Just one day before Season 9 of Doctor Who debuts, BBC confirmed that actress Jenna Coleman is leaving the series. The network isn't revealing exactly when the actress will part ways with the show, only confirming that it will happen at some point during Season 9. Here's what Doctor Who star Peter Capaldi had to say about his departing companion in a statement.
"Jenna has been absolutely brilliant. I think she's wonderful in the show, and she's my favorite companion."
Jenna Coleman made her Doctor Who debut on September 1, 2012 as Oswin Oswald in Asylum of the Daleks. She returned on Christmas Day of that year, playing Clara and remained with the Eleventh Doctor from the following episode, The Bells of Saint John, onwards. She stayed on board the TARDIS for all of Peter Capaldi's episodes to date. BBC hasn't announced who will replace Jenna Coleman yet, but it is believed that she has already shot her final scenes.
Jenna Coleman was rumored to leave the show after last season's Christmas Special, but she ended up changing her mind and coming back for Doctor Who Season 9. While we will have to wait and see when exactly Jenna Coleman will part ways with the Time Lord, we already know what the actress will be starring in next. ITV announced today that the actress will star as a young Queen Victoria in their major new drama series Victoria.
The ambitious 8-part drama follows the early life of Queen Victoria, from her ascension to the throne at the tender age of 18, through to her courtship and marriage to Price Albert. Victoria went on to rule for 63 years, and was our longest serving monarch until she was overtaken by Elizabeth II on 9th September this year. Here's what Jenna Coleman had to say about her new role in a statement.
"I am delighted to be cast as Queen Victoria in this ambitious drama of her life. She is a vivid, strong, inspirational and utterly fascinating woman in British history and I can't wait to tell her story."
Victoria will be produced by Mammoth Screen, producers of Poldark (BBC One) and Endeavour (ITV), and the series is created and written by acclaimed novelist Daisy Goodwin, in her screenwriting debut. Daisy will serve as executive producer alongside Dan McCulloch (Endeavour, Indian Summers) and Mammoth Screen's Managing Director Damien Timmer (Parade's End, Poldark). The series will open with a 90-minute episode, followed by 7 one-hour episodes. Tom Vaughan (Doctor Foster, He Knew He Was Right, Starter For Ten) opens the series as director and Paul Frift (Doctor Who, That Day We Sang, Room at the Top) will produce the landmark series.