Stephen Joseph Graham OBE (born 3 August 1973) is a British actor and producer. He began his career in 1990, with early notable roles including Tommy in Snatch (2000) and Shang in Gangs of New York (2002), before his breakout role as Andrew "Combo" Gascoigne in the film This Is England (2006).

Stephen Graham
Graham in August 2013
Born (1973-08-03) 3 August 1973 (age 50)
Kirkby, Lancashire, England
Occupations
  • Actor
  • producer
Years active1990–present
Spouse
(m. 2008)
Children2

On television, Graham reprised his role as Combo in This Is England '86 (2010), This Is England '88 (2011), and This Is England '90 (2015). He also starred as Det. Supt. Dave Kelly in the 2017 drama Little Boy Blue, John Corbett in the fifth series of Line of Duty (2019), Al Capone in the HBO series Boardwalk Empire (2010–2014), Eric McNally in the BBC drama Time (2021), and Hayden Stagg in the sixth series of Peaky Blinders (2022).

Graham's film roles include Scrum in Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (2011) and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales (2017), Anthony Provenzano in The Irishman (2019), and Andy Jones in Boiling Point (2021) and its sequel series of the same name (2023). He has received numerous accolades, including a Screen Actors Guild Award, nominations for five British Academy Television Awards and two British Academy Film Awards, and an OBE. In 2020, he co-founded the production company Matriarch Productions alongside his wife, actress Hannah Walters.

Early life

edit

Stephen Joseph Graham[1][2] was born on 3 August 1973 in Kirkby, Lancashire.[2][3] He had a Swedish grandmother and Jamaican grandfather, and has discussed his experience being a light-skinned multiracial person as he has brothers who have much darker skin.[4] He was brought up by his mother, a social worker, and his stepfather, a mechanic who later became a paediatric nurse.[3] He maintained a good relationship with his biological father.[3][5] He attended Overdale Primary School in Kirkby, where he was encouraged to pursue an acting career at the age of eight by local actor Andrew Schofield, who had seen him perform as Jim Hawkins in a school production of Treasure Island.[3] He then continued his education at Ruffwood Comprehensive and was subsequently introduced to Liverpool's Everyman Theatre at the age of 14, later going on to train at the Rose Bruford College of Theatre & Performance.[3]

Career

edit

Graham has often portrayed characters from different parts of Britain, Ireland, and America, receiving praise for his accent work.[6] He began his career in 1990, with early notable roles including Tommy in Snatch (2000) and Shang in Gangs of New York (2002), before his breakout role as Andrew "Combo" Gascoigne in the film This Is England (2006). He was nominated for a British Independent Film Award for This Is England He appeared as the Scrum in the 2011 film Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, a role he reprised in the 2017 film Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, starring alongside his wife Hannah Walters.[7][8][9][10]

Graham was nominated for an RTS Award for his work in The Street, and for a British Independent Film Award for his work in This Is England. He appeared in the music videos for "I Remember" by Deadmau5 and Kaskade,[11] "Fluorescent Adolescent" and "When the Sun Goes Down" by Arctic Monkeys, "Unlovable" by Babybird (directed by Johnny Depp), and Gazelle's single "Finger on the Trigger".[12] Graham also appeared in the music video "Soul Vampire" by Macclesfield-based neo-psychedelic band The Virginmarys, the music video for "Turn" by Travis, and Kasabian's video "You're in Love with a Psycho". He appeared as an inmate within the open prison system in the music video for Goldie's "I Adore You" in 2017, and also starred in Sam Fender's music video for "Spit of You".

In 2011, Graham starred in the BBC Christmas show Lapland. When the series was remade as Being Eileen Graham's role was recast with Dean Andrews.[13][14] He also appeared on a promotional video for a DLC of the video game Call of Duty: Ghosts, titled "CODnapped".

In 2019, Graham featured as DS John Corbett in series 5 of the BBC drama Line of Duty.[15][16][17] In November of that year, Graham was the guest for BBC Radio 4's Desert Island Discs.[18] In January 2020, he appeared in the ITV series White House Farm as Welsh detective "Taff" Jones. Despite his reputation for his ability to adopt different accents, a number of critics criticised his performance and stated that his Welsh accent was inauthentic.[19] Later that year, he co-founded the production company Matriarch Productions alongside Walters.

