If you've ever wondered what it takes to be cast as the Doctor, then you're in luck – returning showrunner Russell T Davies has opened up about the audition process for Doctor Who and the "special audition speech" that secured Ncuti Gatwa the role.


The Sex Education star was announced as the latest person to play the Doctor on Sunday, with Davies revealing he had to perform an "eight-page scene" whilst auditioning for the show.

Speaking to RadioTimes.com and other press on the BAFTA Television Awards red carpet, the showrunner said: "I wrote a special audition speech. It was an eight-page scene, a big scene, you had to learn it and come in.

"Top, proper audition, not just standing there and giving Shakespeare. Really hard work. Me and Phil Collinson, the producer, were there. It was taped and it gets passed on. It's tough, properly tough. And we do many versions of it, we do it lighter, funnier, harder."

Ncuti Gatwa attends the Virgin Media British Academy Television Awards 2022
Ncuti Gatwa at the Virgin Media British Academy Television Awards 2022. Samir Hussein/WireImage/Getty Images

Doctor Who fans were sent into a frenzy after Gatwa's casting news, with some speculating that Bridgerton's Nicola Coughlan could play his companion while others were wondering what other big surprises Davies has up his sleeve for the 2023 episodes.

More like this

Davies, who was Doctor Who's showrunner between 2005 and 2010, also confirmed that he planted Doctor Who red herrings and that a different actor was almost cast as the Doctor before Ncuti Gatwa auditioned.

Read More:

Doctor Who is available to stream on BBC iPlayer. For more, check out our dedicated Sci-Fi page or our full TV Guide.


The latest issue of Radio Times magazine is on sale now – subscribe now and get the next 12 issues for only £1. For more from the biggest stars in TV, listen to the Radio Times podcast with Jane Garvey.