Just days after the Doctor Who special, Doctor Who: Revolution of the Daleks, debuted, rumors began to swirl that Jodie Whittaker is leaving her role as the 13th doctor after its forthcoming 13th season with a report from The Mirror that the actress is planning to quit the series. Now, The BBC has responded to that report (via Digital Spy), stating "We won't be commenting on any speculation around Jodie's future on the show."
On Sunday, The Mirror ran a report that Whittaker would be ending her Doctor Who run at the end of the upcoming 13th season of the popular series, citing insiders who claimed her departure was "hush-hush" and "top secret" and that Whittaker was looking to move on to other roles with the source also noting that while Whittaker's Doctor Who co-stars Bradley Walsh and Tosin Cole were departing, while showrunner Chris Chibnall will remain.
However, Whittaker herself has recently indicated the opposite. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Whittaker explained her sadness filming the holiday special due to the departure of Walsh and Cole, but that she's also not even considering anything outside of her role as the Doctor.
"As far as I'm concerned, right now, I'm the Doctor and that's taking up everything of me, as an actor," Whittaker said. "And to think something beyond that, I can't put my head there, and I don't want to."
If Whittaker does stay on after the next season of Doctor Who, she will have the longest tenure of any modern Doctor actor. Whittaker's predecessor Peter Capaldi, as well as David Tennant and Matt Smith all did three seasons as the Doctor. Should Whittaker come back for Season 14, that would give her four full seasons as the Doctor.
As for the upcoming Season 13, it will be a bit shorter than expected, thanks to COVID-19.
"In this strangest of years, the Doctor Who production team have worked wonders to get the show back into production," showrunner Chris Chibnall said previously in a statement. "We're thrilled to be back making the show. Given the complexity of making Doctor Who, and with new and rigorous COVID working protocols, it's going to take us a little longer to film each episode, meaning we expect to end up with eight episodes, rather than the usual 11. But rest assured, the ambition, humor, fun and scares you expect from Doctor Who will all still be firmly in place. For everyone around the world, this is a challenging period – but the Doctor never shirks from a challenge!"
Production on Season 13 of Doctor Who is underway.