With rumors swirling that Jodie Whittaker is on her way out of the Doctor Who franchise, Whoopi Goldberg is hoping she could be the next person cast as the Doctor. Years ago, Goldberg had been eyeing the part with aspirations of becoming the first female Doctor before Whittaker was ultimately cast. Now that the 13th Doctor seems to be nearing the end of her road, Goldberg is speaking back up about the role that got away, remaining hopeful that she could become the first American Doctor.
"I was lucky enough to speak to Tom Baker about it - he's the Doctor I know best," Whoopi Goldberg recently told SFX Magazine. "For me, Tom Baker was the best Doctor. Of course, the younger Doctors are good, but when it comes to the older Doctors, it was always Tom Baker for me."
Goldberg adds, "I wanted to be the first female Doctor, but they have one. I said to [Tom], 'I love the idea of an American Doctor Who'. I'm still trying to do it."
It's not the first time Goldberg has made it known she loves the Doctor Who franchise and wants to be a part of it. In 2019, she told former Doctor actor David Tennant as much when she appeared on his podcast. As it turns out, Goldberg says she actually approached the BBC to throw her name in the hat for consideration before Whittaker was cast.
"They were like, 'Um, no,'" Goldberg explained. "So I was like, 'OK, I'm cool. I understand.'"
It still hasn't been confirmed that Whittaker will in fact be leaving the series after she completes filming on the next season. When the rumors of her exit went viral, the network responded with a vague statement noting they wouldn't be "commenting on any speculation around Jodie's future on the show." For her part, Jodi Whittaker has not yet publicly addressed the rumors at this time, though she's spoken very positively about her experience filming Doctor Who in previous interviews.
Doctor Who may not be in the cards for Goldberg, but the actress will still have plenty of other upcoming projects to keep her busy. She'll be returning to the role of Deloris Van Cartier in Sister Act 3, a new sequel in the works at Disney+. Goldberg has also teased reprising her role as Guinan from Star Trek: The Next Generation in the CBS All Access series Picard, and with Patrick Stewart giving her an open invitation to come aboard the show, it seems very likely Guinan will be showing up in season 2.
The most recent episode of Doctor Who aired on the BBC on New Year's Day, introducing comedian John Bishop as the new assistant for the Doctor. Bringing in a new assistant only makes it more plausible that the Doctor herself could be leaving next. Departing after three seasons is also in line with many other actors to have played the Doctor in recent years. In any case, if Whittaker is out the door, it's going to be interesting to see who gets the job next. This news comes to us from SFX Magazine.