Ever since it was announced that John Hurt would be taking part in this month’s much-anticipated Doctor Who 50th anniversary special episode, The Day of the Doctor, fans have wondered how this extra addition to the Doctor Who family would affect the shows future with regards to its regeneration limit.
Before Hurt’s appearance was announced the question about how many regenerations there were left had already come up when current Time Lord, Matt Smith announced his decision to leave the epic BBC1 family sci-fi series back in June.
When, after much speculation, The Thick Of It star Peter Capaldi was revealed as taking the role of the 12th Doctor, in what would be the 11th regeneration, there was a huge sense of fear that the actor after him, the 13th Doctor, would be the show’s last.
Then when it was revealed that in the celebratory episode, The Day of the Doctor, Smith would be joined by the 10th Doctor David Tennant AND a never-before-seen version of the Time Lord, thought by many to be 8.5, played by John Hurt, the fear escalated as many believed that meant Capaldi would in fact be the last ever Doctor.
However, with less than a fortnight to go till The Day of the Doctor is broadcast in homes and cinemas around the world on November 23rd, show runner Steven Moffat has come out to put our minds at rest with regards to the shows future!
Discussing the regeneration limit, which has always been 12, Moffat is quoted by the Sun newspaper as revealing that Hurt’s story will actually create a new regeneration cycle in a story to be included in this year’s Christmas Day Special, explaining:
“This should be the first step on the next journey, guaranteeing the 100th anniversary.
“The story focuses on the most important thing that ever happened to the Doctor.
“With John Hurt we have serious acting royalty and that was the intent of John’s character.
“John is one of the most distinguished film stars of British origin, one of the most distinguished actors this country has produced and has now become part of Doctor Who mythology.”
Doctor Who The Day of the Doctor is due to be aired at 7.50pm On BBC1/BBC1 HD as well as in cinemas across the UK and in over 75 other countries around the world too!