Jonathan Pryce Biography |
  • Jonathan Pryce Biography

    Born: January 06, 1947 in Flintshire, Wales, UK

    Jonathan Pryce is an internationally acclaimed, award-winning actor, known for his outstanding performances on both stage and screen.  From his seminal theatre performances in Hamlet and Miss Saigon to film roles in Carrington and Pirates of the Caribbean, he has entertained audiences on both sides of the Atlantic and beyond.  

    Jonathan studied at RADA and upon graduating, joined the Liverpool Everyman Theatre Company for an 18-month season, followed by a season at the Nottingham Playhouse under the direction of Richard Eyre.  He then returned to the Everyman for a season as Artistic Director. 

    An illustrious career of theatre credits followed.  In 1975, he starred in Trevor Griffiths’ “Comedians”, directed by Richard Eyre at The Old Vic, and then took that role to New York, directed by Mike Nichols, where he won his first Tony Award for Best Actor.  A season with the Royal Shakespeare Company came next, with lead roles in “The Taming of the Shrew”, “Antony and Cleopatra” and “Measure for Measure”, and in 1980, Jonathan won an Olivier Award for his highly acclaimed “Hamlet”, directed by Richard Eyre, at the Royal Court.  Subsequent theatre credits include: “Tally’s Folly” at the Lyric Theatre Hammersmith; playing The Fool in “Accidental Death of an Anarchist” on Broadway; “The Seagull”, opposite Vanessa Redgrave; “Macbeth” at the RSC; and “Uncle Vanya”, directed by Michael Blakemore.

    In 1989 Jonathan created the role of The Engineer in the musical “Miss Saigon”, for which he was awarded his second Tony, together with the Drama Desk, Olivier and Outer Circle Critics awards for Best Actor in a musical. Other musical starring roles have since followed in “Oliver!” and “My Fair Lady” in London and “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels” on Broadway.

    His recent theatre credits include “The Goat or Who Is Sylvia?” at the Almeida Theatre and Apollo Theatre, which garnered him a nomination for Best Actor at the Olivier Awards; “Glengarry Glen Ross”, directed by James MacDonald; “Dimetos” at The Donmar Warehouse; and his landmark performance as Davies in “The Caretaker”, which played initially at the Liverpool Playhouse before transferring to the West End in 2010.

    Jonathan’s achievements on stage have been mirrored by his success on screen.  His early film credits include Stuart Rosenburg’s VOYAGE OF THE DAMNED, Brian Gibdon’s  BREAKING GLASS, for which he won Best Newcomer at the Evening Standard Awards, Jack Clayton’s SOMETHING WICKED THIS WAY COMES, and Terry Gilliam’s award-winning BRAZIL, which was to be followed later by two other collaborations with GILLIAM: THE ADVENTURES OF BARON MUNCHAUSEN and THE BROTHERS GRIMM.

    Other film credits include THE PLOUGHMAN’S LUNCH, MAN ON FIRE, CONSUMING PASSIONS, THE DOCTOR and the Devil’s, JUMPIN’ JACK FLASH, Scorcese”s THE AGE OF INNOCENCE and GLENGARRY GLEN ROSS, and in 1995 Pryce starred in Christopher Hampton’s CARRINGTON, which brought him Best Actor awards at the Cannes Film Festival and the Evening Standard Awards and a BAFTA Award nomination.  A starring role alongside Madonna in EVITA followed, as well as a memorable turn as the James Bond villain Eliot Carver in TOMORROW NEVER DIES, and roles in RONIN and STIGMATA.

    His most recent film work includes: G.I. JOE: RETALIATION, directed by Jon M. Chu; JUNK, directed by Justin Trefgarne; HYSTERIA, directed by Tania Wexler; BEDTIME STORIES, directed by Adam Shankman; G.I.JOE: THE RISE OF COBRA, directed by Stephen Sommers; MY ZINC BED, directed by Anthony Page; LEATHERHEADS, directed George Clooney; DE-LOVELY, directed by Irwin Walker; and THE AFFAIR OF THE NECKLACE, directed by Charles Shyer.  Jonathan is also known to millions for his role as Governor Weatherby Swann in the first three Pirates of the Caribbean films: THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL, DEAD MAN’S CHEST and AT WORLD’S END.

    Jonathan’s television work includes: HBO’s “Barbarians at the Gate” (for which he was Emmy and Golden Globe nominated), the lead roles of Wallace in the BBC TV film “The Man from the Pru” and Gerd Heidemann in the four-part telefilm “Selling Hitler”; starring in “Great Moments in Aviation” for BBC Films, directed by Beeban Kidron; playing Sherlock Holmes in “Baker Street Irregulars”, directed by Julian Kemp for RDF Media; and the lead role in “Thicker Than Water” for BBC TV.  Most recently, he played Mr. Buxton in “Cranford: Return to Cranford”, for which he received an Emmy Nomination for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Mini-series or Drama.

    In recognition of his many achievements in film, television and theatre Jonathan was awarded an honorary doctorate from Liverpool University in 2006, and in 2009 he was awarded the C.B.E in the Queen’s Birthday Honours.

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