The Doctor can travel in time and space. And now the BBC will liven up the experience by filming and broadcasting the much anticipated 50th anniversary episode in 3-D … and distribute it to theaters.
Showrunner Steven Moffat said the addition of 3-D would bring a “whole new dimension of adventure for The Doctor to explore.”
The announcement is the latest in the fast-and-furious coverage of the 50th anniversary celebration episode. It is rumored that current Doctor, Matt Smith, will meet with all of his predecessors, including William Hartnell, Jon Pertwee and Patrick Troughton (who have all since passed away) – as well as Christopher Eccleston, who had formerly distanced himself from the show.
Of course, this is not the first attempt at a 3-D “Doctor Who” episode. “Dimensions in Time” was broadcast as a part of the 1993 BBC telethon for its Children in Need charity. The two-part telecast served as a 30th anniversary special and included a time jump to 2013.
To see the 3-D effect, viewers needed a pair of cardboard glasses with one clear and one polarized lens. The glasses were sold in British stores with proceeds going to the charity. It was reported that “Dimensions in Time” raised more than £101,000 (about $157,000) for Children in Need.
“Dimensions in Time” was one of the most highly watched episodes of series ever produced at the time. The two-part special reportedly drew more than 13 million viewers.
The 50th anniversary edition, considering the hype and attention it is receiving, could rival those numbers.
The anniversary special will be shown on the BBC HD channel, presumably because the 3-D effect will require the extra bandwidth provided by the HD signal. The exact release date has not been confirmed yet, but it is (once again) rumored that the episode will air during the actual anniversary month of November.
“Doctor Who” itself returns in April to BBC and BBC America.