Five into Tardis will go if BBC enterprise takes off: A special programme to celebrate the 30th anniversary of 'Dr Who' could feature five of its stars

FOUR YEARS after the BBC killed off Dr Who, the Corporation is about to resurrect the intrepid Time Lord. But only after the intervention of its commercial wing, BBC Enterprises.

To celebrate the 30th anniversary of its longest-running science- fiction programme, the BBC is planning to show a 90-minute Dr Who special in November, featuring five of the seven actors who have played the doctor. The first two, William Hartnell (1963-66), and Patrick Troughton (1966-69) are now dead.

While the BBC dropped the series in 1989, despite a public outcry from thousands of Dr Who followers, BBC Enterprises has been selling the doctor's adventures around the world ever since. It now estimates the show has an audience of 110 million, with a spin-off industry of mugs, T-shirts, books, chess sets and even a pinball machine.

BBC Enterprises decided that a one-off special to celebrate 30 years of the doctor and his Tardis was a financial winner - whether or not the BBC decided to broadcast it.

'The new programme vindicates our argument all along,' said Steven Wickham, Co-Ordinator of the British Dr Who Appreciation Society.

'We always said that the BBC were making a fortune out of Dr Who around the world so they should be making a new series. We hope the series follows this special.'

The five Time Lords that the BBC are hoping to persuade to appear in the one-off, 90-minute special are Jon Pertwee (1970-74), Tom Baker (1974-81), Peter Davison (1981-83), Colin Baker (1983-86) and Sylvester McCoy (1987-89).

And the philosophical and logical questions raised by getting five of the screen doctors to meet, interact and talk to themselves, are not a major problem according to Marcus Hearn, Assistant Editor of The Dr Who Magazine, a monthly which sells 30,000 copies.

'It's the same doctor but they are all in a different time-stream,' he said. 'This can be engineered by Time Lords, an alien species who have control over time itself and use it for their own purposes.'

In fact, it is not unprecedented - for the 10th anniversary programme in 1973, Hartnell, Troughton and Pertwee met up in the storyline and for the 20th anniversary, Davison joined them.

According to Mr Hearn, who has inside knowledge, Tom Baker, who refused to co-operate in 1983 because he wanted to distance himself from the part, is now believed to be in favour of the one-off show.

(Photographs omitted)

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Service Manager

£37000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A position has become available...

Recruitment Genius: Administrator

£18000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company has a track record...

Recruitment Genius: Solar Field Sales Executive

£40000 - £70000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Recruitment Genius: Customer Relations Officer

£13000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity to join ...

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans campaign: Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after £300,000 gift from Lloyds Bank

Homeless Veterans campaign

Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after huge gift from Lloyds Bank
Flight MH370 a year on: Lost without a trace – but the search goes on

Lost without a trace

But, a year on, the search continues for Flight MH370
Germany's spymasters left red-faced after thieves break into brand new secret service HQ and steal taps

Germany's spy HQ springs a leak

Thieves break into new €1.5bn complex... to steal taps
International Women's Day 2015: Celebrating the whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Simone de Beauvoir's seminal feminist polemic, 'The Second Sex', has been published in short-form for International Women's Day
Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Why would I want to employ someone I’d be happy to have as my boss, asks Simon Kelner
Confessions of a planespotter: With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent

Confessions of a planespotter

With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent. Sam Masters explains the appeal
Russia's gulag museum 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities

Russia's gulag museum

Ministry of Culture-run site 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities
The big fresh food con: Alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay

The big fresh food con

Joanna Blythman reveals the alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay
Virginia Ironside was my landlady: What is it like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7?

Virginia Ironside was my landlady

Tim Willis reveals what it's like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7
Paris Fashion Week 2015: The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp

Paris Fashion Week 2015

The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp
8 best workout DVDs

8 best workout DVDs

If your 'New Year new you' regime hasn’t lasted beyond February, why not try working out from home?
Paul Scholes column: I don't believe Jonny Evans was spitting at Papiss Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible

Paul Scholes column

I don't believe Evans was spitting at Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible
Miguel Layun interview: From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

Miguel Layun is a star in Mexico where he was criticised for leaving to join Watford. But he says he sees the bigger picture
Frank Warren column: Amir Khan ready to meet winner of Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao

Khan ready to meet winner of Mayweather v Pacquiao

The Bolton fighter is unlikely to take on Kell Brook with two superstar opponents on the horizon, says Frank Warren
War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable