You probably know him as Cousin Matthew from “Downtown Abbey” (and let’s be honest, that’s what I’ll always call him), but he’s so much more than that! Depending on when I hit publish, he’s either starring or about to star in Noah Hawley’s Marvel adaptation on FX, “Legion,” and is playing the Beast in the live action “Beauty and the Beast.”
Side note: I am VERY excited about “Legion,” and slightly less excited about “Beauty and the Beast,” although I will still go see it in the theater. Obviously.
I should probably warn you there will be some vague spoilers for “Downton Abbey” and “The Guest” in the following paragraphs.
In “Downtown Abbey” Dan Stevens is the affable, slightly stutter-y, but ultimately charming romantic lead…the Hugh Grant role, if you will (side note: Stevens plays Edward Ferrars in the 2008 BBC adaptation of “Sense and Sensibility,” the same role Hugh Grant played in the Emma Thompson version). And then he left “Downton Abbey” and crushed all of our hearts. I myself mourned for over 30 seconds. I didn’t even like Cousin Matthew at first, but then Stevens created such a charming, sweet character that I fell in love despite myself. And then he took it all away. Bastard.
However, it was worth it because we got this:
That’s Dan Stevens in “The Guest” playing what I can only describe as a psychotic Captain America. I LOVE “The Guest.” It’s hilarious, campy fun, anchored by a fantastic performance from Stevens, all earnest charm one second, and chilling homicidal mania the next.
So what is my point in all this? I’m not sure. I lost my train of thought gazing into those piercing baby blues.
Oh, right. If Dan Stevens is in a movie, you should at least consider checking it out. Except “The Cobbler.” “The Cobbler” is terrible. Although, Stevens is actually doing something kind of interesting because at one point his character is Adam Sandler’s character in disguise (it would take too long to fully explain), and he’s doing this kind of Adam Sandler impression that’s pretty interesting from an acting standpoint. But that movie is garbage. So maybe just skip through to the Dan Stevens parts?
He doesn’t just play the same character or type of character over and over. He’s always trying something different, and that’s really fun to watch.
Anyway. Um, here’s some suggestions of stuff to watch to start you out:
- Downtown Abbey (season one is the best)
- The Guest (on Netflix)
- Sense and Sensibility (on Hulu)
- A Walk Among the Tombstones
- High Maintenance (episodes “Rachel” and “Museebat”)
And if Dan Stevens has a google alert set up for his name, and ever by some chance reads this…come be in my movie, Dan Stevens! I want you to play Satan 🙂