Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images for Universal Pictures
In an interview with The Daily Express, Nighy says taking the lead in "Doctor Who" would carry "too much baggage."
It's often a similar story with high-profile franchises like "Doctor Who" or the Bond films where who turned down the role is sometimes as interesting as who took it. The BBC likely had an extensive list of candidates to take on the role of the 12th Doctor, and if I were casting the upcoming series, I'd at least have the versatile and talented Nighy's phone number close at hand.
However, the 63-year-old actor wasn't interested, telling the Daily Express:
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. 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.
Nighy was nothing but complimentary towards Peter Capaldi, the actor who did ultimately nab the role, saying
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 is currently out promoting his part in the sci-fi romantic dramedy "About Time" from director Richard Curtis and I'll confess that I'm a big dumb softie and keep getting choked up by its trailer.*
*Don't you judge me.