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Jodie Whittaker’s Doctor Who Almost Killed the Multi-Billion Dollar BBC Franchise: “It literally went down to the wire”

doctor who jodie whitaker

With one of the most critically acclaimed British shows inching towards its 60th anniversary, Doctor Who is set to move in a new direction with its 14th season. But it appears that the 13th season of the show, which marked the end of Jodie Whittaker’s iconic run as the thirteenth doctor, was almost canceled.

The former showrunner of the show, Chris Chibnall opened up that he wasn’t sure whether the final season under his reign would would happen. And the iconic multi-billion dollar BBC franchise came very close to its cancellation.

Also read: After Creating History With Ncuti Gatwa as First POC Doctor, Doctor Who Showrunner Wants Franchise To Take Inspiration from “Progressive” Star Trek: ‘The world has changed’

Doctor Who: Flux
Doctor Who: Flux

The Doctor Who series almost got canceled following covid delays

While speaking with Radio Freaks Skaro, Chris Chibnall expressed that after the pandemic, which led to an extensive delay in the production process, he wasn’t sure whether the show would get completed. And considering that the lead, Jodie Whittaker was being offered many more roles at the time and he was too being offered another show, he was assured that BBC was ready to scrap the Doctor Who franchise. He said,

“There was a week where it was not going to be made. There was a week where I’d been offered another job. And it literally went down to the wire, there was an hour on one day when it’s like, it was done.”

But they eventually managed to complete the show and wrap up Jodie Whittaker’s story in a satisfying manner and Chibnall went on to acknowledge Whittaker’s sacrifices for the role.

Also read: ‘RIP Doctor Who’: Fans Convinced New BBC-Disney Deal Will Kill Franchise’s British Roots, Give Doctor Who a Total American Makeover

Doctor Who showrunner Chris Chibnall
Doctor Who showrunner Chris Chibnall

Despite the delays, Jodie Whittaker stuck with the series

Chibnall shared that Jodie Whittaker, who has portrayed the character in three series and five specials, was adamant about completing the season. And despite being offered a plethora of roles after the delay of the show, she stuck with the development and their sacrifices eventually paid off. He stated,

“And you know, she’s in demand, and so she sacrificed a lot. Everybody sacrificed a lot. But yeah, we did have those moments. Yeah, completely. And there was, yeah, there are some things I’ll just keep to myself.”

Also read: “Can you imagine the outrage? I’m American”: Tom Hanks Says He Will Never Play Doctor Who Because He Won’t Jump into a ‘red telephone box’

Jodie Whittaker
Jodie Whittaker

And with the duo of Chris Chibnall and Jodie Whittaker leaving the franchise after the 13th season, the upcoming season will pass on to Disney, considering their recent deal with BBC. And the upcoming season will introduce Ncuti Gatwa as the next Doctor.

The 13th season of Doctor Who is available to stream on HBO Max.

Source: Radio Freaks Skaro


Written by Santanu Roy

Santanu Roy is a film enthusiast with a deep love for the medium of animation while also being obsessed with Batman and The Everly Brothers. Apart from pursuing animation and analyzing movies, he possesses a deep fondness for narrative-driven games and is currently a content writer at Fandomwire with over 500 articles.