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  New actor to play Doctor Who
Updated 09 July 2003, 20.18
Sylvester McCoy played the seventh TV Doctor

TV's most famous sci-fi hero is coming back with a new face.

Richard E Grant
New face: Richard E Grant
Film and TV actor Richard E Grant will play the ninth Doctor Who in a new animated BBC web series to launch in November.

This year is the 40th anniversary of Doctor Who - which was on TV from 1963 until 1989.

Fact File
Who is Dr Who?
The TV series lasted 26 years
Eight different actors played the Doctor on TV
The Doctor's enemies included Daleks, Cybermen and robotic Yeti!
The Doctor once had a computerised dog sidekick called K-9
The time-traveller's adventures have continued on the radio, the web and audio CD.

This is the first major change in the lead actor since Paul McGann took over the role of the Doctor in a 1996 TV movie.

Although Richard E Grant did have a taste of playing The Doctor in a Comic Relief special in 1999.

He's appeared in films like The Little Vampire and Spiceworld and starred in The Scarlet Pimpernel on TV.

Doctor Who?

Arch enemies: The Daleks!
Arch enemies: The Daleks!
In 2002, readers of SFX magazine voted Doctor Who the greatest sci-fi hero ahead of Buffy and Han Solo from Star Wars.

The Doctor is a Time Lord who fights evil beings across time and space - his most famous enemies are the Daleks.

The Doctor travels in a ship called the Tardis that's shaped like a police phone box and is bigger on the inside than it is on the outside.

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