Doctor Who spin-off axed in BBC cuts

A Doctor Who spin-off show is being dropped by the BBC as the corporation plans for life after 20 per cent budget cuts.

Doctor Who Confidential, which is shown on BBC Three, mixes cast and crew interviews with a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the popular science fiction show.

The programme runs at 8pm on Saturdays shortly after Doctor Who finishes on BBC One.

A BBC spokeswoman said: “The Doctor Who spin-off series Doctor Who Confidential has been a great show for BBC Three over the years, but our priority now is to build on original British commissions, unique to the channel.”

The BBC, which has to implement savings following the six-year licence fee freeze, has cut the number of senior managers it employs and frozen bonus payments.

BBC Three controller Zai Bennett told the Edinburgh International Television Festival he would be “focusing” his budget on the 9pm and 10.30pm time slots.

He added: “Budgets are tight, so we have to be sensible with the money we have.”

Zai has already axed BBC Three shows including the Johnny Vegas sitcom Ideal and Two Pints Of Lager And A Packet Of Crisps.

The BBC’s cost-cutting strategy, Delivering Quality First, will be unveiled early next month.

Among the proposals reportedly being considered are dropping overnight programmes on BBC One and replacing daytime shows on BBC Two with rolling news.

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