| 13.4°C Dublin

Capaldi still figuring out Doctor role

New Doctor Who star Peter Capaldi says he is still finding his feet when it comes to playing the Time Lord.

The actor (56) will be seen in the new series of Doctor Who this Saturday, having spent seven months making the sci-fi show.

But he told Radio Times: "I don't know if it's quite fallen into place yet. I'm trying all the time to see what works and what doesn't work, though I'm trying to bring back some of the Doctor's mystery and strangeness."

Capaldi, who had thought his age ruled him out of the role, said: "I think I'm a more grown-up Doctor, but he's still mirthful. He's serious when he needs to be but he's still quite comic."

The Thick Of It star said that stepping out of the Tardis on his first day filming the BBC1 show made him anxious but also rekindled childhood memories.

"I'd never been in the police box, apart from the wardrobe at home when I was a kid pretending it was a police box," he said. "I was shocked to find it was just like a wardrobe, like something your dad had made."


Capaldi has previously revealed that he has been supported by his immediate predecessors in the role, Matt Smith and David Tennant.

Asked what advice they gave, he said: "Sometimes you're in the middle of a big production that has a lot of BBC politics and administration and it's a big commercial vehicle.

"But you're an actor and sometimes have to compare notes to see how the others might have felt about the things I'm going through or am being asked to do. It's good to be able to chat to people who've been in the same situation."

Capaldi told how he kept his casting secret. He learned he had landed the role after calling his agent on a break while filming BBC1 drama The Musketeers in Prague.

"She said, 'Hello Doctor', but I couldn't tell anyone. I wandered around Prague singing the Doctor Who theme to myself," he said.

Of his unveiling on live TV, he said: "There was a lot of cloak-and-dagger. I was taken to a car park, dropped off by one car and put in another with a blanket over my head. For all I knew, because I couldn't see or hear anything, there might have been no one there and it could all have been a load of baloney."