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Published on November 19th, 2011 | by Alasdair Shaw

Don’t We Have a Movie Already?

Well there may or may not be a Doctor Who big screen outing on the way. And the Valeyard may or may not be starring in it.

Talk of a movie will always force a reaction from fans of a certain age. Over the years the made for TV movie (TVM) starring Paul McGann has been a bit of a marmite topic for Who fans.

I’ve always been a fan myself.

The Doctor Who Reprint Society are as well, unsurprising given their love of the McGann books. And as such they’ve just launched a poll to see if fans would like to see the TVM on the silver screen.

So, if you fancy seeing the Doctor in canon and on screen then have a wonder over and vote with your mouse. If significant interest is shown you never know where the DWRS might take this idea.

Stranger things have happened after all…


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About the Author


Alasdair Shaw dabbled in Who throughout the 80s, but didn’t really get into it properly until 1989. His sense of timing has not improved over the years. He’s a third generation Who fan as well as a father of two. His wife has a bad feeling about those two facts. When not working as a lab technician or writing for Kasterborous Alasdair runs the Doctor Who Reprint Society for which he writes In Print and Dangling Threads. He’s a big fan of the Valeyard, but that’s neither here nor there. He has never worked for UNIT and is not related to Dr Liz Shaw.

6 Responses to Don’t We Have a Movie Already?

  1. avatar James says:

    It would begreat to see my favourite Doctor/s on the big screen, but thinking about it from the BBC’s & filmmaker’s point of view, making it separate from the TV series makes complete sense.

    Why don’t all the skeptics just picture how the relationship between the Spider-Man comics and the Spider-Man films work together. The films do not affect the comics and the comics continue regardless whether there’s a new Spidey film or not. The films MUSt reboot (like this proposed DW movie) every time they start out a new series of Spidey films because cinema and film is a completely different medium of storytelling to comics (as is TV to film) also because by making this Dr Who film they’re introducing it to a new audience.

    All that would work EXACTLY the same as the TV series of Doctor Who and this film – this new film would just be a new kind of adaption, just like the movie adaptions of comic are. Also, Spider-Man whole comic history obviously cannot be included in the films, and the same goes for this Doctor Who film, because the series/brand’s history is so rich and full and extensive that it can’t be included as it would confuse new viewers.

  2. avatar Alex says:

    @James – it’s not the same. The comics are a different medium that frankly very few people actually pay attention to anymore. I’m comfortable in saying 90% (that’s a low estimate) of viewers of the Spiderman movies have ever read one of the comics. The percentage that remember the previous live-action version in the 1970s probably is a fraction of a percent. A larger percentage, probably half, know the 1960s cartoon, or at least the theme song. Factor in a few others who remember Spidey and His Amazing Friends or remember seeing the version featured on The Electric Company.

    But with Doctor Who, you have had a solid, continual continuity since 1963. There were 2 movies made in the 60s, but they were made specifically because part of the world – the US – didn’t buy the series. And also back then Doctor Who was only 2 years old.

    To launch a separate continuity now would be a clusterfrell of the highest magnitude. The mainstream is just now figuring out what Doctor Who is about. The show is breaking away from just being a geek special (I’m referring to how it’s viewed outside the UK; inside the UK is a different story). So suddenly we’ll end up with two separate storylines, two different Doctors. And what if they cast Brad Pitt or someone like that for the movie? Poor old Matt Smith wouldn’t stand a chance.

    I’m all for a movie, but it has to be part of the continuity. Either that, or retire the TV series and all its continuity and start fresh, which is apparently what they’re attempting with Battlestar Galactica as we speak. But at least they had the decency to wait until Ronald Moore’s series and its spinoff had run their course.

  3. avatar Alex says:

    ^ I wish these forums would allow us to edit our posts. Of course my statement above should have read “90% of viewers of the Spiderman films have NEVER read the comics”.

  4. avatar Simon says:

    Although I liked the Paul McGann story, I’ve never been all that keen on a Doctor Who movie. The franchise really isn’t a good fit for it; it’s a television show based on bringing an adventure to life, encountering a serious threat to the universe, and then exploring the possibilities of how to defeat it. Even in the old show the greatest suspense was when it was broken down into parts, forcing a cliff-hanger where fans to had wonder, “Oh man… how the hell are they going to get out of that”!

    Unless movies like for Twilight or Harry Potter have been designed to function as two-part extravaganzas, I don’t believe Doctor Who has the right structure for theatrical release. While some fans endear to the characters; spawning future stories with its incarnation of the Doctor, people haven’t particularly liked the franchise move in such a direction, and the critics’ reactions to them are proof enough of that.

    Better if it were a miniseries told over several nights like Torchwood: Children of Earth was.

  5. avatar Simon says:

    Another thing that worries me from fans wanting a movie is, why have a story that lasts for 1hr 40mins (which is the de facto length demanded by most studios) where some people’s answers are left out, when you can have 6hrs of television for the same cost and nobody’s answers are left out?

    I know there are those out there that despearately want a movie in cinemas, but it’ll never provide the same amount of impact as a multi-part story arc.

  6. avatar Krumstets says:

    A film is perfectly OK as long as it stays with the current TV series using the same actors.
    If they cannot manage that then they needn’t bother.
    Unless of course the film deals with the Doctor’s beginnings.
    From the early days on Gallifrey and possibly then his early adventures BTL. (Before Totters Lane)
    This could easily be recast without any negative impact on the current series.
    Surely film audiences don’t need to be spoon fed top Hollywood actors in lead roles?

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