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Chanya Button Revealed as New Doctor Who 60th Anniversary Director

Chanya Button has been revealed as the latest director in charge of Doctor Who‘s 60th anniversary celebrations — and what’s more, it appears this news confirms numerous special episodes will air to commemorate the massive milestone!

Button announced that she’s in charge of an episode of the series on Instagram, posting a clapperboard with the caption:

“When @russelltdavies63 🧙 offers you a ticket to the Whoniverse there’s only one answer. YES PLEASE!!”

The board reveals this is “episode 3”, tying into the rumours that there will be three celebratory stories airing in 2023, presumably with David Tennant and Catherine Tate as the Doctor and Donna Noble respectively, and written by showrunner, Russell T Davies.

And of course, Rachel Talalay (Heaven Sent/ Hell Bent; Twice Upon a Time) has also been confirmed for the 60th, meaning we’re definitely getting more than one episode anyway.

Chanya Button is probably best known for directing the 2018 film, Vita and Virginia, based on the true love story between authors, Vita Sackville-West, and Virginia Woolf, played by Elizabeth Debicki (Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 2; The Night Manager) and Gemma Arterton (Quantum of Solace; Watership Down). Button has also directed (and produced) the 2015 black comedy, Burn Burn Burn, and the acclaimed World War II drama, World on Fire (2019).

It’s always lovely to have a fresh face in front of and behind the camera, and Button seems like a great fit for Doctor Who. Asked for the best and worst advice she’s ever received, she said:

“‘Don’t take it personally,’ oddly enough, is the best advice I’ve ever been given! You need such an enormous amount of resilience to bring a film to life. You’ll hear the word “no” ten times more often than the word “yes.” If I took every “no” to heart I don’t know how I’d get out of bed every morning!

“And I can’t think of any terrible advice! The creative process is so subjective — if anything ever sounds like terrible advice it’s only because someone works in a different way to you. I think you have to just try to develop a strong sense of your own process and what’s right for you.”

She sounds enthusiastic, realistic, and exciting — a strong addition to the legion of Who directors.

We expect to hear more about the 60th anniversary in the coming months, presumably after Jodie Whittaker’s swansong as the Thirteenth Doctor later this year.

Philip Bates

Editor and co-founder of the Doctor Who Companion. When he’s not watching television, reading books ‘n’ Marvel comics, listening to The Killers, and obsessing over script ideas, Philip Bates pretends to be a freelance writer. He enjoys collecting everything. Writer of The Black Archive: The Pandorica Opens/ The Big Bang, The Silver Archive: The Stone Tape, and 100 Objects of Doctor Who.

Chanya Button Revealed as New Doctor Who 60th Anniversary Director

by Philip Bates time to read: 2 min
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