Peter Capaldi opens up about leaving DoctorWho

Louise McCreesh
Photo credit: BBC

From Digital Spy

Peter Capaldi has shared some more details about the reasons behind his Doctor Who exit, and he's revealed that it has a lot to do with hitting that elusive three year mark.

Previous Doctors David Tennant and Matt Smith both bowed out of the role after around three years – something showrunner Steven Moffatt noted recently that there was "a logic" to – and now Capaldi is weighing in on the time frame too, saying he feels like he'd given the role everything he could.

"I was not sure how long you could keep doing this and be doing your best," he told The Sunday Times. "My fear was that if I went on, I'd end up phoning it in.

Photo credit: BBC

"Because there's so little preparation time, you're mostly flying by the seat of your pants - which is exciting, but I worried I might not be able to keep on doing it as well as I'd like to."

Capaldi announced he would be stepping down from the series in January, and added in his talk with The Sunday Times just how much he'd miss working with the Doctor Who crew.

"They're such a nice group of people here," he added. "I'll miss them terribly - and it's the end of something.

"I've never done anything for three years before. Also, it's a kind of magical thing, Doctor Who. It's connected to my childhood and it brings this very warm response from people, children and fans of all different stripes. But then it's over."

Of course, Capaldi's run isn't over just yet and we have another season plus a Christmas Special to look forward to with Thirteen before he bows out for good.

But before we can get there, we first have to battle the hectic air times, which Capaldi acknowledges may be somewhat to blame for Doctor Who's slump in ratings.

Photo credit: BBC

Related: Peter Capaldi wants to do something completely different after leaving Doctor Who

"If you want families to watch it together, you have to put it on at the same time every week so that people can gather," he said. "That's what I used to do with my family.

"And why would you put it on at 8.50, when the week before it was on at 7.30? That battle for Saturday-night ratings is a challenge and I think Doctor Who gets fed into that.

"But I say that with the deepest affection for the BBC - they do a fabulous job, and this show is one that is beloved."

Doctor Who returns April 15 to BBC One.

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