The British actor Paterson Joseph was considered for the role of the Doctor in the long-running sci-fi series Doctor Who, it has been revealed.
An interview with the actor has appeared today on the Premium Hollywood website, concerning his role in the British drama series Survivors.
In it, the 45-year-old actor is asked by an interviewer with the online name of Bullz-Eye whether it was true that he was under consideration for the role of the Doctor, following rumors to that effect. Joseph responds, after some hesitation: “Uh, a lot.”
Joseph has appeared in the series before, in the mid-naughties, when Christopher Eccleston was in the role of the ninth Doctor.
On the question of the secrecy that usually surrounds the series, Joseph says in the interview: “You know what it’s like. I did the last two episodes of the first new incarnation, with Christopher Eccleston. They’re called the ‘Bad Wolf’ episodes ['Bad Wolf' and 'The Parting of the Ways'], and, y’know, we were up there on the space station. And I have to say, I’ve never been involved in anything so secret! I mean, scripts coming to me with my name embossed on every page . . . which, of course, I kept, because it’s amazing.
“But, if you lose that in a taxi, they know who you are and they know where you live. [Laughs.] So everything is very hush-hush, so I wouldn’t dream of giving away any of the Doctor Who secrets. I can only say that, yes, there was some truth in the rumor.”
“I’m sure that would’ve thrilled you to no end,” Bullz-Eye says.
Joseph responds: “I . . . I mean, I can’t think of any actor in the world who wouldn’t be completely flattered by that. Well, maybe not in the world, but certainly any British actor, because we know what Doctor Who means for us."
Joseph has had several television roles, including in the UK hospital soap Casualty and a 1996 drama series called Neverwhere, which, incidentally, was written by Neil Gaiman, who’s slated to write a Doctor Who story for 2011.
Another interesting connection is that Casualty’s production is moving to purpose-built studios of BBC Wales in Cardiff, which is where Doctor Who is produced.
A new Doctor in the guise of actor Matt Smith took over the role on New Year's Day and his first story, "The Eleventh Hour," will be aired in the spring. He takes over from tenth Doctor David Tennant.