The BBC have announced Chris Chibnall’s successor as Doctor Who showrunner… and it’s RTD!
The BBC have made the shock announcement that a familiar face will be taking control of the Doctor’s fate for the 60th Anniversary and beyond. Russell T Davies, who famously resurrected Doctor Who in 2005 to critical acclaim, will return to run the show when the Fourteenth Doctor debuts in 2023. The deal makes Doctor Who a co-production with Bad Wolf Studios, the production company of Davies fellow Doctor Who alumnus Julie Gardner.
Russell T Davies remained close lipped about his own plans, instead looking ahead to Series 13 and Jodie Whittaker’s climactic episodes. “I’m beyond excited to be back on my favourite show,” he said. “But we’re time-travelling too fast, there’s a whole series of Jodie Whittaker’s brilliant Doctor for me to enjoy, with my friend and hero Chris Chibnall at the helm – I’m still a viewer for now.”
Current showrunner Chris Chibnall meanwhile described it as fitting for Davies to be the one to mark six decades of Doctor Who. “It’s monumentally exciting and fitting that Doctor Who’s 60th anniversary will see one of Britain’s screenwriting diamonds return home,” he said. “Russell built the baton that is about to be handed back to him – Doctor Who, the BBC, the screen industry in Wales, and let’s be honest everyone in the whole world, have so many reasons to be Very Excited Indeed about what lies ahead.”
“Hello Russell, it’s wonderful to have you back”
Piers Wenger, the BBC Director of Drama, praised both showrunners’ achievements and expressed excitement for the 60th. “As the 13th Doctor prepares to embark on new and extraordinary adventures, the winds of change are blowing…” he said, “bringing with them news to delight Doctor Who fans across the globe. We are thrilled that Russell is returning to Doctor Who to build on the huge achievements of Chris and Jodie. Thank you to the two of them and the team in Cardiff for all they continue to do for the show and hello Russell, it’s wonderful to have you back.”
Russell T Davies last episode for the show was 2010’s The End of Time Part Two. In the decade since fans have consistently hoped for a new story for him as a guest writer for one of his successors. But few would have dreamed he would return to the showrunner itself. That he is marks this out as one of the most exciting and interesting times for the show since the revival was first announced in 2003.