Exciting change as BBC names first female ‘Doctor Who’
LONDON — The lead role in British scifi television series Doctor Who will be played by a woman for the first time in its more than 50year history, the BBC said on Sunday. After much speculation over the role, Britain’s public broadcaster said 35yearold British actress Jodie Whittaker, who starred in the awardwinning television crime drama series Broadchurch, will play the 13th Doctor.
The news was announced in a oneminute video clip broadcast on television after the Wimbledon tennis men’s final match, showing the actress walking through a forest wearing a long coat and hiding her face with a hood until the final moment.
“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 indemand, funny, inspiring, supersmart force of nature and will bring loads of wit, strength and warmth to the role,” said Chris Chibnall, the show’s new head writer and executive producer.
The Doctor, who travels through time in what from the outside appears to be a blue police telephone box, has the ability to regenerate, allowing a number of ac tors to play the role since the series was first broadcast in 1963.
Whittaker will replace Peter Capaldi, who took on the role in 2013 amid an increasing clamour that it should go to a woman. His final episode will be the 2017 Christmas special. “This is a really exciting time, and Doc
tor 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,” said Whittaker.
Actress Jodie Whittaker was announced as the 13th incarnation of the Doctor and the first woman to play the role in the longrunning BBC science fiction series Doctor Who.