Ian McKellen to star in Doctor Who Christmas special

Sir Ian McKellen is lending his voice to the 'Doctor Who - The Snowmen' Christmas special, in which he will portray the titular killers, who all have the same voice

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Sir Ian McKellan

Sir Ian McKellen

Sir Ian McKellen will star in the 'Doctor Who - The Snowmen' Christmas special.

The 'Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey' actor is lending his voice to the role of the titular killers, The Snowmen, who all have the same voice, in the sci-fi show's festive episode alongside Richard E. Grant, who is playing Victorian misanthrope Dr. Simeon.

While the 73-year-old star - who made a brief appearance as Mel Hutchwright in ITV1 soap 'Coronation Street' in May 2005 - is guest starring in the special episode, recent speculation suggests he could be set for a longer stint on the programme.

Jenna-Louise Coleman will make her debut as the Time Lord's new sidekick Clara Oswin in 'Doctor Who - The Snowmen' following her appearance in episode 'Asylum of the Daleks' in September, where she played deceased Dalek Oswin Oswald.

The special festive episode will see the titular Time Lord - played by Matt Smith - take on a mysterious icy menace which is causing chaos in Victorian England in 1892.

News of Ian's appearance comes two years after Matt said he would love the actor to play a bad guy in the show.

When asked who he would he like to see on 'Doctor Who' - which has previously attracted guest stars such as Michael Gambon, Kylie Minogue and Timothy Dalton - he replied: "Maybe Ian McKellen would be quite interesting to come and do one. He could be a cool baddie, couldn't he?"

The 'Doctor Who - The Snowmen' Christmas special will air on Christmas Day (25.12.12) at 5:15pm on BBC One.

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