Peter Capaldi Discusses His Reasons For Leaving Doctor Who

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Let’s face it. Peter Capaldi is a bigger Doctor Who fan than you, me or any of us. The man has been watching the show all his life, was inspired by the actors in the series to get into acting and then – decades later – made his childhood dreams come true when he landed the role of the Twelfth Doctor back in 2013. After three seasons in the part though, Capaldi has decided to say goodbye to the TARDIS, which must have been a tough decision for the self-confessed uber-fan to make.

In an interview with Radio Times, Capaldi has elaborated on the reasons behind that decision, and it’s clear that it came down to his needs as an actor rather than growing bored with the role or falling out of love with the series.

“I love this show, but I’ve never done anything where you turn up every day for ten months. I want to always be giving it my best and I don’t think if I stayed on I’d be able to do that. I can’t think of another way to say, “This could be the end of civilisation as we know it.” With episodic television of any genre, the audience wants the same thing all the time – but the instinct that leads the actor is not about being in a groove.”

In the same interview, Capaldi also spoke about how “challenging” it is to act in Doctor Who, due to the heightened world of the show and how it went against his usual acting instincts.

Doctor Who is a hugely challenging show to write and to act in. It has to turn on a dime from comedy to terror to tragedy. It’s a children’s show that developed into something more complex, a bit more adult-orientated, but we have a duty to play to the seven-year-old as well as the 42-year-old. Sometimes you have to be more comic than you’d normally be comfortable with, but it’s important.”

If he had to go, at least Capaldi is going out with many of some of his fanboy wishes fulfilled. The actor had previously spoken about his love for the original design of the Cybermen – which, lo and behold, returned to the series for the first time since 1966 in last week’s episode.

You can see Peter Capaldi’s penultimate turn as the Time Lord in the Doctor Who season 10 finale this Saturday at 9PM on BBC America.

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