Doctor Who News Could Torchwood's Burn Gorman be the Twelfth Doctor?

Published on July 14th, 2013 | by Andrew Reynolds

Tovey, Burn and Colman Deny Doctor Who Rumours

You may have counted them in but now you’re going to have to count them back out again as Russell Tovey, Burn Gorman and Olivia Colman have ruled themselves out of the running for the Twelfth Doctor.

Russell Tovey as Midshipman Frame in Voyage of the Damned

While both actors are keen to tackle the Doctor neither of them believes that their respective places in the Whoniverse will stand against them when the producers finally name the next Doctor.

Russell who previously played Alonso Frame in Voyage of the Damned and The End of Time and was believed to have had a screen test for the Eleventh Doctor after being recommended by former show runner Russell T Davies for the part, told UKPA:

It would be an incredible job to do, but don’t bet on me as the Doctor this time round. It was incredible to be part of it as Alonso; part of that family, and especially in David Tennant’s reign.

Could Torchwood's Burn Gorman be the Twelfth Doctor?Meanwhile, Burn, who played Owen Harper in Torchwood, explicitly ruled himself out because of his ties to the Doctor Who spin-off:

I’m afraid the Doctor Who door is probably closed because of me being in Torchwood. I’m really excited to see who it will be, let’s hope they go with someone different but I’m sure whoever they choose will be amazing.

David Tennant starred with Olivia Colman in Broadchurch

Someone amazing who won’t be taking on the role is double BAFTA winner and former Doctor Who guest star Olivia Colman, who won’t be backing herself at the bookies when it comes to who’ll be the next Doctor.

Olivia told What’s on TV:

My brother sent me a text saying ‘Congratulations, they’ve released odds on you being the new Doctor Who. How funny, I wouldn’t put any money on it!

With so many established names declaring or denying their interest in the role; would you like to see another unknown cast in the role or an as yet to be revealed leftfield known name? Should established Whoniverse actors be counted out?


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About the Author


Everyone has a favourite Doctor and mine - just for his honesty, his fairness and his ability to not notice the Master's awful, awful disguises/anagrams (Sir Gilles Estram!?!) - has to be the Fifth Doctor, Peter Davison. The stories didn’t serve him as well as his acting served those stories.

51 Responses to Tovey, Burn and Colman Deny Doctor Who Rumours

  1. avatar lee moone says:

    There are only two people I’d like to see as Dr no 12. Richard Coyle or David Threlfall. Threlfall would be my 1st choice and if he got it, he would be the oldest (60) ever to take on the role. He can carry a long filmed TV series as he’s the lead in Shameless. It won’t be either of course!

    • avatar Spider-pope says:

      Ooh good choice with Richard Coyle. I rather liked his very short stint as ‘Strange’, he definitely has the acting chops for the role.

      Still hoping for Paterson Joseph though.

      • avatar Lewis Seymour says:

        Coyle was mentioned before – because of the Moffat connection via Coupling. Trelfall is a big DW fan, and even appeared as a sort of Doctor in a hallucination episode in Shameless, so I understand! I read once that he actively sought the role when Eccles left, but they’d already lined up DT.

        My no.1 choice was and is Colin Salmon, but I just hope we get a good actor, whoever it is.

        • avatar lee moone says:

          Tho Coyle is my 2nd choice I fear it won’t be him while Moffat is in charge, as they fell out over couplings. He wasn’t happy that Coyle left the series. We also have to consider that Mark Gates will also be in on the castings as he will be taking over the prods role after Moffat. (No inside scoop there just obvious) So they may also go for an actor that he worked with. I wouldn’t be surprised if Lee Ingleby was a contender.

          • avatar Lewis Seymour says:

            I don’t think it’s obvious that Gatiss would be involved – or that he would be the next showrunner. However – funnily enough I thought of Ingleby last night while watching a rerun of Gently!

          • Nothing obvious about it.

            Far more likely that Minchin will take over.

          • avatar lee moone says:

            Not obvious that Gates will take over? Really? Look at the facts. He has been given exec prods roles on shows to get him up to scratch, is working hand in hand with Moffat on Sherlock so learning from directly from him and is the only writer to write an episode for each of Moffat’s seasons just like Moffat did for RTD.

