Originally a stage comic known for his work in productions such as the Secret Policeman's Ball, Atkinson is best known for creating and starring in two iconic UK TV series Mr. Bean and Blackadder, which he co-created with Richard Curtis and which featured appearances by many Doctor Who alumni.
Film roles include the James Bond film Never Say Never Again and the Bond spoofs Johnny English and Johnny English Reborn. Atkinson also starred in the police comedy The Thin Blue Line with Mina Anwar.
In a Mr. Bean Christmas episode, Rowan Atkinson makes a reference to Dr. Who while playing with a Nativity scene in a toy store. At one point, he plays with a toy Dalek, which then kills off a sheep and later also a dinosaur. Mr. Bean also says the word: "Exterminate" and "Hahahaha!" while playing with the Dalek.
He was considered for the role of the Eighth Doctor in the 1996 TV movie.