A VETERAN York actor has landed a leading role in a major American television series.

David Bradley, who was born in Burton Stone Lane and won a BAFTA for his role in Broadchurch but is also well known for his role as Argus Filch, the caretaker of Hogwarts School in the Harry Potter films, plays elderly vampire hunter Abraham Setrakian in The Strain, which starts later this month.

Speaking to Access Hollywood, he said the series is about the rise of a virus which turns people into vampire-like beings, and Mr Bradley admitted the worm-like creature that spreads the virus was almost enough to put people off their spaghetti.

He said: "I have to say, but I’d rather have watched from behind the sofa, to be honest.

"It puts you off certain foodstuff, but they showed the entire pilot of the first episode while we were having lunch in the studio canteen, so, there were a few people pushing their plates away as they watched."

Although he had not heard of The Strain, which started as a series of books then graphic novels, his desire to work with the celebrated Oscar-nominated director behind Pan's Labyrinth who wrote the books and directed the first episode.

Mr Bradley said: "It was the three magic words, Guillermo del Toro.

"He’s one of the great directors and he’s just got such a wonderful imagination, so it’s something you want to be a part of. I didn’t know an awful lot about it, but he and Carlton described the character and I saw a script and I thought, ‘Wow, this has great potential.’"

Another aspect of the series that appealed to the York actor was the difference between the vampire creatures in The Strain and the ones seen more commonly in modern or classic films or television.

He told AccessHollywood: "There are quite a lot of vampire movies and TV series out there at the moment, but the creatures in this one seemed to be more visceral and unpleasant than the suave, pointy-toothed guys in evening dress with top hats.

"There was something more earthy about these creatures and I just loved the story about a man of a certain age who is an action hero and he’s a man with a mission, and it’s just an interesting character because he’s got such an interesting past, which the story delves into more and more as it goes along."

*The Strain starts on Watch on September 17.