The Many Roles of Alun Armstrong

A fan's guide to the 226+ roles played by Alun Armstrong, including descriptions, images, availability, ratings & reviews.

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Alun Armstrong in Exit the King at Bath's Theatre Royal

Alun Armstrong will star in Exit The King by Eugene Ionesco at the Ustinov Studio of the Theatre Royal Bath from Thursday 20th November to Saturday 20th December. The play follows the last day in the life of the great King Berenger, now 400 years old, once the ruler of millions of subjects, but now on his last legs. Exit The King is directed by Laurence Boswell, and is the third in a series of three black comedies which make up this autumn's Ustinov Studio season.

Tickets are now on sale. See the Theatre Royal Bath website for details.

Armstrong discussed the role of Berenger - as well as other roles - in an interview with Rebecca McWattie for The Pass.

"The king is going to die and personifies Ionesco's view of how little real communication there is between people. Ionesco himself was obsessed with death from a young age and Berenger, the king, is a naive character who doesn't really understand himself or other people and can't face death with any kind of realism or acceptance. It's a very difficult play, as it's very bleak and wordy - the challenge is to make it believable emotionally whilst spouting this rather intense prose. It's very funny as well - as there is something essentially absurd about life and death, it seems in our minds ridiculous that it's going to come to an end." - Read the full interview at The Pass


Alun Armstrong guest stars in Downton Abbey Christmas special

Alun Armstrong will appear in the special episode of Downton Abbey airing on Christmas Day 2014 on ITV. The Series 5 Christmas special will also air in the U.S. on PBS sometime in 2015. According to The Journal: "He plays the butler of the family who host the Crawleys on a grouse shoot and manages to irritate their servants. He says of his character: 'He's very pernickity and particular and he gives them a hard time so they want to get their own back and gang up on me!'"

A new interview in the Daily Mail gives more details:

... he plays a snooty butler (even snootier than Carson, apparently) at the home of some cousins of the Crawleys where the family has decamped for a shooting party. 'I've never really watched the show,' admits Alun in a whisper.

'So I would take people aside and ask, "Can you remind me who she’s married to?" It was a funny couple of weeks; my character is fruity and ridiculous. We were filming at Alnwick Castle which was remarkable; it was the first time anyone had been allowed to film inside.

'Even for Harry Potter [the castle’s exteriors were used for Hogwarts] it was only ever filmed from the outside. The Duke and Duchess of Northumberland, whose home it is, said, "Make yourselves right at home."

'It was nice to be back working with Michelle Dockery [Lady Mary] as she played my daughter-in-law in The Hollow Crown. I was the Duke of Northumberland – an ancestor of the one whose home we were in – and my son Joe played my son and her husband. It felt like we’d gone full circle.' - Read the full interview at the Daily Mail


Penny Dreadful now on DVD

Alun ArmstrongThe 8-part horror series Penny Dreadful is now available on Region 1 DVD for viewers in the US and Canada and on Region 2 DVD for those in the UK and Europe. Alun Armstrong plays Vincent Brand, an actor who takes in Frankenstein's Creature (Rory Kinnear) after he is abandoned by his creator. Armstrong appears in Episode 3: "Resurrection," in Episode 4: "Demimonde," and in Episode 8: "Grand Guignol." (There was also a brief flashback from "Demimonde" in Episode 7.)

Penny Dreadful is created and written by John Logan (Hugo; Skyfall) and is co-executive produced by Sam Mendes (The Hollow Crown).  The series also stars Josh Hartnett, Eva Green, Billie Piper, Rory Kinnear, Timothy Dalton, Helen McCrory and Simon Russell Beale.

Some of literature's most terrifying characters, including Dr. Frankenstein, Dorian Gray and iconic figures from the novel Dracula are lurking in the darkest corners of Victorian London. Penny Dreadful is a frightening psychological thriller that weaves together these classic horror origin stories into a new adult drama. - Showtime