            No not obvious at all! ;)

          • avatar Lewis Seymour says:

            I’d agree with Christian here – I suspect that it is very likely that Minchin has been brought in to take over from Moffat and that the “showrunner” idea, fairly rare in the UK, will be dropped once Moffat has moved on. I do think that if Gatiss was going to get this job, he’d have had it in 2010.

          • avatar lee moone says:

            Nope Gatiss wouldn’t have had it in 2010 as Moffat was offered it in 2008/9. He also had no experience of being a show runner. But has since been given things to produce as tho he is in training, just as they used to do with Directors training at the Beeb years ago. It will be Gatiss.

          • avatar Lewis Seymour says:

            Just been announced that Mark Gatiss is joining Game of Thrones – so highly unlikely he’ll be thinking much about DW, either as a writer or producer for while yet.

  2. avatar FrancoPabloDiablo says:

    I wish this would all die down until an actual announcement is made by the BBC. Like it always has done, the focus on who is going to be the next Doctor is distracting attention away from the present. The fact is Matt Smith IS STILL VERY MUCH THE DOCTOR! We have the 50th anniversary and x-mas special with him to look forward to. Let’s focus a little more on that please. Anyway, in an ideal world we wouldn’t find out the new Doctor’s identity until Matt’s features regenerated into whoever is lucky enough to take on the role. Shame it couldn’t be kept a secret like Jenna’s appearance in Asylum.

    • avatar TimeChaser says:

      It won’t be, unless the filming is all done in locked studios where the media is not allowed. If not, they’d be able to get a shot of whoever is cast so might as well announce it first anyway.

      • avatar FrancoPabloDiablo says:

        I KNOW it won’t be, hence the reason I said it’s a “shame it couldn’t be kept a secret like Jenna’s appearance in Asylum”.

    • avatar Brain of Morbius says:

      I agree. I came late to the new show and had the luxury of watching the first 4 seasons without being surprised by the media reports. Since then I’ve had spoilers ruin episodes. However, I think most of the blame for the current hype has to fall on Moffats head. If he kept a tighter ship these leaks wouldn’t get out and we could all watch the story unfold the way he intended.

      • avatar Lewis Seymour says:

        When JNT ran the show in the 80s he would inform us of pretty much everything that was going on – surprises, like the return of the Cybermen in Earthshock would be few and far between. I think now they try to keep more for the viewers to be surprised by which in turn results in leaks and rampant speculation. All in all though prefer it now, with a bit of mystery at least attempted!

        • avatar lee moone says:

          Have to correct you there re JNT. He didn’t let on that the Cybermen were returning in Earthshhock. That was a total surprise I remember it well! He mainly let on which guest artist was on the show.

          It was also a different animal then. No Internet and fans desperately wanting spoilers and taking photos. I do think that the regeneration of Matt was going to be a secret, or try to be nearer the time, but was ruined by an internal email leak the released by Ian Le vine on Twitter for his own perverse reasons, so BBC had to release a statement. It is still possible in this day and age to avoid some spoilers. I avoided the net while away and saw the surprise ending of Hurt’s Dr 2weeks after transmission. I’m no fan of this Moffat era or Matt’s Dr , by its really not all the man’s fault!

          • avatar Lewis Seymour says:

            Yes, that’s what I said – he kept very few surprises up his sleeve, like the Cybermen’s return – mostly he told us everything that was going on. I did live through it too. I was quite active in fandom at the time, and well remember people feeling we knew too much and more mystery would have been nice – apart from obvious name games with the Master, very little came our way that we didn’t already know about via DWAS newsletters or press releases in the papers.

            As far as I am aware, the Hurt revelation caught us all on the hop – there was rumours flying around, but that’s not the same as a spoiler – and no one predicted the “Introducing John Hurt as The Doctor” cliffhanger.

            Even if they had not be forced into announcing MS’s departure, I really can’t see them having managed to keep it secret until Christmas, especially as they would be likely to be filming season 8 in the latter part of this year, and Smith’s absence, and the presence of another actor with Jenna, would have certainly raised suspicions!

          • avatar lee moone says:

            Sorry miss read you there re Earth shock. As for surprise regeneration, timings wise I think they were hoping it would work. They film Matt exit in sept/Oct but leaving the last bit unrecorded. Season 8 would start filming in new year after Xmas transmission so the new guy could have popped in just weeks before that episode aired. Hence surprise.

