Malorie Blackman among newly announced writers for Doctor Who series 11

Vinay Patel, Ed Hime, Peter McTighe and Joy Wilkinson will also bring Jodie Whittaker’s Doctor to life with Chris Chibnall and some intriguing new directors

Jodie Whittaker, Tosin Cole, Bradley Walsh and Mandip Gill in Doctor Who series 11 (BBC, HF)

After months (if not years) of speculation, the BBC has finally revealed the new writers working on Jodie Whittaker’s first series of Doctor Who, and they’re extremely exciting.

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The full list (alongside showrunner Chris Chibnall) consists of Vinay Patel (Murdered by My Father), Joy Wilkinson (Doctors), Peter McTighe (Wentworth), Ed Hime (Skins) and celebrated author Malorie Blackman, best known for novels like Noughts and Crosses and Pig Heart Boy.

All five writers are newcomers to the series, though Blackman previously wrote an official tie-in novella (The Ripple Effect, starring Sylvester McCoy’s Seventh Doctor), and lifelong fan McTighe penned the sleeve notes and booklets for many DVD releases of the classic series.

Meanwhile, the series has also revealed the team of directors working on the new episodes including Jamie Childs (who directed Whittaker’s reveal as the Thirteenth Doctor in 2017), Sallie Aprahamian (This Life), Jennifer Perrott (Gentleman Jack) and Mark Tonderai (Lucifer).

“We have a team of writers who’ve been working quietly and secretly for a long time now, crafting characters, worlds and stories to excite and move you,” showrunner Chris Chibnall said in a release.

“A set of directors who stood those scripts up on their feet, bringing those ideas, visuals and emotions into existence with bravura and fun.

“Hailing from a range of backgrounds, tastes and styles, here’s what unites them: they are awesome people as well as brilliant at their job. (It matters!) They love Doctor Who. And they’ve all worked above and beyond the call of duty in an effort to bring audiences something special, later this year.”

And the writers and directors themselves soon shared their excitement about the journey ahead of them.

“I’ve always loved Doctor Who,” Blackman said. “Getting the chance to write for this series has definitely been a dream come true.”

“I grew up watching shows like Star Trek and Quantum Leap on the edge of my dad’s bed, and I loved how they managed to capture the imagination of a kid like me as well as acting as a moral compass,” Murdered by My Father’s Patel explained. “I never imagined that I’d get to write for Doctor Who – I was pretty thrilled.”

“My entire television career has quite literally been an elaborate plan to get to write Doctor Who – and no one is more shocked than me that it paid off,” joked McTighe. “I’ve been having the time of my life working with Chris, and writing for Jodie and the new team, and can’t wait for everyone to see what we’ve been up to.”

Earlier this year, Chibnall confirmed that his upcoming series would concentrate on diversity behind the scenes as well as on camera: “We have the first writers of colour to write on Doctor Who this year,” he confirmed at San Diego Comic-Con. “We have two female writers and three male writers in the guest writers’ slots.”

He added: “The whole concept of Doctor Who is that anybody can go anywhere and do anything, and we want to reflect that on-screen and off.”

The new team of writers also confirms that regular Who screenwriters like Mark Gatiss, Toby Whithouse and Jamie Mathieson won’t be a part of the new series – though given that most of them had already revealed their absence, this shouldn’t be too much of a shock for fans.

As of yet, it’s not entirely clear which episodes the new writers and directors worked on, but we’re sure fans will be extremely excited to see their words and pictures come to life with Jodie Whittaker and her new Tardis team.

After all, it’s not too long a wait now…

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Doctor Who returns to BBC1 this autumn