LEAVING THE TARDIS: Jodie Whittaker leaves role in Doctor Who
It has been announced that Jodie Whittaker is to leave her role in Doctor Who. But why now?
The first woman to play the Time Lord will bow out in Autumn 2022, along with showrunner Chris Chibnall.
Whittaker will star in a new six-part series later this year, and three specials next year, before she exits.
In a statement, Whittaker paid tribute to Chibnall and the Doctor Who team, adding:
"I will carry the Doctor and the lessons I've learnt forever."
Chibnall, who appointed the actress to replace Peter Capaldi in the role, has been in charge of the BBC One series since 2017.
It has not yet been announced who will take over from Whittaker in the leading role.
"In 2017 I opened my glorious gift box of size 13 shoes," Whittaker said in a statement. "I could not have guessed the brilliant adventures, worlds and wonders I was to see in them."
"My heart is so full of love for this show, for the team who make it, for the fans who watch it and for what it has brought to my life."
"And I cannot thank Chris enough for entrusting me with his incredible stories. We knew that we wanted to ride this wave side by side, and pass on the baton together. So here we are, weeks away from wrapping on the best job I have ever had. I don't think I'll ever be able to express what this role has given me. I will carry the Doctor and the lessons I've learnt forever.
"I know change can be scary and none of us know what's out there. That's why we keep looking. Travel hopefully. The universe will surprise you. Constantly."
One of the long-running drama's unique features has been regeneration, where the Doctor completely changes their physical appearance, allowing the show to recast its lead role every few years.
Chibnall is currently writing and producing the next series of Doctor Who, which will air later this year. It will be followed by three specials, the first of which will be broadcast on New Year's Day 2022, with another later in spring 2022.
Whittaker's final feature-length special, where the 13th Doctor will regenerate, will transmit in autumn 2022 as part of the BBC's Centenary celebrations.
Speculation will now turn to who Whittaker's replacement might be, as Doctor Who approaches its 60th anniversary in 2023. Who do you think it is?
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