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As Doctor Who battles rumors about Jodie Whittaker leaving after the upcoming season and questions about a new Doctor arise, one star has confirmed she's still out of the franchise for the time being. Billie Piper, who helped set the franchise on the map with her portrayal as Rose Tyler way back when the reboot first started, has reaffirmed that she will not return to the franchise anytime soon.
As far as her reasoning, Piper's decision isn't tied to some of the recent drama with fans or anything like that. The actress told The Guardian what would currently keep her out of Doctor Who and spoke about her experience on the show back when she was first on it:
I wouldn’t go back. It’s a great role, but you’re away from your kids for so long. My experience was that you were in Wales for nine months solid. And as a job it dominates your life. It’s mainstream family viewing so you can’t really escape it. It feels like it makes you very, very famous.
Nine months is quite a commitment, and that's especially true for someone with three children like Billie Piper. That's essentially a year away during a time where children can go through a lot of changes in a relatively short amount of time. It's totally understandable that Piper wouldn't be on board to return to Doctor Who given that commitment, even if that commitment would seem unlikely for her past character.
If Billie Piper were offered a role back on Doctor Who, chances are it wouldn't be for the entirety of a season. A more likely scenario is that her return would be for a guest-appearance, similar to when she made an appearance in the 50th anniversary special of Doctor Who as "The Moment." A small cameo like that wouldn't take nine months to film, though it should be stated that Piper didn't add an "if" or "but" in her response.
Another reason Billie Piper may not want to jump back into Doctor Who is that she's been busy with various projects since she left. Her latest series, I Hate Suzie, has received favorable reviews from critics, so it would make more sense she'd want to devote time to a series she's currently working on rather than re-treading old ground. Doctor Who will survive without her, though I'm sure no one would say no to a random one-off appearance in Season 13.
A lot of people believe Billie Piper's Rose Tyler was the greatest companion of The Doctor. Share your thoughts on her down in the comments and for more on Doctor Who, read up on some of the enemies of The Doctor we'd really love to see return.