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Doctor Who spin-off: Katherine Kelly to lead cast

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BBC America

Class is in session at Coal Hill School.

On Monday, BBC America announced that Katherine Kelly (Mr. Selfridge) will take on the role of teacher in the upcoming Doctor Who spin-off, Class, leading a charge of students played by Greg Austin, Fady Elsayed, Sophie Hopkins, and Vivian Oparah.

“We searched far and wide for this amazing cast, fantastic actors who understand what we’re aiming for with this show,” says Class creator Patrick Ness. “And how lucky we are to get Katherine Kelly! She’s been stunning in Happy Valley, The Night Manager, and Mr. Selfridge, just wait until you see her here.”

Coal Hill School has been a part of the Doctor Who universe since the series’ inception in 1963 — the Doctor’s most recent companion, Jenna Coleman’s Clara Oswald, served as a teacher at the school, though Ness confirms to EW that Clara is not involved in the spin-off — but the school’s continual brushes with time travel have worn down the walls of space and time. Now, we’re warned, “there’s something pressing in on the other side.”

Class is dark and sexy and right now,” says Doctor Who and Class executive producer Steven Moffat. “I’ve always wondered if there could be a British Buffy — it’s taken the brilliant Patrick Ness to figure out how to make it happen.”