Doctor Who boss Steven Moffat has admitted that he finds the sci-fi series’ budget limitations frustrating, with the outgoing head writer (who will be replaced by Chris Chibnall this Christmas) saying that he “[doesn’t] think it’s as good as it could be.”
“There’s a cultural sense sometimes that Doctor Who is the little engine that could, it’s this plucky little British show,” Moffat told the i. “But it’s actually one of the giants. It’s one of the least well-funded of the giants but it’s operating at that level. Why? It’s a massive show.”
Moffat, who is soon to give Doctor Who fans a sneak preview of the new series and new companion Pearl Mackie at the BFI & Radio Times Television Festival next weekend (where he’ll also be inducted into the Radio Times Hall of Fame), explained that while Doctor Who has a bigger budget than some productions it still pales into comparison with other shows of a similar pedigree, resulting in certain ambitions for the series being curtailed.
“We have a pretty good budget,” he said. “But we have a smaller budget than other shows that look cheaper. We don’t have the top budget, not by the standards of a colossus of the TV world.
“I don’t think it’s as good as it could be,” he concluded. “I want more than three monsters on screen at a time.”
Fingers crossed that in his final series this year, he finally gets to see that ambition realised.
Steven Moffat will be in conversation with Frank Skinner at the BFI & Radio Times Television Festival at BFI Southbank, London on 9th April; Peter Capaldi and Pearl Mackie take part in a panel discussion and preview of the new series of ‘Doctor Who’ at the festival, also on 9th April (020 7928 3232); and Doctor Who writer Mark Gatiss will be in conversation with Radio Times TV Editor Alison Graham, also on the 9th April.
Doctor Who returns to BBC1 on Saturday 15th April