Daniel Mays: Stephen Graham is my Cilla Black

Daniel Mays on how Stephen Graham played matchmaker for him and his wife credit:Bang Showbiz
Daniel Mays on how Stephen Graham played matchmaker for him and his wife credit:Bang Showbiz

Daniel Mays says Stephen Graham was his Cilla Black.

The 44-year-old actor is married to Louise Burton and has 17-year-old Mylo and daughter Dixie, nine, with her but admitted that he was "too scared" to ask her on a date and that his 'Line of Duty' co-star was his version of the late TV legend, who played matchmaker to hundreds of couples on ITV dating show 'Blind Date' for almost two decades between 1985 and 2003.

He said: "Stephen is my Cilla Black. He's a Scouser too, there's the connection. He was a matchmaker for me and my wife. She was a makeup artist and we were working on show years ago and I couldn't ask her out, I was too scared. But then Stephen stepped in and put us together. It's all his fault!"

Meanwhile, Daniel has teamed up with Stephen, 49, once again for a new series of Sky Comedy show 'Code 404', which he describes as a "slapstick twist" on their BBC police drama and revealed that he managed to get his daughter a part in the first episode before joking that he "doesn't know where she gets it from.".

Speaking on ITV's 'Lorraine', he told stand-in host Ranvir Singh: "We've got Stephen Graham and Anna Maxwell Martin in the show. All three of us have been in 'Line of Duty' so this is a kind of twist on it all. 'Code 404' you kind of leave your brain in the corridor with it. It's slapstick, it's silly and it's a whole lot of fun really. It's just a chance for Stephen and I to play in the comedy world and we had such a ball making it for six weeks and we never stopped giggling with each other."

"My daughter Dixie, who is nine years old, she appears in the first episode as a cheeky school girl. When I read it in the script, I thought 'I know exactly the person who could play that' and she was absolutely fantastic. She was so relaxed and assured on set and loved it. I think she wants to do more. My son was in 'Matilda' in the West End but I think Mylo is more interested in going behind the scenes. I don't know where they get it from!"

The third series of 'Code 404' started airing in the UK on Thursday 4 August at 9pm and will be shown as double-bills over three weeks.