Doctor Who goes 3D and hits cinemas for 50th anniversary

Feb 12, 2013

3D television gives the Time Lord a 'whole new dimension to explore' says Steven Moffat


THE BBC is to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who with a special 3D episode that will be shown in cinemas as well as on television.

The special edition of the show will be broadcast on 23 November, the exact anniversary of the Doctor's TV debut in 1963, when he was first played by William Hartnell in an adventure called An Unearthly Child.

The plot of the 3D special has not been revealed but the Time Lord will once again be played by Matt Smith, with Jenna-Louise Coleman as his assistant. The 3D version will be shown on BBC HD.

The cult show's executive producer and lead writer, Steven Moffat, said it was "about time" the Doctor went 3D and compared modern TVs with the Tardis.

"Technology has finally caught up with Doctor Who and your television is now bigger on the inside," he said. "[There is] a whole new dimension of adventure for the Doctor to explore."

The end of 2013 promises to be a busy time for the Doctor, said Ben Stephenson, the BBC's head of drama commissioning. The 50th anniversary show comes after an eight-part series and before the annual Christmas special.

Stephenson’s comments suggest that the plot of the 3D spectacular had yet to be finalised. "There will be lots of aliens and daleks and things like that – or maybe there won't," he said.

The Guardian reported that Stephenson had compared the event to the Queen's diamond jubilee and the Olympics. It is certainly likely to get more attention that the original transmission, which was overshadowed by the assassination of JFK a day earlier.

"There has been no shortage of speculation about the content of the 50th birthday show, and whether it will see a reunion of previous doctors," said the paper. "Tom Baker memorably declined to appear in the 20th anniversary special, The Five Doctors, and three of the 11 actors to have played the role are now dead."

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