Rupert Simeon Graves[1] (born 30 June 1963) is an English film, television, and theatre actor. He is known for his roles in A Room with a View, Maurice, The Madness of King George and The Forsyte Saga. From 2010 to 2017 he starred as DI Lestrade in the BBC television series Sherlock.

Rupert Graves
Graves at the Made in Dagenham film premiere in 2010
Rupert Simeon Graves

(1963-06-30) 30 June 1963 (age 60)
Years active1978–present
Susie Lewis
(m. 2001)

Early life and education

Graves was born in Weston-super-Mare in Somerset, England,[2] to Mary Lousilla (née Roberts) Graves, a travel co-ordinator, and Richard Harding Graves, a music teacher and musician.[3]

Graves was educated at Wyvern Community School,[4] a state comprehensive school in his home town of Weston-super-Mare, which he left at the age of 16.


Graves's first job after leaving school was as a circus clown. He has appeared in more than 25 films and more than 35 television productions. He has also appeared on stage.

He first came to prominence in costume-drama adaptations of E. M. Forster's novels A Room with a View (1985) and Maurice (1987), before appearing in films including A Handful of Dust (1988), The Madness of King George (1994), Different for Girls (1996), and Intimate Relations (1996).

His role in Intimate Relations won him the Best Actor award at the 1996 Montreal World Film Festival.[5] He was also acclaimed for his portrayal of Young Jolyon Forsyte in the television miniseries The Forsyte Saga (2002).[6]

Personal life

In 1987, in his hometown of Weston-super-Mare, Graves met Yvonne, a stained glass artist (later a trained gardener) in a café. They lived together in Stoke Newington, London, and he helped her raise her two daughters, who were 10 and 14 years old when the relationship began. The couple were together for 13 years.[7]

In September 2000, shortly after Graves's relationship with Yvonne ended, he met Australian-born production co-ordinator Suzanne Lewis at the opening-night party for The Caretaker, a play he was appearing in with Michael Gambon. They are married and have five children together.[citation needed]



Year Title Role Notes
1985 A Room with a View Freddie Honeychurch
1987 Maurice Alec Scudder
1988 A Handful of Dust John Beaver
1990 The Plot to Kill Hitler Axel von dem Busche
1990 The Children Gerald Ormerod
1991 Where Angels Fear to Tread Philip Herriton
1992 Damage Martyn Fleming
1992 The Sheltering Desert Hermann Korn
1994 The Madness of King George Robert Fulke Greville
1996 Different for Girls Paul Prentice
1996 The Innocent Sleep Alan Terry
1996 Intimate Relations Harold Guppy Montreal World Film Festival – Best Actor
1997 Bent Officer on train
1997 Mrs Dalloway Septimus Warren Smith
1998 The Soldier's Leap Christian Short film
1998 Sweet Revenge Oliver Knightly
1999 All My Loved Ones Nicholas Winton Original title: Vsichni moji blízcí
1999 Dreaming of Joseph Lees Joseph Lees
2000 Room to Rent Mark
2002 Extreme Ops Jeffrey
2005 Rag Tale Eddy Taylor
2005 V for Vendetta Dominic
2007 Death at a Funeral Robert
2007 Intervention Mark
2007 The Waiting Room George
2010 Made in Dagenham Peter Hopkins
2012 Fast Girls David Temple
2015 Bone in the Throat Rupert based on Anthony Bourdain's novel
2016 Native Cane
2016 Sacrifice Duncan Guthrie based on Sharon Bolton's novel
2018 Swimming with Men Luke
2019 Horrible Histories: The Movie – Rotten Romans Governor General Paulinus
2020 Emma Mr. Weston
2021 Smyrna my Beloved George Horton
2022 Dalíland Captain Moore Post-production


