However, the 'Love, Actually' actor refuses to reveal when exactly he was offered the role
Bill Nighy has revealed that he once turned down the chance to star in Doctor Who.
Nighy made an uncredited appearance as an art expert called Dr Black in a 2010 episode of the BBC sci-fi series written by his regular collaborator Richard Curtis. However, the Love, Actually star was once offered the role of the Timelord himself.
“I won’t tell you when because the rule is that you are not allowed to say you turned that job down because it’s disrespectful to whoever did it,” Nighy said in an interview with the Daily Express. “I will say that I was approached. But I didn’t want to be the Doctor. No disrespect to Doctor Who or anything, I just think that it comes with too much baggage.”
Earlier this month Peter Capaldi was confirmed to succeed Matt Smith as Timelord and his casting met with approval from Nighy. “He’s a marvellous actor. He’ll be very good as the Doctor. He’ll bring a lot of wit and dry humour. He’s elegant and he looks great,” Nighy said.
Matt Smith announced in June that he will be leaving the show at the end of this year (2013). Viewers will see his Doctor regenerate into Capaldi’s Timelord during the upcoming Christmas special.
Before then, Smith’s Doctor will return in the show’s 50th anniversary special airing on November 23. In addition to current companion Jenna-Louise Coleman, he’ll be joined for the episode by his Doctor Who predecessor David Tennant and popular former companion Billie Piper.