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Oliver Robert Ford Davies (born 12 August 1939) is an English actor and writer, best known for his role as Sio Bibble in Star Wars Episodes I to III. He is also known for his role as Cressen in HBO series Game of Thrones.[2]

Oliver Ford Davies
Oliver Ford Davies.jpg
Davies in 2008
Oliver Robert Ford Davies

(1939-08-12) 12 August 1939 (age 80)
OccupationActor, writer
Years active1959–present
Jenifer Armitage (m. 1977)

Early life and academic careerEdit

Davies was born in Ealing, Middlesex, England. He attended the King's School, Canterbury. In 1956 He joined the eminent Ealing amateur company Questors.[3] He won a scholarship to Merton College, Oxford, where he read History and became President of the Oxford University Dramatic Society. After obtaining his DPhil,[4] he worked as a history lecturer at the University of Edinburgh before taking up acting professionally in 1967.[5]

Acting careerEdit

In 1959, as a member of the Oxford University Experimental Theatre Club, he appeared in his first Stratford performance in the Memorial Theatre's open-air production of Bartholomew Fair.[6][7] His first professional appearances were, at the age of 27, in the 1967 season at the Birmingham Repertory Theatre.[5] Short Seasons at the Mermaid, London, the Oxford Playhouse and the Cambridge Arts Theatre followed.[8] His long and prolific association with the Royal Shakespeare Company started in 1975, when director Terry Hands cast him as Mountjoy in Henry V. He is an Honorary Associate Artist of the company.[9][10] From 1990 until 2019 He appeared more frequently at the National Theatre, London, until at the age of 80 he lent his "sublime presence" to the part of the appraising button moulder in Henryk Ibsen's Peter Gynt at the Olivier Theatre.[11]

On television, Davies had a regular role as Peter Foxcott QC in Kavanagh QC and was schoolmaster Le Bas in the serialization of A Dance to the Music of Time (1997). He also appeared with John Thaw in an episode of Inspector Morse and also appeared in the ITV television drama The Uninvited, and in a 2002 episode of the popular drama Foyle's War.

On film, his most prominent role was probably Sio Bibble in the Star Wars "prequel trilogy" films, released in 1999, 2002 and 2005. In 2003, Davies appeared in the film Johnny English, where he portrayed the Archbishop of Canterbury.

He appeared on stage as Polonius in Hamlet with the Royal Shakespeare Company, alongside David Tennant and Patrick Stewart, and in 2009 appeared in All's Well That Ends Well at the Royal National Theatre as the King of France. In 2010, he appeared as Balfour in the premiere of Ben Brown's play The Promise, about the Balfour Declaration.

In 2011, he appeared in a stage adaptation of Michelle Magorian's book Goodnight Mister Tom, in which he played the central character, Thomas Oakley. He is back with the Royal Shakespeare Company in 2014 as Justice Shallow in "Henry IV, Part 2". Davies again appeared with David Tennant in Richard II in 2013. In February 2019 Davies discussed his career in the BBC Radio Three series Private Passions.[12]

He is the only actor to appear in both the 1974 version and 2013 version of Father Brown.

Awards and nominationsEdit

Davies was awarded the Laurence Olivier Award in 1990 (1989 season) for Best Actor in a New Play for Racing Demon. He was twice nominated for a Laurence Olivier Theatre Award for Best Performance in a Supporting Role for his performance in Absolutely! (perhaps) at the Wyndham's Theatre in 2003, and again in 2009 for his performance as Polonius in the RSC production of Hamlet at the Novello Theatre.


Oliver Ford Davies's books include Playing Lear, an account of his experience while performing King Lear at the Almeida Theatre, and Performing Shakespeare. Both are published by Nick Hern Books.


Davies's drama King Cromwell was staged at the Orange Tree Theatre, Richmond in November 2003. The director was Sam Walters and Davies himself took the title role.[13][14]

Partial filmographyEdit

Partial TV SeriesEdit

  • The Protectors (1973) – Hansen – Episode “Bagman”
  • Father Brown (1974) – Det. Insp. Corliss - Episode “The Eye of Apollo”
  • A Taste of Death (1988 mini-series) – Father Francis Barnes – 6 episodes
  • Agatha Christie's Poirot (1989 TV series) - Dr. Sheppard - Episode "The Murder of Roger Ackroyd" (S07:E01)
  • Inspector Morse (1991) - Frederick Redpath - Episode "Second Time Around" (S05:E01}
  • Maigret (1992 TV series) - Dr. Pardon - Episode "Maigret on the Defensive" (S02:E03)
  • Kavanagh QC (1995 TV series) - Peter Foxcott QC - 26 episodes
  • Midsomer Murders (1997 TV series) - Otto Benham - Episode "Hidden Depths" (S08:E06)


  1. ^ Profile at
  2. ^ "Oliver Ford Davies on Melisandre, Stannis & Flaming Idols". 22 November 2013. Retrieved 27 September 2016.
  3. ^ "Questors Joins Forces With University of West London". 29 June 2011.
  4. ^ Naxos Audiobooks: Oliver Ford Davies; accessed 22 March 2013
  5. ^ a b Barnett, Laura (18 December 2012). "Oliver Ford Davies, actor – portrait of the artist". the Guardian.
  6. ^ Levens, R.G.C., ed. (1964). Merton College Register 1900-1964. Oxford: Basil Blackwell. p. 503.
  7. ^ "RSC Performances 1959". Shakespeare Birthplace Trust.
  8. ^ Trowbridge, Simon. Stratfordians: a Biographical Dictionary of the Royal Shakespeare Company. Oxford: Editions Albert Creed. pp. 204–206. ISBN 9780955983016.
  9. ^ "Associate artists | Royal Shakespeare Company". Royal Shakespeare Company.
  10. ^ "RSC Performances Oliver Ford Davies". Shakespeare Birthplace Trust. Retrieved 19 September 2019.
  11. ^ Evans, Lloyd (20 July 2019). "The greatest actor in the world couldn't salvage David Hare's batty adaptation". The Spectator.
  12. ^
  13. ^ ISBN 9780573112133
  14. ^ Billington, Michael (17 November 2003). "King Cromwell, Orange Tree, London". The Guardian.

External linksEdit