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The 11th Doctor begins work: Matt Smith is in the house

20/07/2009. Contributed by Jessica Martin

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Production, we are told, has started today on the new series of Doctor Who, in which BBC One viewers will meet the 11th Doctor and his companion - Amy Pond (aka Karen Gillan) - for the very first time. Matt Smith of Party Animals fame plays the latest incarnation of our favourite time lord.

Accompanying The Doctor on his further adventures in time is a new companion Amy Pond, played by Scottish actress Karen Gillan (The Kevin Bishop Show), who will first meet The Doctor in episode one of the new series.

Matt Smith Dr Who 11

New show-runner and long-running Doctor Who fan Steven Moffat has developed this series and, as Lead Writer and Executive Producer, will be responsible for the overall creative direction of the show, as well as plot and character arcs.

Moffat told the Nest, "And here it is, the big moment - the new Doctor, and his new best friend. And here's me, with the job I wanted since I was seven - 40 years to here! If I could go back in time and tell that little boy that one day all this would happen, he'd scream, call for his mum and I'd be talking to you now from a prison cell in 1969. So probably best not then. Matt and Karen are going to be incredible, and Doctor Who is going to come alive on Saturday nights in a whole new way - and, best of all, somewhere out there a seven-year-old is going to see them, fall in love and start making a 40-year plan..."

Upon arriving on set in Cardiff, for his first day of filming, Smith told SFcrowsnest.com, "I feel very privileged and proud to be part of this iconic show. The scripts are brilliant and working alongside Karen, Steven and the rest of the crew is an inspiration because their work ethic and passion for the show is so admirable. I'm excited about the future and all the brilliant adventures I get to go on as the Doctor."

Piers Wenger, Executive Producer and Head of Drama, BBC Wales, added: "The scripts for the new series are every bit as funny, thrilling, scary and imaginative as you'd expect from the man who brought us The Empty Child and Blink. There's a strange and perfect alchemy between Steven and Matt Smith and the next few months are going to be riveting as that relationship starts to emerge on screen. Steven always says he's been waiting to do this job since he was seven. But it's actually the Doctor who has been waiting for him."

The new series follows three Doctor Who specials starring David Tennant which will transmit later this year.

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