Playwrights recruited for new series of Doctor Who

Two playwrights have been enlisted to write episodes for the new series of Doctor Who.

Playwrights recruited for Doctor Who
Vinay Patel and Joy Wilkinson

They include Vinay Patel whose play Sticks and Stones is currently running at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe as part of Paines Plough’s Roundabout programme. His latest work, An Adventure, will premiere at London’s Bush Theatre from 6 September to 20 October. Previous plays include True Brits and Free Fall. His television debut, Murdered By My Father, won the 2016 Royal Television Society Award for Best Single Drama and was nominated for three BAFTAs.

Patel said: “I grew up watching shows like Star Trek and Quantum Leap on the edge of my dad’s bed, and I loved how they managed to capture the imagination of a kid like me as well as acting as a moral compass. I never imagined that I’d get to write for Doctor Who – I was pretty thrilled.”

Joy Wilkinson’s previous plays include Britain’s Best Recruiting Sergeant, Now is the Time, and Fair while her latest play The Sweet Science of Bruising, about Victorian female boxers, will be produced by Troupe at Southwark Playhouse from 3 to 27 October 2018. She was selected as a Screen International Star of Tomorrow and wrote the BBC series The Life and Adventures of Nick Nickleby.

Talking about being chosen for Doctor Who, Wilkinson said: “I loved the show and felt like it might be a good fit for me, but I knew it was really hard to get onto. So quite frankly I’m still pinching myself to be here!”

Other writers announced by Doctor Who’s new showrunner Chris Chibnall include former Children’s Laureate Malorie Blackman whose books for children and young adults include the Noughts and Crosses series which has been adapted for the stage by the Royal Shakespeare Company in 2007 and for a new play due to tour the UK in 2019 presented by Pilot Theatre and Derby Theatre.

Another is Ed Hime who was nominated for a Craft BAFTA for his first episode of Skins and won the Prix Italia for his radio play The Incomplete Recorded Works of a Dead Body. His work for theatre has included Small Hours at Hampstead Theatre Downstairs, London Falls and London Tongue.

Along with Chibnall himself, the new series’ line-up of writers is completed by Pete McTighe who is the originating writer of TV prison drama Wentworth.

The directors announced for the new series include Sallie Aprahamian who has been directing TV for over two decades but started out in theatre including the award-winning production of Blue Night In The Heart Of The West by James Stock. The series’ other directors are Jamie Childs, Jennifer Perrott and Mark Tonderai.

Chris said: “We have a team of writers who’ve been working quietly and secretly for a long time now, crafting characters, worlds and stories to excite and move you. A set of directors who stood those scripts up on their feet, bringing those ideas, visuals and emotions into existence with bravura and fun.

“Hailing from a range of backgrounds, tastes and styles, here’s what unites them: they are awesome people as well as brilliant at their job. (It matters!) They love Doctor Who. And they’ve all worked above and beyond the call of duty in an effort to bring audiences something special, later this year.”

The new series of Doctor Who begins on BBC One this autumn, made by BBC Studios in Wales and starring Jodie Whittaker.

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