Variety is reporting that director David Yates, who directed the last four Harry Potter films, is teaming up with the BBC to bring Doctor Who to the big screen.
“We’re looking at writers now. We’re going to spend two to three years to get it right,” he said. “It needs quite a radical transformation to take it into the bigger arena.” Yates added, “The notion of the time-travelling Time Lord is such a strong one, because you can express story and drama in any dimension or time.”
For those unaware, the Doctor Who series has a long and rich history, originally running from 1963 to 1989, and recently being rebooted in 2005 by writers Russell T. Davies and subsequently by Steven Moffat. The present incarnation of The Doctor has garnered more attention to the series then ever before.
While this all sounds very exciting, Yates went on to make a very controversial comment that has the Who-niverse buzzing with skepticism.
“Russell T. Davies and then Steven Moffat have done their own transformations, which were fantastic, but we have to put that aside and start from scratch,” he said.
If this comment means abandoning 50+ years of canon and the current state of the show, I believe it to be a huge mistake. However, if the movie were simply to begin the story of the next Doctor in line, it could easily serve as a jumping on point for new viewers while respecting the loyal Whovians.
Doctor Who Head Writer and Executive Producer Steven Moffat has chimed in on Twitter to address the news:
To clarify: any Doctor Who movie would be made by the BBC team, star the current TV Doctor and certainly NOT be a Hollywood reboot. David Yates, great director, was speaking off the cuff, on a red carpet. You’ve seen the rubbish I talk when I’m cornered.