Skip to main content

Peter Capaldi steps into the Tardis as the new Doctor

By A Different Matt Smith, CNN
updated 1:54 PM EDT, Mon August 5, 2013
The BBC draws back the curtains to reveal who will be the next British actor to play the famed Doctor. He is Peter Capaldi, seen here attending the British Comedy Awards at the O2 Arena on January 22, 2011. The BBC draws back the curtains to reveal who will be the next British actor to play the famed Doctor. He is Peter Capaldi, seen here attending the British Comedy Awards at the O2 Arena on January 22, 2011.
HIDE CAPTION
Travel through time with Doctor Who
Travel through time with Doctor Who
Travel through time with Doctor Who
Travel through time with Doctor Who
Travel through time with Doctor Who
Travel through time with Doctor Who
Travel through time with Doctor Who
Travel through time with Doctor Who
Travel through time with Doctor Who
Travel through time with Doctor Who
Travel through time with Doctor Who
Travel through time with Doctor Who
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
>
>>
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Peter Capaldi named the 12th Doctor on "Doctor Who"
  • He'll replace current star Matt Smith after Christmas
  • He's appeared in previous episodes of the show and a spinoff

(CNN) -- Veteran British actor Peter Capaldi is stepping into the blue police box as the 12th Doctor, the eccentric time traveler at the heart of the BBC's "Doctor Who," the network announced Sunday.

Capaldi is the latest in a series of actors to play the universe-saving chrononaut since the series first aired in 1963. He'll replace Matt Smith, who has held the role since 2010, when Smith bows out at Christmas.

In a televised BBC special announcing the pick, Capaldi described himself as a lifelong fan of the 50-year-old show -- "but I haven't really played Dr. Who since I was 9, on the playground."

He said his daughter, also a fan, was reading speculation online about the producers' new pick and "was getting rather upset that they never mentioned me." After auditioning in secret, he said, his agent broke the news in a phone call by answering, "Hello, Doctor."

Fan: Capaldi born to play 'Doctor Who'

It's not Capaldi's first trip in the Tardis, as the Doctor's time machine -- which appears from the outside to be a London police phone booth -- is known. Capaldi has appeared in a 2008 episode of the series and in its spinoff "Torchwood."

But the Glasgow native is better known for his portrayal of the foul-mouthed spin doctor Malcolm Tucker in the series "The Thick of It" and a 2009 film offshoot, "In the Loop."

He also won an Academy Award in 1995 as the writer and director of the short film "Franz Kafka's It's a Wonderful Life."

'Doctor Who' celebrates 50 years with biopic and new Doctor

2011: Joy for 'Doctor Who' fans as lost episodes materialize

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 10:21 AM EST, Thu November 27, 2014
The first human trial of an experimental Ebola vaccine has produced promising results, U.S. scientists said.
updated 9:15 AM EST, Thu November 27, 2014
Darren Wilson, the police officer who fatally shot unarmed black teen in August abandoned home after address made public.
updated 5:36 PM EST, Tue November 25, 2014
HBO -- backing a documentary based on "Going Clear," a book about Scientology and Hollywood -- isn't taking any chances with legal side.
updated 2:35 PM EST, Wed November 26, 2014
Grandmaster Nguyen Van Chieu has devoted his adult life to spreading the word about Vietnames martial art, Vovinam.
updated 1:47 PM EST, Fri November 28, 2014
England cricketer Nick Compton shares insight into "drive and courage" it takes to face fears as top batsman.
updated 7:59 PM EST, Wed November 26, 2014
Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson says he was just doing his "job right" when he shot and killed black teenager Michael Brown.
updated 8:18 PM EST, Sun November 23, 2014
The interior of the Formosa Boulevard Mass Rapid Transit Station in Kaohsiung, in southern Taiwan.
Stunning stations where your first priority won't be finding the nearest exit.
updated 6:18 PM EST, Tue November 25, 2014
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says women's "nature is different," sparking fury.
updated 5:43 AM EST, Mon November 24, 2014
A 30-year-old woman has been charged with attempting to kill a baby police say spent five days down a drain before being discovered by cyclists.
updated 8:21 PM EST, Thu November 20, 2014
If it wasn't for a comic's skit, Bill Cosby would still be America's favorite father, says expert.
updated 7:51 PM EST, Sun November 23, 2014
Where do hip young things hang out in Taiwan?
updated 10:50 AM EST, Fri November 21, 2014
Obama orders the most sweeping overhaul of U.S. immigration in decades, prioritizing the deportation of "felons, not families."
updated 4:06 PM EST, Tue November 18, 2014
Fighters loyal to ISIS are now in control of Derna, a city on Libya's Mediterranean coast.
updated 6:19 PM EST, Fri November 21, 2014
China and likely other countries have the capacity to shut down the U.S. power grid, says the NSA.
updated 2:45 PM EST, Wed November 19, 2014
The founder of a U.S. nonprofit that works with returning soldiers is named CNN's Hero of the Year.
updated 12:54 PM EST, Fri November 28, 2014
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT