Hot Spot

Sophie Aldred’s Ace was set to have a role in The Sarah Jane Adventures

The tragic death of Elisabeth Sladen in 2011 still feels incredibly unfair. Not least because she was headlining one of the best ever Doctor Who spin-off series, the terrific The Sarah Jane Adventures. In the show, she was reprising the role of Sarah Jane Smith, and in all five series were produced. The fifth series was cut short due to her illness.

Sophie Aldred, who played Ace alongside Sylvester McCoy in classic Doctor Who, has been chatting to Digital Spy about her character. And she’s revealed a surprising The Sarah Jane Adventures crossover. For it turns out we were going to learn what happened to Ace following her otherwise last screen appearance in Survival back in 1989.

“I didn’t know [at the time] but Russell T Davies had a whole couple of scenes planned out”, she told the site. “This sports car was going to draw up in front of Sarah Jane’s house, the door opens and this very smart, besuited woman would get out – and it’d be me, as I am now”.

Aldred added that “Sarah Jane, of course, would have no clue who Ace was! But sadly that was not to be, because I would’ve absolutely loved to have worked with Lis Sladen. We knew each other very well from conventions and signings and so on, but I would’ve loved to have actually worked with her on a story”.

Aldred hinted that Ace would possibly have been working as a sort-of intergalactic Greenpeace activist, “hanging off the back of spaceships, righting wrongs in the universe”.

The full interview with Digital Spy is here.

Mark Gatiss on his Doctor Who legacy

The Doctor Who writer and Sherlock co-creator discusses his history on Doctor Who as showrunner Steven Moffat prepares to leave this Christmas

Jodie Whittaker “knew for months” about being cast in Doctor Who - and only told one person

If being able to keep a secret makes for a good Time Lord then Jodie Whittaker has passed the first test.

Sources close to the performer, who was named last week as the Thirteenth Doctor, say that she knew “for months” about getting the role.

It is thought that she was given the job at least five months ago by Chris Chibnall, the new Doctor Who showrunner who worked with Whittaker on ITV drama Broadchurch where she played grieving Mum Beth Latimer. And she had to keep the secret all that time.

She even appeared at a press launch earlier this summer for her new drama Trust Me where she plays a nurse who poses as... a doctor – and managed to keep her poker face for that.

However the sources said that Whittaker did tell one person (and one person only): her husband, American actor Christian Contreras.

Whittaker is expected to start filming for the role next year for a likely broadcast in autumn 2018, with the role of her companion still undecided according to sources.

It has been said that former Death in Paradise star Kris Marshall has been chosen to accompany her Doctor in the TARDIS but BBC sources say that a decision has still not been made on the casting.

Whittaker said of her new role: “I’m beyond excited to begin this epic journey – with Chris and with every Whovian on this planet.

“It’s more than an honour to play the Doctor. It means remembering everyone I used to be, while stepping forward to embrace everything the Doctor stands for: hope. I can’t wait.”

New showrunner Chris Chibnall is understood to have been committed to casting a woman in the role ever since he landed the job last year.

His statement said: “I always knew I wanted the Thirteenth Doctor to be a woman and we’re thrilled to have secured our number one choice. Her audition for The Doctor simply blew us all away.

“Jodie is an in-demand, funny, inspiring, super-smart force of nature and will bring loads of wit, strength and warmth to the role. The Thirteenth Doctor is on her way.”

Via Radio Times by Ben Dowell

Deborah Watling has died aged 69 - Victoria in Doctor Who

Doctor Who's companion Deborah Watling has died following a short battle with cancer, aged 69.

The actress was best known for her role as Victoria Waterfield – the companion of 2nd Doctor Patrick Troughton in the BBC’s sci-fi series Doctor Who.

She was diagnosed with lung cancer just six weeks ago.

Deborah was the daughter of 1940s film star Jack Watling and actress Patricia Hicks, and started acting at a young age.

Via the Mirror Online by Jessica Gibb

More on the Sad News...

Deborah Watling, Doctor Who companion, dies aged 69 - BBC News Deborah Watling dead - Doctor Who's second assistant 'dies after short battle with cancer' BREAKING: Doctor Who assistant dies aged 69 Deborah Watling, Victoria In Doctor Who, Dies At 69 Deborah Watling, former Doctor Who assistant, dies aged 69 after lung cancer battle 'Doctor Who' companion Deborah Watling dies Deborah Watling: 1948 - 2017 RIP Deborah Watling, Doctor Who's Victorian Heroine

New Classic Who Is Coming To A Britbox Near You

The premier of new Doctor Who episodes in 2005 introduced a whole new audience, especially in America, to the Whoniverse. Naturally, this generated a renewed interest in classic Doctor Who episodes, only for new fans to discover that there are more than 97 episodes for which no recordings can be found, mostly from the era of the first and second Doctors.

The BBC and Britbox have teamed up to try and bring as many Classic Who stories to fans as possible. Britbox is a new streaming service with both classic and current BBC shows. Billed as having “the best in British television” it also boasts the most complete collection of Classic Who episodes, offering fans all episodes available to date.

