(Photo: Getty Images, Rich Fury)

“Blink” is arguably the most beloved episode of the modern Doctor Who era, with a slightly unsettling mystery that isn’t too dark, the first appearance of a now-iconic monster, and the origin of “wibbly wobbly, timey wimey” (a phrase that non-Who fans probably wish could be eradicated from existence). It also breaks the show’s format a little bit, focusing on a new character named Sally Sparrow instead of David Tennant’s Doctor. Sally is played by a pre-famous (or at least pre-United States famous) Carey Mulligan, and her portrayal of a mostly normal young woman who suddenly has to solve a time mystery when her friend is transported to the past by a living angel statue won her plenty of fans among the Doctor Who faithful.

The episode was written by soon-to-be-former Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffat, and he recently revealed that those fans almost got a chance to see even more of Sally Sparrow. Speaking with the Radio Times (via Screen Rant), Moffat revealed that the Doctor Who people liked Mulligan so much that they offered her a chance to be the next companion—basically a full-time sidekick for the Doctor—but she turned them down.

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Here’s his full comment:

Oh my God, Carey Mulligan! It’s funny but “Blink,” I say immodestly, is a very famous episode of television and yet Carey Mulligan, who was the star of it, I’m almost certain wouldn’t even remember being in Doctor Who. I don’t think she was much of a fan, or anything. They liked her so much, they said, “Do you want to be the next companion?” but she said no. God, she was amazing.