Back in November, Doctor Who fans were struck by the news that Harry Potter director David Yates wants to do a movie. While that in itself is not bad news, his opinion of how this movie needs to go – “[Doctor Who] needs quite a radical transformation to take it into the bigger arena.” – has gotten fans pretty worked up, and rightly so.
As I previously reported, the first rumors indicated that the current Doctor Who series cast would not be invited to participate. Instead they would be attacking the franchise from a different angle with a new Doctor at the helm. Historically, this has not necessarily worked as planned.
Today I was idly skimming some entertainment magazine headlines at my local bookstore when I saw that Total Film Magazine had something about the movie plans. I grabbed it and searched until I found the article that was so small they didn’t even bother to include it in the table of contents. Once home I found a slightly more comprehensive report on their website. Total Film reports that renowned series writer Steven Moffat has finally spoken out about Yates’ idea via his Twitter feed.
“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,” said Moffat on his Twitter feed. He went on to put Yates’ comments into context, explaining: “David Yates, great director, was speaking off the cuff, on a red carpet.”
So all this hoopla was over a slip of the tongue? Hmm. Something seems fishy. Yates has said quite a bit about his plans, and from what has been reported thus far he seemed quite bent on disregarding the series canon to date. There may be a more deep-seated creative difference in play here. Moffat continued on to say:
“[Doctor Who] is a vitally important BBC brand with a huge international audience [that] not even Hollywood can start from scratch,” he says. “There simply are no developed plans for a Doctor Who movie at the moment. If and when the movie happens it will need to star television’s Doctor Who – and there’s only ever one of those at a time.”
“Whatever happens,” he continues, “the BBC and BBC Worldwide will work together to ensure that we don’t just get a movie, we get the movie that everyone wants.”
From this I think it’s fair to say that whatever happens with this movie plan, fans can trust Moffat to represent our best interests, and that we should put any fears that we will have a repeat of the Peter Cushing fiasco to rest. Yates’ movie will only happen if he can condescend to give Doctor Who respect the successful franchise deserves and honor its history.