "I don't know when I'll start work again. I've got to see how Andrew's health goes."
Q: Can you tell me where I can obtain a copy of the movie "Love and Pain and the Whole Damn Thing," starring Maggie Smith and Timothy Bottoms?
A: The 1973 romance directed by Alan J. Pakula was released on DVD under Sony's "Martini Movies" banner in 2009. If you are not having any luck with your local video retailer, it can be found at online retailers, including Amazon.com, Deepdiscount.com and Moviesunlimited.com.
Q: I was wondering if there were any copies made of the TV show "B.J. and the Bear"? I used to watch it as a kid and would love to find it out on video.
A: When NBC was struggling to find an audience in the late '70s, this action comedy was enough of a success to run during a couple of seasons -- and have a spinoff. Greg Evigan starred as B.J., a trucker with a pet chimp named Bear. Aiming for much the same audience as CBS' "The Dukes of Hazzard" (which had premiered two weeks before the NBC show), it often found B.J. in conflict with sheriffs, notably Elroy P. Lobo, played by Claude Akins. He got his own series, "The Misadventures of Sheriff Lobo" (and later just "Lobo"). That said, I do not know of an authorized video of either program.
Q: This summer I saw an ad for a movie titled "The Company Men" with a cast of well-known actors. It sounded like one I would like to see but I've neither seen nor heard about it since then. Can you tell me anything about it? Has it been or will it be released?
A: The film starred Ben Affleck, Tommy Lee Jones and Chris Cooper in a tale of businessmen in the age of corporate downsizing. John Wells ("ER," "The West Wing") wrote and directed it. A good film, it was not widely seen, appearing in fewer than 300 theaters nationwide. But it is now available on DVD and Blu-ray. (If your local retailer does not have it, try online vendors.) It has also been airing on Showtime, and there are several telecasts set for early January.
Q: I am looking for an old Italian movie called "The Overcoat." Is it available?
A: Alberto Lattuada directed and co-wrote the movie, also known as "Il Cappotto," a 1952 adaptation of a Nikolai Gogol story. It involves a poor clerk (Renato Rascel) who wants to buy a new overcoat, and the complicated sequence of events resulting from that. While your question came in a long time ago, I am happy to tell you at last that it will be on DVD on Jan. 17 from Raro Video. If your local retailer cannot get it for you, it is for sale from online vendors, including Amazon.com and Moviesunlimited.com.