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Former ‘Doctor Who’ showrunner turns down offer to return

Russell T. Davies "just said no" to the BBC's offer to return to the show.


Gavia Baker-Whitelaw

Internet Culture

Posted on Jan 7, 2015   Updated on May 29, 2021, 8:02 pm CDT

In an interview with the Radio Times, former Doctor Who showrunner Russell T. Davies admitted that he’d turned down a recent offer to return to the show.

Davies launched the era of “New Who,” beginning with Christopher Eccleston’s Ninth Doctor in 2005. He stuck around for four seasons before stepping down to make way for Steven Moffat, who has been in charge since then.

The 10th anniversary of Davies’ first episode is coming up, and the BBC asked him if he’d be interested in coming back to “do something” with the show. “I don’t know what they imagined,” he told Radio Times, “a talk or a convention perhaps. I just said no, to be honest. A programme can’t have its fiftieth [anniversary] and then its tenth. I think that’s just confusing.”

When asked if he’d write another episode, he answered, “The lovely Steven [Moffat] invites me every year to come and write one. And I love him and I love them and I love watching it, but here I am, moving on. I love Doctor Who with all my heart but nothing is more important to me than my own stuff.”

It’s an understandable response. Some fans may wish for him to return, if not as showrunner then at least for an episode or two. But as he points out in this interview, he spent years of his life overseeing Doctor Who and its two spinoffs Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures, so it’s no wonder that he wants to prioritize his own projects now. Plus, there’s the unavoidable concern that for better or worse, his writing style wouldn’t fit with the tone of current seasons.

Photo via Kari Haley/Wikimedia, CC-BY SA 2.0

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*First Published: Jan 7, 2015, 3:33 pm CST