The 55-year-old Scottish actor became the odds-on favorite in the past week after word leaked that he’d expressed an interest in playing the role. His many credits include Skins, Torchwood, The Thick of It, World War Z, and oddly enough, a season 4 episode of Doctor Who.
But how did we get here? Every Whovian worth his psychic paper and sonic screwdriver tuned in to the Doctor Who Live: The Next Doctor special to find out who would be taking over as the 12th Doctor when Matt Smith leaves the role later this year.
Hosted by Zoe Ball, the show featured live appearances by Peter Davison (the Fifth Doctor), and Colin Baker (the Sixth Doctor). Fan favorites from past seasons were also in attendance including Bernard Cribbins (Wilfred Mott). It began with a live walk down memory lane with Davison, a montage of Matt Smith’s time as The Doctor and his thoughts on leaving (sob!), and a look back of all the past Doctors, a taped bit from Steven Moffatt
UPDATE: Press release from the BBC below:
“Amid much hype and speculation, Peter Capaldi was unveiled as the next Doctor during a special live television event on BBC ONE tonight.
Widely regarded as one of the biggest roles in British television, Capaldi will be the Twelfth Doctor and takes over from Matt Smith who leaves the show at Christmas.
Peter Capaldi says: “Being asked to play The Doctor is an amazing privilege. Like the Doctor himself I find myself in a state of utter terror and delight. I can’t wait to get started.”
Steven Moffat, lead writer and executive producer says: “It’s an incendiary combination: one of the most talented actors of his generation is about to play the best part on television. Peter Capaldi is in the TARDIS!”
Doctor Who companion, Jenna Coleman says: “I’m so excited Peter Capaldi is the man taking on the challenge of becoming the Twelfth Doctor. With Steven’s writing and his talent I know we’ll be making an amazing show with an incredible incarnation of number 12. I can’t wait to start this new adventure!”
Charlotte Moore, Controller BBC One says: “Peter Capaldi has all the genius and versatility needed to take on the mantel of the great Time Lord and make the role his own. He’ll bring his own particular wisdom, charisma and wit to the Twelfth Doctor and take the show into an exciting new era.”
Ben Stephenson, Controller, BBC Drama Commissioning says: “We started thinking Peter Capaldi might be the right person to take on this iconic part a few months ago. But it was only when he did a secret audition at Steven’s house under the cover of darkness that we knew we had our man. He’s an extraordinarily talented actor who can seemingly turn his hand to anything. We can’t wait to premiere his unique take on the Doctor on Christmas Day and we are sure he’s going to become one of the all-time classic Doctors.”