Jodie Whittaker was "quite emotional" over the huge audience for her 'Doctor Who' debut.

Jodie Whittaker

Jodie Whittaker

The 36-year-old actress appeared in her first full episode as the Time Lord last weekend with an average of 8.2 million viewers tuning in, meaning it drew a bigger audience than both Matt Smith and David Tennant's introductions.

Speaking to Chris Evans on the BBC Radio 2 breakfast show, she said: "The good thing about being on a show like 'Doctor Who' is you know it will be seen - but obviously to this extent is quite emotional...

"What we wanted was something that the family could sit down [in front of]. To make this piece that is for everyone and is inclusive - because it's not just for Whovians. It's to make new Whovians as well."

Jodie - who is the first woman to take on the iconic sci-fi role - opened up about the positive reaction to the episode, and said it has been an amazing experience building up to the moment it finally aired on TV.

She added: "It's been really exciting, just because of the whole thing of the show and me finding out I'd got it before anyone else knew.

"There's been probably an 18 month period building up to it being seen by the fans."

Although she held it together this time, the former 'Broadchurch' star admitted she cried when she saw her first appearance as the Doctor at New York Comic Con earlier this year.

She said: "We had a screening and there were about 5000 people and a panel afterwards of fans watching the show, and I blubbed my eyes out throughout the entire thing! Just because it was such a massive sigh of relief more than anything."

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