Doctor Who movie? The BBC doesn't know what you're talking about

Yesterday we heard that David Yates, the master of the final four Harry Potter films, had been tapped to direct a big-screen version of Doctor Who that would feature entirely new stars and continuity. Whether you love or hate it, there's no denying it's big news, but a few people at the BBC didn't even seem to think it was actually happening.

According to Yates, there's no script for the project yet and it won't happen for another two or three years, but with his name attached to it the film—no matter what stage of development it's in—it was bound to be major news. Still, some at the BBC treated the Yates story as though it were just the same old Doctor Who movie rumors they've been swatting down for years.

Here's what BBC executive Edward Russell had to say via Twitter:

Off Twitter for a few hours and the Doctor Who world explodes. There's always talk of a movie. Perhaps? Maybe one day. But not right now!
OK, so this guy didn't seem to think the story was serious, or at least not serious enough to set it apart from another movie rumor. But maybe he's not so close to Doctor Who in the first place. What about someone who is like, say, the BBC's official Doctor Who Magazine?

Here's their Who movie Tweet:

To those hearing Doctor Who movie rumours, it's just the same rumours which have been going round for years. Nothing's currently happening!

So the major publication devoted to all things Time Lord thinks that one of the biggest sci-fi and fantasy directors around right now developing a project like this is akin to the same old rumors they've heard before? What's going on?

It's not as odd as it seems, really. Though Yates is attached to the project, nothing definite has truly emerged yet, so they can still say these are just rumors. Plus, there could be some concern from both of these people that a Who movie could downplay the success of the TV show. Let's look for a tweet from someone even more official, like someone at BBC America:

A Doctor Who feature film remains in development w/ BBC Worldwide Productions in LA. As of yet no script, cast or production crew in place.
Are we to take that no production crew comment as meaning Yates is not officially on board just yet? Who knows, but that's a much more accurate way of saying where the project is right now. And over at the official BBC website, we've got an even briefer summing up of what's going on:
Dr Who is to be taken to the big screen by Harry Potter director David Yates.
Anyone who denied Yates' developing film can be forgiven. After all, Doctor Who has seen its share of dropped projects, delays and bumps in the road, including that big, big bump that lasted for a decade and a half. We could chalk those tweets up to a case of crossed wires, but it's more likely these guys are just taking the news with a grain of salt, as history has taught them to do. What do you think? Even with Yates on board, will this movie ever get made?

(via Bleeding Cool)

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