We knew that Peter Capaldi was exiting his role as the latest incarnation of “Doctor Who” in the upcoming Christmas special after three seasons of time travel. But showrunner Steven Moffat is also signing off after six years at the helm. The final season for each kicks off April 15 on BBC America.
At the behest of Russell T. Davies (“Queer as Folk”), the BBC rebooted “Doctor Who” in 2005 with Christopher Eccleston, who would only sign on for one season. His replacement was David Tennant(“Broadchurch,” “Jessica Jones”) who played the Time Lord for three years before handing off to Matt Smith (“The Crown”) in 2010. That was when Davies exited and Moffat came on board.
That was also the same year that Moffat launched “Sherlock,” the modern-day take on Arthur Conan Doyle‘s fabled detective Sherlock Holmes. He has won two Emmys for writing “His Last Vow” in 2014 and producing the 2016 episode “The Abominable Bride,” which won Best TV Movie. It is rumored that this franchise is finished, with the last three telefilms airing on both sides of the pond in January.
But “Doctor Who” will go on as Moffat hands over the reins of “Doctor Who” to “Broadchurch” creator Chris Chibnall. In a recent interview, Moffat revealed that his successor is far more equipped to take over the “Doctor Who” franchise than he was. “Chris is coming on to the show with the experience of doing ‘Broadchurch.’ He’s already done a major-league, much-fussed about show, so he’s got all that experience so there’s not a lot to talk about there. We just keep each other up to date with what’s going on, and we’ve had various conversations about how the stories will work together.”
Moffat says he will let his successor write the first words uttered by the regenerated Doctor. “I haven’t completely planned it, but I quite like the insanity of the fact this is a job you quit two pages before you type ‘End Titles’.” As he explains, this was the same courtesy extended to him by Davies back in 2010. Those first few lines uttered by Smith defined the character for his three-season run and Chibnall’s efforts are likely to have the same effect.
Indeed, Moffat revealed that Chibnall “has his own ideas about how to do ‘Doctor Who.’” However, he did impart some words, albeit perhaps not of wisdom, to his successor. “The advice I’ve given him is all prosaic and all quite, ‘Make sure this happens, make sure you get that and don’t let them do this.'”
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