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Matt Smith Announces He's Leaving 'Doctor Who' After Four Years

Matt Smith and the BBC have announced that the actor will leave 'Doctor Who' at the end of this year after starring in the 50th anniversary episode in November and then the Christmas special.

Smith first stepped into the TARDIS in 2010, then becoming the youngest person to play the Doctor. He was also the first actor to be nominated for a BAFTA in the role.

"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 says. "I'm incredibly grateful to all the cast and crew who work tirelessly every day, to realise all the elements of the show and deliver Doctor Who to the audience."

"Having Steven Moffat as show runner write such varied, funny, mind bending and brilliant scripts has been one of the greatest and most rewarding challenges of my career. It's been a privilege and a treat to work with Steven, he's a good friend and will continue to shape a brilliant world for the Doctor."

"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 in a way that I've never seen before, your dedication is truly remarkable. Thank you so very much for supporting my incarnation of the Time Lord, number Eleven."

"It's been an honour 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'. But when you gotta go, you gotta go and Trenzalore calls."

Lead writer and executive producer Steven Moffat adds: "Every day, on every episode, in every set of rushes, Matt Smith surprised me: the way he'd turn a line, or spin on his heels, or make something funny, or out of nowhere make me cry, I just never knew what was coming next."

"The Doctor can be clown and hero, often at the same time, and Matt rose to both challenges magnificently. And even 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. Whatever we threw at him - sometimes literally - his behaviour was always worthy of the Doctor."

"But 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 Eleven," he says. "Thank you Matt - bow ties were never cooler."

June 3, 2013 |

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