Press and Publicity Articles for The Christmas Invasion

23 May 2005Billie Piper to return for second Doctor Who series
29 Jun 2005Who two for Canada
18 Jul 2005Tennant's first interview
25 Jul 2005Filming starts
27 Jul 2005Doctor Who, fashion icon, by Jackie Storer and Megan Lane
25 Oct 2005Doctor and Rose light up Cardiff
23 Nov 2005BBC Press pack
29 Nov 2005Who's on Radio Times?
02 Dec 2005DWM - It's Christmas!
17 Dec 2005Radio Times cover (17-30 December 2005)
03 Jan 2006DWM - Welcome to the Tenth Doctor
10 Jan 2006Murray Gold's Christmas special song

The BBC today confirmed that Billie Piper - who plays Doctor Who's companion Rose - will return for the second series on BBC One.

A spokeswoman said: "Billie Piper will return for the second series of Doctor Who. It has not been confirmed how many episodes she will be in. We are awaiting storylines and scripts."

LinkCredit: BBC Press Office 

Following the success of the first series of Doctor Who, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation have agreed to screen series two and the Christmas Special.

"We're delighted to have the CBC on board for another season," said Russell T Davies. "They have been the perfect partner on Doctor Who - sharing the editorial vision at the outset, then running a strong campaign from sexy posters to slick witty trailers, and best of all having the confidence to schedule the series in a big showy prime time slot.

"Once again Canadian viewers will be amongst the first to see the adventure. It all kicks off with a Christmas Special - just wait till you see what we do with Santa..."

Slawko Klymkiw, Executive Director Programming, CBC Television said, "It is great being part of such an innovative project with BBC. We've enjoyed great success with the first season of Doctor Who and are looking forward to season two with great relish."

LinkCredit: BBC - Doctor Who 

Meet the new Doctor in Doctor Who Magazine

"When I first got asked, I just laughed!" David Tennant tells Doctor Who Magazine, "I found it hilarious and impossible! It's very exciting, but there's this part of you that goes 'Jings! This is serious suddenly!'"

As well as a detailed chat about taking control of the TARDIS, there's the first of a two-part interview with executive producer Russell T Davies. He speaks candidly about casting two very different Doctors, attracting female viewers, and why the Doctor regenerated standing up!

DWM 359 is on sale from Thursday 21 July, priced £3.99.

LinkCredit: BBC - Doctor Who 

David Tennant today steps into the role of the tenth Time Lord, as filming commences on the highly anticipated Christmas special and second series of Doctor Who for BBC One.

Billie Piper returns as the Doctor's feisty young companion, Rose Tyler, and together they will travel through time and space battling new and returning aliens and monsters.

David Tennant says of his striking new look: "I think we've come up with something distinctive that's both timeless and modern, with a bit of geek chic and of course, a dash of Time Lord! Most importantly Billie tells me she likes it – after all she's the one who has to see me in it for the next nine months! "

Billie Piper, who will star alongside Tennant in the Christmas special and all 13 episodes in series two, says: "I'm thrilled to be stepping back into the role of Rose. We plan to make series two even bigger and better and challenge the viewers' imaginations like never before. Wait until you get a load of the new doctor!"

Russell T Davies, writer and Executive Producer, adds: "We were delighted and honoured by the first series' success, and we can promise new thrills, new laughs, new heartbreak, and some terrifying new aliens. The Doctor and Rose are destined to meet Queen Victoria, an evil race of Cat Women, and the dreaded Cybermen. 2006 is going to be scarier than ever!"

Filming of the Christmas episode kicks off in London and continues in various locations across Wales, predominantly in Cardiff. Christmas becomes a time of terror for Planet Earth, as the whole of mankind falls under the shadow of the alien Sycorax. Rose needs the Doctor's help, but can she trust a man with a new face?

LinkCredit: BBC - Doctor Who 

He's been a dandy, an Edwardian cricketer and most famously wore a long scarf. Doctor Who's togs change as he regenerates. So what are the fashion tips from everyone's favourite Time Lord?

Flamboyant. Garish. Bizarre. Seldom does Time Lord fashion make it to the High Street.

Until now. When David Tennant takes over the role later this year, it will be in what he describes as "geek chic".

Gone is his predecessor's tailored leather jacket. Instead Tennant will look like the type of man Kate Moss might date, with a just-got-out-of-bed, dragged-through-a-hedge-backwards, only-thing-I-could-find look.

So what are the key points of the look, which was devised for the programme's makers by a freelance costume designer?

Brown pin-striped suit: Gone are the days of Angus Deayton-inspired stigma for men wearing brown suits. And this is surely a sign that pin-stripes have been well and truly reclaimed from City bankers.

