Ever since Peter Capaldi announced that he was stepping down from BBC sci-fi series Doctor Who, speculation has been rife as to who could replace him at the Tardis controls.
Tilda Swinton, David Harewood, Kris Marshall and Richard Ayoade have all been rumoured for the coveted role, with many fans excited to imagine their favourite stars as the titular Time Lord.
However, perhaps none of these potential Doctors is as excited about the idea as Sherlock star Sacha Dhawan, who was suggested by fans as a potential successor to Capaldi shortly after the Scottish actor revealed his departure from the series. After speaking to him on the topic, it's clear Dhawan is keen – very keen.
“Oh my God, I’d absolutely love to,” Dhawan told RadioTimes.com when asked if he was interested in the part. “I SO would love to.
“I’ve worked with [frequent Doctor Who writer Mark Gatiss] quite a lot, and I think I’d bring something really exciting to it. It’d be incredibly nerve-wracking to do to be honest. It’s quite a lot of pressure.
“When the list came out, I was so honoured really that I was even considered,” he went on. “And that alone was kind of good enough. But who wouldn’t want to do it? It’s Doctor Who.”
Of course, eagle-eyed Who fans will know that Dhawan has a bit of history with the series, having appeared in Mark Gatiss’ biopic An Adventure in Space and Time back in 2013, playing original Doctor Who director Waris Hussein (pictured above, alongside Jessica Raine as Verity Lambert).
And apparently during that period Dhawan actually ran into Capaldi before he was announced as the Twelfth Doctor, giving him a certain insight into the secrecy of recasting the character.
“Actually, when we were filming an Adventure in Space and Time we were on set, and Peter Capaldi came on, and he was making some notes and stuff,” the Stockport-born actor recalled.
“And I was like ‘Oh, he’s the guy from…what’s he doing on set?’
“And Mark [Gatiss] said ‘Oh no, he’s a huge Doctor Who fan, he just wanted to come and have a look.’ I didn’t know then, but he obviously ended up being the next Doctor Who!”
Dhawan, who has just been revealed to be playing a major character in Marvel/Netflix superhero series Iron Fist, also waded into the debate about whether the next Doctor should be played by an actor of ethnic origin or by a woman, after the first thirteen incarnations have all appeared as white men.
Figures ranging from former companion Billie Piper, series writer Mark Gatiss and actor David Harewood have suggested it’s time for such a change, and Dhawan agrees that it’s about time the Doctor caught up with the modern world.
“I think generally with Doctor Who, whether it’s of race or of gender, I think it’s time that we celebrate that it should maybe be something different,” he told us.
“I don’t know what the answer is – I guess it’s the right person for the job. But I think it’s time to flip the character on its head slightly – and I feel that’ll very much happen this year, whether or not it’ll be someone of race or gender.
He concluded: “I personally think maybe it should be a female now. I’m keen to see what the Beeb do.”
Sounds like he’s not too keen on his own chances, then – but if the BBC do come calling, at least they’ll know they have a very willing contender.
Iron Fist is streaming on Netflix now