Year Title Role Notes
1978 Return of the Saint Prefect Episode: "Yesterday's Hero"
1979 The Famous Five Yan 2 episodes
1981 Vice Versa Tipping 6 episodes
1982 All for Love Episode: "Mona"
1983 St. Ursula's in Danger Teddy
1983 Good and Bad at Games Guthrie
1984 Puccini Tonio
1987 Fortunes of War Simon Boulderstone 3 episodes
1991 A Private Affair Milton
1992 Inspector Morse Billy Episode: "Happy Families"
1993 Screen One Neil Episode: "Royal Celebration"
1994 Doomsday Gun Jones
1994 Open Fire David Martin
1995 Harry Dominic Collier Series 2, Episode 6
1996 1914–1918 3 episodes
1996 The Tenant of Wildfell Hall Arthur Huntingdon 3 episodes
1999 The Blonde Bombshell Dennis Hamilton
1999 Cleopatra Octavian
2000 Take a Girl Like You Patrick Standish TV movie
2002 The Forsyte Saga Young Jolyon Forsyte
2003 The Forsyte Saga: To Let Young Jolyon Forsyte 4 episodes
2003 Charles II: The Power & the Passion George Villiers, Duke of Buckingham 4 episodes
2004 Pride Linus Voice only
2005 Spooks William Sampson Series 4, Episode 2
2005 A Waste of Shame William Shakespeare
2006 Son of the Dragon The Lord of the North
2007 To Be First Dr. Christiaan Barnard
2007 Clapham Junction Robin Cape
2007 The Dinner Party Roger
2008 Ashes to Ashes Danny Moore Series 1, Episode 2
2008 Waking the Dead Colonel John Garrett 2 episodes
2008 Midnight Man Daniel Cosgrave 3 episodes
2008 God on Trial Mordechai
2008 Marple: A Pocket Full of Rye Lance Fortescue
2009 The Good Times Are Killing Me Lexy
2009–2011 Garrow's Law Sir Arthur Hill 12 episodes
2010 Wallander Alfred Harderberg Episode: "The Man Who Smiled"
2010 Lewis Alec Pickman Episode: "Falling Darkness"
2010 Law & Order: UK John Smith Episode: "Defence"
2010 Single Father Stuart 3 episodes
2010 New Tricks Adrian Levene Episode: "Fashion Victim"
2010–2017 Sherlock D.I. Lestrade 13 episodes
2011 Case Sensitive Mark Bretherick 2 episodes
2011 Scott & Bailey Nick Savage 5 episodes
2011 Death in Paradise[8] James Lavender Series 1 episode 1
2012 Putin, Russia & The West Narrator 4 episodes
2012 Terror at Sea: The Sinking of the Concordia Narrator
2012 The Hunt for bin Laden Narrator
2012 Air Force One Is Down Arkady Dragutin 2 Episodes
2012 Doctor Who[9] Riddell Series 7, Episode 2: "Dinosaurs on a Spaceship"[10]
2012 Secret State Felix Durrell 4 Episodes
2013 The White Queen Lord Stanley 6 episodes
2014 Turks & Caicos Stirling Rogers
2014 Salting the Battlefield Stirling Rogers
2014 The Crimson Field Maj. Edward Crecy Episode 2
2014 Last Tango in Halifax Gary Series 3
2015 Valentine's Kiss Nicholas Whiteley
2016 The Nightmare Worlds of H. G. Wells: The Moth Hapley
2016 The Family John Warren
2017 12 Monkeys Sebastian Series 3, Episode 8[11]
2018 Krypton Ter-El Episode: "Pilot"
2019 The War of the Worlds Frederick 2 episodes
2020 Riviera Gabriel Hirsch 8 episodes
2023 The Burning Girls Simon Harper Main role


In addition to his screen work, Graves has won acclaim for his stage acting, including roles in Broadway productions, in New York City, of the plays Closer (2000) and The Elephant Man (2002).

His notable London theatre credits include his performance as Presley Stray in the original production of Philip Ridley's The Pitchfork Disney (1991) at the Bush Theatre, west London, which won him Best Actor at the 1991 Charrington London Fringe Awards; in Martin Sherman's A Madhouse in Goa (1989) opposite Vanessa Redgrave; and as Eddie in the Peter Hall Company's production of David Rabe's Hurlyburly (1997–98) at the Old Vic and Queen's Theatre, for which he was nominated for the 1998 Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actor.