White shirt, unbuttoned at the collar with loose tie: Christopher Eccleston as the Doctor wouldn't have gone near a tie, preferring Michael Douglas-style V-necked jumpers. A signal perhaps that the Tennant Doctor will be a slightly more erudite character than Eccleston's action-and-sarcasm hero?

Skinny trousers and trainers: Converse trainers are white hot items this summer, selling out within hours of hitting the shelves in some shops. The trousers are skinny and crumpled - think Pete Doherty - and if they were much tighter, Norman Wisdom would be demanding royalties.

Long brown trench coat: A cross between an old hack's Mac and flasher attire, with a twist of debonair gent. A lo-fi contrast to the high gloss trenchcoats Keanu Reeves swirled through The Matrix in?

The look is Franz Ferdinand cum Kaiser Chiefs. But is it Time Lord? Does it have the gravitas, the power and the magic that goes with such an eminent position? Will it make the Slitheen, the Autons and the Gelth quake in their boots, or will it simply reduce the Daleks to helpless laughter?

Only time will tell, but the new look should further cement the popularity of the series, says Mark Hooper, associate editor at men's magazine Esquire.

The programme makers seem to be trying to move with the times, to catch a hipper demographic's eye, he says.

"[The outfit] looks really good. Someone said to me it looks a bit Jarvis Cocker, kind of geeky but cool. It is a much younger look, like he's in an indie band. The pinstripe suit is quite tight-fitting, quite timely. It's a bit of an absent-minded professor look, but trendy with it. It's slightly eccentric."

So how do Tennant's Soho-louche kecks compare with those of his predecessors?

The original Doctor, the rather grandfatherly figure of William Hartnell, was fond of a black frock coat. His twinkly successor Patrick Troughton wore baggy trousers, while Jon Pertwee was a bit of a dandy with his capes and frills.

But for Hooper, there is still only one Doctor Who outfit.

"I still think the Tom Baker scarf is a classic - that's what I grew up with. Peter Davison's cricket outfit didn't do it for me. And I just remember Jon Pertwee having big cuffs."

But there are risks from flirting with high fashion, as the new Doctor might find out when he comes on to TV screens after Christmas. Fashion - just like time itself - moves quickly, as any time lord should know.

LinkCredit: BBC News Online 
Santa has an early present for Cardiff-based Doctor Who fans this year. 17 November sees the Welsh capital's own Christmas Invasion as Billie Piper and David Tennant arrive to turn on the festive lights. Seasonal celebrations begin at 5.45, with the Red Hot Santas taking to the stage to play some Christmas favourites. The big switch on by the Doctor and Rose happens at 6.45, after which visitors can move on to the City Centre and shop until 8pm. Or they can get their skates on and head to the open-air ice rink at Cardiff's Winter Wonderland, which opens its doors to the public at 7.45pm.

Billie is very excited about the event. "I'm really looking forward to kick-starting the Christmas spirit in Cardiff," she said. "We filmed a lot of scenes for the Christmas episode, The Christmas Invasion, in the city centre and I can't wait to see it lit up for real. I hope everyone has a fantastic time."

LinkCredit: BBC - Doctor Who 

Doctor Who returns to our screens this Christmas for a one-off special, starring David Tennant as the tenth Doctor and Billie Piper as Rose Tyler.

It's Christmas and Jackie Tyler is at home preparing for the festive season, not knowing if her daughter Rose will be home in time - or at all.

Then she hears the familiar, ancient grind of the TARDIS! Mickey, who is hard at work, also hears it and they both race across the estate just in time to witness the TARDIS' glorious, chaotic crash landing.

The doors open and, much to their delight, out steps Rose and a complete stranger - except it isn't a stranger - it's the Doctor.

Disorientated, yet overwhelmed to see them, he takes a few minutes to regain his balance and consider what it is he wants to tell them.

"Oh! I know! Merry Christmas!" he yells, before collapsing. The Doctor falls in and out of consciousness, with Rose and Jackie powerless to help him.

In a bid to boost Rose's spirits, Mickey suggests a spot of Christmas shopping. A good plan - until they find themselves under attack by a sinister brass band of masked Santas.

However, they are not the only ones with problems. Prime Minister Harriet Jones has just been informed that a British space probe, on its way to Mars for a Christmas Day landing, has gone missing.

It has been kidnapped by a monstrous race known as the Sycorax, who are set on taking over the world.

Meanwhile, back at the Tylers', Mickey and Jackie are trying to fend off a killer Christmas tree, while Rose tries to wake the Doctor.

