Doctor Who is one of the oldest franchises to still exist on television. It has seen many evolutions and spinoffs over the years and often times will feature guest appearances from old characters. However, one fan-favorite actor Christopher Eccleston, who played the doctor on Doctor Who (Series One) in 2005, candidly revealed during a panel at Dragon Con in Atlanta, GA that he will most likely never return to the seasoned franchise.
During the panel at the convention, according to ComicBook.com, questions arose regarding why so many past doctors returned for the 50th Anniversary episode of Doctor Who, but he hadn’t. Given that the show’s 60th anniversary is just around the corner, fans were curious to know if they would get to see Eccleston on Doctor Who ever again. Eccleston honestly stated that due to his tumultuous relationship with Doctor Who’s parent company, BBC, that it would be highly unlikely that he would ever reappear on the current show or any further incarnations thereafter. Fans can watch the entire panel below.
Eccleston went on to explain in the panel that the experiences that he had while he was filming Doctor Who are what led to a breakdown in the relationships that he had with the producers who worked for BBC. Even though Eccleston was honest about having no plans in the foreseeable future to return to the series, he did recently work with a separate company called Big Finish to produce episodes for a Doctor Who audio play. Additionally, he expressed his profound love and appreciation for the Doctor Who franchise itself and his fans while also emphasizing a commitment to not tarnish the Doctor Who image that he made to BBC and has upheld.
“I agreed…that I would go, quietly and respectfully, and I would look after the show publicity-wise, in terms of publicizing it.”Christopher Eccleston
It is unlikely that fans will ever get to see Eccleston on Doctor Who again. However, Eccleston’s relationship and feelings towards the half-century-old franchise is not as unique as it might seem. Actor Peter Capaldi (The Suicide Squad), who played the twelfth doctor in the revival series that began with Eccleston, recently shed some light on his feelings and frustrations that he experienced during his time on the show. He opened up particularly about how disheartening it was to work on a science fiction show whose budget was abysmally small and all of the shortcomings that arose because of it. However, in response to Capaldi’s allegations revolving Doctor Who, Big Finish, the company that produces the audio drama, elected to relieve the actor of his commitment to reprise his role as the twelfth doctor in a future episode and replace him altogether.
Even though the Doctor Who franchise has clearly had its fair share of fallacies along the way, the franchise, the franchise’s spinoffs, and its fanbase still continue to thrive. In fact, despite all of the recent drama surrounding former cast members of the show, fans can still look forward to Star Trek: The Next Generation actress Marina Sirtis joining the cast in an episode of the Doctor Who audio drama titled The Year of Martha Jones.