Moffat on Everything From the 50th Anniversary to the 12th Doctor; Plus David Bradley as the First Doctor is Uncanny!
At the moment we’re drifting in the void awaiting new Doctor Who. The 50th anniversary special will air on November 23rd, followed by the Christmas special on Christmas Day, and Series 8 is expected to begin late summer 2014. At least that’s what showrunner Steven Moffat revealed in the latest issue of Entertainment Weekly all about Comic Con.
The interview, available online as well as in print, covers just about everything you’d want to pry from the mind of The Moff. In it he discusses the search for the next Doctor, when we’ll see the new Doctor, when he knew Matt Smith was leaving, the length of the 50th anniversary special, what is was like having Matt and David Tennant work together, just everything! Though, any real spoilers are cleverly hidden by Moffat’s usual knack for misdirection and tight lips.
Below the cut we’ve got the highlights, gathered by the ever vigilant Doctor Who TV. Expect mild spoilers, with a chance of, “OMG! CAN’T WAIT!”
But first! Check out this officially released image of David Bradley as the First Doctor, William Hartnell, for the BBC‘s other anniversary special, An Adventure in Space in Time, chronicling the early days of Who and written by Mark Gatiss.
Uncanny, isn’t it!? The more we see from this docu-drama, the more excited I may be for it over the show’s proper anniversary special. Okay, that’s a lie, I’m out of mind with excitement for the 50th anniversary special, but I’m totally stoked for this, too.
On when they will finally announce the 12th Doctor,
Unless we have an insane plan, we’ll announce a new Doctor within days of finalizing the new Doctor. I think we’ll go public pretty fast.
On the search for the 12th Doctor,
Well, it’s always just terrifying… When you’re suddenly faced with the reality that you are going to sit there and you are going to make that decision it does feel absolutely chilling. There’s a very big range of people who could play it and different ways you could go with it. We must get this right. One false move and the show’s over.
On the gender of the next Doctor,
I’m not going to comment at all on the direction we’re going. Sorry!
On when we will first see the 12th Doctor in the Christmas special,
It’ll be the traditional regeneration. You know, the eleventh will fall and the twelfth shall rise. And you’ll see that in the closing moments of the show.
On whether Matt is going to need to wear a wig,
We’re sprinkling fertilizer on his head as we speak… The Doctor will turn up in his trademark quiff. We can’t have Matt’s last stand in the TARDIS without his proper look.
On whether Series 8 will be broadcast late summer 2014,
I think that’s probably right. But these things change so often.
On finding out Matt was leaving,
Well, I’ve known broadly speaking for a very long while because I knew how long, when he first came in, he was broadly speaking intending to do. And obviously, being the man I am, I always tried to persuade him to do longer and to do more and he [stayed] a little bit longer than he intended to. I knew that he would do what most of them do and do his three years.
On when Matt actually told Moffat he was leaving,
We discussed ages ago that we would do three series and then he would do the 50th and then he’d do Christmas. That was Plan A for a very, very long while. That may sound cold that it was so far in advance but you’ve got to plan a career. [Laughs] The question was, “Will I be able to talk him out of it?” We went out for lunch and he said that he’d come very close to doing another series but it was the same argument: “If I do another series, I think I might do two more series, or three more series. I think I might never leave.” It’s that thing of wanting to leave while you’re a huge hit and not let it tail off.
On the length of the 50th anniversary special,
I think you could call it movie-length, yeah. I mean, I’m saying that with a slight hint of vagueness because I don’t know the finished running time. [Laughs] It’s certainly well over an hour.
On what was it like having Matt and David together,
They really loved each other and had a huge laugh together. And of course they’ve been through this experience that only the two of them can talk about, really, in the modern world. They are the two people that have played that part at a time when the series is this big. They spent the entire time just sitting together talking animatedly.
On how Tennant & Smith’s Doctors react to each other.
They’re quite a fun pairing, I would say. There’s a bit of the normal joshing of each other but they’re both such enthusiastic Doctors. While they might be sort of competing slightly, they’re both standing there saying, “Oh god, it’s so cool, there’s two of me!” So, it’s very different. I think the other one that worked brilliantly was Jon Pertwee and Patrick Troughton. They were incredibly funny together. This is very different from that but it’s a sublime double act.
On John Hurt’s Doctor,
You get a whole new Doctor played by a proper screen legend.
On Moffat’s future,
I’ve signed up for this next year, with the new Doctor. It’s one of those jobs when you know when you’ve had enough. At the moment I haven’t had enough and I’m thoroughly enjoying it. I’m very excited for the challenge of the new Doctor and establishing that new Doctor. So, no plans to leave as yet.
Toldja! He talks about almost everything, all while revealing so little. Agh! Moffat, how you aggravate us!
There’s lot of info in here, but what stood out to you the most? I noticed Moffat still referred to Smith’s Doctor as “eleventh”, so that mystery is solved, no Doctor renumbering. And I can’t say I’m surprised Smith had a plan all along for when he would leave. Honestly, I almost thought he’d leave with The Ponds and we’d get a clean start again; New Doctor and new Companion, y’know? But I’m really happy we’ve got him around for the 5oth and the Christmas special.
How are you Whovians holding up in absence of new Who?