Daily Record Interview

Exclusive: Scots star David Tennant on taking a gamble with switch to Hollywood

DR WHO star David Tennant has admitted that he could be left out in the cold if his big break in Hollywood doesn't come off.
Tennant has the chance to make his name in the States after filming the hour-long pilot for the new US legal comedy Rex Is Not Your Lawyer in which he plays an oddball Chicago attorney at law.
But he admitted his fame in Britain could mean nothing when it comes to NBC network bosses deciding whether the pilot shows enough promise to become a full series.
Following in the footsteps of stars such as fellow-Scot Ashley Jensen as he tries to make it big across the Pond, the 38-year old from Bathgate explained: "It's impossible to know what will happen with a pilot, especially in the American market, which is so different to ours and difficult to predict. But it will be an adventure if nothing else.
"These American shows could be very allconsuming and go on for years, or I might film my pilot and never hear a thing. So you have to roll with the punches. I never really think about possibilities. I just kind of ramble along and see what happens next and hope for the best - and that's worked out so far."
The eagerly awaited pair of Dr Who Christmas specials will see Tennant step aside to make way for Matt Smith, who will take over as the "regenerated" 11th incarnation of the Time Lord with two hearts.
Smith will make a brief appearance in the Christmas special, in which the Time Lord will battle arch-enemy The Master, played by John Simm.
Over the festive period, David will also guest star in Catherine Tate's sketch show special, playing the Ghost of Christmas Present in Nan's Christmas Carol, a spoof of the Dickens classic in which the foul-mouthed pensioner plays Scrooge.
He is set to reprise his RSC role of Hamlet, which he performed on stage at Stratford-upon-Avon, for a three-hour BBC2 film.
And he stars in the Stephen Poliakoff film Glorious 39, with plans to work with comedy genius Simon Pegg, best known for classic British comedies Shaun Of The Dead and Hot Fuzz.
David said: "We're just hoping that everything is going to work out but it's all looking very positive. Simon's terrific. I wouldn't say we're friends but we've certainly met and I'm a huge fan of his."
If the acting work does ever dry up, David has a future as a game show host.
He put in some practice recently, presenting a special edition of Never Mind The Buzzcocks, where he was joined by Catherine Tate, who stars as Doctor Who sidekick Donna in the Christmas specials.
But it's unlikely, having shown in versatility on the stage and screen.
He is currently starring alongside a largely female cast in the St. Trinians 2 film, an experience he admits was not entirely unpleasant.
"I'm the villain in St Trinian's 2 which was just great fun," David said. "I just didn't know what to expect, and on the first day I'm there with Colin Firth, who is one of the funniest men, just such a lovely man. Very funny and just enjoying himself - so I took my lead from him, and we had a really good time."
David also found the camaraderie between co-stars Rupert Everett and Firth particularly amusing between takes.
"They've known each other forever, so they're like an old married couple which is sort of what they're playing in the film - so that makes sense," he explained.
"And the girls were such a really nice bunch, because I guess potentially if you put a bunch of late-teen, early-20s girls together in a room they are not necessarily all going to be the best of friends but this lot absolutely were - like blood sisters. They all really looked out for each other and looked after each other. It was a really lovely time. I had a ball making that film."
One thing he has been less comfortable with is the fact that he has topped various polls as Britain's sexiest male since taking on the role of the Doctor - the latest among women over 30.
"Oh I don't know about that. I'm not sure about that," he admitted. "That doesn't make sense - 70 per cent of women voted for me and 55 per cent for Daniel Craig, so that doesn't add up. So, flattered as I am to be at the top of any list, frankly I'm not sure that we should be trusting the maths of this one."
As he looks back on 2009, he surveys an acting career which is in fine health - having injured his back in 2008, causing a spell on the sidelines.
David said: "This time last year I was struggling to get back on stage in Hamlet. I had to take a couple of weeks off, but I got back and finished the show and I've been fine ever since - thanks to some very fine surgeons.
"There's nothing you can do when your body decides to take a break - it becomes enforced. You suddenly feel a bit mortal and maybe that's a good lesson.

"It's quite good when you're playing Hamlet and you come back and feel even more mortal than you did before it happened. So perhaps that fed into the final performances and you'll see that when it's on TV at Christmas - a flash of my mortality.
"I'll be everywhere over Christmas. You'll be gorging on me but, don't worry, I'll go away and you won't see me for a long time."
David admitted there would be a feeling of loss when the Dr Who specials get aired. He almost broke down during the filming of the final scenes, so emotional was the experience after four years in control of the Tardis.
"The bell is tolling. The Doctor's time is running out. But I've done it all so I know exactly what's going to happen," he admitted.

"To be honest, it's exciting. We finished them in May, and they're such good stories I've just been desperate for everyone to see them.
"And now I've seen the finished episodes and they're sort of the best ones we've done, I think. It really is a big, exciting, rollicking story so I'm impatient for everyone to see them.
"The four extraordinary, rollercoaster years have flown by.. but it does feel like it's been such a huge part of my life, and life-changing I guess. And when I think back to 2005, it feels like I'm thinking about somebody who was much more young and more naive.
"It's sad and it's moving, and that feels right and proper too. And it's a big old epic story. I was a bit nervous when I got the scripts for the final stories because you're desperate for it to feel significant and to feel like the end of something.
"Actually the scripts that Russell T Davies has written are so fantastic, so perfect. And everybody involved on the show has done such incredible work."

Credit: John Dingwall The Daily Record