BBC has announced that showrunner, executive producer, and writer for Doctor Who, Steven Moffat, will be stepping down from the show after the next season. Moffat has reportedly begun working on Season 10, which will be his final season and will not air until spring of 2017. BBC1 controller Charlotte Moore has promised fans that the wait is for good reason and it will be worth it in the end:
I have decided to schedule Steven’s big finale series in Spring 2017 to bring the nation together for what will be a huge event on the channel. 2016 is spoilt with national moments including the Euros and Olympics and I want to hold something big back for 2017 – I promise it will be worth the wait!
Moffat has been with Doctor Who for over 10 years, serving the past six as showrunner, lead writer, and executive producer. He has sole writing credits on 37 episodes, co-written numerous more, and also has various other minor credits with IMDB citing him having a hand in 55 Doctor Who episodes throughout his career. He is sad to go but feels that his time has come.
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. 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.
As tends to be tradition with “new” faces on Doctor Who, Moffat’s replacement, Chris Chibnall, not only has an already impressive set of credentials but he is also not an unfamiliar face to the Whoverse. Interestingly enough, Chibnall has already written an episode for the Tenth Doctor, three episodes for the Eleventh Doctor, and one for the Twelfth Doctor: “42” (2007), “The Hungry Earth” (2010), “Cold Blood” (2010), “Dinosaurs on a Spaceship” (2012), and “The Power of Three” (2012), respectively. Other works under Chibnall’s belt will not be unfamiliar to Whovians as he has written 8 episodes of the Doctor Who spinoff series Torchwood, as well as the popular UK TV series Broadchurch, starring David Tennant and it’s American counterpart Gracepoint, also starring David Tennant. Chibnall is excited for the opportunity but also fears what Moffat will do with Season 10.
Doctor Who is the ultimate BBC programme: bold, unique, vastly entertaining, and adored all around the world. So it’s a privilege and a joy to be the next curator of this funny, scary and emotional family drama. I’ve loved Doctor Who since I was four years old, and I’m relishing the thought of working with the exceptional team at BBC Wales to create new characters, creatures and worlds for the Doctor to explore. Steven’s achieved the impossible by continually expanding Doctor Who‘s creative ambition, while growing its global popularity. He’s been a dazzling and daring showrunner, and hearing his plans and stories for 2017, it’s clear he’ll be going out with a bang. Just to make my life difficult.