To celebrate, Britbox brought Peter Davison (the Fifth Doctor), Colin Baker (the Sixth Doctor), and Sophie Aldred (Ace) to SDCC to discuss the history, and future, of Doctor Who in a panel moderated by Nerdist’s Kyle Anderson. The panelists were sincere, funny, and seemed to still really enjoy being involved with Doctor Who.

Diversity, or the lack thereof, in the casting of the show came up multiple times throughout the panel. When Anderson asked the panelists their thoughts on Jodie Whittaker being cast as the 13th Doctor, the general consensus was that fans always push back against a change in Doctor, no matter who is cast, and that it was about time there was a female doctor. Colin Baker went further saying, “I have four daughters, I want them to have a doctor they can aspire to.”

This led Sophie Aldred to discuss how her character, Ace, was really the precursor to the modern female companion. Before she was cast as Ace, the women of Doctor Who would “just run around quarries and twist their ankles…and scream.” In fact, until she read the script and saw that her character was, in fact, not just a damsel in distress, Aldred worried that she would not be a good fit for the show.

During Q&A, a fan asked about racial and ethnic diversity in the Doctor role, and how they may have cast a woman, but it was a white woman. Colin Baker again gave an impassioned answer that racial diversity in the Doctor role “should have happened ages ago,” characterizing the previous casting of the role of the Doctor as “timid.” However, Baker expressed hope that now that a female Doctor had been cast, the show would be more willing to take casting risks in the future.

Moving on to Classic Who discussion, Daleks came up as a common thread in the tenure of all three Doctor Who alums on the panel. Peter Davison volunteered that one of his favorite memories of playing the Doctor what when he pushed a Dalek out of an open window and it crashed to the ground (in Resurrection of the Daleks). However, all three actors made it clear that working with the Daleks in the days before robotic props was an arduous task. The Daleks had to be moved manually or by remote control, often getting stuck on the smallest piece of dirt on the floor. Additionally, they were slow, with Baker stating that one of the hardest things to do as an actor was to pretend to run from a Dalek, because you had time to “stop and take a [cigarette] break.”

And if you, like many Doctor Who fans, are wondering where to start watching classic Doctor Who episodes, the panel has advice for you. Colin Baker suggests that you start all the way at the beginning. However, Davison suggested two of his favorite episodes, Earthshock and The Caves of Androzani. Aldred’s choice would be The Remembrance of the Daleks, her first story as a companion, as well as The Curse of Fenric.

Finally, Britbox showcased some of the hard work it has been doing to bring classic Doctor Who to the masses. In September Britbox will premier a number of the lost episodes that have not been seen in years, and for which only the audio has been re-discovered.  For these specific episodes BritBox has reconstructed them by pairing dialogue with telesnaps and still photography.  BritBox showed clips from one of these newly available episodes, “The Wheel in Space,” from the Second Doctor story. The effect of the still visuals with the show’s original audio makes you feel like you are watching a science fiction slide show.

So, for those of you who will be in Doctor Who withdrawal until the Christmas special, Britbox now offers you a chance to travel back in time with the earliest Doctors and catch up on classic Doctor Who.

Via Bleeding Cool by Madeline Ricchiuto

Colin Baker says Doctor Who fans "weren't very kind" to Peter Capaldi, because they wanted "eye candy"

Peter Capaldi will depart Doctor Who this Christmas after four years as the show's lead, but one of his predecessors - Colin Baker - thinks the actor has "had a rough deal" from fans.

Baker, who played the sixth Doctor from 1984-86, told Digital Spy that he believes some Whovians were hostile towards Capaldi because he didn't fit the young and dashing model popularised by David Tennant.

"The fans weren't very kind to Peter Capaldi, because they'd been conditioned to want eye candy," Baker said. "The first and second and third Doctors... none of them were eye candy. They were strong, definite characters.

"Peter [Davison, who played the fifth Doctor] was a bit eye candy-ish, I suppose, but don't tell him I said that!"

Baker went on to suggest that there are similarities between Capaldi's Doctor and his own, with both starting out more severe before mellowing in later life.

"For me, the most interesting characters, in anything, are the ones that you learn about as the drama unfolds." he said. "Someone like Darcy in Pride and Prejudice, who for 7/8s of the book, you hate. But you find out at the end that he had the most decent motives of anybody in the book.

"And if I can take a more prosaic analogy, in Harry Potter, who do we hate all the way through? Severus Snape. Who was the greatest hero of them all? Severus Snape. So I find that interesting.

"That was the plan with my Doctor, to reveal his true self later on, but the plan was somewhat stymied by the powers-that-be at the BBC, who didn't like the programme."

Colin Baker was speaking at San Diego Comic-Con to promote classic Doctor Who on BritBox.

Via Digital Spy by Morgan Jeffery

Doctor Who Magazine Number 515 - Cover and Details


With his last episode due to air at Christmas, we asked Doctor Who‘s head writer and showrunner Steven Moffat if he ever thought, back in 2004, when he wrote The Empty Child, that he’d still be writing for the series in 2017?

“No, God, no!” he exclaims. “God, no! I also didn’t think I’d do the showrunning job for more than three years, and I’m here after six series. Yes, I’ve been writing Doctor Who stories since 2004. That’s a hell of a long time. When I wrote The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances, I wondered if I’d ever write another Doctor Who story. I was very keen to, I really wanted to. I remember asking, ‘Would you have me back next year…?’”

So what’s next for Steven after he finishes with the Doctor? He’s staying tight-lipped.

“I’m looking forward to the idea of not having to automatically say no to everything else! Whether that’s writing jobs, or weekends away. I can write different things. I’m looking forward to that, hugely. But I am so glad it happened. I’d have been miserable if I’d never got to write Doctor Who! It’s been amazing. Of course it’s been amazing.”

    Steven Moffat writes his final column for DWM, and his last-ever Doctor Who words!
  • THE TOP 20!
    A look back at 20 amazing things about the Steven Moffat era of Doctor Who – plus tributes from Russell T Davies, Chris Chibnall, Mark Gatiss and many others…
    The concluding part of our all-encompassing interview with actor/writer Mark Gatiss!
    There’s a brand-new adventure for the Doctor and Bill Potts in Part 1 of a new comic strip story, written by Scott Gray, with art by Staz Johnson.
    Reviews of the 2017 series, and the season finale World Enough and Time/The Doctor Falls.
    The Fact of Fiction examines the Eleventh Doctor’s d├ębut adventure, 2010’s The Eleventh Hour!
    The latest DVD and audio releases are put under the microscope.
    Previews of all the latest Doctor Who CD and book releases.
  • PLUS! All the latest official news, the Watcher’s column, prize-winning competitions, the DWM crossword, the 2017 Season Survey – and much, much more!

Doctor Who Magazine 515 is on sale from Thursday 27 July, price £5.99.

Peter Davison challenges the decision to make the Time Lord a woman but Colin Baker disagrees

Former Doctor Who Peter Davison has slammed the decision to make the Time Lord a woman, calling it 'sad' and a 'loss of a role model for boys'.

Speaking before an appearance at Comic-Con in San Diego on Thursday, the British actor said Jodie Whittaker was a 'terrific actress' but expressed concerns about the lead role going to a female.

The 66-year-old said: 'If I feel any doubts, it's the loss of a role model for boys who I think Doctor Who is vitally important for.'

He said: 'So  I feel a bit sad about that, but I understand the argument that you need to open it up.'

Davison said he liked the idea of the Doctor 'as a boy' but added, 'maybe I'm an old-fashioned dinosaur, who knows?'.

Via The Daily Mail by Katie French

The sixth Time Lord Colin Baker bluntly disagreed with Davison.

“They’ve had 50 years of having a role model. So sorry Peter, you’re talking rubbish there – absolute rubbish,” he said.

“Well you don’t have to be of a gender of someone to be a role model. Can’t you be a role model as people?”

Baker also said that he hopes to see a non-white Doctor in the future and that the series should look to America where he feels casting is less dependant on colour.

“They see a future world where that is irrelevant and it’s perhaps time Doctor Who and its fans did too,” he added.


Jodie Whittaker will earn the same as Peter Capaldi, BBC confirms

As the debate over the salaries the BBC pays to its talent continues to rumble, the director general of the corporation, Tony Hall, has been discussing money and Doctor Who in a new interview.

He’s been talking to the Evening Standard, and was asked whether the new Doctor – Jodie Whittaker – would be taking how the c£200k that Peter Capaldi earned for the role in the last financial year.

“Yes”, he confirmed, “there is parity for the same amount of work”.

He also added that “and I do think it is time for 13th Time Lord to be a woman. I watched my first Doctor Who in the Sixties, hiding behind the sofa. As a devoted Whovian, I’m incredibly excited”.

The full interview can be found here.

Via Cult Box by Martin Prince

Penguin announces major new deal for Doctor Who series eleven

Following the casting of Jodie Whittaker as the 13th Doctor in Doctor Who, Penguin Random House Children’s UK has now announced that it’s snapped up world publishing rights across all languages for Doctor Who series 11.

This will cover non-fiction, fiction, novelty, activity, audio and the Doctor Who annual. Furthermore, Penguin Random House has promised “a combination of titles that introduce the show and the Doctor to a new audience as well as more in-depth books for die-hard fans”.

It’s not just going to cover series 11 either. The formal press announcement confirms that this is “a two series publishing deal”

Francesca Dow, managing director of Penguin Random House Children’s UK, also added: ““What an exciting time to be renewing our partnership with BBC Worldwide as Doctor Who moves into a new era with its first female Doctor. Doctor Who stands for transformational magical storytelling and we can’t wait to take the new Doctor on new adventures in our books as we continue to expand the Doctor Who universe. We’ll be publishing for brand new fans meeting the Doctor for the very first time, as well as the existing fans who already know and love the show as much as we do”.

The first fruits of the deal are expected on sale next year.

Via Cult Box by Martin Prince

Kris Marshall is rumoured to play the Doctor's assistant

Former Doctor Who favourite Kris Marshall is being tipped to play the Doctor's assistant following the reveal of Jodie Whittaker as the Time Lord.

