During the 1970s, the BBC wiped several episodes of Doctor Who from their archives and they were thought lost forever. While some have been recovered, there are still 97 missing episodes in total. But one archivist reckon’s they’re still out there waiting to be found.
BBC Doctor Who archivist Paul Vanezis recovered four missing episodes in the 80s, and in an interview on the Radio Free Skaro podcast, he revealed he knows where some others may be hidden.
“There is absolutely no question that there are missing Doctor Who films out there with private film collectors I know some of these collectors, and at some point they may be interested in handing over their films. But they’re not the kind of people that you should be pressuring to hand things over.”
That might prompt you to think that these collectors are mean for not letting people see their beloved episodes, but Vanezis doesn’t see it that way:
“There’s been a lot of criticism of film collectors by people who should really know better. Without them, these things would have been lost or destroyed years and years ago and the fact that they have survived and survived in good condition is because people have cared for them. We might not like it because we can’t see them but it’s not really for us to criticise them for preserving this material. one day we will get to see them.”
Although Vanezis seems pretty confident that he knows the whereabouts of lost episodes, he makes it clear that it’s only a small number:
“I don’t want to make this sound like there are lots of tins of missing Doctor Who out there that I know about. You know, we’re talking about one or two episodes. But they’re there and if something happens at some point in the future for them to be revealed then great.”