The two met at the readthrough for the eight-part serial, penned by Dinosaurs on a Spaceship writer, Chris Chibnall, and Darvill says:
Doctor Who is such a different job to any other; it was nice talking to someone who’s been through that.
While Tennant stars as one of two lead characters, DI Hardy (alongside The Eleventh Hour’s Olivia Coleman), Arthur plays the local vicar, and The Mirror points out that he’s portrayed a nurse and a soldier in the past. Darvill says:
Maybe I should just aim to do all the Village People. I’ll work through all six of them and then that’ll be my career sorted… You only really see vicars at funerals and weddings, I never realised how busy they are. They’re always on duty and they have to be really well behaved all the time, it must be a nightmare.
Though he left in last year’s The Angels Take Manhattan, he still watches the show, explaining:
I went to the National Television Awards last month and they were showing clips from the Christmas episode, which I’m not in, and it was like, ‘Oh, I used to be in Doctor Who.’ It’s good, it’s something I’m so proud of, but it was definitely the right time to go.
Arthur played Rory from 2010 to 2012, and came up against Daleks, Cybermen, the Silence, Vampires in Venice, Silurians, House, and the Gunslinger – amongst many others. His guest stars have included Captain America: The First Avenger star, Toby Jones; Notting Hill’s Hugh Bonneville; and Little Britain’s David Walliams; but he was most star struck when meeting Night Terrors writer, Mark Gatiss:
I’m such a League Of Gentlemen fan. I was drunk the first time I met him and I went up to him and said, ‘I’m sorry, I’m not going to be able to have a proper conversation with you because I’m a massive fan.’
And he just threw his arms round me and went, ‘Oh, don’t worry about it,’ and since then we’ve become quite good friends.
Rory remains a popular character, carving out a definitive era of Doctor Who alongside Matt Smith’s Eleventh Doctor and Karen Gillan’s Amy Pond. He obviously gets lots of attention from fans and the press. But not all of that attention has been good, as he says:
For my birthday a couple of years ago, a guy sent me a book of pictures of himself wearing clothes I own. I don’t understand what his thinking was.
It was lovely, but it was weird because at the time I was wearing one of the tops he had on in one of the pictures.
You can read more of the revealing interview here. And don’t forget to watch Broadchurch every Monday at 9pm, ITV1.