Doctor Who: Jodie Whittaker Reveals the Advice She Got From David Tennant
This next season of Doctor Who is set to bring about the end of an era, with current series star Jodie Whittaker departing the show alongside showrunner Chris Chibnall. Whittaker, who made history as the first woman to portray the series' titular Time Lord, already had connections to the larger world of the series, starring alongside Tenth Doctor actor David Tennant in Broadchurch. That connection between Whittaker and Tennant has become apparent both in the world of Doctor Who and behind the scenes — and as Whittaker recently revealed to the Radio Times, it also included some specific advice from Tennant.
"I was announced in...was I announced in 2017? Yeah. Weirdly, it's like for me, it's as if it's been three years, I've done three seasons, but it's been much longer than that," Whittaker explained in a recent interview. "And actually, it has gone [quickly]. And I remember this was one thing that I really remember David [Tennant] saying to me before, right? Like before I started shooting. He said 'this will go so quickly. It will feel like it goes in a whirlwind.' And it has. And I think the one thing that I will be eternally grateful for and I think I can speak for Mandip [Gill] in this way is that we have always been aware of how ace it is. As much as you can be in the chaos and it is you know, it's a mad whirlwind. Any film set is but this is particularly mad! It's been yeah, it is a really joyous thing. And so it's gone quick, but it's like so rich, full of wonderful experiences."
Tennant spoke about the advice he shared to Whittaker back in 2019, arguing that he could best contribute to her tenure by offering pointers on the larger experience.
"To certain people, you'll always be the Doctor, which is a wonderful, humbling thing but it does mean accepting an adjustment to your life," the actor explained to The Guardian back in 2019. "You have to be ready for that. It's a unique experience and there's a very small support group who know how that feels. One would never give advice about how to play a part. The acting bit is what you go to drama school for. All you can help with is the other stuff."
Whittaker and Chibnall confirmed their exits earlier this summer, but indicated that their farewell to the iconic BBC series will be with great fanfare.
"In 2017 I opened my glorious gift box of size 13 shoes," Whittaker said in a statement. "I could not have guessed the brilliant adventures, worlds and wonders I was to see in them. My heart is so full of love for this show, for the team who make it, for the fans who watch it and for what it has brought to my life. And I cannot thank Chris enough for entrusting me with his incredible stories. We knew that we wanted to ride this wave side by side, and pass on the baton together. So here we are, weeks away from wrapping on the best job I have ever had. I don't think I'll ever be able to express what this role has given me. I will carry the Doctor and the lessons I've learnt forever.
"I know change can be scary and none of us know what's out there," Whittaker continued. "That's why we keep looking. Travel Hopefully. The Universe will surprise you. Constantly."