Matt Smith exits 'Doctor Who'
June 3rd, 2013
03:12 PM ET

Matt Smith exits 'Doctor Who'

When you "gotta go, (you) gotta go" - or so said actor Matt Smith as he announced his departure from BBC One's "Doctor Who" over the weekend.

The Brit actor has starred on the program as the Time Lord since 2010, when he took over for David Tennant, and he'll officially step away from the role at the end of this year.

"Doctor Who has been the most brilliant experience for me as an actor and a bloke, and that largely is down to the cast, crew and fans of the show," Smith said in a statement to the BBC. "The fans of 'Doctor Who' around the world are unlike any other; they dress up, shout louder, know more about the history of the show (and speculate more about the future of the show) in a way that I've never seen before. ... Thank you so very much for supporting my incarnation of the Time Lord, number 11, who I might add is not done yet."

Smith will return for "Doctor Who's" 50th anniversary special in November, and he'll also regenerate once more in this year's Christmas special.

Executive producer and writer Steven Moffat commended Smith's performance in a statement, telling the BBC that "every day, on every episode, in every set of rushes, Matt Smith surprised me. ... [E]ven better than that, given the pressures of this extraordinary show, he is one of the nicest and hardest-working people I have ever had the privilege of knowing," Moffat said. "Great actors always know when it's time for the curtain call, so this Christmas prepare for your hearts to break as we say goodbye to number 11."

Smith was just as grateful for Moffat's leadership, as having "such varied, funny, mind-bending and brilliant scripts has been one of the greatest and most rewarding challenges of my career," the 30-year-old said. "It's been an honor to play this part, to follow the legacy of brilliant actors, and helm the Tardis for a spell with 'the ginger, the nose and the impossible one.'"

Of course, now that Smith's bowing out of the part, the speculation is heating up on who could take his place. The latest set of names to hit the rumor mill include Idris Elba, Helen Mirren and John Hurt.

Filed under: Celebrities • television

soundoff (43 Responses)
  1. grace and ohana

    How about the brilliant, handsome, charming, stylish, and talented Stephen Fry?

    October 25, 2013 at 3:48 am | Report abuse |
  2. AMADA

    I really like your blog.. very nice colors & theme. Did you create this website yourself or did you hire someone to do it for you? Plz answer back as I'm looking to create my own blog and would like to find out where u got this from. thank you

    October 18, 2013 at 9:39 am | Report abuse |
  3. She started it.

    June 19, 2013 at 3:27 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Mario

    Moffat is the one who should step down...

    He's an awful writer (he did "write" a fw good episodes during Russell T. Davies's tenure, proving once again what a talented person Davies is, able to take trash and turn it into an entertaining yarn !!!!), a worse producer, totally clueless when it comes to talent (that Amy Pond actress made William Shatner look like Laurence Olivier) and one for whom subtlelties are best served with a couple of wacks of 2×4, so as to make sure you get them....

    He couldn't be original if his life depended on it !!!!

    It is time to get some talent back on DOCTOR WHO, before it turns once again into the idiotic show it had become by the late 70ies...


    June 19, 2013 at 3:25 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Stephen

    I vote for Rupert Grint. The Doctor has been waiting for awile to be ginger.

    June 19, 2013 at 2:07 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Kate

    I love Rupert Grint, but aside from his hair colour I don't think he's quite ready to be the Doctor just yet. Sure, Matt was young when he took on the role, but somehow Rupert needs a bit more experience. Maybe in a couple of years - if the Doctor goes beyond 12 regenerations.

    Has anyone read Neil Gaiman's opinion on who should be casted as the Twelvth Doctor? It's a pretty interesting one, and that of which I agree with. As much as I'd love to see Hugh Laurie take on the role, I'd probably be imagining him as House. Too bad Martin Freeman is with Sherlock. I'd like to see him as the Doctor. Or maybe... Simon Pegg? 😛

    June 10, 2013 at 8:20 am | Report abuse |
    • kylemaxwell671

      Only complete spaztards worry about the "12 regenerations" nonsense. For the first three seasons, the Doctor wasn't even an alien, yet because of ONE throw-away line, there's a whole group of fans whining about how the Doctor "can't regenerate more than twelve times." Damn, there were no such thing as "Time Lords" until Season Four. I think they can get away with changing the regeneration count if they want to.

