A Popular Doctor Who Frontrunner Says He Won't Be Jodie Whittaker's Replacement, And I'm Bummed

Michael Sheen in Apostle
(Image credit: Netflix)

Doctor Who: Flux recently ended, which means there are only a few specials left before Jodie Whittaker officially exits Doctor Who. The Doctor’s regeneration will bring a new actor into the starring role, and while the speculation mill has been teasing many popular actors for the character, the only information fans have gotten as of late is who won’t be doing it. Now, there’s another name we can add to that list, as a popular frontrunner for the next Doctor, AKA actor Michael Sheen, recently confirmed he won’t be the new Doctor. Yes, I'm very bummed. 

Michael Sheen has been one of a handful of names believed to be a favorite by The BBC to play the next Doctor, though it looks like his official odds will decrease now the actor has spoken on record about Doctor Who. Sheen talked to Metro and other outlets about the speculation and confirmed he won't be the 14th Doctor, saying: 

I must say I’m very flattered that there’s been a lot of people, particularly Doctor Who fans, who have said they would like to see me as Doctor Who. That’s incredibly flattering. I have to say – none of those people work on Doctor Who. So I have not heard from them. I would be very surprised myself if, when the Doctor transforms, it is me. Because, presumably, the person who’s doing it knows already. And it ain’t me!

Well, I guess that’s another prospective Doctor Who candidate that oddsmakers can mark off the list. Michael Sheen not only said he’s not playing The Doctor but that those responsible for the series haven’t even contacted him. Typically actors who may be involved don’t outright deny or comment on the matter, so I’m inclined to believe Sheen’s genuine in saying that. Or, I suppose he really could just be that good when it comes to acting, but I'm guessing no and that I'm right to be bummed out. 

It’s not at all surprising the Welsh actor’s been rumored for Doctor Who, though, considering he’s one of the more prolific television actors from Europe with an international appeal--that's one of the reasons he seemed like such a good fit in the first place. I also had high hopes he might be an option given that Sheen's Fox series, Prodigal Son, was canceled earlier this year. With that said, Sheen probably has no shortage of projects coming his way, so he should end up somewhere soon enough, even if the folks at Doctor Who aren’t calling. I guess I'll have to content myself with that. (Still bummed.) 

To note, Michael Sheen had a very brief role in Doctor Who as he appeared in the 2011 episode “The Doctor’s Wife,” in a very unique way. In the episode, Michael Sheen voiced a character called House but didn’t appear in live-action for the role. It’s worth noting that it wouldn’t have jeopardized his chances of playing the Doctor if he had portrayed a past character, as Peter Capaldi proved with his casting as the Twelfth Doctor. 

With Michael Sheen out of the running, fans will continue to wonder who Russell T. Davies will bring in as his new Doctor. Hopefully, we find out in the coming months, as speculation will get out of control if The BBC makes its fans wait until Jodie Whittaker’s actual regeneration episode. 

Doctor Who will return to BBC America on New Year’s Day with a new episode. Tune in to see the beginning of the end of the Doctor’s final run and to see the new Doctor revealed!

Mick Joest
Content Producer

Mick Joest is a Content Producer for CinemaBlend with his hand in an eclectic mix of television goodness. Star Trek is his main jam, but he also regularly reports on happenings in the world of Star Trek, WWE, Doctor Who, 90 Day Fiancé, Quantum Leap, and Big Brother. He graduated from the University of Southern Indiana with a degree in Journalism and a minor in Radio and Television. He's great at hosting panels and appearing on podcasts if given the chance as well.