Omari Douglas: who is It’s a Sin star, will he be the next Doctor Who - and when is Jodie Whittaker leaving?

Jodie Whittaker, the first female Doctor, is set to end her run on the BBC programme after taking over from Peter Capaldi

Doctor Who is one of the most iconic British TV shows of all time, and as is tradition when one actor’s run of the character comes to an end, the speculation on who might be stepping into the role has well and truly begun.

With the end of the line for Jodie Whittaker’s incarnation of the Doctor on the horizon, Omari Douglas is the latest to be named as the frontrunner for the part.

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This is what you need to know about the actor who made his onscreen debut earlier this year on 80s AIDS drama It’s a Sin.

Who is Omari Douglas?

Omari Douglas is a British actor born in Wolverhampton in 1994 who graduated from the Arts Education Schools in London in 2015.

He made his TV debut starring as Roscoe Babtunde in It’s a Sin, the award winning Channel 4 drama created and written by Russell T Davies, who is set to make his return to Doctor Who as a showrunner next year.

Speaking about his role in It’s a Sin, Douglas said that Britain’s queer Black community have “been left out of the narrative for a long time”.

He said: “I’m proud to have played Roscoe and for him to be a reminder that we’ve already been here.”

Omari Douglas starred as Roscoe in the Channel 4 drama It’s a Sin (Photo: Channel 4)

The newcomer is currently shooting feature film Midas Man, a Brian Epstein biopic also starring Emily Watson (Chernobyl, War Horse) and Eddie Marsan (Ray Donovan, Deceit).

Off screen, Douglas boasts theatre credits like Rush at the King’s Head Theatre, Jesus Christ Superstar and Peter Pan at Regent’s Park Open Air, Five Guys Named Moe at the Marble Arch Theatre.

He also performed in Emma Rice’s adaptation of Wise Children at the Old Vic, which then went on to tour across a number of cities in the UK.

Most recently he starred in Constellations at the Vaudeville Theatre in the West End, opposite Russell Tovey (The Sister, Flesh and Blood).

Is Omari Douglas the next Doctor?

Rumours that Doctor Who bosses are eyeing Douglas as the frontrunner to take over the role from current Doctor Jodie Whittaker originate from The Sun.

A source reportedly told the news outlet: “Omari is the perfect condidate on so many levels, including the fact that the BBC said they’d prefer the Doctor to be played by a non-white actor.

“He has also struck up the kind of close working relationship with Russell [T Davies] that helped Christopher [Eccleston] and David [Tennant] get the sought after role.

Omari Douglas with John Brannoch, Zak Nemorin and Katherine Pearson at the press night for “High Society” at The Old Vic Theatre, 2015 (Photo: Miles Willis/Getty Images)

“And although he’s not quite a household name yet, he’s proved he’s a great actor with a memorable performance in It’s a Sin.”

However, nothing official has been announced yet, and there has been plenty of speculation over other names that could nab the role, including Lydia West (Years and Years, It’s a Sin), Olly Alexander (It’s a Sin, Penny Dreadful), Michael Sheen (Good Omens, Prodigal Son), and Michaela Coel (I May Destroy You, Chewing Gum).

When is Jodie Whittaker stepping down as the Doctor?

Whittaker, the first female actress to play the Doctor, has been in the role since 2017 and is set to leave in 2022 following the upcoming series and a trio of specials next year.

Whittaker has said she knew filming her final series of Doctor Who during the pandemic would be “very different”, and said that she had been aware of the challenges around travel and being “tactile” with her co-stars.

However, she said she felt reassured as soon as she arrived on set.

She said: “We started filming late because of Covid so starting was a tentative time because none of us had shot during the pandemic. So knowing it was my last I knew it would be very different because we weren’t able to travel, we couldn’t be tactile in that way we were.

Jodie Whittaker attends Doctor Who screening and Q&A at the Paley Center for Media on January 05 2020 in New York City (Photo: Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images for BBCAmerica)

“But what was immediately reassuring is as soon as you got on set, no matter if the logistics or the face of the show seemed different because of masks and all of that, all of the heart and all the love was still there and it was still great fun.

“We were able to be safe as we could be and as caring as we could be and not lose the atmosphere on the set. It was such a pleasure to be around people, so I was delighted.

“It was emotional to start with because you hadn’t seen anyone and everyone has gone through so much to get to the first day, and you want to make sure you’re not the person to make a mistake as the domino effect can be so catastrophic on the set.”

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