      June 12, 2013 at 10:10 am | Report abuse |
  7. Lynndel

    Dr. Who is a complicated production which must be exhausting to the cast. Recent Drs. were vere good.

    June 7, 2013 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Thought i could trust matt again..but appears no.

    oh well...

    June 6, 2013 at 6:06 pm | Report abuse |


    June 6, 2013 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Sheesh even a rock star needs too get off screen...

    you need to get dat done...

    June 6, 2013 at 12:39 pm | Report abuse |
  11. tom Bergeron

    I think Telly Savalas or Richard Simmons should be the next Doctor Who!!

    June 6, 2013 at 12:02 pm | Report abuse |
  12. boobs...4th period would be best.

    June 6, 2013 at 11:59 am | Report abuse |
  13. Carrie

    It goes to show in the comments that Matt seems to polarize Who fans. Even if I hated him, it's disrespectful to bash. I've Been watching Doctor Who since Tom Baker and Matt Smith has been one of my favorite Doctors. Love his awkward lanky limbs and strange grace. I wish you could have hung in there one more series. I'll will miss you.

    June 6, 2013 at 4:50 am | Report abuse |
  14. Netmonger

    I hated Matt Smith as the Doctor. Waaay too young. IMO Tom Baker was the best followed closely by David Tennant. Bring back an older middle aged doctor, and put the emphasis back on science and plot instead of corny personal relationships.

    June 5, 2013 at 3:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Traditionalist


      June 5, 2013 at 3:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kate

      I hope that means that we all three agree – no Rupert Grint? I keep picturing him from the FIRST HP film. I know it's not fair, but he'll always be a kid to me. What about the actor who played Mr. Weasley? Except wasn't he Rory's father in the last Amy/Rory season? They've already used all of the good actors in some capacity or another. I want John Barrowman. I don't care if he was Captain John Harkness. If we can have a Rickey and a Mickey in alternate universes, then they could figure out an answer to explain Captain John Harkness away.

      June 7, 2013 at 9:31 am | Report abuse |
    • Mada

      I have this sudden urge to see Sean Connery as the Doctor....

      July 17, 2013 at 10:53 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Traditionalist

    I keep hearing the Doctor should be a women or an American. I watched the show since the 80's. The doctror is a male character lets keep it that way. Do get me wrong. I have no problem with strong female lead characters I love them in fact. They have have strong females on the show before. They were all great including female time lords loved Romana. Like the second one betere she regerated. they even had a female villian time lord. The Roney (spelling may be wrong) wasn't that great. But the Doctor is a male character, let him stay that way. If you want to have a female time lord Bring Ramana back shes stuck in e-space and could easily have survived the time wars.

    as for the Doctor being an American. Please no, I am an american the Doctor must be from the Brtish Isle (the actor any way) its a British show lts not make the mistake of casting a Yank. We Americans do great things but the docotr in a Brit, lets keep it that way.

    June 5, 2013 at 11:49 am | Report abuse |
    • Kate

      As a female American. please no to both. The Doctor is a man and he's British.....OK, let's just say it's in his Time Lord DNA to regenerate as a man (although upon feeling his hair in the first epi with Matt Smith saying, "I'm a girl! I'm a girl?" was quite hilarious). And although the Dr. has made it quite clear that he loves Earth and humans, in his 11 verson he has always chosen a British accent, so that should stay the same. Don't think I would watch an American or a female. If the audience were able to suspend belief, I would personally be thrilled with John Barrowman (captain John Harkness from Dr. Who and Torchwood) or Rose's Rickey/Mickey who in the end married Martha and now works with her at Unit. But Barrowman has already proven he can do the quick dialog, has just the right comedic touch, and you trust him.

