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A new era of Doctor Who is upon us.
Showrunner Steven Moffat has quit Doctor Who after five years with the long-running BBC series, Radio Times announced today.
Moffat will continue with the show for the next 12 episode season (or series, if you're English) and then will be replaced in 2018 by Broadchurch creator Chris Chibnall.
Chibnall has also written many episodes of Doctor Who and served as executive producer on the spin-off series Torchwood, so it feels safe to say that the show will be in good hands.
"Feels odd to be talking about leaving when I'm just starting work on the scripts for season 10, but the fact is my timey-wimey is running out," Moffat said in a statement. "While Chris is doing his last run of Broadchurch, I'll be finishing up on the best job in the universe and keeping the TARDIS warm for him. It took a lot of gin and tonic to talk him into this, but I am beyond delighted that one of the true stars of British Television drama will be taking the Time Lord even further into the future. At the start of season 11, Chris Chibnall will become the new showrunner of Doctor Who. And I will be thrown in a skip."
Moffat has worked on the series since it was first revived in 2005 by Russell T. Davies, and took over for Davies as showrunner in 2010. He's been talking about finding a replacement showrunner, and recently opened up to Radio Times about what it would take for him to leave the series.
"I won't be leaving because I'm suddenly miserable. It'll be because I want to do something else," he said, so we'll just have to wait to find out what that "something else" is.
For now, Moffat remains at the helm of his other show, Sherlock, and of course, he'll still be around for another year, giving him time to establish a new companion after the departure of Jenna Coleman and maybe even help choose a new Doctor.
Current Doctor Peter Capaldi will be around for at least one more season according to his contract, but beyond that, it's unclear. He recently told The Telegraph:
"This could be my final year—it's terrifying. I love Doctor Who but it can be quite an insular world and I want to do other things. There will come a time when this is over. But I knew that when I started."
Is it too much to ask that Broadchurch star (and former Doctor/current terrifying Jessica Jones villain) David Tennant return as the Doctor, or perhaps even as a companion? Can we nominate his costar Olivia Coleman as the Doctor? There are just so many possibilities!
Doctor Who returns to BBC America later this year.