Nicolas Hoult Was Almost Cast In The Idiot’s Lantern

Here’s a fun fact – X-Men star Nicholas Hoult was originally supposed to be cast in Doctor Who Series Two episode, The Idiot’s Lantern but missed out because he was too young.

Mark Gatiss, who penned the episode and is the subject of an in-depth interview in the latest issue of Doctor Who Magazine, let slip that the role of Tommy Connolly nearly went to the Skins actor.

However, Rory Jennings was eventually cast as the character, who helped the Tenth Doctor and Rose (Billie Piper) save TV viewers from The Wire.

Gatiss said:

“I remember Nicholas Hoult was going to play that part, but we couldn’t get the licence to work because he was too young.

“But Rory Jennings, who played Tommy, was wonderful – and he was actually a lot older than he looked.”

Gatiss, who will appear in this year’s Christmas special, Twice Upon a Time, in the role of the captain, also said that the character of Tommy was originally meant to be gay.

Gatiss added:

“In the early drafts, the boy Tommy is gay and he has a crush on the Doctor.

“Rose thinks he’s interested in her, then goes ‘Oh!’ and realises Tommy’s been talking about the Doctor all along.

“And the Doctor has to have a quiet word with him. When they get back in the TARDIS, Rose says something like, ‘It’s quite sweet isn’t it – obviously you wouldn’t be interested’.

“And the Doctor plays ‘Don’t Fence Me In’ by Cole Porter, like James Bond [in Skyfall] saying, ‘What makes you think it’s my first time?’

“I thought it’d be nice to have the Doctor telling Rose not to make any assumptions about him.”

Doctor Who Magazine #515 is available to buy now.

  • FrancoPabloDiablo

    It would have still been a disappointing episode, regardless of who was cast. I think this is my least favourite Gatiss episode. I’d even prefer Victory or Sleep over this. Great episode name though – I’ll give him that much 🙂

    • DonnaM

      It might have given me *one* cheering moment if Rose’s second series smug balloon had been pricked – wouldn’t have rescued the rest of it from terminal dullness though 🙂