Doctor Who is officially losing its 13th doctor.
The BBC announced on Thursday that Jodie Whittaker would exit the sci-fi drama for good in 2022.
The good news is that fans have a six-episode season in the fall with Whittaker as part of the show.
Additionally, a trio of specials will air in 2022 to bring the Thirteenth Doctor’s arc to a close.
What’s more, showrunner Chris Chibnall is also exiting the series.
As the Thirteenth Doctor, Jodie Whittaker stepped aboard the TARDIS to begin filming in 2017.
“As the first woman to play the iconic role, Jodie has thrilled audiences with her portrayal of the Time Lord, winning the hearts of Doctor Who fans across the globe,” reads the press release.
“Jodie and I made a ‘three series and out’ pact with each other at the start of this once-in-a-lifetime blast. So now our shift is done, and we’re handing back the TARDIS keys,” Chris Chibnall says.
“Jodie’s magnificent, iconic Doctor has exceeded all our high expectations. She’s been the gold standard leading actor, shouldering the responsibility of being the first female Doctor with style, strength, warmth, generosity and humour.”
“She captured the public imagination and continues to inspire adoration around the world, as well as from everyone on the production.”
“I can’t imagine working with a more inspiring Doctor – so I’m not going to!”
“For me, leading this exceptional team has been unrivalled creative fun, and one of the great joys of my career,” Chris said, confirming his own exit.
“I’m so proud of the people we’ve worked with and the stories we’ve told. To finish our time on the show with an additional Special, after the pandemic changed and challenged our production plans, is a lovely bonus.”
“It’s great that the climax of the Thirteenth Doctor’s story will be at the heart(s) of the BBC’s centenary celebrations.”
“I wish our successors – whoever the BBC and BBC Studios choose – as much fun as we’ve had. They’re in for a treat!”
Jodie Whittaker adds: “In 2017 I opened my glorious gift box of size 13 shoes. I could not have guessed the brilliant adventures, worlds and wonders I was to see in them.”
“My heart is so full of love for this show, for the team who make it, for the fans who watch it and for what it has brought to my life,” the actress continues.
“And I cannot thank Chris enough for entrusting me with his incredible stories. We knew that we wanted to ride this wave side by side and pass on the baton together.”
“So here we are, weeks away from wrapping on the best job I have ever had. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to express what this role has given me.”
“I will carry the Doctor and the lessons I’ve learnt forever.”
“I know change can be scary and none of us know what’s out there. That’s why we keep looking. Travel Hopefully. The Universe will surprise you. Constantly.”
Piers Wenger, Director of BBC Drama, said:
“Over the last four years Chris and Jodie have made Doctor Who history and their time on the show is indelibly marked on our memories.”
“From Rosa Parks to Ascension of the Cybermen, Chris and Jodie have given Doctor Who some of its most life-affirming and tear-jerking moments to date and we are beyond excited to see what they have in store for us in the new series this Autumn,” the statement continues.
“Jodie’s final adventure to mark the BBC’s Centenary in 2022 is set to be a Doctor Who Special to remember. I’d like to thank them both for their incredible work on the show.”
Blake Callaway, GM of BBC AMERICA, said: “We’re incredibly grateful to have worked with Chris and Jodie as they ushered in a new era of the Doctor Who franchise, breaking new ground with one of TV’s most iconic heroes and bringing longstanding fans, and new viewers alike, three remarkable seasons.”
“We’re very proud to be a part of a series that, fifty-seven years later, continues to reinvent itself, surprise and delight fans around the world.”
What are your thoughts on the news?
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Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.