Chiwetel Ejiofor 'Turned Down Doctor Who Role'
Matt Smith wouldn't have been 11th Doctor if he'd said yes, it is claimed...
The news emerged after respected fantasy writer Neil Gaiman, who has worked on several episodes of the BBC show, claimed on his blog that a black actor had previously turned down the high-profile role.
Gaiman said he felt it was a missed opportunity and that he hoped a non-white star would one day take the role.
He said: "Would I like a person of colour as the Doctor? Absolutely, I have no doubt there will be. I know one black actor who was already offered the part of the Doctor, and who turned it down."
After his revelation, The Mirror newspaper claims to have been contacted by several sources, all claiming to be certain it was Ejiofor.
Although the star of American Gangster and 2012 had previously expressed an interest in the role, it is thought that he could not agree terms.
The BBC described the news as "pure speculation", but stressed that Peter Capaldi had definitely been the first choice as the 12th Doctor.