Wednesday, 27 January 2016

Peter Capaldi's verdict on new showrunner

Since revealed that Steven Moffat will be stepping down as Doctor Who showrunner, fans have been clamouring to know what the Doctor himself makes of this regime change.

Speaking exclusively to at the Radio Times Covers Party, Peter Capaldi said it would be "very exciting" to see what Moffat's replacement, Broadchurch writer Chris Chibnall, does with the show.  

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"I think Chris is a wonderful writer, so that’s the exciting thing about Doctor Who — I don’t really know what he’s going to do with it. It’s going to be different and he’ll take it in a direction that is his… and that’ll be very exciting. That’s the lovely thing about Doctor Who, it keeps changing. Steven's been fabulous but it will be very exciting to see what Chris does." 

And whichever new direction the series does go in, Capaldi says that playing the Time Lord will always keep him on his toes. 

"It's always a challenge. I don't take it lightly, it's always hard trying to figure out how to do it. But that's a delightful challenge."

Peter Capaldi to leave Doctor Who in 2017?

BBC bosses expect Peter Capaldi to leave Doctor Who after the next series – when writer Steven Moffat also steps down.

The 57-year-old’s tenure as the 12th Doctor is likely to end in 2017. When new chief Chris Chibnall, who created Broadchurch, begins a new era in series 11, it is thought he will also get to choose his own Time Lord. A source on the BBC show said: “Bosses are already discussing a fresh start when Steven leaves."

“They’ve been happy with what Peter has brought to the role but some think it might make sense to give Chris his own choice of actor to play the Doctor. They hope he will be able to find someone who can have the same impact as Matt Smith did when Steven Moffat kicked off his run as executive producer.”

(Full article here)

Friday, 22 January 2016

Steven Moffat QUITS as Doctor Who showrunner

Steven Moffat has decided that his “timey wimey” as showrunner of Doctor Who has come to an end and he will step down as the show’s lead writer and executive producer after six series at the helm, can reveal.

Moffatt will hand over the keys to the TARDIS at the end of the next series in 2017 to Broadchurch writer and Doctor Who fan Chris Chibnall.

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BBC1 has decided to air Moffat’s final 12-part series - the 10th of the modern era - in spring 2017. Chibnall’s debut series as head writer and executive producer will launch in 2018.

A Christmas special WILL air this year overseen by Moffat, though it is unclear whether Peter Capaldi’s new companion will feature. The companion, who will replace Jenna Coleman's Clara Oswald, will definitely be in place for the spring 2017 series, say BBC sources.

Explaining the decision to hold Moffat’s last series until next year, BBC1 controller Charlotte Moore said: “I have decided to schedule Steven’s big finale series in Spring 2017 to bring the nation together for what will be a huge event on the channel. 2016 is spoilt with national moments including the Euros and Olympics and I want to hold something big back for 2017 - I promise it will be worth the wait!”

It is unclear if the plan is now to make Doctor Who a series which regularly begins its runs in the spring when Chibnall becomes showrunner. “That is all to be decided,” said a BBC source, who pointed out that it began airing in the spring when it was relaunched by Russell T Davies in 2005.

Moffat said of his decision to quit: “Feels odd to be talking about leaving when I’m just starting work on the scripts for season 10, but the fact is my timey-wimey is running out. While Chris is doing his last run of Broadchurch, I’ll be finishing up on the best job in the universe and keeping the TARDIS warm for him. It took a lot of gin and tonic to talk him into this, but I am beyond delighted that one of the true stars of British Television drama will be taking the Time Lord even further into the future. At the start of season 11, Chris Chibnall will become the new showrunner of Doctor Who. And I will be thrown in a skip.”

Moore, who next month takes over a super controller’s job at the BBC, paid tribute to Moffat and welcomed Chibnall into the Doctor Who fold. 

“I want to thank Steven Moffat for everything he has given Doctor Who – I’ve loved working with him, he is an absolute genius and has brought fans all over the world such joy,” she added. “I will be very sad to see him leave the show but I can’t wait to see what he will deliver in his last ever series next year with a brand new companion. I would also like to take this opportunity to welcome Chris Chibnall, a wonderfully talented writer who I know will bring something very special to the hit series.”

