According to Bloomberg, in efforts to further expand their streaming service Disney+, Walt Disney Co is in early talks with the British Broadcasting Corporation to acquire the streaming rights for a new Doctor Who series. While no deal has been met currently, if an agreement can be made the series would air both on Disney’s streaming service and the BBC.
As is typical of the mega media conglomerate, Disney is looking to bolster their global subscription-based streaming service, Disney+, with “established entertainment properties,” to bulk up their content. Sources say that the company is discussing the potential to obtain the streaming rights for the popular time-travel series Doctor Who for a future season. If a deal can be made upcoming seasons would stream with Disney+ and BBC, while all the previous revival seasons from 2005 onward are available on HBO Max.
The British science-fiction television show first aired in 1963, starring actor William Hartnell as the very first Doctor. The Doctor is an ancient being known as a Time Lord who has mastered a command of, well, time. Over the years the titular character has been portrayed by more than a dozen actors, including Jon Pertwee, David Tennant, Matt Smith, the very first female Doctor Jodie Whittaker. Since the show began in the early ’60s, Doctor Who has followed the space and time-defying adventures of a human-passing being who is always accompanied by a companion. The two travel via TARDIS – a time machine that takes on the appearance of a bright blue police box – and provide aide to those in need, or casually save entire civilizations.
Most recently the brand-new Doctor was announced in May as Scottish actor Ncuti Gatwa, best known for his role in Netflix’s comedy Sex Education. Gatwa will take on the beloved role of the fourteenth Doctor in the upcoming Season 14 in 2023, taking over the regeneration of Whittaker’s form. In a statement to the BBC, Gatwa said:
“This role and show means so much to so many around the world, including myself, and each one of my incredibly talented predecessors has handled that unique responsibility and privilege with the utmost care. I will endeavour my upmost to do the same.”
Gatwa has had a number of roles since 2014, including the crime drama Stonemouth and StudioCanal’s 2021 romantic drama The Last Letter from Your Lover, starring Shailene Woodley. Gatwa’s breakout role came in Netflix’s Sex Education before he landed a part in Greta Gerwig‘s notoriously stacked cast of Barbie.
Currently, no deal has been met between Walt Disney and the British Broadcasting Corp, but if they do the iconic British series will have found it’s future season’s home. Check out this video about the upcoming Doctor below: