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Last Updated: Thursday, 16 June 2005, 08:36 GMT 09:36 UK
Doctor Who third series confirmed
David Tennant
David Tennant is set to take over the Doctor Who role
The BBC has commissioned a third series of Doctor Who in addition to the second series already planned.

The announcement comes days before the current series - a huge ratings success for BBC One - reaches its end.

With Christmas specials scheduled for 2005 and 2006, fans can look forward to 28 new episodes in total.

As Christopher Eccleston will not be returning for the next series, Casanova actor David Tennant has been cast as his replacement.

But Billie Piper, who plays the Doctor's assistant Rose Tyler, will return for the whole of the second series.

Writer Russell T Davies has confirmed he will write six episodes of series two, which will see the return of classic villains the Cybermen.

"It's a joy to write - you couldn't have more fun," he told the BBC Breakfast programme on Thursday.

He added that Eccleston's departure was "a great loss", but that a new lead actor would give the show "a new lease of life".

The new series will begin filming in Wales in five weeks.

Stop reading now if you do not want to know what happens in Saturday's episode.

The final episode of the first series sees an army of Daleks attack the earth.

The programme also reveals the identity of Bad Wolf, the unseen nemesis that has been following the Doctor and Rose throughout the series.

Viewers will see the Doctor kiss his assistant for the first time - though not for romantic reasons.

They will also watch him regenerate into David Tennant, whose first words as the Time Lord will be: "Hello. New teeth. Now where were we?"

Russell T Davies on the final episode of current series



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