            For me the season split, plus timings indicated Matt was off. Just a shame a few more episodes weren’t recorded this year in the same vein as DT’s specials and we could have had an almost full season this year. Guess it was down to No.of episodes signed in the contract? Very odd!

  3. avatar TimeChaser says:

    I am so utterly happy the Burn Gorman has denied it. He was one of the last people I would want to see as the Doctor.

    • avatar Brain of Morbius says:

      I thought his acting on Torchwood was brilliant. His character’s death was so emotional that I would have a hard time not thinking about it while watching him as The Doctor. He gets a no vote from me too.

      • avatar FrancoPabloDiablo says:

        Totally agree. He was great in Torchwood and probably went through the most meaningful character development during the show’s first 2 series. His and Tosh’s last moments were heartbreaking and, for me, was the moment that the show truly justified it’s existence and credibility as a separate entity as opposed to a mere Doctor Who spin-off. But as new Doctor – no thanks!

  4. James Nesbitt would be worth a look

    • avatar lee moone says:

      Good God no! Besides he has too much of ‘a past’. The tabloids would have a field day with the man.

      • avatar Lewis Seymour says:

        Quite a few of the “candidates” over the years have this problem – Rhys Ifans, for example, may be a great actor be he’s usually drunk and has had the clap, Hugh Grant got arrested soliciting a prostitute (what was RTD thinking offering him the job?), Idris Elba was just in a brawl with a Gallagher brother and Daniel Rigby is a prolific tweeter who often talks about sex using anglo saxon language! DW, whether you view it as a kids show or not, is certainly a Family show, and whoever we get would need to have a fairly clean profile or the tabloids will make mincemeat of him (though, having said that, MS managed to avoid too many appearances and I doubt he lived the life of a Monk!). Unfortunately this may rule out pretty much every actor alive!!!

        • avatar krumstets says:

          Well precisely , you can’t reject an actor just because he or she is tabloid fodder.
          If any actor were dismissed for the part because they have a `history’ or they have had a colourfull private life then we would end up with such a narrow or non existent field of people to choose from .

          • avatar Lewis Seymour says:

            So you’d have no problem with the Doctor falling out of a nightclub at 4am with a tart on his arm and white powder round his nostrils then? I suspect that the BBC wouldn’t take such a liberal view…

          • avatar krumstets says:

            I would have a problem with the Doctor falling out of nightclub at 4am with white powder up his nose and a tart on his arm, but I wouldn’t have a problem with the actor playing him whose private life is none of mine or anyone else’s business.

          • avatar Lewis Seymour says:

            I can’t think of a response to that – the fact that you do not consider the actor’s private life to have a bearing on his role in a high profile family show watched by millions of children (many of whom won’t separate the role from the actor), even if that behaviour was socially and morally reprehensible (and illegal) leaves me speechless.

  5. avatar TimeChaser says:

    I know some people have poo-pooed the idea, but my name in the hat is still Ben Miller, and will be until I hear him deny it or they’ve cast someone else.

    • avatar Lewis Seymour says:

      Didn’t he once say he was a “huge” DW fan and had been all his life? He’s about the only actor the papers haven’t named, so maybe he is the one!

  6. avatar rickjlundeen says:

    I wouldn’t mind Bill Nighy coming in.

    • avatar Bob James says:

      That, however unlikely, would be very cool.

    • avatar lee moone says:

      Won’t be Nighy. Best Dr we never had. Have you noticed that all the actors tipped to be or linked to the DR in the past, Moffat has used? Nighy, Richard E Grant, Liam Cunningham, David Warner to name but a few…

    • avatar krumstets says:

      That would be cool , but I fear that they would consider him too `old’ and he probably wouldn’t want to relocate to Wales for nine months of the year.

      (it’s not exactly Hollywood out there)

      • avatar Lewis Seymour says:

        Most actors never see Hollywood and will go where the work is.Unlike you, Eccleston, Tennant nor Smith didn’t seem to have a problem with Wales or Cardiff. Also there are plenty of Welsh actors who could be considered (Damian Lewis for example – he even has a house in South Wales).

