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David Tennant

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David John McDonald (better known under his stage-name David Tennant) portrayed Barty Crouch Jr. in the film adaptation of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. He is best known for his role as the Tenth Doctor in the long-running BBC series Doctor Who.

Early Life

Tennant attended the Ralston Primary and Paisley Grammar School in Scotland. He also attended Saturday classes at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama.


Tennant made his professional acting debut while still in secondary school. When he was 16 he acted in an anti-smoking film made by the Glasgow Health Board which aired on television and was also screened in schools. The following year he played a role in an episode of Dramarama.

Tennant's first professional role upon graduating from drama school was in a staging of The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui co-starring Ashley Jensen, one of a few plays in which he performed as part of the agitprop 7:84 Theatre Company.

Tennant's first major TV role was as the manic depressive Campbell in the Scottish drama series Takin' Over the Asylum (1994). During filming, Tennant met comic actress and writer Arabella Weir. When he moved to London shortly afterwards he lodged with Weir for five years and became godfather to her youngest child. He has subsequently appeared alongside Weir in many productions; as a guest in her spoof television series, Posh Nosh; in the Doctor Who audio drama Exile- during which Weir played an alternate version of the Doctor- and as panelists on the West Wing Ultimate Quiz on More4.

Tennant developed his career in the British theatre, frequently performing with the Royal Shakespeare Company for whom he specialised in comic roles such as Touchstone in As You Like It, Antipholus of Syracuse in The Comedy of Errors (a role he recorded for the 1998 Arkangel Complete Shakespeare production of the play) and Captain Jack Absolute in The Rivals, although he also played the tragic role of Romeo in Romeo and Juliet.

In 2000, Tennant appeared at the Royal National Theatre, London, playing the role of Nicholas Beckett in Joe Orton's What the Butler Saw. The plot required Tennant to appear near-naked on stage.

Tennant appeared in several high-profile dramas for the BBC, including Takin' Over the Asylum (1994), He Knew He Was Right (2004), Blackpool (2004), Casanova (2005) and The Quatermass Experiment (2005). In film, he has appeared in Stephen Fry's Bright Young Things, and as Barty Crouch Jr. in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. One of his earliest big screen roles was in Jude (1996), in which he shared a scene with his Doctor Who predecessor Christopher Eccleston, playing a drunken undergraduate who challenges Eccleston's Jude to prove his intellect.


David Tennant as Barty Crouch Jr.

In 2005, soon after his appearance in Goblet of Fire, Tennant was signed to take over as the Tenth Doctor on Doctor Who after Christopher Eccleston chose to leave after a single season. Tennant is has been identified by Doctor Who Magazine and other media as one of the most popular actors to play the iconic SF character. In October 2008, he announced that he would be stepping down as The Doctor after appearing in four special episodes scheduled to air by the end of 2009; he was replaced by relative unknown Matt Smith.

In 2008, coinciding with his announcement regarding Doctor Who, Tennant performed in Hamlet the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon, UK. His co-star was Patrick Stewart of Star Trek fame. A back injury forced Tennant to undergo surgery towards the end of 2008, but he recovered in time to complete his run on Hamlet and film his final Doctor Who episodes.

Since completing his final scenes in Doctor Who, Tennant has filmed his performance of Hamlet for eventual

David Tennant having a laugh on set of Doctor Who (this was taken just before he got the role in Harry Potter)

TV broadcast, and is reportedly being considered for a number of high-profile movie roles. He is also scheduled to host Masterpiece Contemporary, a new version of Masterpiece Theatre, for the American PBS network in the fall of 2009[2].

Tennant performed alongside Doctor Who co-star Catherine Tate in Much Ado About Nothing between May 2011 and September 2011.

He also did voice work opposite Imelda Staunton again playing a protagonist in the Aardman film The Pirates! In an Adventure With Scientists!. Her voicing Queen Victoria and him voicing Charles Darwin.

Behind the scenes

  • Tennant's first solo appearance as the Tenth Doctor occurred in a (canonical) mini-episode produced for the 2005 Children in Need Appeal. This episode was first broadcast on 18 November 2005 -- the same day Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire was released in cinemas.
  • As the Doctor in Doctor Who, Tennant mentions Expelliarmus, J. K. Rowling and the seventh Harry Potter book in the Doctor Who episode The Shakespeare Code.
  • During the two-part Doctor Who story Rise of the Cybermen / The Age of Steel, he appears along with Roger Lloyd-Pack who in Goblet of Fire appeared as Barty Crouch Sr, Tennant's character's father, who played an enemy in Doctor Who whereas in GoF, David plays the villain and is the hero in Doctor Who.
  • Coincidentally, the first episode that David Tennant portrayed the Doctor was called "The Parting of the Ways". The last chapter that Tennant's character appears in the book is called "The Parting of the Ways". The amount of time the characters appear in is also very similar. Crouch appears for the first page of the chapter, while the the Tenth Doctor appears in the final scene of the episode.

External links

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