This fall, BBC and BBC America are celebrating the 50th anniversary of “Doctor Who” with a TV movie that will dramatize the creation of the series all the way from the beginning.
First announced last August, “Doctor Who: An Adventure in Space and Time” will chronicle the story of how the “Doctor Who” TV series came into existence while exploring the people who made it happen. “Doctor Who” veteran, Mark Gatiss wrote the script while Terry McDonough (“Breaking Bad”) is slated to direct it.
Earlier today, BBC announced that veteran actors David Bradley and Brian Cox will headline “An Adventure in Space and Time.” Bradley will step into the role of William Hartnell, the first actor to portray the Doctor in the series. Cox will play, Sydney Newman, BBC’s Head of Drama who is largely credited with the creation of “Doctor Who.”
If Bradley looks familiar to “Doctor Who” viewers, it’s probably because he guest starred in “Dinosaurs on a Spaceship” as Solomon in the current season. Bradley has also appeared in Captain America: The First Avenger, “Game of Thrones” and Hot Fuzz among several film and television series across his long career.
Cox was the first actor to play Hannibal Lecter in Manhunter, in addition to his turns in X2: X-Men United, Rushmore, Troy and The Bourne Identity.
Other cast members announced for “An Adventure in Space and Time” include Jessica Raine and Sacha Dhawan.
In a brief statement released by BBC, Bradley said “I’m absolutely thrilled. I first heard about this role from Mark [Gatiss] while watching the Diamond Jubilee flotilla from the roof of the National Theatre. When he asked if I would be interested, I almost bit his hand off!”
“Mark has written such a wonderful script not only about the birth of a cultural phenomenon, but a moment in television’s history,” continued Bradley. “William Hartnell was one of the finest character actors of our time and as a fan I want to make sure that I do him justice. I’m so looking forward to getting started.”
Filming for “Doctor Who: An Adventure in Space and Time” is expected to begin next month. A premiere date has not yet been announced, but it is expected to debut in fall 2013.