Peter Capaldi renews call for Doctor Who in New Zealand
Could Doctor Who star Peter Capaldi be meeting Sir Peter Jackson in Wellington this week to discuss filming an episode here?
In the first official visit of a reigning Doctor to New Zealand in the hit BBC show's 52 year history, the actor took centre stage at The Civic in Auckland on Tuesday for a chat show style night hosted by Australian media personality Adam Spencer.
Capaldi, who has played the 12th Doctor in the 52 year old television show since 2013, teased fans when he was asked what his favourite location for the series was. After revealing Series 9, now airing on Prime, had been filmed in Wales and the Canary Islands, Capaldi said New Zealand.
"Well, we'd love to come here you know, It's so incredible here, with fabulous locations," Capaldi teased. "You've got some talented crews here, it would be wonderful to come and do an episode and there was talk of that, I think that almost happened, and it may yet."
"When we drove from the airport to the hotel we said this is fantastic and people laughed at us because we think the drive from the airport to the hotel is spectacular so goodness knows what lies in store because I am going to stay on for a week."
Capaldi said he would visit Wellington and Queenstown this week.
Capaldi's immediate predecessor Matt Smith first suggested Wellington based Jackson helm an episode in a 2012 interview and the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit director responded immediately with an offer for Smith to name a time and a place. Earlier this month Doctor Who show runner Steven Moffat said he was keen for Jackson to direct an episode although there was a disparity between his and Jackson's expectations.
"He's a genuine big old Doctor Who fan. He's mentioned it, and then we email him and he doesn't reply . . . I think his plan is we all go to New Zealand and spend six months making it and our plan is he comes to Cardiff and makes it in 12 days. There's that disparity," Moffat said.
Jackson has not responded to requests for an interview.
Capaldi in Conversation, the last in Capaldi's Doctor Who commitments this year, was a near sell out.
It followed on the heels of the Doctor Who Festival in Australia which Moffat and Doctor Who writer Mark Gatiss attended with other show alumni.
Capaldi arrived in a puff of smoke to the Doctor Who theme and revealed he'd written "Time Lord" in the occupation box on his passenger arrival card in Auckland.
"And they still let me in."
At one stage Capaldi almost sounded bemused over the role: "I'm still looking for the Doctor, and sometimes he's just there, and he's got my face, how did that happen?"
While, no doubt, rehearsed (Spencer's questions often led to clips from the show being played behind the pair), the night felt fresh, and Capaldi enthusiastic. It was rather like a live DVD extra, only the audience could ask questions and in return questioned by Capaldi from the Doctor Who Trivial Pursuit game.
The crowd went wild many times, including when Capaldi revealed the Doctor's trusty sonic screwdriver could soon return to the show after being replaced by his sonic shades.
"If someone said to me do you want to play with a screwdriver or wear shades there really wouldn't be much of a contest, but what I would say is this: fans of the sonic screwdriver should not fret."
Capaldi, a fan of the show from childhood, told fans they need not worry about being too geeky. "Why shouldn't we be geeky about it? That's what we're here for!"