It's been a fantastic whirlwind of a year for David Tennant. Over the past twelve months, he has rocketed from being a relative unknown in the eyes of the public to a household name.

However, David first graced our screens in the 1994 drama Takin' Over The Asylum. It was roles such as Reverend Gibson in Andrew Davies' adaptation of Trollope's He Knew He Was Right, the maverick DI Carlisle in Pete Bowker's acclaimed Blackpool, and then the legendary Casanova in Russell T Davies' beautiful, fast-paced and ground-breaking serial that have made him one of the the nation's favourites.

However, it's his role as the tenth Time Lord that is set to cement his place in history.

When Christopher Eccleston returned as the ninth Doctor last year, sixteen years had passed since the series had last aired and noone could have predicted its phenomenal success.

Now mid-way through filming, David has settled into his role and is enjoying the experience immensely.

David explains: "It was funny, when I first got asked I just laughed! I found it hilarious and impossible! And I remember Russell, very perceptively, saying: 'Don't say anything now, because I know the experience is quite a weird one.'

"But it's such a great job! I [mean], I get to play a Time Lord and have a TARDIS: you can't knock that!"

Fans have already had their first taste of David as the tenth Time Lord. Eight million viewers tuned in to witness the climatic scene of Bad Wolf/Parting of the Ways where Christopher's ninth Doctor morphed into David as the tenth.

The regeneration process is something David admits is an attractive part of the role.

"The fantastic thing about the regeneration process is that every time the Doctor goes through it, he changes to an extent. So as an actor, you get to work on a blank canvas where you don't have to worry too much about what has gone before.

"It's interesting, because he's always going to be the moral egalitarian, humanitarian, slightly wild, slightly anarchic bloke that he's always been. But because he's getting older he's moving on. He's seen it all before, every alien creature with a superiority complex."

David continues: "Viewers are going to see a slightly more no-nonsense Doctor and that is influenced by what Chris did with him. We are more aware that he's someone who fought a war, lost all his people and because he's the last Time Lord, the last authority in the universe, he's less indulgent, more ruthless."

The other striking difference between David and his predecessors is his overall look. David, along with Costume designer Louise Page, wanted a look that was both distinctive and effective, something that clearly states: 'It's The Doctor'.

So they opted for a tailored calf-length coat - chocolate brown - with a blue pinstripe suit and white plimsolls. The look - which David himself labelled 'Geek Chic' - has been a huge hit with fans and critics alike.

There have been a host of articles written about his look, much to David's amusement, including a 'How to dress like the Doctor' in monthly sci-fi magazine SFX.

"I wanted something that I'd enjoy wearing, an outfit that would look good and feel right. We also wanted something that was modern, without being specifically en vogue. I wasn't trying to create a Times Style article about it, but I'm glad people like it so much," David laughs.

"I also wanted an outfit that wasn't too authoritarian. So that's why I opted for a scruffier-styled suit. It's more what you'd expect to see a student sporting than a college professor. And inevitably the look is influenced by the sort of things I like wearing."

However, the audience are going to have to wait a little longer before they see David stepping out in his new outfit, as for part of the Christmas special David will be tucked up in bed and sporting a pair of striped pyjamas!

At the end of the last series, viewers witnessed the start of the regeneration process. The Doctor is still undergoing this process as we enter the Christmas special.

Shortly after returning to the Powell Estate, the Doctor says his hellos to Jackie and Mickey before collapsing into unconsciousness.

With the world under attack from the evil Sycorax, Rose feels powerless as she tries in vain to find a remedy that will get him back on his feet.

"The regeneration process is a severe biological process which takes a fair bit of time. This is not good news for Rose and the rest of the world, because whilst he's going through this, the earth is being invaded by the Sycorax."

He continues: "It's a very difficult time for Rose. He hadn't prepared her for the changes he'd undergo. So whilst the Doctor is recuperating, Rose is trying to fathom out how she can save the world.

"She's also trying to understand how she feels about him now."

So will Rose still want to travel through time and space with this man, now he's got a new face and mannerisms?

"The Christmas episode is a new start for the Doctor and Rose. They've got to rediscover each other and decipher whether they still feel the same about one another. Despite the new face, he is fundamentally the same bloke, he's still the Doctor and still has a huge amount of affection for her.

"However, it's not just the way he looks or the way he talks that is different. The Doctor's outlook on life has changed, as has the way he tackles situations. I think he's just hoping Rose can accept the changes and they can pick up where they left off."

David has been a lifelong fan of Doctor Who. His favourite Doctor is Tom Baker and he admits that watching his hero in action had a part to play in his decision to be become an actor.

Like viewers today, he tuned in on a weekly basis to catch the next exciting and scary instalment. The fear factor is something David feels is a key part of the series and an important part of growing up.

"Being scared and having nightmares is part of our childhood. The Christmas episode does have some scary moments. Sinister Santas, a spinning killer Christmas tree and of course the Sycorax. But that's great. I don't think we should shy away from it. Kids love fear."

One of the biggest surprises of last year was the varied age range of the audience Doctor Who attracted. The series really hit a chord with viewers of all ages and has been heralded as good family entertainment.

The majority of David's television and theatre roles have been for a predominantly adult audience, so how does he feel about his new army of younger fans?

"It's genuinely watched by everyone, aged seven to seventy, including groups you wouldn't particularly expect to be huge Doctor Who fans.

"I'm continually surprised by the number of trendy teenage girls and middle-aged mums who come up to talk to me and who genuinely love the show. I think that's what's extraordinary and unique about it.

"But that's how it should be. I think it's a good enough show to justify that kind of cross-spread of audience. I doubt I'll ever do something that attracts such a varied audience again."

Aside from David's eclectic array of television credits, he has an equally impressive number of theatre roles to his name. Two of his most recent roles were for the dark and gritty plays, The Pillowman and Look Back In Anger.

For the latter, David was awarded the Best Male Performance award at the 2005 Critics Awards for Theatre of Scotland for his performance as Jimmy Porter.

His younger audience are also about to get a taste of him in action as Barty Crouch Junior in the fourth Harry Potter film, The Goblet of Fire.

Prior to the Christmas episode of Doctor Who, David will be appearing in ITV1's dramatisation of Nicci French's novel, Secret Smile.

Billie Piper is still brimming with pride following her recent success at the annual National Television Awards, where she picked up the much deserved accolade of 'Most Popular Actress'.

The award was one of three that Doctor Who won, following its return to our screens earlier this year.

The other awards included 'Best Drama' and 'Most Popular Actor,' which Christopher Eccleston walked away with for his stellar performance as the ninth Doctor.

"It was the most amazing feeling," Billie smiles. "I was so terrified and really thought one of the soap actresses would win. But when they said it was me, I was just amazed.

"It was such a strange, wonderful evening. I felt like I was having an out of body experience."

Billie continues: "Winning an award like this, which has been voted for by the public, makes you realise the enormous impact the series has had on the nation."

The wait for the next instalment is almost over, with the countdown to the Christmas special underway.

In true Doctor Who style, the one-off special will see Earth under threat from an evil alien race and Rose and co battling to come up with a solution to save mankind.

However, the big surprise is that to begin with they'll be doing it without the help of the Doctor!

At the start of the Christmas special, Rose is still in a state of confusion following the Doctor's regeneration. They return to Powell estate, where the Doctor falls into a state of unconsciousness and Rose has no idea how to help him.

"Rose feels so unloved and isolated at the start of the episode," Billie explains.

"She's returned home to her mother and Mickey and as ever they are there for her. But she feels like she's lost her best friend. The earth is being invaded and Rose has no control over the situation.

"The Doctor, who is still going through the regeneration process, isn't there to give her the answers and she's scared."

And Rose has every right to be scared because aside from being chased by killer Santas, she - along with Mickey and Jackie - have to ward off a killer, spinning Christmas tree.

Although these scenes will show two essential elements of the festive season in a different, more sinister light, Billie is not worried that younger viewers will be left terrified by Christmas.

"Kids love being scared. It's something I've learned since starting on Doctor Who. As adults we worry that kids can't cope with anything scary and that everything should be censored. But that is nonsense. Children are so inquisitive, and I'm sure will be asking themselves questions such as 'What if the tree came to life?' etc. It excites them.

"Part of the series' success is it challenges the viewers' imaginations, including the kids."

Rose is very aware that she might not be able to save the world single-handedly, but she's certainly prepared to give it a try. She also hopes that she'll either come up with a solution, or at the very least give the Doctor enough time to return.

"Rose is very smart," says Billie. "She's very instinctive and has great strength of character. She's travelled all over the galaxy with the Doctor, and taken note of how he handles situations, so tries to mimic his actions."

Billie laughs: "It's very amusing to see Rose trying to copy the Doctor, but she looks up to him. He's her best friend, her personal hero and she believes in him, so tries to act like him."

However, whilst Rose, Mickey and Jackie are trying to find ways to both save the world and revive the Doctor, Rose is also battling with the fear that when he returns he may not want her.

"Rose is so scared he won't want her to travel with him anymore. She has spent so much time with him, experiencing new and exciting worlds. She can't bear the thought that this could be the end and the thought of going back to reality, working in a shop, fills her with dread."

