Who Will Play The Next Dr Who

On 26th September the BBC announced that they had plans afoot to return the nation's favourite Time Lord to a new series of Doctor Who sometime almost real-soon-now (2005, officially).

The big question, upon which the Beeb has been tight-lipped, is who will play the lead? Rumours have been rife...

According to one wikizen: It has been decided that it is Richard E Grant, don't bother reading the rest.

Various names include: Bill Nighy (who seems to be the favourite - even for the current incumbent), Richard E Grant, Eddie Izzard, Alan Davies, Sean Pertwee, Andrew Lincoln, James H. Taylor, Alan Cumming, Jonathan Pryce, Chiwetel Eijofor, William Dafoe, Shane Ritchie (hear the grinding of the Rumour Mills already?), Peter Capaldi (was in Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere), Danny John Jules, Geoffrey Bayldon, Dawn French (according to Colin Baker), Rowan Atkinson (again!), Anthony Stewart Head of Bt VS (according to Reuters, the Radio Times readers' favourite to take the part), Ian Richardson (WJR's favourite, see below, also number five in the Radio Times poll), Stephen Fry (supported by selected British Members of Parliament), Ricky "my (retroceded?)donkey" Tomlinson (The Sun), David "Sark" Warner (Mc Gann?'s other favourite), Paul "not a lot" Daniels (according to one of the tabloids, but beware of putting your faith in a Doc who's going to be shorter than the average companion!)

Eddie Izzard??? well, intended as a :) by Tom Baker, methinks - he was the one who recommended the name. Most pundits don't think it's going to be him. Not even Mr Izzard thinks it's going to be him. Tom Baker is probably not the best guide to the new Doctor... as far back as 1980 he's been dropping mischievous hints of female Doctors, and his remarks in the 40th Anniversary Radio Times: "Will the new Doctor be gay? Black? A woman?" seem to be more aimed at needling for controversy than casting suggestions.

Why not cast someone on the basis of their being a good actor, and suitable for the role (which is of a male character... nothing wrong with writing a good, strong, female character, but it'd be far better to create a character for that rather than re-write a man into a woman, which is insulting anyway ("So, the only way to have a strong female character is to turn a man into a woman... great.") and create thematic chaos in the process), and only consider things like their celebrity, or their skin colour if it's relevant to the part... which, when you're casting an alien, it isn't. There's an argument for saying that casting a black Doctor would clutter up potential historical adventures with unwanted racial politics, but, on the other hand, it might also offer new storylines and, let's be honest, as much as some Whovian Wikizens might appreciate a healthy, large dose of historical adventures in the new series, it's highly unlikely that there'll be many 'pure' historicals made anyway. So, cast who turns up and fits the script and character. Amen to that; whoever, given a convincing script, can act it convincingly, gets my vote. I'm cool on the whole historicals/etc debate: even in the early days, they sorted out a roster between 'past', 'future', 'space' and 'sideways' - twenty-minutes-into-the-future suits me fine, thanks.

Alan Davies has also declined the role...

That's a pity. He wouldn't have been a bad choice, especially after practically playing the part for a number of years in Jonathan Creek. Still, perhaps he's afraid of getting typecast. My personal favourite for the role, who I believe has been mentioned, is Ian Richardson. -- WJR

I think that was a :) on the part of Paul Mc Gann. Another new Docsocus suggested Gary Oldman: if he wasn't so expensive I'd see why - he is very good, especially in terms of versatility of voice. --TL

Agreed- he's rather younger than I'd envisaged the troublemaker of Messrs Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot & Prongs, but he would be rather good for the part... although, as you say, he alone might well take up the BBC Drama budget of the year. Have you seen him in the film version of "Rosencrantz And Guildenstern Are Dead" ? -- WJR

Official: it's Christopher Eccleston.

Sat, 20 Mar 2004 19:34:24 GMT Front Page Recent Changes Message Of The Day