Sci-fi series considered most successful of all-time

On Sunday, the Guinness Book of World Records recognized “Doctor Who” as the most successful sci-fi series. “It is too good a show to have just one record,” said Guinness editor in chief Craig Glenday.

Guinness granted the award on the basis of broadcast ratings, DVD sales, book sales and iTunes traffic. “It’s hard to quantify illegal downloads, but we included those as well,” Glenday said.

Longevity was another factor, since “Doctor Who” also holds the Guinness record for longest-running sci-fi TV series. A controversy broke out over that record in 2006, and “Stargate SG-1″ later received the record for longest-running consecutive sci-fi series after completing a 10-year run.

“I can hear Comic-Con war breaking out there,” said showrunner Russell T. Davies, who accepted the honor on behalf of “Dr Who” creator Verity Lambert.

“Doctor Who” premiered November 23, 1963. The one-hour “Dr. Who” special, “Planet of the Dead,” premieres July 26 on BBC America.

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