Doctor Who’s Rachel Talalay to direct Sherlock series 4 episode

The respected American director who helmed the last two Doctor Who series finales will take charge of the opening episode of the fourth run of the detective drama

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The opening episode of Sherlock series four will be directed by Doctor Who’s Rachel Talalay.

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Talalay has a place in the affections of Who fans as the woman behind the camera on Dark Water and Death in Heaven  the double bill of episodes which brought a dark tone to the conclusion of series eight – and the series nine two-part finale, which included the innovative episode Heaven Sent, a one-hander in which Peter Capaldi’s Twelfth Doctor found himself trapped in a castle filled with traps and puzzles fleeing the sinister attentions of The Veil.

Talalay’s other credits include work on The Flash, Supernatural, Freddy’s Dead, Legends of Tomorrow and Arrow. She also directed the film Tank Girl.

When she joined Doctor Who she was the first American – and the seventh woman – to direct the Time Lord drama.

Talalay is a favourite of current Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffat, and did her place in his good books no harm in January when she called on Bafta and Emmy Award voters to give Doctor Who a chance.

Filming of the three-part Sherlock series four began this week.

Senior BBC sources have confirmed to RadioTimes.com that it is a “near certainty” that the new run will follow recent tradition and start airing on New Year’s Day in 2017.

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Sherlock will return for a fourth series on BBC1