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David Tennant says Billie Piper helped him cope with fame after joining Doctor Who

The duo quickly became two of the biggest stars on British television.

David Tennant and Billie Piper in Doctor Who (BBC)
Published: Wednesday, 21st October 2020 at 2:56 pm

Former Doctor Who star David Tennant has revealed that Billie Piper helped him cope with his newfound fame after joining the popular sci-fi series.


He was cast as the Tenth Doctor in 2005, joining the show for its second modern series, which catapulted him to national fame virtually overnight.

In the latest episode of David Tennant Does a Podcast With..., he and Piper reunite to discuss their time working together as well as their more recent projects.

As part of that conversation, they reflected on the fame that Doctor Who brought to their lives, with Piper admitting that she has always felt "uncomfortable" with that side of the job.

"I'd been there before and it's an uncomfortable position for me," she said. "I've never really liked that. You become this thing to people and you don't really have any part in that. And so you have to behave a certain way or at least try to, and that's quite annoying.

"It's not the worst thing in the world, but it means that you can't be yourself entirely. And it means that you become incredibly guarded. And for me, reclusive, always."

Tennant went on to say that Piper's past experience with fame helped him to adjust to his new lifestyle, after experiencing a huge rise in prominence following his debut as The Doctor.

He added: "I've often said in the intervening 15 years that entering into that madness... and particularly that loss of anonymity, which I had not really experienced before... because I had you to go on that journey with, I think I survived it much better than I might have done.

"You knew what it was to lose that layer of skin. It was very helpful to be on that journey with someone who understood what it was."

Tennant stayed on as The Doctor for three full series, with Freema Agyeman and Catherine Tate taking on co-star roles as companions Martha Jones and Donna Noble.

In that time, a number of the show's most fearsome foes emerged, both returning favourites and some chilling new creations, such as the Weeping Angels and the Ood.

Vote for which Doctor Who monster you find the scariest in our poll below.

Billie Piper is this week’s guest on David Tenant Does A Podcast With… David Tennant Does A Podcast With... is available on Apple, Spotify and all podcast providers. A Somethin' Else and No Mystery production. Subscribe to the podcast here.


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