      June 7, 2013 at 9:03 am | Report abuse |
  16. the focus gets closer and closer

    June 5, 2013 at 10:16 am | Report abuse |
  17. ElectricLion

    I'll go with Rupert Grint, as well as Mr. Flibble. But that got me thinking... How would Emma Watson do as the Doctor? I remember thinking "There is no way in hell Barty Crouch Jr. could be the Doctor" when I saw that David Tennant was going to take over the role. The Christmas episode didn't enthrall me, either. But by "School Reunion," I was convinced that Tennant was the best Doctor ever, even better than Tom Baker. Matt Smith hasn't done a bad job. He just had the misfortune of coming after Tennant, just as Peter Davison couldn't fill Tom Baker's scarf.

    So, Rupert Grint? Cool! But Emma Watson? Hmm... I wonder...

    June 5, 2013 at 8:21 am | Report abuse |
  18. 2 men at 1 time

    has anyone ever dated 2 rock stars instead of 1?

    June 4, 2013 at 6:54 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Matt and I are going to discuss our own script.

    kapeesh–get off the phones...none of it existed.

    June 4, 2013 at 6:33 pm | Report abuse |
  20. Isaac

    Dan Stevens, from Downton Abbey, would be a good choice to replace Matt Smith

    June 4, 2013 at 3:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kate

      Dan Stevens left Downton to pursue his first love, the theater, specifically Broadway. Another of the reasons he cited was the grueling long days on a television series. He's not going to do it.

      June 7, 2013 at 9:23 am | Report abuse |
  21. christmas---he's so was just a joke.

    alone time por favore so you get the humor...

    June 4, 2013 at 2:57 pm | Report abuse |
  22. monkey see monkey do

    all those fake calls made her look like a foo.....

    June 4, 2013 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse |
  23. Stripes55

    A tearjerker Christmas episode? What does Moffat think this is, EastEnders?

    June 4, 2013 at 2:52 pm | Report abuse |
  24. He's easy on the eyes...

    I'll watch him

    June 4, 2013 at 2:52 pm | Report abuse |
  25. Bluedestiny

    I've watched for decades... and stop watching with Matt. The guy has zero on-screen charisma IMO. I couldn't watch it beyond a couple episodes.

    June 4, 2013 at 2:48 pm | Report abuse |
  26. Not gonna stop the Matt fun...he's way too talented.

    June 4, 2013 at 12:05 pm | Report abuse |
  27. Aware Luv! No need too thread what is happening.

    good day too all

    June 4, 2013 at 11:42 am | Report abuse |
  28. Martina

    feb i think

    June 4, 2013 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
  29. Ej

    oh thank god.

    June 4, 2013 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
  30. Sarah

    Moffat!! The bombshell they dropped on the last episode and then another bombshell that he will be regenerating again... That means he'll be dying in the Christmas episode... it's Christmas!!!, Moffat! *sigh* Whovians should we well versed, but we still cry our Whovian tears..

    June 4, 2013 at 10:57 am | Report abuse |
  31. gah

    very, very sad – why couldn't it be river song finally going to the library

    June 4, 2013 at 12:25 am | Report abuse |
  32. cynic44

    Someone get Chiwetel Ejiofor a bowtie stat!

    June 3, 2013 at 7:51 pm | Report abuse |
  33. Mr. Flibble

    Rupert Grint for The Doctor. He'd finally be a Ginger like he's always wanted to be. 🙂

    June 3, 2013 at 5:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mada


      Too young. I followed the new material through Eccleston and Tennant, and dropped off sharply with Smith. The show swung wildly away from sci-fi/adventure/drama into sci-fi/relationship saga with him and I'd like the focus to swing back to the Doctor being an off-kilter explorer of questionable sanity. It's turned into "Dawctor's Creek" lately. The only time I've bothered to watch Smith lately was when I found out David Warner was going to be in the episode.

      July 17, 2013 at 11:01 pm | Report abuse |
  34. Amy


    June 3, 2013 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
  35. mummacate

    So sad! I'll miss you Matt Smith.You're quirkiness and charm added to the flavour of the Doctor.Wish you would stay another season at least.

    June 3, 2013 at 3:51 pm | Report abuse |

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