Doctor Who 60th reunion “happened a little bit by accident”

The 60th anniversary specials of Doctor Who in 2023 are something that has all Doctor Who fans incredibly excited.

Not only will it almost certainly be our first chance to see the incoming Doctor Ncuti Gatwa at the helm of the TARDIS for the first time, it will also be our first taste of what the return of Russell T Davies, the showrunner of the series between 2005 and 2009, means for the BBC science fiction show.

And, there’s even more! Because we know that the 60th special will also feature a number of new and returning stars to the show – including Yasmin Finney as Rose and Neil Patrick Harris in an as yet unconfirmed role.

Perhaps the most exciting part of all, is the news that David Tennant will be returning to the show as the Doctor and his popular companion Donna Noble, played by Catherine Tate will also be there by his side.

But how did such a fantastic reunion come about? Well, it was “It all slightly happened a little bit by accident” David Tennant has revealed in an interview with the BBC.

He reveals that the roots of the idea of getting back together on the show can be dated back to the 2020 pandemic lockdowns when they all became involved in a series of watch-along events as part of Doctor Who: Lockdown!

David Tennant and Catherine Tate – BBC Studios, Alistair Heap

“That’s where this all started”, said Tennant.

He added: “At a certain time and day everyone would press play on a certain episode and some of the people who had been involved in those episodes were tweeting along.

“I don’t tweet but my wife helped me.”

After the event the three of them were all texting and Catherine said “wouldn’t it be fun to do it again?”

He added: “Russell said, ‘We could do a one off, maybe they’d let us’.

“We said, ‘yeah that would be a laugh,’ and then it all went quiet.”

But of course, little did they know, but RTD was soon to be back at the helm of the show, and that silence would quickly turn into a surprise message.

“Suddenly Russell let us know that he was taking over the show again and he would be back fully in charge and would we come and play a little bit for him?” said Tennant.

“So I don’t know if we gave him the idea to take Doctor Who back but certainly we thought if he’s doing it, we can’t let these young people have all the fun.”

It is thought that there will be three parts to the 60th anniversary Doctor Who special in 2023. It is not yet known if any other former Doctor Who stars like Matt Smith or Peter Capaldi will be returning for the shows, but it seems likely there are more surprises to come before that race is run. However, Steven Moffat, former showrunner has ruled himself out of an imminent return.

Before that, there is the small matter of The Power of the Doctor next month, a feature-length episode that will say goodbye to Jodie Whittaker as the Doctor, and will be the last episode to be showrun by Chris Chibnall.