It seems strange to think that, until relatively recently, Christopher Eccleston was known as the ‘grumpy Doctor’.
He was the one who dramatically quit after just one season of the show and didn’t really want to be involved in promotional opportunities or appear at conventions. Instead, he wanted to be in the odd Hollywood blockbuster and develop an impressively eclectic CV, acting in the likes of The A Word on television and, on-stage, Macbeth, in which he is currently appearing at the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC).
Eccleston was also fairly candid about the fact that his time on Doctor Who had been a less than pleasant experience…
There is another side to the actor though, which shone through as time went on. He’s increasingly relaxed with Doctor Who fans and has even granted them exclusive interviews on occasion.
Even more recently, he’s been appearing as himself at St Paul’s C of E Primary School in Nuneaten and was, apparently, fantastic!
It was the actor’s more positive side that was on show when he made a visit to the school to deliver a masterclass in acting, with a specific focus on Shakespeare. Assistant headteacher, Jennifer Jenkins said:
“Lots of people wanted their pictures taken with him. He was really good but he was insistent on spending as much time as possible with the children.”
It was, according to Jenkins, an amazing opportunity, especially because of the school’s links with the RSC. It’s is part of the company’s Associate Schools Programme, which aims to foster a knowledge and appreciation of Shakespeare.
Which makes me wonder: Could the BBC do a similar associate schools programme that was focused on fostering knowledge of Doctor Who?
Daleks in the classroom, anyone?