Rachel Talalay is directing this year’s Doctor Who Christmas special.
After showrunner Steven Moffat spilled the beans ahead of the weekend’s Sherlocked convention in Los Angeles, Talalay herself confirmed the news via Twitter.
Yes, thrilled to be doing #DoctorWho Xmas episode (and what a script!). Very sad it's our last.— Rachel Talalay (@rtalalay) May 27, 2017
https://t.co/5sJr5lXUmz via @HuffPostBlog
The American director made Who history three years ago when she became the first woman to command a finale episode—a task she has undertaken three times. (She was also the show’s first female director since Catherine Morshead worked on Amy’s Choice in 2010.)
Talalay helmed 2014’s two-part ending “Dark Water”/”Death in Heaven,” and returned in 2015 for double-hitter “Heaven Sent”/”Hell Bent.” She’s weilding the megaphone again for this season’s paired conclusion, “World Enough and Time”/”The Doctor Falls.”
“We checked up on Rachel several times on Doctor Who, because she’s got phenomenal experience in genre and action,” Moffat told the Huffington Post last week. “Frankly, making big-budget spectaculars on no money at all is what we need, and Rachel’s got such a deep background, and such great ability at that.
“I’m working with her right now, actually,” he continued. “We’re just finishing up on the finale episodes, and planning the Christmas one, which she’s also directing—which is my very last one.”
And, judging by Talalay’s tweet, her swan song, too.
“Very sad it’s our last,” she wrote on Saturday, hinting that she is joining Moffat and stars Peter Capaldi and Michelle Gomez as they say goodbye to Doctor Who.
There is no word on whether the Tank Girl director’s appointment to the holiday event implies the need for continuity between the series 10 conclusion and December’s snowy romp—which is expected to see the Twelfth Doctor’s full regeneration.
Before joining the Whoniverse, Talalay led feature films like Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare (1991), Ghost in the Machine (1993), and The Wind in the Willows (2006). She has also lent her talent to TV shows like Ally McBeal and Kyle XY, and joined the Arrowverse last year, directing one episode of Legends of Tomorrow and Supergirl, plus two chapters of The Flash.
But perhaps most notably, Talalay became the first woman to direct Moffat’s other powerhouse, Sherlock, with season four opener “The Six Thatchers.”