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Matt Smith: I can’t wait to see Jodie Whittaker as the next Doctor in Doctor Who

Actor Matt Smith wants an end to the debates around Jodie Whittaker playing the next incarnation of Doctor Who. He also discusses the upcoming season of the popular web series, The Crown, where he plays the role of Philip Mountbatten.

tv Updated: Nov 23, 2017 16:30 IST
Samarth Goyal
Samarth Goyal
Hindustan Times
Doctor Who,The Crown,Matt Smith
Matt Smith played the 11th incarnation of The Doctor in British sci-fi TV series, Dr. Who.

Actor Matt Smith might be a man of few words, but whatever he says doesn’t need much explanation. Smith is excited about the upcoming season of the popular Netflix show, The Crown, where he plays the role of Philip Mountbatten. The 35-year-old, who played the 11th incarnation of The Doctor in the popular British sci-fi drama, Doctor Who, wants the debate around Jodie Whitaker, the latest incarnation and also the first woman actor in 54 years to play the Time Lord, to “end soon”, and for viewers to focus on watching the new actor in action. In a telephonic chat with us from London, England, Smith talks about the show, the never-ending debate about the new Doctor, and his love for India. Excerpts:

Since the first season of The Crown was well received, are you apprehensive about the reaction from the masses for the second season?
Of course. There’s a degree of concern about how people will react to it, especially after the first season did so well. I think you can never anticipate success, or failure of any show. A lot of credit goes to the writers, and the makers who created the show. So from that perspective, you try not to think much about it, and do the show to the best of your ability.

Matt Smith plays the role of Philip Mountbatten in the show, The Crown.

You play the role of Philip Mountbatten in the family. Have you spoken with him about your role before or after the release of the show?
No. Sadly, I haven’t got a chance to speak with him. I don’t know anyone from the Royal Family, personally. But we did explore his character by speaking to people who are close to him. You try to immerse yourself as much as you can, when you play such characters.

You have also acted in Dr Who and other TV shows. Are there any differences between TV shows and web series?
Not really. The basics remain largely the same. At the end of the day, I am an actor, and as an actor, you just try to follow the best script. It doesn’t really matter whether it’s TV, or films, or a play. But, with the coming of platforms like Netflix, a lot of actors are turning to television. I think it’s interesting to them to play a character deeply, and get into the skin of the character.

What’s your stand about Jodie Whittaker, being the next Doctor in the TV show?
I think people should just stop discussing about whether it’s a good or a bad thing. I think she is a wonderful actor, and she will really play the part well. Maybe she will explore some part of the personality that wasn’t really touched on before by the other actors who have played this character. People should watch the new show and stop these discussions. I can speak for myself, at least. I can’t wait to see her as the next Doctor. I am excited!

We saw photos of your vacation in Goa (India) a couple of years back. Where all did you visit, and would you like to visit the country in the future?
We went there (Goa) and Kerala, as well. In fact, I loved Kerala. I would love to come back, simply because there are so many places I really want to visit. There’s Kashmir, there’s Jodhpur. I would really love come back again. I have heard a lot about India and seen a few films as well. I know that Indian movies are famous for their music in cinema. When I was there, I saw this Kathakali dancer, explaining the entire story of Mahabharat. I was amazed to see one actor telling the story, playing all the characters from that epic, and I wondered how that was possible. India is a great country.

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First Published: Nov 23, 2017 16:30 IST