Martin Compston reveals the surprising celebrity who inspired Line of Duty's Steve Arnott

MARTIN Compston has revealed that he perfected his south London accent on Line of Duty by listening to recordings of Dermot O'Leary.

The actor portrays Steve Arnott, one of AC-12's leading investigators, in the long-running BBC crime drama – and his accent may come as a surprise for some.

The 37-year-old, who has a rather distinctive Scottish accent, recently told Jessica Ware on her Table Manners podcast how he used to "cringe" after watching himself in the first series.

He said: "I can tell in those moments I’m really straining with certain words and looking back I think my performance is quite flat in the first one."

However, Martin turned to a certain This Morning presenter for guidance.

"I was trying to get back into the accent and I started listening to people and Dermot’s a really good sounding board for the accent," he revealed.

"I was like, 'I want a piece of that, sounds like fun'."

Martin, who is currently starring in ITV’s latest thriller Our House, recently teased his hopes over another season of Line of Duty.

"With everything, Jed Mercurio definitely left the odds loose end and he always leaves little things that could probably pick up in the next series," he told the Metro.

"But he won’t do it just for the sake of it just because, in terms of like people want to back, he’ll only want to do it if he thinks of a good story to tell!"

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Talking about the reaction from fans, Martin added: "Whenever people ask for a selfie or ask about the show, it means they love what we’re doing.

"It means what we’re doing is going well. And the fact that people want us to come back again means the world."

Line of Duty is available to stream on the BBC iPlayer.

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