Thursday, 28 November 2013
Who News: New Series 8 Director Confirmed, Format Rumoured
The BBC have this week announced the second director of their latest series of Doctor Who. Scheduled to enter production in January 2014, the new run of the acclaimed science-fiction drama stars Peter Capaldi as the Doctor and Jenna Coleman as Clara Oswald.
Our first word on the direction of Series Eight came last month, when the studio confirmed that Sightseers helm Ben Wheatley would oversee the first two-parter of the run. Now, it has been confirmed that Paul Murphy will direct Episodes 3 and 6 of the latest season. Murphy is renowned for his work on UK cult programmes such as Waterloo Road, Hollyoaks, Grange Hill and Trollied, and in light of this being his first attempt at Who, it appears that Series Eight will offer a fresh perspective on the Doctor's adventures in both its lead star and its aesthetic aspects.
There are rumours abound, though, that the series format from 2014 onwards will take a change that would disappoint fans aplenty. Bleeding Cool reported earlier this week that after this year, we can expect seven 45-minute episodes and a 60-minute Christmas Special in a regular annual format. The decision would come as a result of the studio's financial setbacks since the license fee freeze enacted in 2010, whereby Doctor Who's continuing success has helped the BBC to fund other original drama prospects. No one would dare see this immortal broadcaster go under, so in that sense, this potential alteration to Who's format isn't a real tragedy, but the thought of losing the original 14-episode yearly run established in 2005-2010 is disillusioning nonetheless.
Doctor Who returns with its 2013 Christmas Special, The Time of the Doctor, this Christmas Day on BBC One.