Phoebe Waller-Bridge in “Fleabag”. (Photo: Amazon Studios)
Everyone loves BBC Three/Amazon comedy Fleabag, and star Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s is a big part of why. Funny, sly, smart and emotionally devastating by turns, her performance as the titular Fleabag is making waves everywhere. So much so that she’s being eyed for a role in the upcoming Han Solo Star Wars prequel. And she’s also now sitting near the top of the oddmakers charts as the candidate most likely to succeed outgoing Doctor Peter Capaldi. Some of this seems like just so much internet gossip. After all, whenever anyone has a breakout hit like Fleabag, suddenly they’re reportedly in the running for everything under the sun. That doesn’t necessarily make it true. But if Waller-Bridge is in the running to play Thirteen? She’d be a great choice.
Besides Fleabag, Waller-Bridge has had solid roles in Crashing, Blandings, The Café and The Iron Lady, to name just a few. She also played a major part in the second season of Broadchurch as Abby Thompson, the barrister to accused murderer Joe Miller. More importantly, this means she already possess a solid working relationship with Chris Chibnall, the new showrunner for Doctor Who. That doesn’t necessarily mean her casting is a lock or anything – just that it’s not uncommon for show executives to want to cast people they know. It’s a point in her favor, that’s for sure.
However, Waller-Bridge’s success may prove an ultimate obstacle to her playing Thirteen. A second season of Fleabag is in the works already. And should she land that Han Solo role, she’d likely be much too busy to take on a role as demanding as the Doctor. No matter how great at the part she might be.