Who is Doctor's new companion Jenna-Louise Coleman?

Jenna-Louise Coleman

Former Emmerdale actress replaces Karen Gillan as Matt Smith's sidekick for new series

LAST UPDATED AT 12:35 ON Wed 21 Mar 2012

THE BBC has revealed that the Doctor's new companion will be 25-year-old Jenna-Louise Coleman. The Emmerdale actress will replace Karen Gillan, who starred as Amy Pond in the past three seasons of Doctor Who.

Coleman will join 11th Time Lord Matt Smith midway through the next series, to be screened later this year. Producers have suggested viewers will see Pond and her husband Rory meet a “heartbreaking end”. While we are all familiar with flame-haired Amy, what do we know about rising star Coleman?
 
EARLY LIFE
Jenna-Louise Coleman was born and raised in Blackpool, where she was Head Girl at Arnold School. She was a bright student, getting straight As in her A-levels, and she has expressed regret at not going to university: "Part of me feels that I am missing that, but I am living the life I want", she said after landing a role in Emmerdale.
 
EARLY CAREER
Coleman showed early promise as a member of In Yer Space, a theatre company with whom she performed at the Edinburgh Festival in the play Crystal Clear. She won an award for her part, and while auditioning for drama school won the role of Jasmine Thomas in Emmerdale, in 2005.
 
CRITICAL REVIEWS
In 2007 Coleman was nominated for two awards for her part in Emmerdale: Best Newcomer at the National Television Awards and Most Popular Newcomer at the British Soap Awards. In 2009 she received more nominations at the British Soap Awards: Best Actress, Sexiest Female and Best Dramatic Performance.
 
RECENT WORK
Coleman played the part of 'hard girl' Lindsay James in Waterloo Road in 2009 and appeared in BBC4's Room at the Top in 2010. She can be seen this Sunday in Julian Fellowes's Titanic, a new series starting on ITV, and made her big screen debut in last year's Captain America: The First Avenger.
 
DOCTOR WHO
The Doctor will apparently meet his new friend in a dramatic turn of events as the show builds towards its climactic 50th anniversary year. The series is currently being filmed and is said by the BBC to comprise 14 "blockbuster-movie episodes - each a brand new epic adventure featuring new monsters and some familiar foes as you've never seen them before".

Lead writer and Executive Producer, Steven Moffat, says: "It always seems impossible when you start casting these parts, but when we saw Matt and Jenna together, we knew we had our girl. She's funny and clever and exactly mad enough to step on board the TARDIS.

"It's not often the Doctor meets someone who can talk even faster than he does, but it's about to happen. Jenna is going to lead him his merriest dance yet. And that's all you're getting for now." · 

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