An insider told The Sun: 'Kris is a big fan of the show and the BBC are a big fan of his', as fans await the announcement following the groundbreaking reveal of the first ever female doctor earlier in the week.

The 44-year-old Death In Paradise star was previously in the lead for the role before viewers were delighted to hear of the arrival of the first ever female lead.

Could it be? Former Doctor Who favourite Kris Marshall is being tipped to play the Doctor's assistant following the reveal of Jodie Whittaker as the Time Lord

Talk long-circulated about Kris scooping the role as doctor, with sources previously revealing: 'Kris Marshall has already joined the cast and will regenerate at the end of this series, not in the Christmas special'.

Atop the misleading claims regarding his recruitment, insiders totally dismissed the idea of a woman scooping the role - just two months before Jodie's announcement: 'They won’t risk a woman Doctor. They want a David Tennant type.'

News of Kris' possible casting comes just days after Jodie was confirmed as the first female Time Lord on Sunday, after the Wimbledon Men's Singles Final.

Read the full story at Daily Mail Online  by Ciara Farmer and Julia Pritchard

BBC issues response to complaints about Jodie Whittaker being cast as The Doctor

Since the reveal of the 13th Doctor for hit sci-fi show on Sunday there has been a lot of unhappy people online about it.


Well, for the first time in its history of over 50 years, the series has cast a female in the role in the form of actress Jodie Whittaker (above).

A lot of people feel the show’s new lead has changed a fundamental part of the show and will unrecognisably alter it. A few knuckle draggers feel a woman shouldn’t be the Doctor because, well, she’s a woman. And then others still have accepted that the character can be whom ever he/she/they choose to be.

We are well aware that the character can change sex as well as faces and, like Missy regenerating from the Master, we’re perfectly ok with the move and look forward to what comes next.

However, some of the ones who don’t feel happy about the change have written to the BBC to complain (they must surely have been aware of the complaints online too) and, as expected, the BBC have responded.

The response simply outlines the character and the fact that gender has always been an open book as far The Doctor goes.

Read it here...

BBC One, Doctor Who casting announcement, 16 July 2017

  • Some viewers contacted us unhappy that Jodie Whittaker has been cast as the new Doctor.
  • Since the first Doctor regenerated back in 1966, the concept of the Doctor as a constantly evolving being has been central to the programme. The continual input of fresh ideas and new voices across the cast and the writing and production teams has been key to the longevity of the series.
  • The Doctor is an alien from the planet Gallifrey and it has been established in the show that Time Lords can switch gender.
  • As the Controller of BBC Drama has said, Jodie is not just a talented actor but she has a bold and brilliant vision for her Doctor. She aced it in her audition both technically and with the powerful female life force she brings to the role. She is destined to be an utterly iconic Doctor.
  • We hope viewers will enjoy what we have in store for the continuation of the story.

Via Following the Nerd

A Cybermen invasion at the Doctor Who Experience

Get ready for a Cybermen invasion this Saturday, July 22 at the Doctor Who Experience as we explore the world of the emotionless, deadly monsters.

Throughout the day expert prosthetic artists Millennium FX will be hosting Cybermen workshops and talks about the creation of the Cybermen you see on your screens. Millennium FX will also be performing Cyber conversions for those who purchased the special Cyber upgrade.

Relive the appearance of the Mondasian Cybermen in the Series 10 two-part finale in our special episode screenings of World Enough And Time / The Doctor Falls. Get your photo taken with our special green screen background. Plus, Luke Spillane, Doctor Who: The Fan Show favourite, will also be present hosting our very first Facebook Live – stay tuned!

Finally make sure you keep your wits about you as some of the Cybermen will come to life…

See the day’s timetable* below:

    11.30am - 12pm: Millennium FX workshop and Q&A
    12pm - 12.45pm: Series 10, Ep 11 screening
    12pm - 12.20pm: Facebook Live with Luke Spillane
    1pm - 1.30pm: Millennium FX workshop talk and Q&A
    1.30pm - 2.30pm: Series 10, Ep 12 screening
    2.45pm - 3.15pm: Millennium FX workshop talk and Q&A
    3.15pm - 5.30pm: Series 10, Eps 11 & 12 repeat screening

So you can enjoy all the activities happening during the day, readmission into the exhibition will be allowed – just make sure you have your ticket with you.

Tickets are available on the day but we advise to book in advance to avoid disappointment – please note, Cyber conversions are now sold out!

Click here to book your ticket now!

*Correct as of 19.07.17. Subject to change.

Via doctorwho tv by Cameron K McEwan

Over 16 million people have watched the Jodie Whittaker reveal

Considering we didn’t have a glitzy reveal show, the announcement of the new Doctor Who has travelled very far, and very wide. Revealed on Sunday afternoon in the midst of the BBC’s Wimbledon coverage, the short snippet unveiling Jodie Whittaker as the new Doctor has now been watched over 16 million times, the BBC has revealed.

In a sign of the times, the majority of those views have come online. 9.8 million have watched the video on the BBC’s Facebook channel, with a further 2.5 million on Twitter. Then there’s the those who watched on BBC One, and the additional teaser trailer that screened the Friday before the announcement notched up 4.8 million views online.

