Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 20 September 2014

Dance: I would have done Downton

Charles Dance admitted he would have liked to have starred in Downton Abbey

Charles Dance has admitted he would have liked to have starred in Downton Abbey, but he was never asked.

The Game Of Thrones star - who appeared in Downton creator Julian Fellowes' Oscar-winning film Gosford Park, which also starred Downton's Dame Maggie Smith as a dowager countess - revealed he would not be willing to accept a cameo role in the show.

Dance said: "If I'd been asked to do it I probably would have done it, but I wasn't.

"I did Gosford Park, which was I think the germ from which Downton Abbey grew, and that was written by Julian.

"Of course, it's enjoying enormous success and it's got a big fan base, if I was asked to do something in it now it would probably be just to guest in it and now I wouldn't want to do that."

The 66-year-old British actor, who once starred in acclaimed British drama The Jewel In The Crown, and now appears as the villainous Lord Lannister in hit HBO drama Game Of Thrones, lamented what he felt was a lack of effort to produce good quality drama on British television.

He said: "I have to be careful because I tend to get up on a soap box a bit about this. But especially the BBC seems to be putting more time and energy into real estate at the moment and junk reality television and stuff.

"We are capable of doing it, we have a lot of very very skilled people here, but you get what you pay for.

"I think if you make something of real quality people will buy it, and it has a life span, rather than reality television shows that come and go really quickly."

:: Game Of Thrones Season Two is out on DVD and Blu-ray on Monday March 4 and Season Three returns to Sky Atlantic on April 1, 2013.

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Your Horoscopes by Russell Grant

Virgo:

Spending time on your own will be rewarding. You're an extremely conscientious person who is hyperaware of your surroundings. Sometimes this sensitivity can inhibit you from doing what you really want. You're afraid of offending people with your bold ideas. Instead of repressing your instincts, obey them. If you've developed a romantic interest in someone special, make your move. Playing the aggressor will boost your confidence. Keep your conversations light and playful.More