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Last Updated: Wednesday, 4 August, 2004, 15:31 GMT 16:31 UK
Daleks back to fight Doctor Who
The evil reputation of the Daleks has endured
Doctor Who's arch enemies the Daleks are coming back to the series after a lengthy dispute between the BBC and the creator's estate was finally settled.

The estate of sci-fi writer Terry Nation had originally blocked their return to the classic BBC One show.

But the BBC said an agreement had been reached ensuring that the Daleks - voted the most evil Doctor Who villains of all time - would be back.

Doctor Who returns to TV in 2005 with Christopher Eccleston in the lead role.

"I am absolutely delighted that the Terry Nation estate and the BBC have been able to reach agreement on terms for the use of the Daleks in the new Doctor Who series," said Tim Hancock, agent for the Terry Nation estate.

"We look forward to working closely with the production team in the forthcoming months."


Mr Nation was a prolific TV and film writer before his death in 1997, creating Blake's 7 and Survivors and writing for The Avengers and Hancock.

There have been protracted negotiations between the BBC and the estate since it was announced Doctor Who was coming back 14 years after it was axed.

These talks eventually broke down, with the BBC saying that no agreement could be reached over editorial control and that producers had already created another villain.

Terry Nation's estate accused the BBC of trying to "ruin the brand of the Daleks" by trying to wrestle control of the image.
William Hartnell
William Hartnell was the first doctor to battle the daleks

But fans are thrilled the two sides have settled their differences.

"We are absolutely delighted that the daleks will be back," said Antony Wainer, spokesman for the Doctor Who Appreciation Society (DWAS).

"Doctor Who without daleks would be like Morecambe without Wise or Wimbledon without strawberries."

Although the society is enthusiastic about the daleks, it is also looking forward to the series moving on.

"As much as we like the Cybermen and other characters, we want them to create new baddies and new stories.

"As long as the premise is the same, with Doctor Who as a Time Lord who can regenerate, it can change. Beyond that central character it has been completely different over the years," added Mr Wainer.

The series, written by Russell T Davies for BBC Wales, will see former pop star Billie Piper take the role of the doctor's sidekick Rose Tyler.


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