Jodie Whittaker will become the Doctor on Christmas Day, and is set to film her regeneration scene shortly.

Via Cult Box by Martin Prince

Georgia Moffett to lead a series of Doctor Who audio adventures as the Doctor's daughter

Doctor Who star Georgia Moffett, who played the Doctor’s daughter Jenny in 2008 for the BBC1 sci-fi show, is set to return to the part for a series of audio adventures.

The actress – the daughter of Doctor Who star Peter Davison and wife of former Doctor David Tennant –  is recording the stories this summer for production house Big Finish, with a release expected towards the end of the year.

It marks an interesting week for Doctor Who’s women after the sensational casting of Jodie Whittaker as the Thirteenth Doctor.

Radio Times also reveals that the Doctor’s daughter will have a male companion for her audio adventures: Sean Biggerstaff, the actor best know for playing Oliver Wood in the Harry Potter films, will star alongside her.

One of the new audio adventures is being written by Christian Brassington – the actor will be well known to Poldark fans for playing the loathsome Osborne Whitworth in the current series.

His episode is called Neon Reign and will be the first major production of his work, he told

Via Radio Times by Ben Dowell

Colin Baker on the first female Doctor: "If we do lose some fans we will gain many more"

Sixth Doctor Colin Baker believes Doctor Who will gain "many more" fans with Jodie Whittaker as the first female Doctor – even if certain outraged viewers have vowed to "never watch the programme again".
Writing in the Guardian, Baker – who has long supported the idea of a female Doctor – says he has been saddened and shocked by the backlash from some "fans".

"Let’s hope the disgruntled can be convinced in the end," he writes. "But if we do lose some fans we will gain many more when it’s not just little boys in the playground (or bigger boys in the acting profession) saying: 'I want to be the Doctor one day.'"

The former Doctor Who star, who played the Time Lord from 1984-1986, points out that the Doctor is always changing – after all, when he was the star of the show he wore a long multi-coloured patchwork jacket and had light curly hair.

"I have never been able to think of any logical reason why an alien being capable of regenerating in extremis would necessarily retain all or indeed any of the characteristics of his (or her) pre-renewal self," he says.

"They have been young and old, they have been Scottish, northern and received pronunciation, they have been grumpy, feckless, patrician, barmy, innocent, brash and potty – but never female.

"I have always found that problematical, not in the world we live in, but in the world the characters live in, particularly the Doctor’s world."

Via Radio Times by Eleanor Bley Griffiths

Trevor Baxter (Professor George Litefoot) has sadly died

It is with great sadness that we learn of the death of Trevor Baxter.

Trevor Baxter will always be a familiar name to fans of Big Finish and Doctor Who as Professor George Litefoot. His first unforgettable appearance was in The Talons of Weng-Chiang, the Doctor Who serial from February 1977, alongside Tom Baker, Louise Jameson and his partner-in-crime Christopher Benjamin.

After graduating from RADA in 1951, alongside names such as Joan Collins and Gerald Harper, Trevor Baxter has had an illustrious career on stage and screen, as well as behind the mike at Big Finish. Notable stage performances include David Mamet’s A Life in the Theatre, performing with the RSC, and touring Shakespeare in South America.

Trevor was also a playwright as well as actor, his plays Lies, Office Games and Undertaking all opening in London. He also adapted greats from Oscar Wilde, with a national tour of Dorian Gray in 2003 and Lord Arthur Savile’s Crime touring in 2005.

He continued to perform past a typical retirement age and to write and perform on stage, screen and the mike. Trevor has been an invaluable part of Big Finish and since May 2009 the Jago and Litefoot series has delighted listeners and remained a fan favourite, the last volume to be recorded was released just this year. With 13 series in 8 years, Trevor and Christopher have been some of our most prolific and joyful performers.

Trevor will be greatly missed. Our thoughts are with family and friends at this tragic time.

David Richardson: “In the nine years that I knew and worked with him, Trevor Baxter never stopped laughing. Even when he first joined Big Finish for the Companion Chronicle The Mahogany Murderers, he was not a well man, but his illness never seemed to dampen his joy of life. He loved reading - he didn’t own a TV but read books on his Kindle voraciously. He loved classical music, and could talk about it with passion and at length. He was a hugely intelligent man with great taste, and yet he never made you feel uncomfortable if you didn’t match his intelligence or taste. It was simply a joy to listen to him talking passionately."

"He also loved Jago and Litefoot, which kept him busy in the final years of his life, and he would listen to every single episode in every single release off the press, and write to me and tell me what he loved (which was usually everything). He adored working with Big Finish, but most of all he adored his co-star Christopher Benjamin, who he would tease mercilessly throughout every hour of every recording day. Those precious days (I think there might have been 60 of them) that I spent in their company were some of the happiest of my working life."

"Sometimes we would be crying with laughter, tears streaming down our faces, at the glorious badinage between takes. I will always remember Toby, our studio engineer, turning towards me during a break and saying, ‘I absolutely love Trevor. I’ve never met anyone else like him. He’s unique’ That’s how we all felt, and feel."