Like Moffat, Chibnall is also a lifelong Doctor Who fan and a multi-award winning writer and executive producer. He has most recently achieved success with the triple BAFTA winning hit ITV series Broadchurch. His other credits include BAFTA nominated The Great Train Robbery, United, Law & Order: UK, Life on Mars and Torchwood.

He said: "Doctor Who is the ultimate BBC programme: bold, unique, vastly entertaining, and adored all around the world.  So it's a privilege and a joy to be the next curator of this funny, scary and emotional family drama. I’ve loved Doctor Who since I was four years old, and I’m relishing the thought of working with the exceptional team at BBC Wales to create new characters, creatures and worlds for the Doctor to explore.  Steven’s achieved the impossible by continually expanding Doctor Who's creative ambition, while growing its global popularity. He’s been a dazzling and daring showrunner, and hearing his plans and stories for 2017, it’s clear he’ll be going out with a bang. Just to make my life difficult."

Polly Hill, BBC controller of drama commissioning, added: “Like Charlotte I would like to thank Steven for his brilliance, which has made Doctor Who a global hit under his tenure.  Chris Chibnall is the perfect successor to take over the reins of this incredible show, so I am delighted that his love for Doctor Who has made it impossible for him to resist !  Chris is an incredible writer and his vision and passion for Doctor Who gives it an exciting future and promises to be a real treat for Doctor Who fans across the world.”  

(Source Radio Times)

Monday, 18 January 2016

Steven Moffat Finally Confirms The Doctor Can And Should Be A Woman

Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffat has finally admitted out loud, that the Doctor not only can be a woman, but that the character's next reincarnation may finally see this monumental (and long overdue) change. 

Moffat confirmed that "gender itself is fluid for the residents of Gallifrey, something effectively proven by this past season, when the Master's new form was revealed to have had switched genders, and the Doctor was not shocked by the change (he was shocked by the fact the Master had survived and had weaponized the dead and pretty much everything else she'd done, but not the gender swap). As Moffat told Wales Online: "He doesn't seem to register the fact that his old friend is now a woman. So obviously, he doesn't think it's a remarkable thing to happen. We must assume that gender is quite fluid on Gallifrey."

 Moffat told SFX:
"There easily could be a female Doctor. I think the next time might be a female Doctor. I don't see why not. I think it's good to do that."
Moffat went on to say that he didn't want to do any more speculation about the next Doctor, because Peter Capaldi is doing a tremendous in the role. 

Saturday, 16 January 2016

Leela Returns!

The War Doctor encounters Leela in the heart of the Time War...

Louise Jameson will reprise her role as Leela of the Seveteem, alongside John Hurt's War Doctor in the story Casualties Of War. She was last see in in the Fourth Doctor story The Invasion Of Time, where she opted to stay on Gallifrey after falling in love with a native Gallifreyan called Andred. 

In the middle of the Time War, the War Doctor comes across a very old friend; a woman he trained not to be the kill-first-ask-questions-later fighter. Producer, David Richardson says:

 “I’d often wondered what became of Leela during the Time War, and working on these War Doctor tales has given us a wonderful opportunity to explore that. And it’s irresistible territory – the Warrior of the Sevateem reunited with an old friend, who has become a Warrior in the Time War.”

Jameson has worked extensively for Big Finish before, notably alongside Tom Baker in the Fourth Doctor Adventures and in the incredible Gallifrey saga. Nick Briggs, voice of the Daleks and Executive Producer, adds:
“Over the many years of working with us, Louise has brought so much extra depth to the character of Leela, and given the nature of her backstory and involvement in the affairs of Gallifrey it was a natural choice to have her involved in the Time War. And like John Hurt, she’s a genuinely uplifting person to work with.”
Casualties of War is released in February 2017 and is available for pre-order priced £20. In the meantime, listen to the 35-second teaser

 Only The Monstrous is availbel to purchase now and The War Doctor Volume 02: Infernal Devices is availale in February 2016 from Big Finish.

