The Celestial Toymaker is reportedly set to be the next classic Doctor Who story to get its lost episodes restored in an animated release.


The reported restoration looks set to come just in time for the eponymous Toymaker to return for the 60th anniversary specials, which begin airing in November 2023.

The Daily Mirror reports that episodes will receive an animated release imminently after the original master tapes of the 1966 story were wiped.

The fourth episode of the four-part story was the only episode in the BBC archives after a recording from Australia was given to the BBC in 1984.

It was later released on DVD as part of the Lost in Time box set of partially lost stories.

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The 1966 story features The Doctor (played by original actor William Hartnell) and his companions Steven Taylor (Blue Peter legend Peter Purves) and Dodo Chaplet (Jackie Lane) pitted against the immortal villain known as The Toymaker, played by Michael Gough.

The Toymaker successfully tears the Doctor apart from his companions to play a twisted game, while Steven and Dodo themselves are also forced into some deadly challenges of their own thanks to his schemes.

The villain has been absent from Doctor Who for 57 years, but will return this November - now played by Hollywood star Neil Patrick Harris.

Neil Patrick Harris as the Toymaker in Doctor Who
Neil Patrick Harris as the Toymaker in Doctor Who. BBC

The 60th anniversary specials will see Harris's Toymaker pitted against returning Doctor Who star David Tennant, now playing the Fourteenth Doctor.

Also featuring in the episodes are Catherine Tate as returning companion Donna Noble, Jacqueline King as Sylvia Noble, Karl Collins as Shaun Temple, Bernard Cribbins as Wilfred Mott, Yasmin Finney as Rose, Jemma Redgrave as Kate Stewart, Ruth Madeley as Shirley Anne Bingham and Miriam Margolyes as the voice of The Meep.

Finally, the specials will also see Sex Education star Ncuti Gatwa make his debut as The Fifteenth Doctor.

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