Inside Ncuti Gatwa’s incredible life story from homelessness to Doctor Who lead

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BBC bosses recently announced that actor Ncuti Gatwa will be the next Doctor Who.

The 29 year old is set to takeover from current Doctor Who star Jodie Whittaker, who will step down from her role as the Time Lord later this year.

Posting the news on their official Twitter page Sunday 8 May, the series announced: “The future is here! Ncuti Gatwa is the Doctor,” as fans went wild.

Scottish star Ncuti, who was born in Rwanda, told how he was thrilled to be taking on the role, and called it a “unique responsibility”.

“This role and show means so much to so many around the world, including myself, and each one of my incredibly talented predecessors has handled that unique responsibility and privilege with the utmost care,” he told the BBC.

Here we take a look into the Sex Education star’s life and career so far…

Ncuti Gatwa has been revealed as the new Doctor Who
Ncuti Gatwa has been revealed as the new Doctor Who
(Image: Getty)

Billie Faiers, Greg Shepherd and children Nelly and Arthur are an adorable family unit in the photoshoot

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Ncuti and his family moved to Scotland in 1994, and lived in Edinburgh and Dunfermline.

The star later moved to Glasgow in order to study at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, and he graduated with a BA in acting in 2013.

He then landed a place on the Dundee Repertory Theatre acting graduation scheme, and he went on to perform in numerous productions including Victoria and miniseries Stonemouth.

Ncuti became a fan-favourite on Sex Education
Ncuti became a fan-favourite on Sex Education.
(Image: SAM TAYLOR/NETFLIX)

In 2018, Ncuti was cast as Eric Effiong in hit Netflix show Sex Education, with the first series of the show being released in 2019.

The role saw the actor shoot to fame overnight, and he went on to win a BAFTA Scotland Award for Best Actor in Television in 2020, as well as earning three BAFTA TV Award nominations for Best Male Comedy Performance in 2020, 2021 and 2022.

However, Ncuti previously revealed that before landing the role, he’d struggled with homelessness and depression.

Writing for The Big Issue back in 2020, he told how he’d ran out of savings and was struggling to make ends meet. He wrote: “Being a 25-year-old man with no money or job affected my sense of self-worth. Rejection became unbearable. Auditions weren’t just acting jobs, they were lifelines.”

Ncuti previously opened up about his struggles before landing his Netflix role
Ncuti struggled to make ends meet before landing his Netflix role
(Image: Instagram / Ncuti Gatwa)

He added: “One friend gave me money towards paying off the prior month’s rent and offered to let me move into their spare room rent free for a while.

“Great, I thought. An opportunity to get back on my feet and start paying people back. On moving-in day, he changed his mind. As I was standing on the street with my suitcases, one thought came into my head: ‘I’m homeless.'”

Ncuti went on to explain how he wasn’t eating properly at the time as he couldn’t afford to, writing: “To the outside world everything seemed fine. I was temping at Harrods.

“I’d wake up from the double bed I shared with my best friend, leave the house without a hair out of place in a slick-looking trench coat and polished brogues. I would get compliments for looking so presentable. When I lost weight due to eating only one meal a day, people told me how lean and healthy I looked.”

Sex Education star Ncuti Gatwa has been revealed as the new Doctor Who, replacing Jodie Whittaker
Ncuti will replace Jodie Whittaker in Doctor Who
(Image: BBC)

At this time, Ncuti had actually developed depression but he kept it from his friends out of fear of being a “burden”.

However, the actor’s life was changed when he landed the role of Eric in Sex Education, and he’s since gone on to enjoy great success.

Sex Education proved to be an instant hit among viewers, and the fourth series is currently in the works.

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