"Such a sad day. Doctor Who has lost one of its legends, and we’ve lost a dear friend.”

Jason-Haigh Ellery: “I was always impressed by Trevor, a man with an opinion and a decisive way of giving it. It became a running joke that if I cancelled the Jago and Litefoot series he would have nothing to live for. I don’t say that to be flippant but just to show his determination and his wicked sense of humour. He will be greatly missed by us all at Big Finish.”

Lisa Bowerman: "Dear Trevor. What a spirit, what a brain, what entertainment… and what a friend and colleague. Lover of life and books and art, thoughts and ideas; the first person I knew to own a Kindle!"

"From the time I worked with him in the theatre - to the 6 splendid years I spent with him on Jago & Litefoot. You lightened our lives; and how lucky and privileged we were that you gave all your energy and talent to that splendid creation Professor George Litefoot. I can’t think of a more brilliant epilogue to a long and brilliant career. RIP Trevor. Heartbroken."

Ian Atkins: “I was lucky enough to have been in on a number of recording sessions on the last few Jago & Litefoot sets, where meeting Trevor was never less than a pleasure and an inspiration. He'd hold court in the Green Room about all sorts of subjects, and it felt like he'd devoured every book there was, often looking at me and asking, "Oh, dear boy, have you read..." and having the tact not to look disappointed when I often said, "um... no". Indeed he'd then bring you up to speed with an accuracy most of my university tutors lacked, and welcome you into the conversation. His relationship with Christopher was warm and fun, and they were a double act as much behind the microphone as in front of it, providing many of my happiest Big Finish memories. It's incredibly sad news that I won't experience that again. Thank you so, so much Trevor.”

Via Big Finish

Doctor Who’s new showrunner, Chris Chibnall, has just become a Doctor

Whilst the internet continues to debate his choice as the new Doctor, incoming Doctor Who showrunner has been at Edge Hill University this morning to accept an Honorary Doctorate in Literature

In his address to graduands, he inevitably raised the issue of the new Doctor, acknowledging that he “appointed a new Doctor yesterday, made an Honorary Doctor today – it’s been quite a weekend”.

In his address, he also said that “Something I wish I’d known earlier, you’re probably all wondering ‘what’s going to happen to me in the future?’ It sounds very obvious but I didn’t realise it until four years ago when I wrote Broadchurch and people started stopping me in the street to ask about it – the future is you, it’s not something that just happens. The future is there to be taken by every person graduating today”.

“I wrote Broadchurch for myself and never thought anyone would want to make it, let alone watch it, but that story has gone around the world, been remade in America and France and turned into a novel. It led to me being offered what was as a child my dream job, being in charge of the TARDIS and Doctor Who – I never thought that would happen either!”.

Chris Chibnall will take over Doctor Who from series 11 onwards – although he’s got the small matter of writing an introduction for new Doctor Jodie Whittaker in the upcoming Christmas special!

Via CultBox by Martin Prince

Jodie Whittaker to ask Broadchurch co-stars David Tennant and Arthur Darvill for Doctor Who advice

Jodie Whittaker will be the new leading lady of Doctor Who, the 13th actor to guide viewers through adventures in time and space.

And she’s certainly got a big Tardis to fill: the Broadchurch actor follows applauded Doctors Peter Capaldi, Matt Smith, David Tennant and Christopher Eccleston (and that's just the new generation). Perhaps the previous incarnations of the character could offer some Gallifreyan words of wisdom to the incoming Time Lord?

That’s what Whittaker is hoping for. When asked if any Doctor Who stars have given her advice after the casting was announced yesterday, Whittaker said: “I’m certainly expecting a couple of calls – I’ve got a couple of mates [on the show]. I’m mates with a companion [Broadchurch's Arthur Darvill], I’m mates with a trio of Doctors.

“I know Matt Smith, Chris Eccleston and obviously David Tennant [from Broadchurch]. Oh! And let’s throw in David Bradley [also from Broadchurch]! Four Doctors! So I’m hoping I get some calls of advice.”

And while we're sure the former Doctors will be happy to impart their top Time Lord tips to Whittaker, we’re just left wondering when they’ll call from. Remember, as Clara found out in Capaldi's first episode, the Doc's got a habit of ringing out of his time...

Whittaker also said that she was delighted to become the first female Doctor and mark such a milestone in the sci-fi show’s history. "It feels completely overwhelming, as a feminist, as a woman, as an actor, as a human, as someone who wants to continually push themselves and challenge themselves, and not be boxed in by what you’re told you can and can’t be. It feels incredible."

Via Radio Times by Thomas Ling

Sydney Newman, co-creator of Doctor Who, told The BBC to cast a Woman In 1986

In the mid-eighties, Doctor Who was put on hiatus. There was a real danger the show might have been cancelled there and then after a less-than-stellar run with Colin Baker in the lead. In an attempt to revive the series, the Canadian TV producer Sydney Newman who had co-created the show with Verity Lambert back in the sixties was asked for his thoughts.

