Pearl Mackie has been named the new “Doctor Who” companion, starring alongside Peter Capaldi’s Time Lord in the Tardis, replacing Jenna Coleman, whose character Clara Oswald left the show in 2015.
The announcement was made on BBC One yesterday.
Filming for the next season of the long-running hit science fiction series will kick off later this year for a 2017 bow.
Mackie described her new character “Bill” as “wicked… cool, strong, sharp, a little bit vulnerable with a bit of geekiness thrown in.”
“I’m incredibly excited to be joining the Doctor Who family,” the British actress said. “It’s such an extraordinary British institution, I couldn’t be prouder to call the Tardis my home.”
She added: “Peter Capaldi is such a brilliant actor, and his Doctor is such a wacky and wonderful character, I can’t wait to see what adventures are in store for him and Bill throughout time and space.”
Star Capaldi chimed in with: “It is a genuine delight to welcome Pearl Mackie to ‘Doctor Who.’ A fine, fine actress with a wonderful zest and charm, she’s a refreshing addition to the Tardis and will bring a universe of exciting new possibilities to The Doctor’s adventures.”
The companion figure in the series – generally a human – has been a constant feature in “Doctor Who” since the program’s inception in 1963. The Doctor’s most recent traveling companions have generally been women, who occupy a much larger narrative role than previously. Head writer and executive producer of the series, Steven Moffat, has even described the companion as the main character of the show, as the story begins anew with each companion, eventually undergoing more change than the Doctor.
Pearl Mackie, who graduated from Bristol Old Vic Theatre School in 2010, played Anne-Marie Frasier in “Doctors” in 2014 and is currently performing in the National Theatre’s West End production of “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time.”
In January, it was announced that the head writer and executive producer of “Doctor Who,” Steven Moffat, was stepping down from the show.
The next series will be his last, after which he will be replaced by “Broadchurch” writer Chris Chibnall.
Sneak peak below plus a “Meet the Doctor’s New Companion” video from the BBC, followed by some footage from her first day on set: