At the 2014 TCA press tour panel for new Starz pirate thriller “Black Sails,” star Toby Stephens was asked about whether he’d rather be doing a drawing room drama like “Downton Abbey,” which stars his mother, Maggie Smith, as fan-favorite Dowager Countess of Grantham.
“Any day of the week, I would prefer to do the show I’m doing right now,” says Stephens. “I appreciate ‘Downton Abbey’ for what it is. I have to say, I don’t regularly tune in. … I appreciate what my mom does, she’s great in it. It’s just not what I enjoy watching.”
He adds that getting to be a part of a show about high-seas adventures and swashbuckling pirates, which films in Cape Town, South Africa, is “like going on a vacation,” because it’s just not something actors get to do every day.
“Black Sails” premieres Saturday, Jan. 25 on Starz.