In The Suicide Squad, the word “suicide” in the title refers to how unlikely it is any of the films’ protagonists will survive the conflict. Either ironically or fittingly — depending on how you look at it — one of the films’ stars may have committed career suicide while promoting the film, at least in terms of his involvement with Doctor Who.
The Scottish actor Peter Capaldi plays The Thinker in The Suicide Squad — a villain whose intellect is boosted with cybernetic enhancements. But he’s known much better as the Twelfth Doctor in the popular British sci-fi series Doctor Who, bridging the tenures of Matt Smith and Jodie Whittaker as the eponymous Time Lord. His time as the regular Doctor began with Season 8 of the current series and ended after Season 10. He also makes an appearance as the Doctor in the spin-off series Class as well as voicing the character in video games like 2015’s LEGO Dimensions.
It’s in the area of voice work, in fact, where Capaldi recently may have gotten in a little bit of trouble. As Cinema Blend reported on Thursday, Capaldi was expected to play the Doctor for the Big Finish Doctor Who audio drama Timejacked. However, rather than Capaldi, the Twelfth Doctor will now be voiced by Jacob Dudman, who has done voice work on previous Doctor Who audio dramas.
While it hasn’t been confirmed, there’s a lot of speculation that Capaldi’s recent interview on The Chris Moyles Show may be to blame for his replacement in the Doctor Who audio drama. Capaldi appeared on the show while doing press for The Suicide Squad. During the interview, after Capaldi mentions he’d like to be DJ, he’s asked if he’s ever worked in radio. The actor answers he’s done radio plays, and what he says about them isn’t very complimentary. Capaldi says he finds making them “quite dreary” and that they’re made “in the basement of the BBC with all the pipes and stuff.” He goes on to call it “an absolutely glamor free zone.” See the interview below.
If Capaldi’s comments about the BBC’s unglamorous basement did have anything to do with his being replaced on Timejacked, he didn’t help things when he appeared on Sunday with Steven Rainey last Sunday when he said he had no interest in doing any more Doctor Who stories in which he appears alongside other Doctors from the past and present. Clarifying that he loved his time as the Doctor, Capaldi explained that he thought “the more of the multi-Doctor stories” that were made, “the less effective they are.”
If Capaldi did lose the Timejacked gig for his recent comments, he won’t be the only Doctor Who alum to lose work related to the popular franchise this year. John Barrowman, who played Captain Jack Harkness on both Doctor Who and the spin-off Torchwood, has been under fire this past year after allegations resurfaced of repeatedly exposing his genitals to other cast members. In May, io9 reported that plans had been canceled for the planned audio drama Torchwood: Absent Friends, which would have reunited David Tennant’s version of the Doctor with Harkness. The following month, Radio Times learned Titan Comics cancelled plans for a graphic novel starring Captain Jack. The graphic novel was advertised as leading into the upcoming Season 13 of Doctor Who, causing many to speculate — though it has not been confirmed — that before the controversy, Barrowman was set to reprise his role in the TV series.