Poldark star Aidan Turner has said he does not use social media platforms because he has no interest in being judged by strangers.

The actor, 37, was speaking ahead of Leonardo launching on Amazon Prime Video, in which he plays Italian polymath Leonardo da Vinci.

The eight-part series explores what made the Renaissance painter, architect and inventor famous.

Turner, who bid farewell to his other famous small screen character, Captain Ross Poldark, in 2019, told the PA news agency: “You know, Leonardo, a very famous artist at the time – there’s only so many people who can get into a gallery to see a piece of work, or to have it with them and these days, there’s Instagram, there’s whatever for an artist, and your work is judged on a global level immediately. It’s difficult.

“I personally don’t do social media. I mean maybe that’s one of the reasons too, I probably would struggle with that – people I don’t know commenting on things that I don’t necessarily care about but then I should, I suppose.

“So, I find that whole dynamic difficult, so I don’t participate in it, but probably that’s as a result of that. Being judged by people I don’t know isn’t something I’m very interested in.”

A Twitter account in the actor’s name, which says it was created in 2012 and has a blue verified badge meaning it is authentic, has more than 70,000 followers but is not following anyone and a tweet has yet to be sent from the account.

The new series also features Giancarlo Giannini as Leonardo’s master, Andrea del Verrocchio, and The Undoing star Matilda De Angelis as his muse Caterina of Cremona.

Each episode focuses on a different Da Vinci painting, and reveals the story behind it, with the series also exploring Da Vinci’s unorthodox upbringing with his grandparents as well as his relationships with men.

Aidan Turner and Matilda De Angelis star in Leonardo (Amazon Prime Video/Lux Vide)

The Hobbit star also spoke about doing another period drama following Poldark, which ended in 2019 after five series.

He said: “In a way, if it wasn’t Leonardo da Vinci, I probably wouldn’t [have done it].

“It’s one of those roles that, you know, as actors, sometimes we feel – certainly I do – ‘If I pass on this, will I watch this in a year’s time, with some other actor playing it, and wish I had done it?’ And I kept feeling that.

“I kept having that feeling that I’m going to regret not doing this. I’m going to see some other actor play this role and I’m going to have feelings about that.”

Leonardo launches on Amazon Prime Video on April 16.