Here’s part of an infamous interview from a couple of years ago, when DWM’s Benjamin Cook spoke to Clive Swift about his role as Mr. Copper. To be fair to Swift, if you look up interviews with him on YouTube (mostly about Keeping Up Appearances), he does come across much better, so perhaps he was just having a really bad day here:
“This chap Russell T. Davies seems to be a phenomenon. He not only invents all these strange and wonderful creatures from God knows where, but he manages to get in a lot of humour. Unfortunately, it’s the Doctor who has the most of the humour. Being a comic actor, I’ve missed not making a few jokes. However, one does one’s job.
“I’ve become a bit of an old fuddy-duddy, as it wasn’t until we’d been filming for two weeks that I realised that Mr. Copper is an alien! It’s clever how they’ve got all the trappings of the 1920’s or whenever the Titanic was. I thought, if I’m an alien, should I have played the part in a different way? Nobody said that. It dawned rather slowly. It’s quite sweet. Mr. Copper is a very appealing character. He’s much older than the rest of the gang, but he’s brave, he’s useful in the fight against our enemies, and he’s rewarded in the end, so the writer likes him, and there’s no reason why I shouldn’t.
“When I did this 25 years ago (Revelation of the Daleks), it was a very different kettle of fish, although Jobel was a lovely part also. I had a very nice death, which I remember with pleasure.
“There’s no reason why I should talk to you at all, so you shouldn’t push it. I’m sure you’ll write something very nice. I know that you all think that this is a big world, this Who business, but it isn’t. There are much bigger things than this”.