  7. avatar Al says:

    I have nothing against Tovey, but I just don’t see him as the Doctor. A companion, maybe, but not the Doctor. Burn Gorman would be an interesting Doctor, but I agree – it’s not like Colin Baker being Maxil for a couple episodes, Gorman was a series regular for two years. That’s like casting John Barrowman as the Doctor. And if Colman is involved with Broadchurch, that rules her out – that thing will run for years.

    • avatar Lewis Seymour says:

      Another point here which everyone ignores, but you so rightly mention – these actors often have other commitments. Colman is likely to be involved in Broadchurch 2 as you say. I do get the impression that the papers, and some fans, think actors sit around waiting for the phone to ring so offering them the Doctor!

  8. avatar krumstets says:

    If we take all the actors who have been suggested for the part and subtract from that list those who have denied it we still have a few who are still in the running.

    One such actor who has been suggested and said he would consider it and hasn’t yet ruled himself out – and is my personal favourite – is Chiwetel Ejiofor

    I wonder if part of the reason that some actors don’t want to do it is because they would have to spend so much time in Cardiff , which isn’t an exciting prospect for most people.

    • avatar Spider-pope says:

      …and the rest of the time in Manchester. You could be onto something.

    • avatar Lewis Seymour says:

      That’s twice you’ve slagged off Cardiff…

      • avatar krumstets says:

        I don’t know much about Cardiff and I have no reason to slag it off.
        I just imagine it’s not high on most people’s choice of places to live or work.

        • avatar TonyS says:

          You would be surprised then krumstets. Cardiff has a vibrant nightlife and is becoming one of the more sought after places to live. And consequently very expensive.

          • avatar Paul Blume says:

            Yeah, everybody stop picking on Cardiff ~ it’s better than Hull.

          • avatar TonyS says:

            I am not Welsh and do not live there. But South Wales is an area that I know well, having made regular visits over nearly thirty years. One of my best friends is a Solicitor in Pontypool. South Wales is a wonderful area to live and work. It has a lot going for it. And I don’t just mean the fact that Doctor Who is filmed there. Why not take the opportunity to go find out for yourselves. And don’t just stick to Cardiff. Venture up some of the valleys. Llancaiach Fawr Manor is fun.

  9. avatar Lewis Seymour says:

    There’s been a lot of talk that it should/will be an unknown – because MS was pretty much this when he was cast. Some even claim this is standard for DW – but thinking about it it’s not actually that true, is it? Hartnell was very well known from The Army Game and a range of films – he played against type as The Doctor, but he was still a name (a sort of Eccleston for 1963!). Pertwee was a very big radio name, if not known so much outside the medium. Davison was everywhere in the early 80s – probably the closest the show has come to “star casting”. Colin Baker, we tend to forget, was a star of a hit tv show in the 70s – The Brothers. McCoy, though not a “name” was a regular on children’s tv. McGann was a bone fide film star, Eccleston a highly acclaimed actor who’d been in some top TV, and Tennant, though on the rise, had already appeared in “Blackpool”, a hit and critically acclaimed show. So really, no reason to assume that it could not be someone we know!

    • avatar TonyS says:

      and Troughton was also well known when he was cast. First tv Robin Hood and in loads of stuff.

      • avatar Lewis Seymour says:

        Indeed. Technically, if you were an avid theatre or movie fan, you would probably have known T Baker too – he was at the National and appeared in a number of British films, not least “Nicholas and Alexandra”. Smith probably ranks as the least known Dr of all time, but it seems as if people now view this as the norm rather than as the exception to the rule.

  10. avatar lee moone says:

    Isn’t it funny that brit actors only stay in lead roles for a short time where as American actors are happy to sign up for 5- 8 yrs. Why is that I wonder? Perhaps if we want a Dr to stay longer than 3 series and a few specials the Production Team should go for an American? ;)

    • avatar TimeChaser says:

      If they did that, I nominate Mathew Gray Gubler, aka Dr. Spencer Reid on Criminal Minds. He’s quirky, and I’ve seen him dress Doctor-ish even out of the Reid character.

      • avatar Lewis Seymour says:

        I’ve mentioned him previously – I understand there was even a campaign by American DW fans for him to get the part – but he’s tied to Criminal Minds for at least another season I believe. Personally, don’t see why we can’t have an American – they can do it with a British accent if that’s the only problem!

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