In 2021, Graham starred alongside Walters in the film Boiling Point, directed by his Band of Brothers co-star Philip Barantini. A one-shot film set in a restaurant kitchen, the film was expanded from a 2019 short film of the same name.[20][21] In October 2022, it was announced that Graham would reprise his role in a BBC One series airing in 2023 as a sequel to the film, which was also called Boiling Point.[22][23]

Personal life

edit

Graham began dating actress and producer Hannah Walters after they met while training as actors at Rose Bruford College, and they were married on 6 June 2008. They live in Ibstock, Leicestershire, having previously lived in the Beckenham area of London. They have a son and a daughter together.[24] They have appeared together onscreen multiple times.

Graham is teetotal and has dyslexia,[3] revealing in 2019 that Walters reads scripts for him and helps him decide whether to accept a role.[3] He has struggled with depression and once tried to hang himself in his early 20s, stating that he only survived because "the rope snapped".[3] He is a lifelong supporter of Liverpool FC and has made several appearances on Soccer AM.[25]

Graham was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2023 New Year Honours for services to drama, which he dedicated to his mother, who died in 2022.[26][27][28]

Filmography

edit

Film

edit
Year Title Role Notes
1990 Dancin' Thru the Dark Football Kid
1991 Blonde Fist Son
1997 Downtime Jacko
1998 Joint Venture Ace Short film
2000 Snatch Tommy
2001 Blow Dry Photographer
The Last Minute DJ Banana
2002 Revengers Tragedy Officer
Gangs of New York Shang
2003 American Cousins Henry
Without You Billy Short film
2004 The I Inside Travis
2005 Pit Fighter Harry
Goal! Des
2006 Scummy Man George Short film
This Is England Andrew "Combo" Gascoigne
2007 The Good Night Victor
2008 Filth and Wisdom Harry Beecham
The Crew Franner
Inkheart Fulvio
2009 The Devil's Wedding The Hotelier Short film
Awaydays Godden
The Damned United Billy Bremner
Doghouse Vince
Public Enemies Baby Face Nelson
2010 London Boulevard Danny
Season of the Witch Hagamar
2011 Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides Scrum
Texas Killing Fields Rhino
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy Jerry Westerby
Being Eileen Pete Lewis
2012 Best Laid Plans Danny
Blood Chrissie Fairburn
2014 Get Santa Barber
Hyena David Knight
2015 A Patch of Fog Robert Green
Orthodox Benjamin Executive producer
2017 Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales Scrum
Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool Joe Turner Jr.
Journey's End Trotter
Funny Cow Mike
Being Keegan Jay Short film
The Man with the Iron Heart Heinrich Himmler
2018 Yardie Rico
Walk like a Panther Mark Bolton
2019 Hellboy Gruagach Voice
Rocketman Dick James
The Irishman Anthony "Tony Pro" Provenzano
Boiling Point Chef Short film, adapted into a feature in 2021
Pop Pop
2020 Greyhound Lieutenant Commander Charlie Cole
2021 Venom: Let There Be Carnage Patrick Mulligan
Boiling Point Andy Jones
2022 Matilda the Musical Mr. Wormwood
2024 Young Woman and the Sea Bill Burgess
Venom: The Last Dance Patrick Mulligan Post-production
Blitz Post-production
TBA Modì Léopold Zborowski Post-production

Television

edit
Year Title Role Notes
1990 Children's Ward Mickey Bell 2 episodes
1993 Heartbeat Barry Ward Episode: "Riders of the Storm"
1996 Devil's Food WPKV News Director Television film
1997 The Lakes Graham Episode #1.1
1998 Brothers and Sisters Andrew
Where the Heart Is Nick Bowen Episode: "Darkness Follows"
Liverpool 1 Thewlis 2 episodes
The Jump Peter McNulty
1998–2002 The Bill Jezzo / Jason Barrett 3 episodes
1999 Coronation Street Lee Sankey 5 episodes
2000 Forgive and Forget John Television film
2001 Band of Brothers Sgt. Myron "Mike" Ranney 2 episodes
2002 Flesh and Blood Eddie Television film
2004 Top Buzzer Lee 10 episodes
2005 M.I.T.: Murder Investigation Team Jason Phelps Episode #2.3
Last Rights Steve Miniseries
Empire Bazzer
2006–2007 The Innocence Project Andrew Lucas 6 episodes
2008 The Passion Barabbas 3 episodes
Occupation Danny Ferguson
The Street Shay Ryan 2 episodes
2010 This Is England '86 Andrew "Combo" Gascoigne 2 episodes
2010–2014 Boardwalk Empire Al Capone 36 episodes
2011 This Is England '88 Andrew "Combo" Gascoigne 2 episodes
Walk like a Panther Mark Bolton Episode #1.1
2012 Accused Tony Episode: "Tracie's Story"
Parade's End Vincent Macmaster 5 episodes
Good Cop Noel Finch 1 episode
2013 Playhouse Presents Len Episode: "The Call Out"
2015 This Is England '90 Andrew "Combo" Gascoigne 3 episodes
2016 The Secret Agent Chief Inspector Heat 3 episodes
The Watchman Carl Television film
2017 Decline and Fall Philbrick 3 episodes
Taboo Atticus 8 episodes
Little Boy Blue Detective Superintendent Dave Kelly 4 episodes
2018 Action Team Gavril Episode: "Mind Games"
2018–2020 Save Me Fabio "Melon" Melonzola Main role
2019 Line of Duty John Corbett Series 5, Main Role
The Virtues Joseph 4 episodes
A Christmas Carol Jacob Marley Miniseries
2020 White House Farm DCI Taff Jones 6 episodes
2020–2022 Code 404 DI Roy Carver Main role
2021 Time Eric McNally Three-part drama[29]
The North Water Captain Brownlee Miniseries
Help Tony Television film[30][31]
2022 Peaky Blinders Hayden Stagg Series 6; 2 episodes
The Walk-In Matthew Collins Main role[32]
2023 Boiling Point Andy BBC Television sequel series
Bodies Elias Mannix Main role
TBA A Thousand Blows Sugar Goodson Disney+ series; also executive producer

Music videos

edit
Year Title Artist
1999 "Turn" Travis
2006 "When the Sun Goes Down" Arctic Monkeys
2007 "Fluorescent Adolescent" Arctic Monkeys
2008 "I Remember" Deadmau5 ft. Kaskade
2008 "Soul Vampire" The Virginmarys
2010 "Unloveable" Babybird
2017 "You're in Love with a Psycho" Kasabian
2017 "I Adore You" Goldie
2019 "Wandering Star" Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds
2021 "Spit of You" Sam Fender

Awards and nominations

edit
Year Award Category Work Result Ref.
2006 British Independent Film Award Best Supporting Actor This Is England Nominated
2010 RTS Awards Best Actor The Street Nominated
Screen Actors Guild Award Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series Boardwalk Empire Won
2011 Won
2013 British Academy Television Awards Best Supporting Actor Accused (Tracie’s Story) Nominated [33]
Screen Actors Guild Award Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series Boardwalk Empire Nominated
2014 Nominated
2016 British Academy Television Awards Best Actor This Is England '90 Nominated [33]
2018 RTS Awards Best Actor Little Boy Blue Won
International Film Festival of Wales Best Actor Being Keegan Won [34]
2019 British Academy Television Awards Best Supporting Actor Save Me Nominated [33]
Screen Actors Guild Award Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture The Irishman Nominated
2018 RTS Awards Best Actor The Virtues Won
2020 British Academy Television Awards Best Actor Nominated [33]
2022 British Academy Film Awards Best Actor in a Leading Role Boiling Point Nominated
British Independent Film Award Best Actor Nominated
British Academy Television Awards Best Single Drama (as producer) Help Nominated [33][35]
Best Actor Nominated
Best Supporting Actor Time Nominated
Broadcasting Press Guild Awards Best Actor Help / Time Won [36]
Seoul International Drama Awards Best Actor Help Won [37]

