Civil enthusiasm greeted Matt Smith and Karen Gillan at the weekend for the BBC America premiere of the new season of Doctor Who.
The first US screening of Asylum of the Daleks took place on West 54th Street at New York’s Ziegfeld Theater before a select audience of the press and Doctor Who fans.
Guests of honour, Smith and Gillan – aka the Eleventh Doctor and his companion Amy Pond – and executive producer Caroline Skinner (The Fades) were treated with the enthusiasm that they’ve come to expect over the last three years.
In a nod to another time-travel series, Back to the Future, the stars arrived at the Ziegfeld Theater in a DeLorean sports car.
According to the New York Times, tickets were sold for 11 cents a throw, “in honor of [Smith’s] 11th Doctor”.
Later in the current run of episodes, the Doctor and his TARDIS-travelling companions will be seen in an episode – The Angels Take Manhattan – in which the Weeping Angels make their third full appearance in a story that will see the departure of Amy and Rory Pond. The episode was filmed in New York earlier this year, making it the third time Doctor Who has been filmed in the US since the show’s return to TV screens in 2005.
In 2007, Tenth Doctor David Tennant’s Daleks in Manhattan was set in New York and, last year, The Impossible Astronaut saw Doctor Who filming in the Utah desert.
The UK premiere of Asylum of the Daleks took place at the BFI in London earlier this month. So far, exact details of the plot have not escaped on to the Internet after Doctor Who’s head writer Steven Moffat pleaded with those present not to spoil it for the viewing public.
During a Q&A session after the New York screening, attendees were asked to follow their British counterparts in not revealing the details.
Doctor Who returns to UK and US television on Saturday, 1 September (BBC 1) and Saturday, 8 September (BBC America), respectively. Five single-episode stories will be followed in December by the now-annual Christmas special, in which the Doctor’s new companion – played by Jenna-Louise Coleman – will be introduced.
Eight further episodes are due to air in early 2013, with further episodes scheduled for later that year to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the show.