The stars who appeared in Doctor Who before they were famous

Carey Mulligan? Andrew Garfield? Felicity Jones? What show did these people have in common before they became huge international stars?

Being a show that features a whole new supporting cast every week, Doctor Who is like a rite of passage for most actors – regardless of their experience.


Of course, what this means is that there are those young actors who once took a job on Doctor Who when they were relatively little known, but then went on to become huge stars in TV and film outside of the sci-fi show. There is even a fair chance that you totally missed them the first time around. So, here, as a memory jolt, are those actors who appeared in Doctor Who before they were really famous. 

Carey Mulligan (Blink)

Right, let’s get the most obvious one out of the way first: Carey Mulligan, who popped up in her early acting years as Sally Sparrow in Blink, one of the most beloved episodes of all time. We’re sure you remember.

And after that…

Having frequented a lot of British period dramas, Mulligan suddenly became incredibly famous indeed after earning herself an Academy Award Best Actress nomination for An Education. From then, she has gone on to star in Drive, Inside Llewyn Davis, Never Let Me Go, Shame, and The Great Gatsby. Good job the Weeping Angels didn’t get her, eh? 

Colin Morgan (Midnight)

In series four’s dramatic horror story Midnight, a young Colin Morgan played Jethro, a rebellious emo-tastic teenager on board a ship invaded by a mysterious force. 

And after that…


He starred in another big BBC fantasy drama, Merlin, which started slow but gradually built up a huge fan base. He then went on to feature in dark crime hit The Fall alongside Jamie Dornan and Gillian Anderson. Later this year you’ll be able to see him in Channel 4 show Humans.