[on his knowledge of past Doctor Who (2005)):] I'm very aware of the rich history of Chris [Christopher Eccleston] and David [David Tennant], and I've gone back and watched a lot of those episodes. And the previous history? I have to be honest, I can't claim to have watched the show in its entirety or have been a follower as avidly as some people are - and that's what I'm realising, that people love this show, people are avid, avid fans of it, and know it, and know its history and are part of it. I can't claim to know it as well as that, but I'm going to make it my business to do so, and fall into it in as much depth as I possibly can. [February 2009]
[on being the youngest actor to play The Doctor] I think the whole issue of me being the youngest has worked in my favour. I think there's an interesting contradiction of having a young face and an old soul. There's something funny about it, and it also allows you to reinvent being old. It's interesting because, when I first took the part on, obviously there was a bone of contention for some of the diehard fans.
As a character, the Doctor is excited and fascinated by the tiniest of things. By everything. By every single thing. That's what's wonderful about him as a character. It's why children like him, I think. Because he doesn't dismiss anything. He's not cynical. He's open to every single facet of the universe.
[on why he had no intention to become the longest serving Doctor Who] Tom Baker did it for seven years but he did it in different circumstances. I couldn't do this for seven years. I'd be run into the ground.
What struck me about Lis [Elisabeth Sladen] was her grace. She welcomed me, educated me, and delighted me with her tales and adventures on Doctor Who. And she also seemed to have a quality of youth that not many people retain as they go through life. Her grace and kindness will stay with me because she had such qualities in abundance and shared them freely... I will miss her, as will the world of Doctor Who and all the Doctors that had the good pleasure to work with Lis Sladen and travel the universe with Sarah Jane.
[on Trevor Eve's criticism of the BBC for spending so much money on a "children's programme" such as Doctor Who (2005)] If we all listen to Trevor Eve, then we're in trouble. Thank you very much, Trevor, we appreciate your opinion, but that's ridiculous. Doctor Who (2005) is brilliant. That's why it attracts some of the best writers in the country, and some of the best actors. Trevor, try telling that to Sir Michael Gambon. Show me any other series that can tackle this many big issues, appeal to this broad a range of people, and still have a laugh along the way and I will say, 'You can't.' That's what I'd say to Trevor Eve. At least we're never predictable. At least we're inventive. This whole show is testament to Steven Moffat, and his ambition and his scope, and that's a privilege to be part of. It's as simple as that.