Acclaimed British actor Christopher Eccleston is to play Doctor Who in the forthcoming 13-part drama series for BBC ONE, it was announced by Jane Tranter, BBC Controller of Drama Commissioning.
The programmes will be produced ny BBC Wales in Cardiff.
Eccleston, star of Flesh & Blood and The Second Coming, will take Doctor Who into the 21st century – travelling through time and space, fighting monsters on all fronts, in a fresh and modern approach to the popular science fiction series.
He said: "I am absolutely delighted to be playing Doctor Who. "I am looking forward to joining forces again with the incredible writer Russell T Davies and taking both loyal viewers and a new generation on a journey through time and space – which way is the Tardis? I can't wait to get started!" Jane Tranter says: “We are delighted to have cast an actor of such calibre in one of British television's most iconic roles. "It signals our intention to take Doctor Who into the 21st century, as well as retaining its core traditional values - to be surprising, edgy and eccentric. "We have chosen one of Britain's finest actors to play what, in effect, will be an overtly modern hero."
Executive producer/writer Russell T Davies adds: "We considered many great actors for this wonderful part, but Christopher was our first choice. "This man can give the Doctor a wisdom, wit and emotional range as far-reaching as the Doctor's travels in time and space. "His casting raises the bar for all of us. It's going to be a magnificent, epic, entertaining journey, and I can't wait to start!" Filming in Cardiff later this year for transmission in 2005, Doctor Who is produced by Phil Collinson. The writers are Russell T Davies, Steven Moffat, Mark Gatiss, Paul Cornell and Robert Shearman. Executive producers are BBC Controller of Continuing Drama Series, Mal Young; Head of Drama, BBC Wales, Julie Gardner and Russell T Davies.