Stephen Graham: Scrap Strictly for more TV drama

Film and television star Stephen Graham has called for the BBC to scrap Strictly Come Dancing and spend more money on drama.

The This Is England star told BBC Breakfast there was not enough good drama on television – slamming the decision to axe The Street in which he starred as an alcoholic dad with a disabled son.

Stephen fumed: “I’m gutted that they took The Street off the BBC to be honest with you – it’s a shame.

“If we can’t recreate drama like that – that’s why actors like me are going over to America to work. I’m getting all political now, but you can’t take money away from great drama like The Street and put it into a show of people dancing.

“I don’t mean to be disrespectful but it is my job and I’m very passionate about it.

“Where are new actors going to get discovered? Where are writers like Jimmy McGovern going to be able to put their work across?

He added: “Where are people like me and Maxine (Peake) going to make a living? Where are we going to do good drama?”

Father-of-two Stephen also starred in Guy Ritchie’s Snatch and Public Enemies with Johnny Depp and is filming the pilot for Martin Scorsese’s new gangster show in which he plays Al Capone.