The 41-year-old actor was apparently concerned about being typecast and wanted to be free to tackle new projects
Photo: Rex
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While Christopher looks set to be replaced by Scottish actor David Tennant, former singer Billie Piper will continue in her role as the Doctor's sidekick, Rose
Photo: Rex

31 MARCH 2005

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Hot on the heels of his Dr Who debut which drew a TV audience of ten million viewers when it returned to TV screens on Saturday new Timelord Christopher Eccleston has announced he is to quit the hugely popular show.

The 41-year-old actor has apparently refused to appear in a second series for fear of becoming typecast. He also revealed that he had not found it easy being separated from his girlfriend, TV actress Siwan Morris, during filming in Cardiff. "It's been brilliant to make, but it's been hard work," he said. "It's a long time to be away from home. It's hard on anyone in a relationship."

The new show, the first for 16 years, is due to run to a second series in 2006, with a Christmas special planned for this year.

Co-star Billie Piper is set to continue in her role as the Doctor's sidekick, with 31-year-old Scottish actor David Tennant already having been approached about taking over the role of Timelord.

"I've never made any secret that I'm a big fan of Dr Who and it's the reason I got into acting," says David. "It would be a great role to play."

Christopher will say goodbye to the Tardis in June after saving Billie's character Rose from his longtime enemy the Daleks.

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