Doctor Who’s bigger budget means “stories on a bigger scale”

There has been much talk about the budget of Doctor Who in the last few months since the BBC announced that they had inked a deal with Disney to make Disney+ the streaming home of Doctor Who outside of the UK across the globe.

There have been reports that the budget could spiral to as much as ten million dollars per episode in the future which have been since called “exaggerated” by Russell T Davies, but the showrunner of the long-running BBC science fiction show has admitted that he’s now working with more than he ever had in his first run on the show in 2005, and that will allow him to tell “stories on a bigger scale.”

On whether the larger budgets afforded to the show by the deal with a streaming giant, Davies admitted that it would change some of his approach to the creative process because he is now freer to explore ideas that may once have been impossible.

“Yes, I think it does, it’s one of the reason I’ve come back — you can tell stories on a bigger scale,” Davies told GQ in a recent interview.

However, he was keen to stress that this doesn’t mean he can do anything he imagines now, highlighting the fact that Doctor Who has to be very careful with their budget but they are great at managing what they have.

He added: “It’s the same old problems, I still have to cut scenes because they’re too expensive, and I still have to reduce the number of monsters, and things like that. But my imagination feels more free, a lot more free, actually. It’s just a joy to write anyway. I’m really proud of it. Oh my god, there are some strong episodes coming up.”

Davies also remarked: “But we’re very clever at spending money, I think Doctor Who has learnt more tricks over the years than other shows have, perhaps.”

Doctor Who returns to TV screens in November 2023 with three special episodes of the show to mark the 60th anniversary of Doctor Who. These episodes will see the return of David Tennant in the lead role, on this occasion playing the Fourteenth incarnation of the Time Lord.

Sex Education star Ncuti Gatwa will take over as Fifteen around the festive season of 2023 with his new companion Ruby Sunday, played by former Corrie actor Millie Gibson joining him in the TARDIS. Season 14 of Doctor who will play out in 2024.