Stephen Merchant flew to the US to meet Christopher Walken because he wanted him to play a role in 'The Outlaws'.

Stephen Merchant

Stephen Merchant

The co-creator of 'The Office', 46, had to take the drastic measure to convince Christopher, who has no mobile phone or email address, to be in his BBC One series.

He told the Daily Mirror newspaper: "Chris doesn’t use phones and he doesn’t have a computer, so it was a bit hard to ­contact him. I ended up having this very glamorous weekend where I went to Los Angeles to go to the SAG Awards for that film 'Jojo Rabbit'.

"On the way back, someone said, ‘Chris can see you on your way home.'

"So I flew from this glamorous award ceremony to New York, and then drove up to Connecticut, and met Chris at his house. We spent hours just chewing the fat and the next thing I knew he agreed to do it."

Christopher plays the role of unreformed con-artist and womaniser Frank in the drama, which centres a group of lawbreakers in Bristol who are thrown together to complete a community service sentence.

Stephen - who wrote the script and directed the series - took on the role of Greg, a lawyer who is caught soliciting in a car park.

The series will air on BBC One later this year and will also be available on Amazon Prime Video.

Christopher has recently admitted that it may be time to get himself a mobile phone.

He said: "I mentioned an actor named Clifton Webb and none of my younger colleagues knew who he was. And this one guy took his cell phone and punched in Clifton Webb.

"In 30 seconds he had all these details – where he was born, his credits ... everything! It was amazing."