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BBC America announces behind-the-scenes Doctor Who origins program

Written by Sharon Eberson on .

The celebration of the 50th anniversary of "Doctor Who" continues to gain momentum with announcements of programming to complement the current series. The latest: BBC America will co-produce and premiere "An Adventure in Space and Time," which will tell the story of the behind-the-scenes genesis of the Doctor, who first appeared on TV on November 23, 1963. 

A BBC America press release today said:

David Bradley (Harry Potter) is set to play the first ever Doctor, the iconic William Hartnell, in the drama written by Mark Gatiss (SherlockDoctor Who), who will also serve as executive producer alongside Steven Moffat (Doctor WhoSherlock) and Caroline Skinner (Doctor WhoThe Fades). An Adventure in Space and Time (1x90) is a co-production between BBC Cymru Wales and BBC AMERICA. The drama will premiere later this year on BBC AMERICA.

The BBC’s Head of Drama Sydney Newman, credited with the creation of the show, will be portrayed by Brian Cox (The Bourne Supremacy, Bourne Identity) and the producer, Verity Lambert, by Jessica Raine (Call the Midwife). The director of the first ever episode An Unearthly Child, Waris Hussein, will be played by Sacha Dhawan (History Boys, Last Tango In Halifax). 

Mark Gatiss, writer and executive producer said: “What a cast! I'm utterly delighted that everyone's favorite Time Lord will be in such brilliant and stellar company. We have a terrific team who can't wait to tell the fascinating and surprising story of how the Doctor began his journey through Space and Time.”

Commenting on his upcoming role, David Bradley said, “I’m absolutely thrilled.  I first heard about this role from Mark 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.  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.”   

The current incarnation of "Doctor Who," starring Matt Smith, returns on March 30 as part of BBC AMERICA’s Supernatural Saturday programming block, alongside world premieres of new original series The Nerdist and Orphan Black.

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