Peter Capaldi says any actor playing Doctor Who has a "responsibility" to the fans

The Doctor Who fandom is one of the most passionate and opinionated out there – and, as he prepares to leave the series, Peter Capaldi has insisted that any actor playing the Doctor has "a responsibility" to its followers.

Capaldi himself spent time on his final ever day of filming meeting fans, and told Digital Spy that he doesn't consider the extracurriculars of playing the Doctor to be any kind of hassle.

"I think that there is clearly a responsibility, which is very easy to address, because people don't really ask very much of you," he said. "They just like you to show up, and smile at them, and be nice. And actually that's an incredibly pleasant place to be, on the other side of that.

"As a kid, I liked Doctor Who, so I wouldn't have liked to have met Doctor Who and found them to be rather unpleasant, or preoccupied with other things. And it doesn't take much to be friendly. So I just try to be friendly to them, that's all."

It's nowhere in the contract, but series boss Steven Moffat agreed that there is "emphatically" a responsibility to playing the Doctor, one that "goes on for the rest of [the actor's] life".

"You will always be an ambassador for the show,"
he said. "I remember us saying that when Matt Smith took over – 'You have been rude to your last taxi driver... and we don't mean for the next three years, we mean for the rest of your life!'

"And I remember Matt himself saying, 'Imagine how awful it would be if somebody had to carry the memory that Doctor Who was rude to them. You would remember it on your deathbed, you'd still be thinking about that!'

"So you have to be Doctor Who forever... and nobody who's played the Doctor has ever thought, 'Am I contractually obliged to do this?' – no, it's a role for life."

Read the full article on Digital Spy by Morgan Jeffery

Steven Moffat reveals the classic Doctor Who monsters he wishes he'd "done more with"

As he prepares to depart Doctor Who this Christmas after a seven-year stint, series boss Steven Moffat has admitted to two big regrets.

Moffat told Digital Spy that there are two monsters he wished he'd featured more – one of his own creation, and one a classic menace from the 1970s.

"I wish I'd done more with the Autons," he said. "I really like them."

Robots resembling shop-window mannequins, the Autons did appear in series 5's finale 'The Pandorica Opens / The Big Bang', but haven't featured on the show as a major villain since 2005's 'Rose'.

"I think I should've done some more with The Silence," Moffat added. "That was a good idea that I didn't revisit, and I don't really know why I didn't.

"But I did 42 episodes, I co-wrote more again, probably the same again re-wrote, so I think really I've covered everything. I think it was time to get rid of me!"

Looking back over his time on the series, Moffat cited "all the shows we made around the 50th [anniversary]" as his proudest achievement.

"There was some phenomenal television there – I can now say that. 'The Day of the Doctor', An Adventure in Space and Time, Peter Davison's lovely film, 'The Night of the Doctor'... all the stuff we did was brilliant.

"We carried off that 50th, we absolutely nailed it. No-one thought we would and we did, and it was great and I'm incredibly proud of that. It was hell [at the time], it was living hell, but it turned out great."

And while we'll be sad to see him go, Moffat insists he's feeling "fine" about leaving Doctor Who after so long.

"I haven't experienced the melancholy, partly because I'm still on the job, still doing it, and the other thing is, honestly, when we stopped shooting the Christmas special... I hadn't known how stressed I'd been since 2009.

"When that all lifted from me, I just thought, 'I don't feel like I've got my head in a vice anymore!' - I'm not scheduling my entire life to death, in order to be able to do the work I've got to do. So at the moment, I'm just quite happy.

"I'll be sad, I'm sure, in the future, but right now, bloody hell, is this how the rest of you live? How marvellous!"

Via Digital Spy by Morgan Jeffery

David Tennant says Jodie Whittaker’s gender will be “irrelevant almost immediately” when she starts Doctor Who

After briefly touching on the topic last month at San Diego comic-con, former Doctor Who star David Tennant has finally spoken at length about the casting of Thirteenth Doctor Jodie Whittaker, the first female actor to take on his former role.

Speaking to Stephen Colbert on the Late Show in the US, the Tenth Doctor actor addressed the slight backlash from certain fans disappointed by Whittaker’s casting, saying that such strong reactions “[happen] every time” due to the passionate nature of the fans, and predicting that Thirteen’s gender would become old news pretty quickly.

“Do you know, whenever the Doctor changes there’s a backlash, because that’s a character people love,” Tennant explained. “So people get very affectionate about the Doctor they knew.”

Asked if such a reaction had accompanied his casting, he added “Oh, sure!”

“They were like ‘Who’s the weaselly-looking guy? Who’s this? I like the last guy. This is not gonna work for me – this show is dead to me. I resign from the internet. Send!

“There was a lot of that. And that happens every time, and that’s because it’s a show that has a lot on enthusiastic followers.”

Still, Tennant said he was confident that his former Broadchurch co-star Whittaker would be great in the role, and that the character’s gender would soon be forgotten – at least as a point of contention, anyway.

“Sure, Jodie is from a different gender than anyone who’s gone before, but that will be irrelevant almost immediately when she takes the part,” he said.

“The Doctor can be whatever he needs to be. It’s about finding the right performer at the right time – and that’s Jodie without a doubt.”

Fingers crossed that when the Thirteenth Doctor is revealed on Christmas Day, the fans will feel the same.

Via Radio Times by Huw Fullerton

PETA urge Doctor Who to make the Doctor vegan

Alas, it could be the end of fish fingers and custard – because animal rights organisation PETA has released an open letter to new Doctor Who boss Chris Chibnall asking that the next Doctor (played by Broadchurch’s Jodie Whittaker) be portrayed as a vegan.

“We at PETA – like so many devoted Doctor Who fans worldwide – are excited to see Jodie Whittaker step into the Doctor’s shoes,” the letter from PETA director Elisa Allen begins.

“But before she begins to navigate her way through space and time, we have a request we hope you’ll consider: make the character vegan.”

The letter, which you can read in full here, goes on to lay out the reasons for the change, suggesting that the series’ “central message of love for life in all its forms” is incompatible with a hero who eats meat or meat by-products.

“Eating dead animals simply doesn’t fit with the Doctor’s moral compass since, as Christopher Eccleston so aptly said, the show has ‘the central message of love for life in all its forms,” Allen continues.

“Not only is switching to a vegan diet infinitely kinder to animals, it’s also one of the best ways to protect planet Earth, as animal agriculture is a major producer of the greenhouse-gas emissions that contribute to climate change.

“Considering all the benefits that eating vegan has for a person’s heart, it’d be doubly beneficial for the Doctor!

“Vegan foods really have come a long way since the nut cutlets of the Sixth Doctor’s time – there are tasty options readily available to suit every appetite (even if that’s for faux-fish fingers dunked in soya custard),”
the open letter concludes.

“We hope the new Doctor will join us in taking a stand for animals and inspire others to switch to a healthy, Earth-friendly, life-saving diet.”

So will the Doctor be going full vegan in 2018? Will Jim the Fish finally be safe from Time Lord snacking? Or will the Tardis still have a secret supply of beef jerky somewhere? The ball’s in your court, Chris….

Via Radio Times by Huw Fullerton

Jodie Whittaker's reaction to landing the 'Doctor Who' Role on the 'Lorraine' show

Jodie Whittaker chats to Christine about her new drama 'Trust Me' and recounts the moment she found out she was the new Doctor Who!

After the announcement that Peter Capaldi was departing Doctor Who in January, media pundits and newspapers spent months trying to discover the identity of the next Time Lord, to no avail.

But now, of course, we know the new face in the Tardis will be first female Doctor Jodie Whittaker – and the Broadchurch and Trust Me star has finally opened up on the pressure of keeping her Who identity secret for all those months.

“I didn’t know details but I knew there was going to be an attempt at a really brilliant reveal,” Whittaker told Christine Bleakley on ITV’s Lorraine.

“I have got super bad paranoia, so I was like, ‘Did I tell you that? Sorry. Was I supposed to tell you that?’ You know that awful thing of ‘Was I supposed to tell you that?’

