What do Downton Abbey stars do when they’re not working on the drama? Appear in the buff on other shows. Most recently Hugh Bonneville who plays Lord Grantham, shed his clothes for the new Starz series Da Vinci’s Demons. In the premiere episode which aired April 12, he plays the very hungover and very naked Duke of Milan who is shown relieving himself in a chamber pot. That’s all audiences will see of Hugh though. (And I suppose that’s a good deal!) His character - the Duke gets - assassinated shortly afterward.
The creators of the show tell Entertainment Weekly they were looking for a Hugh Bonneville type to play the aristocrat. The show’s star Tom Riley figured why not get the real McCoy? Riley who had appeared alongside Bonneville in the mini-series Lost in Austen called up his co-star to mention the role. Bonneville was happy to provide the screen time in the buff.
Jessica Brown Findlay, otherwise known as ex-Lady Sybil, stripped for the U.K. time travel drama, Labyrinth which is a film adaptation of the Kate Mosse best-selling novel. She tells the Radio Times that it’s a brief moment in the show that was filmed in one take, so she is fine with it.
She is still bothered by a nude scene she filmed early in her career though. In her first movie Albatross her character bares her breasts in order to buy cigarettes. Findlay tells the Radio Times how much she regrets her decision to do that.
“To be honest, Albatross was naivete and not knowing that I could say no,” she says. “I had no idea what was going to happen and thought I was going to be shot from behind.”
Findlay feels she knows better now and doesn’t plan on removing her clothes for any more movies or television shows.
No word on whether Dan Stevens will be disrobing for his next role, but one can only hope! Have you seen Hugh Bonneville or Jessica Brown Findlay in their out of Downton roles? What do you think of them?