Who doesn’t love to watch Dame Maggie Smith’s Emmy-winning Dowager Countess and her cunning bons mots?
Her own son! Actor Toby Stephens told reporters at the Television Critics Association press tour on Friday that he doesn’t enjoy watching Downton Abbey.
The former Bond villain and lead in Starz’s upcoming pirate drama Black Sails was asked whether he’d prefer to be on a sleepy drama like the ITV/PBS hit rather than his action-heavy new show.
“Any day of the week, I’d prefer to be on the show I am now,” Stephens said. “I appreciate Downton Abbey for what it is. I don’t regularly tune in. It’s not really a show I enjoy — It’s just not really what I enjoy watching. Playing this kind of thing for me is like going on an exotic vacation because we don’t do this kind of stuff in the UK. … I’ve seen [UK shows], I’ve done it, I don’t want to do it for the rest of my life. This is fantastic story and production values, that’s what I want to be involved in.”
In other words: Forget that low-budget British-y stuff, bring on more Michael Bay!