It also Christmas Day and that also means it is almost time for the Doctor Who Christmas Special. And just in case you were hiding under a rock and might not know, this year the Doctor (Peter Capaldi) is in New York City with Nardole (Matt Lucas) fighting brain-swapping aliens with the help of an intrepid reporter and the mysterious superhero know as The Ghost (Justin Chatwin).
So what does the man who plays the Doctor think about this year’s special? Thanks to the BBC we have a few answers.
What can audiences look forward to in this Christmas Special?
I think with the Doctor Who Christmas Special this year, audiences can look forward to a real Christmas treat. It’s nostalgic in the sense that it’s going to be a superhero story from the days when superheroes were ironic and witty and clever. It’s also set in New York and we have a fabulous American cast and some spectacular flying scenes – you’ll believe a man can fly. And we have The Doctor and Nardole and returning nasty monsters. Villains, good guys, bad guys, bit of snow, some children and maybe a hint of Santa Claus. Be there, watch it and have a wonderful Christmas!
What was your reaction to reading the Christmas scripts?
When I first read the script I thought “this is wonderful” because it captures the delightful, light comedy touch that existed in the early Superman movies with Christopher Reeves. Superheroes nowadays tend to be a grim lot but in those days there was optimism and a deliberate naivety that the character of Superman had which was very attractive. But also the way the scripts were written back then reminded me of Spencer Tracy or Katherine Hepburn kind of scripts – they were very witty, very knockabout, very American. This script is like that so I was very happy to read it and to go with this whole idea of the Doctor observing a superhero – it’s great fun. Doctor Who is an extraordinary programme – it allows you the opportunity to almost have a different kind of genre every week not just a different kind of plot so this is very much a light-hearted superhero romp.
Can you talk to us about the casting of Justin Chatwin as Grant/The Ghost?
Justin as The Ghost is amazing because he’s able to do both of those parts – The Ghost and the mild-mannered Grant – and he’s got two different voices that he uses for them. I think comic lightness is a greatly undervalued thing – to be as funny as he is and light but with accurate delivery. He has great charm, a movie star quality which is lovely. The Ghost is a slightly flawed superhero and he’s spot on with all of that. He’s been great to have around.
Doctor Who: The Return of Doctor Mysterio
Doctor Who: The Return of Doctor Mysterio airs Christmas Day at 5:45 pm on BBC One and 8/9c on BBC America.
The special is written by Steven Moffat, Executive Produced by Brian Minchin, Produced by Peter Bennett and Directed by Ed Bazalgette (Poldark). It was shot in Cardiff at BBC Wales Roath Lock.Studios.
Pre-order your copy of this years special on Amazon.