References

edit
  1. ^ England & Wales, Civil Registration Birth Index, 1916–2007
  2. ^ a b "Gralf Limited - Officers (free information from Companies House)". beta.companieshouse.gov.uk. Retrieved 27 December 2019.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h Arnstrong, Stephen (27 October 2019), "Stephen Graham interview: The teetotal actor on playing an alcoholic in The Virtues, his failed suicide bid, and playing a mobster in Scorsese's epic The Irishman", The Times.
  4. ^ Cline, Rich (22 April 2007). "Shane Meadows discusses his most personal film to date, which is saying something". Shadows on the Wall. Retrieved 30 April 2018. Stephen Graham, who plays Combo, he has a mixed-race heritage. He has a Swedish grandmother, a fully Jamaican grandfather [...]
  5. ^ Barkham, Patrick (30 June 2009). "Gizza job, CBeebies". The Guardian. Retrieved 30 April 2018.
  6. ^ Kermode, Jennie (23 February 2007), "Racism and rights of passage: Actor Stephen Graham discusses his role in this year's most talked-about British film, This Is England", Eye For Film.
  7. ^ Line Of Duty's Stephen Graham stars with wife in BBC show and it's 'brilliant' - The Mirror Online
  8. ^ Stephen Graham and his wife Hannah have the most amazing real life love story that sounds straight out of Hollywood - Wales Online
  9. ^ Pirates of the Caribbean star Stephen Graham: my wife helps read my scripts because I'm dyslexic - The Mirror Online
  10. ^ Stephen Graham on Twitter: What a beauty!!!!! I'd still kiss ya!!!
  11. ^ McAlpine, Fraser (10 May 2009). "Deadmau5 & Kaskade - 'I Remember'". BBC. Retrieved 30 April 2018.
  12. ^ Banduk, Gazelle. "Gazelle - Finger on the Trigger". Archived from the original on 21 December 2021 – via YouTube.
  13. ^ Munn, Patrick (13 September 2012). "BBC One Orders Follow Up To Christmas Comedy 'Lapland', Stephen Graham's Role Recast". TV Wise. Retrieved 30 April 2018.
  14. ^ "Being Eileen". BBC. Retrieved 30 April 2018.
  15. ^ "Line of Duty series 5 casts actor Stephen Graham – but what could his role be?".
  16. ^ "Line of Duty's Stephen Graham: 'My throat-slitting was superb. I'm good at dying'". TheGuardian.com. 6 May 2019.
  17. ^ "Who is Stephen Graham playing in Line of Duty season 5?". 22 April 2019.
  18. ^ "Stephen Graham, actor". BBC Online. Retrieved 24 August 2021.
  19. ^ Hitt, Carolyn (11 January 2020). "We need authentic Welsh voices - not English actors mangling our accents". walesonline. Retrieved 12 January 2020.
  20. ^ Boyce, Laurence (23 August 2021). "Karlovy Vary 2021: Philip Barantini talks filming 'Boiling Point' in one take". Screen Daily. Retrieved 19 October 2021.
  21. ^ Aftab, Kaleem (31 August 2021). "Philip Barantini, Director of Boiling Point". Cineuropa. Retrieved 19 October 2021.
  22. ^ Williams, Owen (21 October 2022). "Boiling Point TV Series Starring Stephen Graham Confirmed For BBC". Empire. Retrieved 22 October 2022.
  23. ^ "Boiling Point review: Stephen Graham takes a backseat in this stellar slice of TV".
  24. ^ Marlow, Lee; Smith, Daniel (20 February 2018). "Meet Stephen Graham, the Hollywood star who lives in a Leicestershire village". Leicester Mercury. Retrieved 30 April 2018.
  25. ^ Fendley, John; Chamberlain, Helen (2015). "Soccer AM - Stephen Graham". Sky Sports. Retrieved 9 November 2020.
  26. ^ "No. 63918". The London Gazette (Supplement). 31 December 2022. p. N13.
  27. ^ Kataria, Sonia (30 December 2022). "New Year Honours 2023: Actor Stephen Graham appointed OBE". BBC. Retrieved 31 December 2022.
  28. ^ McLaughlin, Caroline (31 December 2022). "Stephen Graham says he shares OBE with 'incredible' late mother". Independent. Retrieved 31 December 2022.
  29. ^ "First look at Sean Bean and Stephen Graham in Time as Siobhan Finneran joins cast". radiotimes.com. Retrieved 26 December 2020.
  30. ^ "Stephen Graham and Jodie Comer to star in new Channel 4 drama Help". rts.org.uk. 26 November 2020. Retrieved 26 December 2020.
  31. ^ "Jodie Comer and Stephen Graham on friendship, football and their new care home drama". TheGuardian.com. 22 August 2021. Retrieved 14 September 2021.
  32. ^ "TV commissions true story, The Walk-In, starring Stephen Graham". itv.com/presscentre. Retrieved 21 September 2022.
  33. ^ a b c d e "BAFTA Awards Search | BAFTA Awards".
  34. ^ "International Film Festival of Wales | 2018". Film Festival Guild. Retrieved 22 March 2023.
  35. ^ Hooton, Kayleigh (8 May 2022). "BAFTA TV Awards 2022 winners in full". Digital Spy. Retrieved 14 May 2022.
  36. ^ Evans, Connie; Ashe, Isaac (25 March 2022). "Best actor award for Stephen Graham after TWO nominations". LeicestershireLive. Retrieved 26 March 2022.
  37. ^ @seouldramaawards (23 September 2022). "SDA 2022 winners". Retrieved 19 October 2022 – via Instagram.
edit