To save revealing any more about how this episode pans out, viewers will have to wait until Christmas Day to discover the outcome.

And like fans all over the country, Billie, a self-confessed Christmas freak, will be tuning in with her family.

"I'm an absolute Christmas freak! I love the fact it starts in October now! However, this year for me it started in July as we were filming the Christmas special.

"It was slightly bizarre filming snow scenes in the middle of summer, but I was thrilled. It was great to start filming series two with this amazing, emotional and scary episode.

"I'm a huge fan of Christmas specials. It means so much to me that our show is going to go out on Christmas Day when all the families will be sitting down together, eating copious amounts of chocolate and drinking sherry," Billie laughs.

"I have to be honest - I think I'm going to need a few sherries before I sit down to watch it, though!"

LinkCredit: BBC Press Office 

What happens when you take two national institutions and throw in a touch of festive spirit? The Radio Times Christmas edition with a Doctor Who-themed front cover.

It's a rare honour for the magazine to devote a coveted Chrimbo cover to a single show, and the first time that favour's gone to Doctor Who.

Readers of the listings magazine will also have the opportunity to win a six foot Dalek from the show. There's also an in-depth look at making of the monsters from the festive episode.

Radio Times goes on sale from 3 December. But don't forget - other listings magazines are available.

LinkCredit: BBC - Doctor Who 

Pull a cracker, pop on a party hat, and countdown the hours to The Christmas Invasion with the new issue of Doctor Who Magazine!

This issue, the magazine speaks exclusively to Billie Piper - the Doctor's companion, Rose - in a massive 10-page interview. Billie chats about how Rose will cope with the new Doctor in the Christmas Special and the 2006 series.

"Rose is a bit more possessive this time around. I think it's because she feels like she's lost the Doctor once, and she doesn't want to lose him again. She's become a bit more jealous, which is something that's quite funny, but also destructive, as we'll find out...

"Sometimes Christmas specials don't really include Christmas. But ours does. There's lots of Christmas... and I'm such a Christmas freak! So yeah, Christmas and a new Doctor, and an alien invasion. And isn't that everything that you could possibly want from a Christmas special? Oh, and crackers!"

Plus, of course, there's a full preview to the Tenth Doctor's festive début, with dozens of photos from the story.

LinkCredit: BBC - Doctor Who 
LinkCredit: Radio Times 

You've seen The Christmas Invasion - now you can find out more about how it was made.

"You turn up every day and you get on with it," says David Tennant, the new Doctor Who. "But every now and again, standing in these caves in my pyjamas, with a broadsword, I look around and there's Sean dressed up as a huge alien, and down the other end of the cave is the TARDIS, and I do have a moment of going 'This is just unreal! This is impossible!'"

Find out more about the special episode in a massive 28-page feature, including interviews with David Tennant, Billie Piper, Camille Coduri, Noel Clarke, Russell T Davies, James Hawes, Penelope Wilton and many more!

LinkCredit: BBC - Doctor Who 

"What was that lovely song at the end of The Christmas Invasion?" many of you have asked.

We spoke to composer Murray Gold, who told us all about its origins.

So, what's the tune really called then?

It's called 'Song for Ten' in honour of David Tennant being Doctor Ten.

Why was an original composition used, rather than an actual old pop tune?

Do you want the romantic answer or the pragmatic one? Heck, you're right, never mind pragmatic... James Hawes mentioned in passing, while I was writing the score for TCI that he might need a song or two. I sang Jingle Bells and made my voice sound weird then performed the backing vocals on Song for Ten.

I watched through the sequence lots of times and tried to find the sentiment that was true to the moment and express it lyrically. I wanted to hit that lovely moment when the Doctor and Rose smile at each other, and the lyric: "You followed your star, cause that's what you are..." just leapt out.

How do you go about creating that old-fashioned 'Phil Spector' sound?

Well, if you think it does have a Phil Spector way about it, I'm happy, because I adore him, and also the songs of Holland Dozier Holland who are the Lennon and McCartney of Motown. Phil Spector's often described as creating a 'Wall of Sound.' Big production, lots of timpani and strings and multi-tracked vocals. It's basically fantastic pop music. You just need lots of spare tracks.

Who sung and played on it?

It was sung by Tim Phillips. He's a real upcoming talent. I wanted to nab him to sing a song in case next time he's too big. He's got an album out soon which he partly mixed in my studio. As I said, he and I performed backing vocals. I played the instruments.

Will it ever be released on CD?

If there's ever an album of Doctor Who music from the series, I'm sure it would be on that.

LinkCredit: BBC - Doctor Who