Dame Helen Mirren wants BBC bosses to seriously consider casting a female Time Lord following Matt Smith’s departure from Doctor Who – but has ruled herself out of contention.
The 67-year-old star of The Queen added that there were plenty of suitable female candidates available for producers to consider who would “absolutely kill” in the part.
“I think it's absolutely time for a female Doctor Who,” she said.
“I'm so sick of that man with his girl sidekick. I could name at least ten wonderful British actresses who would absolutely kill in that role."
When told that her name has been listed by one bookmaker as being 25/1 to land the role, Mirren responded: “Oh, please, I would put much longer odds on it than that.”
Former Who actor Arthur Darvill reckons Dame Helen would be a good choice to take up residence in the TARDIS, however – although he admitted that he does tend to think of the part as being one for a man.
"I suppose it could be a woman," the Broadchurch actor is reported to have told Anglophenia.
"I don't know. I think it is a male part, though I think it's just about the person."
The 30-year-old, who played Rory Williams in the sci-fi favourite, added: "I'd love to see Dame Helen do it - best of luck to whoever gets it, though."
Bookies announced earlier this week that they were no longer taking bets on the identity of the new Doctor following a report in a Sunday newspaper that Rory Kinnear had been offered the part.
The newspaper quoted an undisclosed source that said the award-winning 35-year-old thesp was the "perfect choice".
A BBC Drama spokesperson reiterated that the search for Smith’s replacement is at a very early stage – and it sounds like bosses won’t be rushed into a decision.
She said: “The Doctor is one of the biggest roles in TV and speculation around the identity of who will be next to step in to the TARDIS is rife, but the search has only just begun so only believe what you hear from us, and that won't be for a while!”
Can't make the first gif work, so I changed it to one of Helen Mirren being a certified badass in the '70s. Who would you cast as a female Doctor, ONTD?