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Doctor Clu

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2009-01-27 Mirror.jpg


Martin Clunes was poised to become the new Doctor Who — but it is claimed he pulled out in a row over cash.

The Men Behaving Badly star had signed up for the Christmas special with producers wanting to give him the full-time job this year. But four days before filming, the deal is said to have collapsed as terms could not be agreed.

David Morrissey, 44, was cast instead at the last minute as a second Tithe Lord opposite David Tennant, 37.

Bosses were desperate for Clunes, 47, to fill Tennant's shoes if the special episode had gone well. In the end, they chose the relatively unknown Matt Smith who was much cheaper to cast.

A source said: "Producers wanted Martin to take over Tennant's job full-time and were desperate

to see him in the Christmas episode. They saw it as a trial for the main job but they found the whole casting process very frustrating.

"Talent comes at a price and the show could simply not afford Martin. It's a shame as he would have been perfect."

Clunes's first ever job in TV was in Doctor Who in 1983 alongside Peter Davison as the Time Lord. Talking about the role on chat show Parkinson, Clunes joked: "I thought that I was brilliant.

"I do remember thinking at the time 'pretty good stuff, Clunesy'."

In last month's Christmas special, Tennant came face to face with a future version of himself Morrissey - in an episode set in Victorian London in which they battled the Cybermen.

The source added: "It was a bit of a scramble to get David Morrissey but he did a brilliant job and was also considered as a contender to replace Tennant. But the man they really wanted was Clunes.

"But they're very happy with Matt and think he'll be brilliant. Not to mention that he's a bit cheaper."

Matt, 26, was revealed as the 11th and youngest Time Lord last month.

Clunes is best known for his role in sitcom Men Behaving Badly, for which he won a Bafta in 1996.

He has since appeared in ITV's Goodbye Mr Chips, William and Mary and Doc Martin.

Last night Clunes's agent admitted he had been approached for the Doctor Who Christmas special but denied there was a dispute over cash and that the deal collapsed four days before filming.

A show spokesman added: "We don't comment on casting."

YOUNGEST Matt Smith, 26

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  • APA 6th ed.: Bryant, Tom (2009-01-27). Doctor Clu. The Mirror p. 7.
  • MLA 7th ed.: Bryant, Tom. "Doctor Clu." The Mirror [add city] 2009-01-27, 7. Print.
  • Chicago 15th ed.: Bryant, Tom. "Doctor Clu." The Mirror, edition, sec., 2009-01-27
  • Turabian: Bryant, Tom. "Doctor Clu." The Mirror, 2009-01-27, section, 7 edition.
  • Wikipedia (this article): <ref>{{cite news| title=Doctor Clu | url= | work=The Mirror | pages=7 | date=2009-01-27 | via=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=22 April 2024 }}</ref>
  • Wikipedia (this page): <ref>{{cite web | title=Doctor Clu | url= | work=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=22 April 2024}}</ref>