As exciting as it can be, taking control of Doctor Who’s Tardis would be enough to make any actor feel nervous. But Jodie Whittaker has now opened up about how she felt she had more pressure on her than her male predecessors.
In fact, in a new interview, Whittaker said she felt she was representing “all actresses” when taking the high-profile part, potentially harming them if she made the wrong “choices”.
“We will have all had incredibly similar feelings about it. But what was an added fear for me was the slight projection that I represented all actresses.” Whittaker told Salon when discussing former Who leads David Tennant, Matt Smith and Peter Capaldi.
“When David got the part or Matt got the part, it was solely on them as an individual and how they did. Whereas I felt like if I’ve made choices that people don’t like, I could potentially hold women back.
She continued: “I seem to be in the media representing all actresses, which obviously isn’t the case and shouldn’t be, but in these moments when women are given these opportunities, is.”
From this experience, Whittaker also gave advice for any future actor or actress who plays The Doctor. “I think instinctively own it, and I mean that. Own the moment. This is such an extraordinary time,” she said.
“Also, this is a time for you with ultimate expression and we can’t always say that on set. In so many jobs, there is this restriction, that restriction. And this, it’s a playground.”
Not only does Whittaker appear to be enjoying the playful side of Who, but the star recently earned the praise of Whovians with her impassioned climate change speech in episode Orphan 55.
“I know what you’re thinking – but it’s one possible future. It’s one timeline,” The Doctor told her companions after an adventure on a hellish version of Earth destroyed by pollution.
“You want me to tell you that Earth’s gonna be OK, ’cause I can’t.
“In your time, humanity’s busy arguing over the washing up while the house burns down. Unless people face facts and change, catastrophe is coming.
“But it’s not decided. You know that. The future is not fixed, it depends on billions of decisions and actions, and people stepping up.
“Humans. I think you forget how powerful you are. Lives change worlds. People can save planets, or wreck them. That’s the choice. Be the best of humanity.”
Doctor Who continues on Sunday at 7:10pm on BBC One