A new Doctor Who? Jodie Whittaker rumoured to have quit role after 3 years as comedian John Bishop joins as new sidekick

Season 13 is said to be the British actress’s final series, after she joined as the thirteenth and first female Time Lord

Jodie Whittaker made history as the first female Time Lord in the long-running BBC series 'Doctor Who', with comedian John Bishop recently unveiled as her latest sidekick. Courtesy BBC, Getty Images
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After three years of playing Doctor Who, British actress Jodie Whittaker may be stepping out of the Tardis for the last time.

The star is rumoured to be leaving the long-running sci-fi show, the Daily Mirror reports, however, the BBC has refused to comment on speculation.

"It's all very hush-hush, but it is known on set that Jodie is leaving and they are gearing up for a regeneration", the Daily Mirror reported on Sunday, citing an unnamed source close to the show.

“Her departure is top secret, but at some point over the coming months the arrival of the 14th Doctor will need to be filmed.”

The BBC responded with a statement that the broadcaster “won't be commenting on any speculation around Jodie's future on the show”.

It comes as the trailer for season 13 was released, although the season premiere for the long-running BBC show is yet to be given a firm date.

News of Whittaker's departure comes as the first female Time Lord unveiled her new travelling companion, British comedian, John Bishop. The comic, 54, appears as Dan in the season 13 teaser trailer, which premiered during the Friday, January 1 broadcast of the show's New Year's special – Revolution of the Daleks.

"It's time for the next chapter of Doctor Who, and it starts with a man called Dan," said executive producer Chris Chibnall. "Oh, we've had to keep this one secret for a long, long time.

“Our conversations started with John even before the pandemic hit. The character of Dan was built for him, and it’s a joy to have him aboard the Tardis.”

Bishop has recently documented his battled with Covid-19 on Instagram, calling it: “the worst illness I have ever had. Incredible headaches, muscle and joint point, no appetite, nausea, dizziness, chronic fatigue like I didn't know existed.”

Of replacing Whittaker’s season 12 companions, Bradley Walsh and Tosin Cole, who both left the series during the New Year’s special, Bishop said: “If I could tell my younger self that one day I would be asked to step on board the Tardis, I would never have believed it.

"It's an absolute dream come true to be joining Doctor Who and I couldn't wish for better company than Jodie and Mandip [Gill, who plays Yaz]."

"The thing I would say to the next person is the pressure of the history of the show is all made up in your own head, on set all the crew who have transitioned onto the show they are kind of excited and with you to bring something new because that is the beauty of this as a role," said Whittaker in a HBO Max reunion of former Doctor Whos including David Tennant and Matt Smith.

“You're not supposed to be recreating what someone did, you’re supposed to take it. But when you're in your Doctor's clothes and you've got your own friends in it feels in a weird way all that pressure disappears because it's yours to play with.”