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Matt Smith Would Return To Doctor Who Under One Condition

Now that Jodie Whittaker has announced her departure from the hit BBC show, a popular former Doctor may have an opening to return to the delight of fans everywhere.

Whittaker's predecessor, Matt Smith, had previously entertained the idea of hopping back into the Tardis following his exit in 2013. However, he had one caveat. When Smith took on the role of Doctor Who in Season 5 (new series), he had the seemingly impossible task of replacing David Tennant, one of the most beloved Doctors in history. Showrunner Steven Moffat allowed the young man to find his footing though, and from 2010 to 2014 Smith served as one of the freshest and most fun Time Lords to date. He's regularly listed as a top 3 Doctor of all time, including by Rotten Tomatoes.

But would Smith actually come back? It turns out, his one caveat may have already been met — meaning the chances of a return could be higher than ever.

Smith would return if the timing worked out

Speaking in 2017, Smith described how he would enjoy stepping back into the "Doctor Who" universe, but ultimately wanted Jodie Whittaker to get a chance to embody the role first. She had just taken over for Smith's replacement, Peter Capaldi, and it wouldn't be fair for Smith to come back before giving Whittaker an opportunity to really sink her teeth into the part.

"I think we've got to give a few years to Miss Whittaker to get the TARDIS under her belt, as it were, and then yeah — one day," Smith told MTV while promoting "The Crown." Fast-forward to September 2021, a time when Whittaker is getting ready to depart, and Smith now has the opening he needs.

"I'd come back," Smith explained to MTV. "Yeah, if the timing was right," he added. It appears that the timing, at the moment, couldn't be more right.

It's been hinted several times that Smith could return at some point, with former "Doctor Who" showrunner Steven Moffat previously saying that the British actor immediately regretted leaving the series. The BBC announced in July that Whittaker would be stepping down next year following "a trio of specials, culminating in an epic blockbuster to air in autumn 2022 as part of the BBC's centenary celebrations." A replacement has not yet been discussed.