'Doctor Who' to Get BBC VOD Companion Show

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'Doctor Who' stars Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman

'Doctor Who Extra' promises "unparalleled access" to stars Peter Capaldi, Jenna Coleman and others

The BBC is launching a companion series for the eighth season of sci-fi hit show Doctor Who, which kicks off this weekend with Peter Capaldi as the new lead.

The companion series, Doctor Who Extra, will be available in Britain exclusively on the BBC iPlayer, the public broadcaster’s VOD service. Each of the 12 episodes, which are 10 minutes long, will become available after a new episode.

In the U.S., Doctor Who airs on BBC America. The BBC didn’t immediately mention any plans to make the program available in the U.S.

Doctor Who Extra is much more than a ‘making of’ show as we follow Peter Capaldi every step of the way throughout the creation of his first season as the Doctor,” the BBC said. “Over the course of 12 programs, we trace the highs and lows of Doctor Who’s most ambitious run of episodes yet, getting the inside take on [season eight] from the people who made it.”

The BBC said that the Doctor Who Extra team had “unparalleled access” to stars Capaldi, Jenna Coleman and series regular Samuel Anderson, as well as guest stars Frank Skinner, Keeley Hawes, Michelle Gomez, Ben Miller, Foxes and others. Writers, such as lead writer and executive producer Steven Moffat, and directors also contributed to the new show with insight into on- and offscreen drama.

One recurring element of the companion series will be a look at Doctor Who library episodes, allowing the show to reflect on “how Doctor Who’s history is echoed” in the new season.

“Packed with emotion, great stories and a real sense of ‘access [to] all areas,’ Doctor Who Extra is essential viewing for everyone who’s ever watched Doctor Who and wondered what it’s like to be a part of the team that brings this global phenomena to our screens,” the BBC said.

The new digital companion series was announced years after Doctor Who Confidential, a behind-the-scenes show that aired on BBC Three, was dropped in 2011. Some fans have been campaigning for a return of that show.

Email: Georg.Szalai@THR.com
Twitter: @georgszalai