Dame Judi Dench has said she “loathes” being called a “national treasure” when speaking to Scottish actor David Tennant on his podcast.

The veteran actress, 85, said she would like to play more villains so she can continue to surprise people - and does not want to be a "relic".

When the Doctor Who star asked if she felt pressure to be a national treasure, Dame Judi replied: “No, no, no. I loathe that word. It’s something very, very dusty, behind a glass, in a corner.

“I don’t want to be a relic.”

She added that she has not played enough villainous parts, saying: "I hate to play parts that are expected.

"I want to play somebody who you think is a benign old lady sitting in a chair, and in actual fact is bumping people off.

“I’m looking for a lot of villains to play.”

She continued: “Notes On A Scandal was my most favourite villain to play. And having a good old fight with Cate Blanchett.”

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Dame Judi also addressed the death of her husband Michael Williams in 2001, after a long illness.

Asked how long it took to work out how to be without him, she said: “I don’t know. I don’t know. Perhaps I’ve never done that, quite.

"I suspect I shall never, ever get over Mikey.”

She continued: “It changes who you are completely, I think. Because it’s like you’re walking along, and suddenly you’re not looking and there’s an enormous chasm in front of you.

“And suddenly all sorts of things take you, expected kinds of things happen… I don’t expect you ever get used to it. Sometimes the door in this house just opens and I think that he’s just wandered in.”

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The podcast already made headlines when actress Jodie Whitaker revealed that she was once asked to have some kind of cosmetic “filler” to smooth out her frown line.

Whoopi Goldberg also told Tennant on an episode of his podcast that she really wanted to be the first female Doctor Who.

As well as the likes of Whittaker, Goldberg, Olivia Colman, and Ian McKellen, Tennant has now added Dame Judi Dench to his list of podcast interviewees.