He wrote to BBC Chairman Michael Grade, asking the BBC to”engage the concerns, fears and curiosity” of young viewers, challenging them “don’t you agree that this is considerably more worthy of the BBC than Doctor Who‘s presently largely socially valueless, escapist schlock!”

He first stated that they should rehire Patrick Troughton in the lead and then “at a later stage Doctor Who should be metamorphosed into a woman” but that he wanted to “avoid a flashy, Hollywood Wonder Women because this kind of heroine with no flaws is a bore. Given more time than I have now, I can create such a character.”

He also called for female and male companions, a trumpet playing schoolgirl in “John Lennon-type spectacles” and her graffiti-spraying “yobbo” elder brother.

He also asked, for a fee, to be the executive director of the show “to ensure the concept is properly executed” and add his name to the closing titles.

This advice was not heeded, the show returned with Sylvester McCoy in the lead for a few years before being cancelled for a lot longer.

Who knows what would have happened in the BBC had taken Sydney Newman’s advice?

The letter was unearthed by researchers for Ed Stradling, who directed the documentary The Last Chance Saloon which appears in the DVD for the Sylvester McCoy Doctor Who story Time And The Rani, which saw the Doctor face a female villainous Time Lord.

Newman proposed an educational children’s science fiction series entitled Doctor Who, as a BBC Saturday teatime kids show to bridge the gap between Grandstand and Juke Box Jury. He would later recruit the likes of Dennis Potter, Jeremy Sandford and Ken Loach to the BBC, and is considered one of the most influential people in TV history.

Shame he didn’t get his way. Jodie could be the 26th Doctor by now, and maybe the eighth female Doctor or so…

Via Bleeding Cool by Rich Johnston

The New Doctor Reactions

Various reactions to the news of  Jodie Whittaker taking over the role

"Change my dears and not a moment too soon": Colin Baker, Billie Piper and Doctor Who stars celebrate first female Doctor
Doctor Who fans couldn't be happier Jodie Whittaker is the new Doctor
  Thoughts On The Casting Of Jodie Whittaker As The Doctor (or "I'm Unsure; I Hope That's Ok?") Alex Kingston's reaction to a female Doctor Who was SO River Song Doctor Who stars react to Jodie Whittaker casting

Jodie Whittaker is the Next Doctor

The identity of the new Doctor was revealed exclusively on BBC One and on social media around the world after the Men’s Wimbledon Final on Sunday 16th July.

She will be the Thirteenth Time Lord and take over from Peter Capaldi who leaves the global hit show at Christmas.

New head writer and executive producer Chris Chibnall who takes over from Steven Moffat on the next series made the decision to cast the first ever woman in the iconic role.

Jodie Whittaker says: “I’m beyond excited to begin this epic journey - with Chris and with every Whovian on this planet. It’s more than an honour to play the Doctor. It means remembering everyone I used to be, while stepping forward to embrace everything the Doctor stands for: hope. I can’t wait.”

Chris Chibnall, New Head Writer and Executive Producer says :
“After months of lists, conversations, auditions, recalls, and a lot of secret-keeping, we’re excited to welcome Jodie Whittaker as the Thirteenth Doctor.

I always knew I wanted the Thirteenth Doctor to be a woman and we're thrilled to have secured our number one choice. Her audition for The Doctor simply blew us all away. Jodie is an in-demand, funny, inspiring, super-smart force of nature and will bring loads of wit, strength and warmth to the role. The Thirteenth Doctor is on her way.”

Peter Capaldi says : “Anyone who has seen Jodie Whittaker’s work will know that she is a wonderful actress of great individuality and charm. She has above all the huge heart to play this most special part. She’s going to be a fantastic Doctor.”

Charlotte Moore, Director of BBC Content says :
“Making history is what Doctor Who is all about and Chris Chibnall’s bold new take on the next Time Lord is exactly that. The nation is going to fall in love with Jodie Whittaker - and have lots of fun too!”

Piers Wenger, Controller BBC Drama says : "Jodie is not just a talented actor but she has a bold and brilliant vision for her Doctor. She aced it in her audition both technically and with the powerful female life force she brings to the role. She is destined to be an utterly iconic Doctor."

Matt Strevens, Executive Producer says : "I'm so thrilled that Jodie Whittaker said yes to playing the Doctor. I've been a fan for years and always hoped to work with her. She is an actor of great emotional range and inhabits every role with complete passion and conviction. Just thinking about what she will bring to the Doctor makes me as excited as a kid at Christmas. It's going to be a lot of fun."

More on the News...

Doctor Who’s new leading lady Jodie Whittaker wants to assure fans of the beloved sci-fi series that there’s nothing to fear when she takes over the Tardis as the first female Doctor

“I want to tell the fans not to be scared by my gender” said Whittaker. Because this is a really exciting time, and Doctor Who represents everything that’s exciting about change. The fans have lived through so many changes, and this is only a new, different one, not a fearful one.”

The actress, best known to UK TV viewers as Danny Latimer’s mum, Beth, from Chris Chibnall’s Broadchurch – which also stared Tenth Doctor David Tennant – said she didn’t need any convincing when it came to the role.

