Jodie Whittaker has been announced as the 13th 'Doctor Who'

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The BBC and BBC America today announced to the world that Jodie Whittaker will be the new DOCTOR WHO.

The "Broadchurch" star will replace Peter Capaldi when the series returns for its annual Christmas special.

Speaking about the decision, Head Writer and Executive Producer Chris Chibnall said: "After months of lists, conversations, auditions, recalls, and a lot of secret-keeping, we're excited to welcome Jodie Whittaker as the Thirteenth Doctor".

"I always knew I wanted the Thirteenth Doctor to be a woman and we're thrilled to have secured our number one choice", he said.

"It feels completely overwhelming; as a feminist, as a woman, as an actor, as a human, as someone who wants to continually push themselves and challenge themselves, and not be boxed in by what you're told you can and can't be", Whittaker said in a BBC Q&A.

Jodie is best known for her role in UK television drama Broadchurch, where she starred coincidently alongside David Tennant, who played the tenth Doctor back in 2005. "The 13th Doctor is on her way".

Fans of the show have had mixed reactions to the announcement, with some taking to Twitter to share their disdain at a woman Doctor. She has above all the huge heart to play this most special part. "She's going to be a fantastic Doctor".

Whittaker, 35, will succeed Peter Capaldi, 59, who's leaving the show and the role he took over in 2013.

Finally, the big moment for Doctor Who fans has arrived. "She is destined to be an utterly iconic Doctor". I've been a fan for years and always hoped to work with her. She is an actor of great emotional range and inhabits every role with complete passion and conviction.

Doctor Who has existed for 36 seasons on the BBC, starting in 1963, with 12 men playing the Doctor over the years.