Later this month, the first 60th Anniversary special of “Doctor Who” will be released on Disney+ around the world and on the BBC in the UK and Ireland. The first of three specials will see David Tennant return to our screens as the Fourteenth Doctor alongside Catherine Tate as Donna Noble.
The series is about an eccentric yet compassionate Time Lord, who zips through time and space to solve problems and battle injustice across the universe and following the three 60th anniversary specials, a brand new doctor, Ncuti Gatwa, will be taking over in a holiday special on Christmas Day, before returning in a new series in 2024.
Filming is already underway on a second season of “Doctor Who”, but apparently, according to The Mirror, , Disney and the BBC are also working on another spin-off series, which will see Paul McGann return as the Doctor. A source said:
“Russell likes the idea of bringing back McGann with his own set of episodes in the TARDIS. Disney are on board as they want more original content and want to fully exploit the franchise as they know how big it could become.”
The original “Doctor Who” series ran for 26 seasons from 1963 through to 1989, when the show was cancelled. But in 1996, the BBC teamed up with Universal to launch a new TV movie, with Paul McGann debuting as the brand new Doctor, who visits Earth on the turn of the millennium, 1999 and does battle with the Master. This TV movie was supposed to be a pilot episode to bring back “Doctor Who” for the US audience, but it never came to anything, even though it did well in terms of rating in the UK.
The Doctor didn’t return to our screens until 2005, when Christopher Eccleston took over the role for a brand new revival, which has been running ever since. Though the new season, which arrives in 2024, will be a soft reboot for the series due to Disney’s involvement and wanting to get newer audiences interested in the character.
While Paul McGann didn’t spend too long as the Doctor, he has reprised his role in some audiobooks and, more recently, made a small cameo in the last season of the show and has previously told The Guardian, he’d like to return:
“I was recently in one of the Jodie Whittaker episodes (The Power of the Doctor). That’s the only time that the Eighth Doctor got onto the telly. So it gave me a little taste for it. I wouldn’t mind doing some more.”
Over the years, many spin-off series have been, including “Torchwood” and the “Sarah Jane Adventures”. Plus, apparently, another spin-off, “UNIT”, is also in development, but nothing has been confirmed.
Nothing has been officially confirmed regarding the return of Paul McGann as a new Doctor, and with Disney now involved with the new rebooted version with Ncuti taking over, it does seem like a weird time to go back to a failed pilot and confuse new viewers with two different Doctor series at the same time, set decades apart. But anything is possible with a show about time travel and a hero who can regenerate into new actors at any time.
The first of the new three 60th Anniversary specials arrives on Disney+ worldwide and on the BBC in the UK on Saturday, 25th November 2023.
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Roger has been a Disney fan since he was a kid and this interest has grown over the years. He has visited Disney Parks around the globe and has a vast collection of Disney movies and collectibles. He is the owner of What's On Disney Plus & DisKingdom.