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Last Updated: Friday, 2 April, 2004, 10:20 GMT 11:20 UK
New Doctor Who 'excited' by role
Christopher Eccleston
Eccleston said he would dispense with the Doctor's hats and scarves
New Doctor Who Christopher Eccleston, star of films like Shallow Grave and The Others, says he chose the role because of the strength of the scripts.

He said he was "excited" at working with Russell T Davies, who wrote Queer as Folk and The Second Coming.

"We've got some fantastic scripts," the 40-year-old actor told BBC One's Breakfast programme.

"That gives me a safety net to rely on. We can do a good job," he said. Filming on the show starts in the summer.

Eccleston said the Doctor would be updated for 21st Century audiences - without the scarves or hats worn by previous doctors.

The actor said: "I don't think he's going to be as eccentric and as foppish as he was in some of his incarnations.

New companion

"I think he should have a slight dark side, but it would be quite nice to bring out something in me which I've not done a great deal of, which is the lighter side," he said.

"In the first episode, there is a line that says 'most of all this a man who enjoys himself'."

He's got two hearts. They can both be broken
Christopher Eccleston on a possible love interest
Eccleston said there were current auditions for the role of Rose Tyler, who will be the new doctor's sidekick.

The character will be a lot more independent and strong-minded than some of the Doctor's previous female companions, he said.

"I'll be doing the running around screaming," he said.

Eccleston added he expected the show to rely on a lot of computer-generated effects.

"Technology's moved on greatly, and there's great things to be done... but I'll be concentrating on the character.

'Emotional story'

"My concern, without getting on a soapbox, is that the show can address social issues, and address what's going on around us.

Sontaran
Ecclestone's favourite monsters were The Sontarans

"You can parallel things with a science-fiction scenario, threats to mankind can always be highlighted."

He also said the series would have a "strong emotional story" for Rose and why she chooses to time travel.

Eccleston said he also wanted the Doctor to have a love interest. "He's got two hearts. They can both be broken," he said.

The Doctor would not speak with received pronunciation, but would have Eccleston's own Salford accent.

He said there would a return for some of the doctor's old foes, and said his favourite had been the "baked potato" lookalikes The Sontarans, who were first seen in third Doctor Jon Pertwee's incarnation.


WATCH AND LISTEN
Christopher Ecclestone
"We've got some fantastic scripts. I'm very excited."



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