Doctor Who's David Bradley set to return as the First Doctor

david bradley as the first doctor in 'doctor who'
David Bradley set to return to Doctor WhoBBC

Game of Thrones and Hot Fuzz actor David Bradley is returning to the world of Doctor Who to play The First Doctor again.

Bradley first portrayed First Doctor actor William Hartnell in An Adventure in Space and Time in 2013, which was a drama retelling the birth of the sci-fi show. He then played the Time Lord in-universe in Peter Capaldi's final episode.

Now he's back for a new audio drama series from Big Finish, which has brought dozens of Doctor Who actors back to reprise their roles. From former Time Lords to companions to villains, and everything in between.

peter capaldi and david bradley, doctor who 2017 christmas special

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The First Doctor Unbound will also bring back Jemma Powell, Jamie Glover and Claudia Grant from An Adventure in Space and Time, but rather than playing the actors who played Barbara, Ian, and Susan, respectively, they'll be playing the characters themselves.

Set to debut in September 2025, the series will "break free from established continuity to tell its own surprising stories", and take inspiration from the two non-canon films.

"The Peter Cushing feature films of the 1960s were our stylistic inspiration here – the lighter tone, the spirit of high adventure, the true Technicolor nature of the storytelling. We want all these adventures to have that bank holiday or Sunday afternoon feeling," producer David O'Mahoney said.

"We combined this with the brilliant cast of the BBC's anniversary special An Adventure in Space and Time, led by the legendary David Bradley. Working with such a wonderful cast and an exceptional creative team, we have created a time fracture leading to a separate universe... it might not be canon (or is it?), but it's going to be brilliant!

david bradley as the first doctor in 'doctor who'

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He continued: "Making these stories unbound to the television continuity of Doctor Who gives us a wonderful creative freedom to explore characters, stories and styles.

"The hunger to create new stories and be inspired by various parts of the Whoniverse has driven so many wonderful Big Finish productions – to bring in this Doctor and set him on these adventures is like unearthing a treasure trove of potential and exciting tales."

Materialising quite a lot sooner than The First Doctor Unbound is the start of Ncuti Gatwa's first full season, which shakes up the release schedule due to the Disney+ deal.

In a recent interview, Ncuti spoke about which monster he hopes to face off against by the end of his tenure, admitting that the possibility of it not happening has been brought up — and he's insistent on making it happen.

Doctor Who will return for its 14th series on May 11 at midnight, airing on BBC One in the UK and Disney+ elsewhere. Classic episodes of Doctor Who are available on BBC iPlayer in the UK.

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