Obituary: Dudley Simpson

Australian composer Dudley Simpson (b.1922) died on November 4. Simpson began working as a conductor for the Borovansky Ballet before he moved to England and conducted at Covent Gardens before becoming the Principal Conductor of the Royal Opera House Orchestra. He began composing for the BBC in the early 1960s, and provided mosic for Doctor Who from 1963-1980, as well as for Blake’s 7, Moonbase 3 and The Tomorrow People. He appeared as an orchestra conductor in the Doctor Who serial “The Talons of Weng-Chiang.”

Obituary: Trevor Martin

Actor Trevor Martin (b.1929) died on October 5. Martin is best known for portraying the Doctor in the 1974 stage production Doctor Who and the Daleks in the Seven Keys to Doomsday. Prior to that, he appeared as a Time Lord in the Patrick Troughton Doctor Who serial “The War Games.” He would go on to appear in the Doctor Who Radio play “Paradise of Death” opposite Jon Pertwee in 1993.

Obituary: Victor Pemberton

Actor and writer Victor Pemberton (b.1931) died on August 13. Pemberton appeared in the Doctor Who serial “The Moonbase” opposite Patrick Troughton. He was later brought on board as a script editor during “The Tomb of the Cybermen.” Pemberton wrote several episodes and introduced the “sonic screwdriver” in his script for “Fury from the Deep,” which also wrote out Victoria, one of the Doctor’s companions (actress Deborah Watling, who played Victoria, died last month). In addition to his work on Soctor Who, he also wrote Timeslipe, Tales from the Thousand and One Nights, and the UK adaptation Fraggle Rock.

Obituary: Deborah Watling

Actress Deborah Watling (b.1948) died on July 21. Watling played Victoria Wakefield on Doctor Who opposite Patrick Troughton from 1967-8. Prior to her time on the show, she had appeared in the television series H. G. Wells’ Invisible Man as Sally Wilson from 1958-9. Although she retired from film and television in 1981, she appeared in Doctor Who: Dimensions in Time in 1993, the video Downtime, and in The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot. For a long time, the only complete serial featuring Watling known to exist was Tomb of the Cybermen, but all the episodes of The Enemy of the World were recovered in 2013.

Obituary: Trevor Baxter

Actor Trevor Baxter (b.1932) died on July 16. Baxter portrayed Professor Litefoot in the Doctor Who serial “The Talons of Weng-Chiang.” He has also portrayed Litefoot in the Big Finish spin-off production of Jago & Litefoot. Baxter appeared as Dr. Jennings in Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow and Dr. Phillimore in The Dark Side of the Sun.

Whittaker Named Doctor

The BBC has announced that Jodie Whittaker will take on the role of the Doctor from Peter Capaldi following this year’s Christmas episode of Doctor Who. Chibnell is the first woman to play the Doctor in the series’ history. She has previously appeared in the film Attack the Block and has also appeared in the television series Broadchurch.
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Capaldi Announces Regeneration

Peter Capaldi has announced that the 2017 Christmas episode of Doctor Who, following season 10, will be his last regular appearance as the Doctor. Capaldi, who was a fan of the series as a child, took on the role in Season 8, immediately after the fiftieth anniversary of the television series. Capaldi’s departure from the show will coincide with the departure of show runner, Stephen Moffett, who had previously announced his departure, and will allow in-coming show-runner, Chris Chibnall, to cast his own Doctor.
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Obituary: Kate O’Mara

Actress Kate O’Mara (b.1939) died on March 30. O’Mara is best known to science fiction fans for her portrayal of The Rani, a Time Lord, in two Doctor Who serials. Other genre roles included Adam Adamant Lives!, The Avengers, The Vampire Lovers, and The Horror of Frankenstein. O’Mara was best known outside the genre for her role on Dynasty.

Obituary: Derek Martinus

Director Derek Martinus (b.1931) died on March 27. Martinus directed numerous episodes of Doctor Who, beginning with Galaxy 4, the first serial of the third season, and ending with Spearhead from Space, the first serial of the seventh season. He went on to direct episodes of Z Cars and Blake’s 7.

Obituary: Christopher Barry

Director Christopher Barry (b.1925) died on February 7. Barry directed more than 40 episodes of Doctor Who, beginning with the first two episodes that introduced the Daleks in the first season through the 1979 serial “The Creature from the Pit.” Other genre work included The Tripods, The Man in the White Suit, Moonbase 3, and Out of the Unknown.