“Obviously I’ve had five years of Broadchurch to know, ‘OK, I’m not sure if I told you that, but if I did, don’t tell anyone…’ I also had a massive panic about it as I was a bit like ‘I can’t remember what I was told I’m not allowed to say’…”

“There was just this thing of, in July this will happen and if we could get it to be this really amazing moment… and also for me I got to live a pretty anonymous life until then,” she added. “So it was within my benefit to have that reveal happen.”

And so Whittaker embarked on a campaign of secrecy, screening calls from new Doctor Who showrunner Chric Chibnall, telling nobody but her husband (actor Christian Contreras) about the job and even keeping discussion of the part down to whispers in her own home. 

“I was just lying left right and centre,” she explained.

“Talking to my agent and [showrunner] Chris Chibnall, obviously we were speaking a lot, I’d get so paranoid if my phone was on the table and his name would ping up and I’d be like ‘Well, people won’t associate it with that as people know we’re friends from Broadchurch.’

“You just become a massive narcissist,"
she went on. "Like, ‘Everything’s about me… everyone is looking at me all the time.

“I think I was incredibly melodramatic the whole time. I talked like this [in a whisper] in my flat for months.”

Still, in the end the secrets paid off, and fans were truly surprised when Whittaker appeared as the next Doctor under that hood. Probably worth the odd missed call and scratchy throat, right?

Via Radio Times by Huw Fullerton

How Jodie Whittaker 'missed' fan reactions to Doctor Who role

Jodie Whittaker says she didn't see people's reactions to her becoming the first female Doctor Who, because she's not on social media.

Speaking to BBC 6 Music in her first broadcast interview since her casting was revealed, she said: "This will be a blessing and a curse.

"I've missed a lot of the fun stuff and probably the bad stuff."

The Broadchurch star also praised fans of the sci-fi series as "the most amazing, creative people".

And she said she had spoken to the actors who have previously played The Doctor - although she didn't ask for advice.

"The overwhelming sense was this is such an exciting journey," she said.

"It's to be enjoyed. There's no advice you can do - no person plays this part the same. What a freeing thing it is."

The reaction to Whittaker's casting was mostly positive - but a sizeable minority protested that the Doctor shouldn't be played by a woman.

The actress said she managed to avoid most of the commentary.

"I'm not on any type of social media," she told Shaun Keaveny. "The only time I see anything is if mates screen grab and send something to me."

She said she had seen "an amazing video" of a young girl's reaction, as she watched the trailer revealing the Doctor's new identity.

Whittaker also admitted the role "was not in the realm of possibility" when she was growing up and that getting the part was "incredibly emotional".

The 35-year-old, who's previously starred in Broadchurch, said that when she found out her audition had been successful: "I didn't faint - I played it really cool and cried."

She added she was looking forward to the "freedoms and fun" and the "scale of the storylines" - especially as she is going to be working with Broadchurch creator Chris Chibnall, who is the new Doctor Who showrunner.

"I already know Chris - I already know how incredible he is. The direction he's going to take it is going to be amazing. I get excited by it," she said.

"I don't even know what the journey is. Every script I read will be brand new. This certainly is very different."

And in an interview with BBC News, the actor said she felt "relief" at the news of her role being "public knowledge".

She added that she'd had "a lot of fantastic advice" about the attention she would receive as The Doctor.

"I'm lucky because I've had a body of work, so it's not like going from anonymous to recognised.

"I've worked with David (Tennant) and other people who've been part of the Doctor Who journey.

"I knew there'd be an interest in me going to the shops - I hope it dies down as it's very boring!"
'Celebrating differences'

She said it was "really exciting" that the Doctor is now female.

"We can celebrate differences. I hope my gender isn't a fearful thing. In this (Doctor Who) world, there aren't rules."

Whittaker is also going to be seen in new BBC One series Trust Me, which starts on 8 August.

She stars as Cath Hardacre, a nurse who loses her job after she turns whistle-blower - and then steals her friend's identity as a senior doctor in an Edinburgh hospital.

Via BBC News