Alexander Armstrong: I’d love a role in Downton Abbey

The Big Ask host fancies trying his hand at Julian Fellowes' period drama - but would also like to star alongside Sherlock's Benedict Cumberbatch again


There’s something about the thought of Alexander Armstrong in Downton Abbey that just makes sense. Maybe it’s the comedian’s willingness to send up his toff image – or the fact that he seems equally comfortable in black tie and country tweeds. Either way, the self-confessed Downton fan is just waiting for the call.


“I notice I’ve never been approached by Downton Abbey. This worries me,” admitted the 42-year-old when asked him which shows he’s keen to land a role in.

Armstrong, who returns to Dave next week with a new series of quiz show The Big Ask, admitted Downton has become a bit far-fetched in recent times but said it hadn’t changed his love of Julian Fellowes’ period drama.

“It really has become risible, but I’ll still watch it. Devotedly,” he said.

It turns out Downton’s not the only drama Armstrong is keen to be a part of. Of all the TV and film stars out there, he revealed it’s Sherlock’s Benedict Cumberbatch he’d most like to work with again. The pair previously crossed paths on “a rather weird short little radio drama”, Seven Women, which Armstrong called “enormous fun”.

“I am a massive fan of Sherlock,” he said. “[And] I’d love to be in anything that [co-creators] Mark Gatiss or Stephen Moffat are involved in. Anything they do, I’d love to do.”

Armstrong is no stranger to Steven Moffat’s work, having appeared in Doctor Who 2011 Christmas special The Doctor, The Widow and The Wardrobe as Second World War bomber Reg Arwell. 


Alexander Armstrong’s quiz show Big Ask returns to Dave on 26 February