Friday, 15 January 2016

Classic Doctor Who writer Robert Banks Stwert has died

Robert Banks Stewart, creator of the Zygons, has sadly passed away.

Aside from writing two Fourth Doctor adventures – Terror of the Zygons and The Seeds of Doom – he co-created the well-remembered Shoestring (1979–80) starring Trevor Eve as a detective on the edge, and created the enormously popular Jersey-based cop show, Bergerac (1981–89). He also scripted episodes of the most iconic series of the 60s and 70s including Danger Man, The Avengers, Callan and The Sweeney and served as a producer on huge hits such as Hannay, The Darling Buds of May and Lovejoy.

But Doctor Who fans will remember Robert for his two fantastic stories from the 70s. The first, Terror of the Zygons, introduced the shapeshifting Zygons, a popular foe who returned in the 50th anniversary special and more recently, in a series 9 two-parter.

His second adventure, The Seeds of Doom, is a cracking six-parter full of wit, energy, terrific dialogue and superb characters. The alien menace of the story – the Krynoids – only made a single television appearance but they remain one of the best-loved monsters from the show’s early years.

Robert Banks Stewart (1931 - 2016)

Friday, 8 January 2016

The Diary Of River Song Trailer

Big Finish hve released a trailer for Alex Kingston's The Diary Of River Song' which also stars Paul McGann as the Eighth Doctor.

You can purchase the CD / Download now priced £20

Paul McGann: "I don't mind doing a little bit every now and again, and stealing all the glory!"

Paul McGann is open the idea of returning as the Eighth Doctor every now and again.

The actor made his debut as the Time Lord nearly 20 years ago in 1996’s ‘TV Movie’ and reprised the role in 2013’s minisode ‘The Night of the Doctor’, which earned 2.5 million views across YouTube, iPlayer and the BBC Red Button in its first week alone.

Fans have petitioned since then for McGann to return.

McGann told DS: “I don’t mind doing a little bit every now and again and stealing all the glory! It’s quite fun. You’re coming in at the 89th minute and scoring the winning penalty – yeah, I’ll do that.”
He joked: “Whereas poor old [Peter] Capaldi’s gotta do nine months and 16-hour days. Yeah, OK, let him do that. Let someone else do the heavy lifting!”

 McGann admitted that his Doctor Who debut - a co-production between the BBC and Fox in the US - "feels like a bit of a dream now".

"Back in '96 / '97, when the pilot failed to go to a series, sure you're disappointed for a day but only 'cos maybe you saw pound signs," he admitted. "My kids were little and that might've taken care of them - it was a nice big contract."

"But that's what living in the arts is like. One minute it's there, the next it's gone and you're doing something else - and suddenly your kids don't have to be Canadians, and you can stay home, and three weeks later you're doing something else."

Friday, 1 January 2016

Peter Capaldi wants original companion to return

Carole Ann Ford has revealed that Peter Capaldi is keen for her too reprise her role as original Doctor Who companion Susan Foreman.

The actress played the Doctor’s granddaughter from the show’s first episode in November 1963 until 1964’s ‘The Dalek Invasion of Earth’. She later returned in 1983’s ‘The Five Doctors’ and 1993 charity special ‘Dimensions in Time’.

 Speaking to Doctor Who Magazine in the new issue, Ford recalled: “…they invited us to the studios in Cardiff [during the filming of ‘Last Christmas’]. It was great. It was lovely to meet Peter [Capaldi]. A lovely man.

“…I had seen some of the performances he’d done as Doctor Who and I didn’t like the way they wrote him at the beginning. I thought, ‘What’s going on here? Give him a chance!’ They portrayed him as someone who was so prickly.

“…he started saying, ‘Oh, you should come back!’ I said, ‘Yeah, I’d love to come back!’ He was running around the TARDIS saying, ‘She’s got to come back! She’s got to come back!’”
Asked if she’d be interested in returning, she confirmed: “Yeah, of course! Are you kidding?”