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TV Interview

Billie Piper ('Secret Diary')

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Billie Piper ('Secret Diary')
Few actresses could pull off simultaneously starring as a London Call Girl and a Doctor Who companion, but Billie Piper - the "face of prostitution" and former right-hand woman to the dearly-departed David Tennant - has successfully straddled both worlds. With a third series of Secret Diary about to drop and Tennant's final Who scenes still etched in the back of our minds, we thought it a good time to catch up with Billie. Will she be hanging up her suspenders for good this year? Did she cry as much as us over 'The End Of Time'? And will she ever return as Rose Tyler? Read on to find out!

Where do we find Belle at the start of series three?
"She's now a published author so she's juggling that with being a call girl and also being Hannah. She's finding it tricky because everyone else is allowed to enjoy the success of her book but obviously she's got to keep quiet that she's behind it. But she's still spiky, free-spirited and looking for a good time - as ever!"

She starts a relationship with her editor, doesn't she? How does that work out?
"Yeah that develops throughout the series. It's a twisted one because he likes her and he doesn't seem to have a problem with what she does. He encourages her to go out and look for more weird and wonderful people, but it gets out of control... she's left thinking about his true intentions."

Bambi also gets herself into a relationship...
"Yeah, she does - with a guy called Byron. Bambi's all heart and not got much head! She tries really hard to mirror Belle's professional existence but fails miserably because she wears her heart on her sleeve and she doesn't apply the rules. She's reckless and she's not massively street smart, but I think Belle really wishes she was more like Bambi."

Do you think her relationship with Byron will last?
"Yeah, I do actually. It's almost a match made in heaven - they're mad individually, and together they live this hedonistic life which is all rather debauched and naughty. It's love though - it's genuine and really quite sweet, if not a bit weird!"

When the series begins, Belle and Ben don't seem as close as they once were. Do you think they're meant to be together?
"It's fun and it makes perfect sense but it just gets too painful for them. He wouldn't be comfortable with sharing his girlfriend with strange men. And he wouldn't be enough for her - he's not man enough! But he is completely adorable and charming and funny - the perfect catch for anyone else. But she really rates herself and she's very self-assured. She's used to dominating men."

Would you like to see them together in a possible fourth series?
"I would because it would be, if nothing else, quite entertaining! But we're still talking about series four and I'm not sure if it's going to happen or not. Part of me wants it to, but part of me isn't sure where the story could go next. The story has got to have legs and I'm not sure that it does after three series. And I'm not sure that I could do all these sex scenes!"

Was there anything that particularly shocked you in the scripts for this series?
"Yeah - I had to make animal noises when this guy took me from behind. The whole thing was very farmyard and I had to pretend to be a sheep! I hope it was funny to watch because I worry it's a bit cringe-worthy."

You returned to film some scenes for Tennant's final Doctor Who outing. How was that?
"It was weird because I didn't have a full script and I had to do it in three hours. It was after filming Secret Diary in the day and it was too short! I didn't know anything about the story. I wish I'd been there for the whole episode - but that would have been a bit tedious!"

Did you get emotional knowing David would be leaving?
"Yes, I hate it that he's left! But then I know Matt Smith really well and I love him and I think he's such a brilliant actor. The role couldn't have gone to a better guy. He's capable of that. He's got big shoes to fill, but I'm certain he can do it."

What did you think when you watched David's final episodes back?
"Do you know, I haven't seen it yet! I went away for Christmas and New Year so it would have been a bit weird trying to sly off and watch an episode of Doctor Who on my own! I definitely will though. Was it good? Did you cry?"

We cried our eyes out! Is there room for Rose to return at a later date?
"I think it's done now, isn't it? I think that ship has sailed. That old, wooden ship! I really loved doing it, but Doctor Who has moved on - it's different people, different crew, different production team and I can't keep going back. It's ridiculous! It's time to move on..."

Secret Diary of a Call Girl returns Thursday, January 28 at 10pm on ITV2 in the UK and Monday, January 25 at 10pm on Showtime in the US.

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