Matt Smith Set To Exit ‘Doctor Who’

Eleven is hanging up his bow tie.

The BBC has announced that Matt Smith, the man who made bow ties cool and “Geronimo!” a catchphrase, will not be returning to Doctor Who for season eight. The actor will exit at the end of 2013 after he appears in the 50th Anniversary Special in November and in the annual Christmas special, where the Doctor will regenerate into his newest incarnation. Smith began playing the Doctor in 2010, and became the first actor to receive a BAFTA nomination for 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 said in a statement.”I’m incredibly grateful to all the cast and crew who work tirelessly every day, to realize all the elements of the show and deliver Doctor Who to the audience. Many of them have become good friends and I’m incredibly proud of what we have achieved over the last four years.”

How Eleven will make his exit has yet to be revealed, and there is no news yet on who will step into the iconic role next. However, in a release head writer Steven Moffat warned “this Christmas prepare for your hearts to break.” Sad as it is to see Smith go, the series is already preparing for the next chapter.

“Of course, this isn’t the end of the story, because now the search begins,” Moffat said. “Somewhere out there right now – all unknowing, just going about their business – is someone who’s about to become the Doctor. A life is going to change, and Doctor Who will be born all over again! After 50 years, that’s still so exciting!”

Are you prepared to say goodbye to Smith, Who fans? And who would you like to see Smith pass the TARDIS key to next?

Doctor Who airs as part of BBC America’s Supernatural Saturdays stateside, and on BBC One in Great Britain. Smith will next be seen this November in the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Special, alongside former Who regulars David Tennant and Billie Piper, as well as Jenna Louise-Coleman, who plays the Doctor’s current companion Clara.