Doctor Who Production Company Name Hints at Shared Universe & Spinoffs

A new production company listed as Whoniverse 1 Ltd. that has a Doctor Who producer attached provokes speculation of a potential shared universe in the franchise’s immediate future. While still in the final stretch of the Thirteenth Doctor’s (Jodie Whittaker) tenure with Doctor Who: Flux currently airing, fans of the show have been eagerly speculating on what the immediate future of the series could contain. Whittaker, along with showrunner Chris Chibnall, will bow out in the Autumn of next year at the end of three specials broadcast through 2022 as part of the BBC’s centenary celebrations. Doctor Who will then need to be concerned with its own celebrations as November 23rd 2023 will mark 60 years since it first debuted back in 1963.

Many were ecstatic to learn that Russell T. Davies, who revived the show for a modern audience in 2005, would return to showrunning duties for the special occasion and for the “series beyond”. If past handovers between showrunners in the modern era are any indication, Davies will likely have a clean slate to work with for Doctor Who season 14. This has led to speculation on what the show will look like now that the returning writer has had a gap of over a decade, in which he has written and produced numerous critically acclaimed dramas such as It’s A Sin from the start of this year.

Related: Doctor Who: Flux Is Borrowing From The MCU (& That's Why It Will Succeed)

GOV.UK has listed a new company going under the name of WHONIVERSE1 LTD with one of its directors being Julie Gardner, co-founder of Bad Wolf Productions which will co-produce Doctor Who from 2023 when Russell T. Davies returns as showrunner. Gardner served as an executive producer of Doctor Who from 2005-2010 with Davies under his first run and was a very influential figure on its production and overall direction. Two other figures listed as directors are Natasha Olivia Anne Hale and Jane Tranter, the latter of whom was Controller of Drama Commissioning at the BBC from the early-mid 2000s and another major figure in Doctor Who’s 2005 revival.

The fact that Gardner is one of the directors for the Whoniverse company seems to indicate that this will be the production company used to produce Doctor Who going forward, starting with the 60th anniversary celebrations. The term ‘Whoniverse’ has often been used by fans to refer to the wider Doctor Who continuity that surrounds the TV show. Doctor Who has always received a generous quantity of ancillary media, particularly when the show was off the air from 1989 to 2005, which saw The Doctor’s adventures continue through countless books, comics and even full-cast audio dramas produced by Big Finish. This choice of name may suggest that Doctor Who under Bad Wolf could see a major expansion of spin-offs that expand the world of the show.

Indeed, under Russell T. Davies’ original run there were two spin-off series: Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures. These series followed companions Captain Jack Harkness and Sarah Jane Smith respectively as the leads and built up their own cast of characters which would tie back in to Doctor Who for a major crossover event in the 2008 episode “Journey’s End”. Davies himself has also gone on record, before it was announced that he was returning, as saying that Doctor Who should have an expansive shared universe in the vain of the MCU. While nothing is confirmed as of yet, the information we have so far indicates that this upcoming era will certainly have major ambitions for the breadth of storytelling capable in the Whoniverse.

Next: Doctor Who: How Flux Sets Up Russell T Davies’ Return

Source: GOV.UK

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