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13 December 2023, 15:48
It's time to meet the new Doctor.
In May 2022, Ncuti Gatwa was revealed as the next actor to take on the coveted role of Doctor Who, becoming the first black actor to play the time travelling television hero.
On Christmas Day in 2023, Gatwa will make his debut appearance as the fifteenth Doctor, in the episode titled The Church On Ruby Road.
It'll mark the first Christmas Day outing for Doctor Who since 2017, given the excitement around Ncuti taking on the role.
Already spotted in some seriously stylish outfits, Ncuti will usher in a new age of the fabled Doctor on what falls on the long-running television series' 60th anniversary.
But who is Ncuti Gatwa? How old is the actor and where was he born? What else has he been in? Here's all you need to know;
Ncuti Gatwa was born on 15th October 1992 in the Nyarugenge district in the city of Kigali in Rwanda. In 2023 he turned 31 years old.
His family - including his father Tharcisse Gatwa who is a journalist with a PhD in Theology - escaped the Rwandan genocide against the Tutsi in 1994 and found refuge Scotland.
They first lived in Oxgangs in Edinburgh before later relocating to Dunfermline when Ncuti was fifteen years old.
Ncuti moved to Glasgow after graduating high school, to study at the Royal Conservatoier of Scotland where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Acting in 2013.
He went on to appear in a host of acting roles in the theatre, receiving a Commendation at the 2014 Ian Charleson Awards for his part in Romeo & Juliet in Manchester.
Alongside his performances in theatre, Ncuti also worked at LGBTQ+ club The Polo Lounge as a go-go dancer.
He was brutally attacked by a gang of thugs in Glasgow around that time, which was fixed with titanium after the gang fractured his jaw.
Being broke, homeless, and having to couch surf for a period, he was eventually cast in Netflix comedy-drama series Sex Education in 2018, which completely transformed his career.
For his role as Eric Effiong, Ncuti received a swathe of awards, including a BAFTA Scotland Award for Best Actor in Television in 2020, as well as three consecutive BAFTA Television Award nominations for Best Male Comedy Performance in 2020, 2021, and 2022.
CHRISTMAS TRAILER | The Church on Ruby Road | Doctor Who
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After Ncuti was revealed as the latest actor to play Doctor Who in May 2022, he said: "There aren't quite the words to describe how I’m feeling. A mix of deeply honoured, beyond excited and of course a little bit scared."
"This role and show means so much to so many around the world, including myself, and each one of my incredibly talented predecessors has handled that unique responsibility and privilege with the utmost care."
"I will endeavour my utmost to do the same. Russell T Davies is almost as iconic as the Doctor himself and being able to work with him is a dream come true. His writing is dynamic, exciting, incredibly intelligent and fizzing with danger. An actor's metaphorical playground."
"The entire team have been so welcoming and truly give their hearts to the show. And so as much as it’s daunting, I'm aware I’m joining a really supportive family. Unlike the Doctor, I may only have one heart but I am giving it all to this show."
As of December 2023, Ncuti Gatwa is single and is focusing on his acting career.
Up until an interview with Elle magazine in August 2023, Ncuti had previously avoided discussing his sexuality and personal life - despite the speculation - for his own "safety and mental health".
During the interview, Gatwa publicly came out as queer, though noted that he preferred not to label himself.
He said he'd been inspired by his work on Sex Education and an encounter with a queer Rwandan woman at Manchester Pride, as he'd "never met another queer Rwandan person before".
After the interview with Elle, Ncuti stated that he had "never been in the closet, you know. I just never talked about it. The work I do is what’s important."
Ncuti's first name is actually pronounced "Shooty". He is the first actor who was born outside of the UK to play Doctor Who.
The actor said he's often met with confusion when he's back in Scotland, as he slips back into his Scottish accent.
In an interview with The Guardian, he said: "I don’t think you expect to see a young black boy with skin fades coming out with a Scottish accent. Even me!"
Talking to The Big Issue about his stint being homeless, he revealed: "I didn’t have a home. I was homeless. The only thing stopping me from being on the streets was the fact I had friends. But you can use up that goodwill. Or you feel scared to ask people for help. Your pride kicks in."
He is fond of astrology and his star sign is Libra.