“There was no persuasion needed. If you need to be persuaded to do this part, you’re not right for this part, and the part isn’t right for you. I also think, for anyone taking this on, you have to want to fight for it, which I certainly had to do. I know there will have been some phenomenal actors who threw their hats in the ring.”

She's particularly pleased to become the first female Doctor and mark such a milestone in Doctor Who history.

"It feels completely overwhelming, as a feminist, as a woman, as an actor, as a human, as someone who wants to continually push themselves and challenge themselves, and not be boxed in by what you’re told you can and can’t be. It feels incredible."

Via Radio Times 

The BBC interviewed Jodie Whittaker about taking on the role of the Doctor…

1) What does it feel like to be the Thirteenth Doctor?
It’s very nerve-racking, as it’s been so secret!

2) Why did you want the role?
To be asked to play the ultimate character, to get to play pretend in the truest form: this is why I wanted to be an actor in the first place. To be able to play someone who is literally reinvented on screen, with all the freedoms that brings: what an unbelievable opportunity. And added to that, to be the first woman in that role.

3) Has it been hard to keep the secret?
Yes. Very hard! I’ve told a lot of lies! I’ve embroiled myself in a whole world of lies which is going to come back at me when this is announced!

4) Who was the first person you told when you got the role?
My husband. Because I was allowed to!

5) Did you have a codename and if so what was it?
In my home, and with my agent, it was The Clooney. Because to me and my husband, George is an iconic guy. And we thought: what’s a really famous iconic name? It was just fitting.

6) What does it feel like to be the first woman Doctor?
It feels completely overwhelming, as a feminist, as a woman, as an actor, as a human, as someone who wants to continually push themselves and challenge themselves, and not be boxed in by what you’re told you can and can’t be. It feels incredible.

7) What do you want to tell the fans?
I want to tell the fans not to be scared by my gender. Because this is a really exciting time, and Doctor Who represents everything that’s exciting about change. The fans have lived through so many changes, and this is only a new, different one, not a fearful one.

8) What are you most excited about?
I’m most excited about becoming part of a family I didn’t even know existed. I was born in 1982, it’s been around longer than me, and it’s a family I couldn’t ever have dreamed I’d be part of.

9) How did Chris sell you the part?
We had a strange chat earlier this year where he tricked me into thinking we were talking about Broadchurch. And I started to quiz him about his new job in Wales, and asked him if I could be a baddie! And he quickly diverted the conversation to suggest I should consider auditioning to be the 13th Clooney.

It was the most incredible chat because I asked every question under the sun, and I said I’d take a few weeks to decide whether I was going to audition. He got a phone call within 24 hours. He would’ve got a phone call sooner, but my husband was away and there was a time difference!

10) Did he persuade you?
No. There was no persuasion needed. If you need to be persuaded to do this part, you’re not right for this part, and the part isn’t right for you. I also think, for anyone taking this on, you have to want to fight for it, which I certainly had to do. I know there will have been some phenomenal actors who threw their hats in the ring.

11) What are you going to wear?
Don’t know yet.

12) Is that your costume in the filmed sequence which introduced you as the new Doctor?

13) Have any of the other Doctors given you advice?
Well they can’t because they haven’t known until now, but I’m certainly expecting a couple of calls – I’ve got a couple of mates in there. I’m mates with a companion [Arthur Darvill], I’m mates with a trio of Doctors. I know Matt Smith, Chris Eccleston and obviously David Tennant. Oh! And let’s throw in David Bradley! Four Doctors! So I’m hoping I get some calls of advice.

Jodie Whittaker Biography

Jodie Whittaker graduated from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 2005 with a gold medal in Acting. Since then she has worked continually in Film, Television and Theatre. Her TV credits include the critically acclaimed ITV drama 'Broadchurch' (for which she was nominated for ‘Best Actress’ for the RTS Television Awards), Emmy award-winning 'Black Mirror’, Sky 1’s 'The Smoke', BBC’s 'Cranford’, in which she starred opposite Judi Dench and Imelda Staunton, 'The Night Watch'(BBC), 'The Accused'(BBC), and 'Tess of the D'Urbervilles' (BBC).

Jodie has recently finished shooting 'Journeyman' written and directed by Paddy Considine as well as the lead in the new BBC drama series ‘Trust Me’. Her other film credits include 'Venus', (which earned her nominations for 'Best Newcomer' at the 'British Independent Film Awards', 'Best British Newcomer' at the 'Critic's Circle Awards' and 'Best Actress in a Motion Picture' at the 'Satellite Awards'), 'Attack the Block', 'One Day', 'Black Sea', 'Good Vibrations', 'St.Trinian's', 'Get Santa' and most recently 'Adult Life Skills' which she Executive Produced as well as starred in which received a number of BIFA nominations.

Jodie made her professional theatrical debut at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre in ‘The Storm’. Other theatre credits include playing the title role in 'Antigone' at the Royal National Theatre, 'Bash' at the Trafalgar Studios 'Awake and Sing' and 'Enemies' at the Almeida, both directed by the then Artistic Director, Michael Attenborough.

Via the BBC