Tom Baker returns to Doctor Who role for newly-released episode

Tom Baker has filmed a scene for Shada which was abandoned in 1979

The oldest living Doctor, 83-year-old Baker threw on his stripy scarf and stepped back into the TARDIS to complete the serial-36 years after it was abandoned. Shada was meant to be a celebratory episode to conclude the 17th series of Doctor Who, and was written by Douglas Adams, most famous for penning book The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Unfortunately, strikes wracked Britain for months and the episode was put on the backburner, with some of the existing footage later used in the Doctor Who 20th anniversary special.

Baker played the fourth Doctor from 1974 to 1981 and is regularly voted fans' favourite Timelord.

The parts not filmed in 1979 will be completed using animation and Baker's voice, but he has also filmed a live action scene. Last year, the BBC also released an animated version of The Power of the Daleks using audio from the original episode, after losing the source video. In 2013, he was cast in a Doctor Who episode as a curator in the National Gallery.

"It's a nice way of waving goodbye to an era of Doctor Who and the 1970s and to Tom Baker in general", he said.

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It's exciting to see BBC give makeovers to lost or unfinished episodes of Doctor Who, which still unfortunately boasts huge gaps in the runs of the Second Doctor (Patrick Troughton).

First off, he turned up in non-canon multi-Doctor special "Dimensions in Time", which aired as part of the 1993 Children in Need celebrations.

"That's why I can't stay away from it, it was a lovely time of my life", he said. I loved doing Doctor Who because it was life to me.

The newly finished storyline is now available as a digital download and will be released on DVD and Blu-ray on Monday, December 4.

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