Louise Jameson wishes she'd been killed off on 'Doctor Who'.
The 72-year-old actress played Sevateem warrior Leela opposite Fourth Doctor Tom Baker between 1977 and 1978 but her 40-episode stint came to an end in 'The Invasion of Time', when she opted to stay on the planet Gallifrey and marry Andred (Christopher Tranchell) and she can understand why her exit proved divisive amongst fans.
Speaking at a BFI Southbank screening of 1977 story 'Horror of Fang Rock', Radio Times reports she said: "It was a c*** ending, wasn't it?
"I think she should have died saving the Doctor's life – something really heroic. Or you travel forward and she's got a football team of children... something dramatic, anyway. I mean, it's so cliché, isn't it, that she's fallen in love, that's how we get rid of her."
Last month, short film 'Leela vs the Time War' was released to promote the Season 15 'Doctor Who' Blue-ray set, which revisited the character in the final days of the Time War, and writer/executive producer Pete McTighe explained he saw it as "an opportunity to right the wrong" of Leela's departure.
He said: "I felt like one of the great injustices across 60 years of Doctor Who was how Louise's departure was handled.
"For such an iconic character and such an amazing actress – one of the best actresses we've ever had in the show – to be married off to a posh Gallifreyan guard she's had six words with never quite seemed right to me, as a kid. So I felt like this was an opportunity to right that wrong."
But the 'Emmerdale' actress revealed her exit scene was deliberately written so it could be easily changed for her to decide to leave Gallifrey as then-producer Graham Williams hopes to convince her to stay.
Louise recalled: "Literally the night before we shot my last scene, [Graham] came up to me and said, 'It's very easy to rewrite your exit... can I ask you one last time, will you please change your mind?' – very flattering.
"I was already signed to go and play Portia [in 'The Merchant of Venice'] in Bristol, so there's no way I could have stayed, but I think it had been written with him thinking, 'I can change her mind', which is why it hadn't been a great big dramatic story."
And Louise admitted she'd jump at the chance to return to the main show following the recent short.
She said: "I'd absolutely love to do one. I'd be back in a nanosecond.
"Can you just tell Russell [T Davies, Doctor Who showrunner]? Can somebody ask him to watch ['Leela vs the Time War']?"