New Doctor Who star Ncuti Gatwa has come down to earth after celebrating landing one of TV’s biggest roles by returning to his north London flat.
The actor, 29, returned home on Sunday for a quiet night after a whirlwind weekend in which the TSWT announced he had landed the role of the titular Time Lord.
A source close to the star told TSWT: “He’s very tired. He’s had a long weekend. He’s home and he’s not going anywhere tonight.
EXCLUSIVE: New Doctor Who star Ncuti Gatwa has celebrated his iconic role on the show by returning to his north London apartment, which he shares with a close friend who runs a unisex salon, where he is a known regular
Gatwa, 29, is set to become one of Britain’s most recognized faces after being named Jodie Whittaker’s replacement, becoming the first black actor to play the Time Lord.
The announcement came as Gatwa stepped out on the red carpet after being nominated for a TV Bafta for the Netflix series Sex Education.
But behind the glitz and glamour, the Rwandan-born actor lives modestly and likes to keep a low profile.
Neighbors told how the star was ‘staying alone’ and unaware they had a celebrity living on their doorstep in north London.
Stellar: The actor returned home to his north London flat on Sunday for a quiet night after a whirlwind weekend in which the TSWT announced he had landed the role of the Time Lord
Candid: Two years ago, Ncuti revealed that he moved in with his best friend and his mother who run a unisex salon, and regularly shared snaps from there on his Instagram
Her home is a top-floor apartment in a converted Victorian terraced house with peeling paint and a crumbling garden wall.
Two years ago Gatwa, who grew up in Dunfermline, told how he moved in with ‘my best friend and his mum’ as he struggled to make ends meet. It is not known if he still lives with them.
In an interview, he said: “I live with my best friend and his mum, who runs a salon in Tottenham and I’m there all the time.”
The couple who took him under their wing are hairstylist Ama Safo and his son Silas Baiden, 37, who run a unisex salon.
Gatwa is a regular visitor to Ama’s hair salon, often posting photos to her 2.7 million Instagram followers.
Support: The couple who took him under their wing are hairstylist Ama Safo and his son Silas Baiden, 37, who run a unisex salon nearby
Full range: The salon, which is open six days a week, charges just £15 for a men’s haircut or £7 for a beard trim, and offers a wide range of specialist services for Afro and Euro hairstyles.
The salon, which is open six days a week, charges just £15 for a men’s haircut or £7 for a beard trim. Women’s haircuts start at £20, but the salon also offers a wide range of specialist services for Afro and Euro hairstyles.
Gatwa – who has also started filming for the new Barbie movie – has previously told how he found himself homeless as he struggled to make his big break into acting in his mid-twenties.
He told how he relied on friends when he was “couch oversurfing” and couldn’t even afford the train fare to and from job interviews.
Rise to fame: Gatwa (pictured in his close friend’s living room) has previously shared how he found himself homeless as he struggled to make his big breakthrough in acting
He said: “I developed depression. But I never let people know how bad I felt. It would have been another burden on my friends.
The first signs that times could be changing for Gatwa appeared on the street today as a security guard sat in a car outside the actor’s house.
A neighbor said: ‘I didn’t know he was on TV. He really is so calm. Sometimes you don’t see it for a while. He is really very discreet. He keeps to himself.
“It’s great to have Doctor Who living across the street. Maybe that will be a selling point for estate agents and push up property prices.
Another neighbor said: ‘We have lived here for almost 50 years and I had no idea we had such a famous neighbour.
Surprise! The show is no stranger to famous faces, with EastEnders star Tameka Empson visiting
“It’s not such a bad place to live. A good number of houses are being renovated. There is a bus stop at the end of the road and there is a grocery store, post office and laundromat around the corner which is quite convenient.
But one local woman was not so impressed, saying: ‘I have to be honest with you, I’m not a Doctor Who fan’.
“It scared me as a kid, funny enough. I do not know why. It was easy to escape the Daleks because they couldn’t climb stairs.
Ncuti will become the popular sci-fi show’s 14th Doctor, after Whittaker announced last July that she would step down from the role this fall.
Gatwa is the first black actor to take on the lead role of The Doctor, after Jodie made history as the first permanent female Time Lord in 2017.
Exciting: Ncuti attended the BAFTA TV Awards ceremony alongside returning Doctor Who writer Russell T Davies hours after it was confirmed he would succeed Jodie Whittaker
Jo Martin played the first black incarnation of the Time Lord in a January 2020 episode, Future of the Judoon, as Ruth Clayton, but Gatwa became the first black Doctor to be chosen to lead the series.
Rwandan-born Scottish actor Gatwa shot to fame as gay teenager Eric Effiong in Netflix’s wildly popular Sex Education about socially awkward high school student Otis (Asa Butterfield) and his sex therapist mother Jean (Gillian Anderson).
Just hours after the announcement, Gatwa and Davies, who returns as Doctor Who showrunner, smiled and posed for snaps at the Virgin Media British Academy Television Awards at the Royal Festival Hall on Sunday.
Success story: Rwandan-born Scottish actor Gatwa starred as Eric Effiong in Netflix’s wildly popular Sex Education about socially awkward high school student Otis (Asa Butterfield – pictured together)