'Doctor Who' Companion Was on Her Way Out But Changed Her Mind

Showrunner Steven Moffat reveals that Jenna Coleman decided to stay, allowing him to use an alternate ending to season 8.

Doctor Who fans were kept on the edge of their seats over Christmas as rumors over the future of the timelord's trusted sidekick Clara became the subject of intense media speculation.

While The Hollywood Reporter broke the news that Peter Capaldi had signed on for season nine of the hit BBC show, Jenna Coleman's status was unknown, with showrunner Steven Moffat remaining tight-lipped on the matter.

In the end, it came down to the wire, with the closing scenes of the Christmas special called Last Christmas confirming that she would be staying, becoming the longest serving Doctor Who companion since the hit show's reboot.

However, Moffat has now revealed that Coleman was indeed set to leave the show of her own volition and that she'd been written out at the end of the season-eight finale.

"That was her last episode," he told Doctor Who Magazine. "And then she asked me if she could be in [for] Christmas." Moffat added that he "never wanted her to go" and had written an alternate version of Last Christmas in which she stayed.

"For Christmas Day, it's a bit nicer. Frankly, I didn't want to lose her," he said. "She's an amazing actress and never stops working to make Clara better. I was very happy to go the extra mile to make sure we could keep her."

Season nine of Doctor Who is due to air in the fall.