Dr Who Returns For Seventh Series Next Year & Matt Smith Stays..

There were few doubts that Doctor Who would be renewed for a seventh series (the BBC1 hasn’t had such ratings on a Saturday evening since it was the only channel on air..) but the big news for fans of the timelord is that that Matt Smith will be staying in the TARDIS for another FOURTEEN new episodes and we’ll be getting our hands on them in 2012 rather than 2013.

The news was first announced on twitter by BBC exec Sam Hodges and later retweeted by showrunner Steven Moffat, who left a mysterious message: “14 eps + Matt definitely [involved]. I’ve got a plan and I’m not telling you what it is.â€?

This follows some recent coverage in Private Eye which claimed that the seventh run could be delayed until 2013 and that Smith could be decamping to Hollywood, but reports have suggested that a series of four specials will air in place of a full series in 2012. Although if you cast your mind back to 2009, the BBC made a similar move, airing David Tennant’s final episodes as specials throughout the year, so there is speculation that while Smith has signed up for a return, it could be his swansong..

A BBC spokesman has also told The Guardian that “a good chunk” of the 14 episodes commissioned for the series will be broadcast next year, although they refused to say how many.