Okay, this whole Doctor Who movie nonsense is starting to make my head hurt. First the news came that Harry Potter director David Yates was in the process of developing a bigscreen Doctor Who movie which would break off from the cult hit TV series and "start from scratch." That made Who fans begin gathering torches and pitchforks. Then the official BBC Twitter feed downplayed the rumor. To quote BBC executive director Edward Russell, "Maybe one day. But not right now!" The original story said Yates was working with the L.A.-based BBC Worldwide Productions. So maybe one hand didn't know what the other was doing? Maybe it was just a case of a director talking out of school and things getting blown out of proportion?
Well, here's the problem. The BBC may not think David Yates is making a Doctor Who movie, but damned if David Yates doesn't think David Yates is making a Doctor Who movie. The director has continued to talk about the project in interviews, so he at least seems pretty convinced that he did not conjure this story out of whole cloth.
So what does current Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffat have to say about this? Moffat took to Twitter last night to address the subject in a pair of posts:
Moffat reiterated his statements -- that there were no plans for a Doctor Who movie, and if there were it wouldn't be Hollywood and David Yates making it -- in an interview with The Register today:
If, and when, the movie happens it will need to star television's Doctor Who -- and there's only ever one of those at a time. And it would need to come out of the same production operation that makes the series ... Doctor Who is a vitally important BBC brand with a huge international audience and not even Hollywood can start this one from scratch. So sorry if there's been any confusion, but on the plus side it has reminded us all what an exciting prospect this could be.
Great, that's settled then. But wait...which red carpet is Moffat talking about? Comic Book Resources suggests it might have been this MTV report. But...that interview was posted yesterday, whereas the story first appeared in Variety on November 14th. So even if Yates was speaking "off the cuff" to MTV, that doesn't explain the original story that precipitated this mess, nor the interviews Yates has given since then where he continues to talk about the movie. So either one of them is wrong, one of them is lying, or various parts of the BBC are making plans without telling the other parts. Or, and this is just me throwing something out there, they're both right, but they're describing different Doctors from different points on the timeline and/or alternate realities. Maybe this new Doctor Who movie is like The Silence and you forget all about it when you aren't looking directly at it?
Stay tuned for more news on the possibly nonexistent Doctor Who movie as we learn it.