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Doctor Who: Matt Lucas joins the cast

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Alice in Wonderland and Bridesmaids actor Matt Lucas has joined the cast of Doctor Who, it was announced Tuesday. The British star will become a regular on the show starting with the first episode of the upcoming season, which begins filming in Cardiff, Wales, next week.

Lucas will reprise the role of Nardole, the part he played in last year’s special Christmas episode of the longrunning science fiction show. The new season also stars Peter Capald as the Doctor and newcomer Pearl Mackie as the titular Time Lord’s companion. 

“I’m chuffed to bits that Nardole is returning to the TARDIS for some more adventures,” said Lucas in a statement. “I loved acting with Peter and I’m excited to work with Pearl.”

“Delighted and slightly amazed to be welcoming Matt Lucas back on to the TARDIS — and this time it’s not just for Christmas, he’s sticking around,” said Doctor Who executive producer and head writer, Steven Moffat. “One of the greatest comedy talents on planet Earth is being unleashed on all of time and space.”

Lucas’ other acting credits include PortlandiaPaddington, and Shaun of the Dead. In the U.K., he is best known for costarring with David Walliams in the sketch show Little Britain.

The opening episode of the new season is written by Moffat while the second has been penned by Frank Cottrell-Boyce (24 Hour Party People). The season will screen on BBC America in 2017 and will be preceded by another special Christmas episiode in December of this year.