Year Title Role Notes
1983 The Killing Of Mr. Toad by David Gooderson Alistair Graham, Mr. Toad The King's Head Theatre, London, director David Gooderson
1983, 1984 Sufficient Carbohydrate by Dennis Potter Clayton Vosper Hampstead Theatre and Albery Theatre, London, director Nancy Meckler
1985 Torch Song Trilogy (Part 2: 'Fugue in a Nursery') by Harvey Fierstein Alan Albery Theatre, London, director Robert Allan Ackerman
1986 Amadeus by Peter Shaffer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Theatr Clwyd, director Simon Callow
1987 The Importance Of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde Algernon Moncrieff Crucible Theatre, Sheffield, director Clare Venables
1986-7 Candida by George Bernard Shaw Marchbanks The King's Head Theatre, London, director Frank Hauser (director)
1988 'Tis Pity She's a Whore by John Ford (dramatist) Giovanni Royal National Theatre (Olivier), London, director Alan Ayckbourn
1989 The History Of Tom Jones by Henry Fielding, adapted by Andrew Wickes Tom Jones Watford Palace Theatre, director Matthew Francis
1989 A Madhouse In Goa by Martin Sherman David, Barnaby Grace Lyric Theatre (Hammersmith) and Apollo Theatre, London, director Robert Allan Ackerman
1991 The Pitchfork Disney by Philip Ridley Presley Stray Bush Theatre, London, director Matthew Lloyd
1992 A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare Lysander Royal National Theatre (Olivier), London, director Robert Lepage
1994 Toyer by Gardner McKay Peter Matson Redgrave Theatre, Farnham, director Wyn Jones
1995 Design for Living by Noël Coward Otto Gielgud Theatre, London, director Sean Mathias
1996 Les Enfants du Paradis by Jacques Prévert, adapted by Simon Callow Baptiste Barbican Centre, London, director Simon Callow
1997, 1998 Hurlyburly by David Rabe Eddie Peter Hall Company at the Old Vic and Queen's Theatre, London, director Wilson Milam
1998 The Iceman Cometh by Eugene O'Neill Don Parrit Almeida Theatre, London, director Howard Davies (director)
1999 Closer by Patrick Marber Dan Music Box Theater, Broadway, director Patrick Marber
2000, 2000–01 The Caretaker by Harold Pinter Mick Yvonne Arnaud Theatre, Guildford, and Comedy Theatre, London, director Patrick Marber
2001 Speak Truth To Power: Voices From Beyond The Dark by Ariel Dorfman Third Voice Playhouse Theatre, London, director Gari Jones
2002 The Elephant Man by Bernard Pomerance Dr. Frederick Treves Royale Theatre, Broadway, director Sean Mathias
2003 A Woman of No Importance by Oscar Wilde Lord Illingworth Theatre Royal Haymarket, London, director Adrian Noble
2004 Dumb Show by Joe Penhall Greg Royal Court Theatre, London, director Terry Johnson (dramatist)
2006 The Exonerated by Jessica Blank and Erik Jensen Kerry Riverside Studios, London, director Bob Balaban
2018 Pinter Five – The Room/Victoria Station/Family Voices by Harold Pinter Bert Hudd/Driver/Voice Three Harold Pinter Theatre, London, director Patrick Marber

[12] and primary archive sources.


  1. ^ Name: Rupert S Graves Mother's Maiden Surname: Ketley-roberts Date of Registration: Jul–Aug–Sep 1963 Registration district: Weston Inferred County: Wiltshire, Dorset, Somerset Volume Number: 7c Page Number: 405
  2. ^ "Biography". Rupert Graves Online. Archived from the original on 29 July 2012. Retrieved 24 January 2010.
  3. ^ "Rupert Graves". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved 27 March 2010.
  4. ^ Brockes, Emma (22 April 2002). "Rupert bared". The Guardian. Retrieved 23 March 2010.
  5. ^ "Rupert Graves". United Agents. Retrieved 23 March 2010.
  6. ^ "Rupert Graves". Gaydar Nation. 22 April 2002. Archived from the original on 21 July 2011. Retrieved 23 March 2010.
  7. ^ Billen, Andrew (27 March 2002). "The secret life of Rupert Graves". The London Evening Standard. Retrieved 16 March 2013.
  8. ^ "Death in Paradise, Series 1, Episode 1". BBC One. 25 October 2011. Retrieved 2 December 2014.
  9. ^ Foster, Chuck (22 February 2012). "Series 7: First publicity photo released". Doctor Who News. Retrieved 2 December 2014.
  10. ^ Anders, Charlie Jane (15 July 2012). "Doctor Who shows us something we've never seen before". Retrieved 2 December 2014.
  11. ^ "Rupert Graves Online Film & Television - 12 Monkeys". Archived from the original on 24 May 2017. Retrieved 30 May 2017.
  12. ^ "Stage Productions". Rupert Graves Online. 2014. Archived from the original on 19 November 2014. Retrieved 2 December 2014.

External links