Once upon a time, Hugh Bonneville, who plays the morally upright Earl of Grantham in Downton Abbey, had to tell women that he was an actor. Now, women are, literally, overcome with emotion when they catch sight of the actor, who appeared in the film Conspiracy of Silence and the play \’Tis Pity She’s a Whore.
“Brendan Coyle [who plays Bates, the jailed valet, in Downton] and I were wandering round a market in Hollywood and we had a few people coming up to us and asking for autographs,” say Bonneville. “But this one woman walked up to us, uttered a sort of stammering \’hello’ and suddenly started struggling breath, gasping and going red. It took us a full hour to calm her down and make sure she was okay.”