There are plenty of reasons why BBC’s Doctor Who has spanned more than fifty years, but one of the biggest is certainly the revolving cast. There aren’t many series in which every single actor is replaceable, but Who has thrived doing just that. Current lead actor Peter Capaldi has hinted that his third year on the show will be his last. As it happens, however, actor Tim Roth has already expressed interest in becoming the next Doctor, and he could be the perfect choice.
In response to a fan question in an AMA about whether or not he’d be open to taking on the role, Roth had this to say:
Ok. If this is the casting director, I’m all for it.
Tim Roth is best known for his role as Mr. Orange in Reservoir Dogs, but he's had plenty of other memorable roles, including a compelling take on a bigoted politician in last year's Selma. He’s back in the spotlight right now as a part of Quentin Tarantino’s Hateful Eight. The prospect of a big name from the big screen taking a break from film to take part in a sci fi series might seem far-fetched were this sci fi series had Roth not taken roles in Lie To Me and Klondike on TV in recent years.
The juggernaut has gone through its fair share of upsets recently, however. Quite aside from the growing list of clues that Capaldi will be leaving Doctor Who after Season 10, the recent departure of companion Clara Oswald will likely leave a vacuum in the series. Clara is certainly not the first companion to leave under somewhat tragic circumstances, but she is also the longest-running companion since Amy Pond and the only companion since Rose Tyler who has spent significant chunks of time with two incarnations of the Doctor. Twelve just may not feel right without Clara by his side.
Of course, Tim Roth mentioning in an online chat that he’d be interested in taking on the role of Thirteen doesn’t mean that he’ll be testing out a sonic screwdriver anytime soon. Besides, a twist in the end of Season 9 saw a male Time Lord regenerate into a female Time Lord. Perhaps Doctor Who is preparing to mix things up and cast a woman as the next Doctor. The rules for regeneration have been changing an awful lot over the past few seasons as current showrunner Steven Moffat had to scramble to find a way around the previous limit on number of regenerations. Frankly, anything could happen.
Still, Tim Roth’s enthusiasm for the role certainly makes it fun to speculate about him taking over the role. Not only could he be an exciting replacement, he could also make Capaldi’s exit somewhat less heartbreaking. Plus, there's always the chance that he could bring new fans to the Doctor Who world.