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“Budget Cuts” Discussed

Ben Stephenson, the BBC’s controller of drama, has confirmed in an interview that the 2010 series of Doctor Who has a lower budget than previous runs.

While chatting about the BBC’s various drama output, Stephenson moved onto the issue of budgets and the rumour that the producers of Season 31 had run into problems due to a lower budget being allocated than in the Russell T Davies era.

“I’m not going to comment on individual shows, but I’ve now seen four or five episodes of the new Doctor Who and it’s bigger and better than ever,” says Stephenson. “The minute that those cuts affect how it looks then I agree that there’s something we need to do.”

I don’t think we should take money away from Occupation or Small Island in order to put money into one show.”

Press rumours in 2009 indicated that Matt Smith was being paid considerably less than predecessor David Tennant – however this was against a backdrop of spriralling BBC bonuses and a requirement for the public service broadcaster to spend more responsibly.  At present we don’t know what the actual budget for the first series of the Steven Moffat era of Doctor Who is – but judging by the trailer that followed the regeneration, production values are not being affected.

The interview is featured in the Telegraph, accompanied by a video of the discussion.

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