Actors who have played 'Doctor Who'
The BBC TV hit show "Doctor Who" is on its 11th Doctor in its 50-year history. Here's a look back at the intrepid time travelers.
"Doctor Who" is a British sci-fi series on the BBC channel that's marking its 50th anniversary this year. A significant element of the series is the ever-changing cast of actors who have played the lead time-traveling character, The Doctor. (Undated)
William Hartnell played The Doctor when the "Doctor Who" series launched on BBC in 1963. His departure--and subsequent replacement--was explained in the storyline as a regeneration that only Time Lord himself could pull off.
"Doctor" #2 was played by Patrick Troughton. Patrick Troughton resumed the lead role in BBC's "Doctor Who" in 1966 and stayed for three years-- although he has subsequently appeared since then as a special guest. (Undated)
"Doctor" #3 was played by Jon Pertwee. Pertwee had the starring role on BBC's "Doctor Who" for a then-record five seasons, beginning in 1970. He left the series to return to his work in British theater productions. (Undated)
"Doctor" #4 was played by Tom Baker. As the fourth Doctor from 1974-1981, Baker was rarely seen without his trademark scarf. The "Doctor Who" series is marking its 50th anniversary this year. (Undated)
D"Doctor" #5 was played by Peter Davison. Davison signed on to play the fifth Doctor for three years, 1981-1984. He now stars in the UK's version of "Law & Order." (Undated)
"Doctor" #6 was played by Colin Baker. Baker played the lead role in the BBC series "Doctor Who" from 1984-1986. It was a short stint, given the series had an 18-month hiatus during this period. (Undated)
"Doctor" #7 was played by Sylvestor McCoy. McCoy was the last actor to play the lead role in BBC's "Doctor Who" during its original run from 1963-1989. (Undated)
"Doctor" #8 was played by Paul McGann. McGann played the eighth Doctor in a 1996 made-for-television movie that was a trial run to see whether the series could be revived. It was his only appearance in the role. (Undated)
"Doctor" #9 was played by Christopher Eccleston. The BBC revived its "Doctor Who" series in 2005 with Eccleston as the ninth Doctor. He departed the series after the season. (Undated)
"Doctor" #10 was played by David Tennant. Tennant signed on to play the lead role in BBC's "Doctor Who" in a run that lasted from 2005-2010. (July 8, 2006)
"Doctor" #11 was played by Matt Smith. At age 26, the series' current Doctor is the youngest actor ever cast in the role. BBC announced Smith is scheduled to depart the role at the end of 2013. (Undated)
A scene from a 1975 episode of BBC's "Doctor Who," with Tom Baker as the Doctor, Michael Sherd and Elisabeth Sladen. (1975)
Colin Baker, who played the sixth Doctor in the BBC series "Doctor Who," emerges from the TARDIS time traveling machine in a field of corn with Tom Pearcy.
BBC's "Doctor Who" series currently stars Rupert Graves, Karen Gillan, Arthur Darvill, Matt Smith as the Doctor, Mark Williams and Riann Steele. (Undated)
"Doctor" #10 was played by David Tennant. Tennant signed on to play the lead role in BBC's "Doctor Who" in a run that lasted from 2005-2010. (Undated)
The Tardis used by "Dr. Who" on set during filming at The Lowry in Manchester, England. (March 31, 2010)
Christopher Eccleston in his character as The Ninth Doctor in "Dr. Who" with co-star, Rose Tyler, played by Billie Piper. (March 25, 2005)
In the episode "Resurrection of the Daleks", The Fifth Doctor, Peter Davison, co-stars with Tegan Jovanka, played by Janet Fielding and Vislor Turlough played by Mark Strickson. (Undated)
Episode 12 of "Dr. Who," with The Doctor, David Tennant, and Martha, Freema Agyeman, continues the adventure with Captain Jack as played by John Barrowman. (June 17, 2007)
"Doctor Who," The Tenth Doctor, as played by actor David Tennant, during a scene with co-star Rose Tyler, played by Billie Piper. In this episode, the TARDIS lands in the distant future of New Earth. (April 15, 2006)
The Tenth Doctor David Tennant, during filming of "Dr. Who," with co-star Billie Piper as Rose Tyler. (Undated)
Matt Smith is the current lead in the BBC series "Doctor Who, which is marking its 50th anniversary in 2013.