|Born||Walter Charles Dance
10 October 1946
Redditch, Worcestershire, England
|Education||Plymouth College of Art|
|Spouse(s)||Joanna Haythorn (1970–2004)|
|Partner(s)||Eleanor Boorman |
Walter Charles Dance, OBE (born 10 October 1946) is an English actor, screenwriter, and film director. Dance typically plays assertive bureaucrats or villains. Some of his most high-profile roles are Guy Perron in The Jewel in the Crown (1984), Dr. Jonathan Clemens in Alien 3 (1992), Sardo Numspa in The Golden Child (1986), Benedict in Last Action Hero (1993), and Tywin Lannister in HBO's Game of Thrones.
Dance was born in Redditch, Worcestershire, the son of Eleanor (née Perks), a cook, and Walter Dance, an engineer. He attended Widey Technical School for Boys (it closed when known as Widey High School in 1988) in Crownhill. He was set for a career in graphic design after graduating from the Plymouth College of Art before turning to acting.
Dance was a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company during the mid- to late-1970s and was in many of their productions in London and Stratford-upon-Avon. Later he returned to the RSC to take the title role in Coriolanus at Stratford-upon-Avon and Newcastle in 1989, and at the Barbican Theatre in 1990. He received rave reviews and a Critics' Circle Best Actor award for his performance as the Oxford don C. S. Lewis in William Nicholson's Shadowlands, in the 2007 stage revival.
Television and film
Dance made his screen debut in 1974, in a BBC mystery series Father Brown as Commandant Neil O'Brien in "The Secret Garden", but his big break came ten years later when he played the major role of Guy Perron in The Jewel in the Crown (Granada Television, Christopher Morahan 1984), an adaptation of Paul Scott's novels that also made stars of Geraldine James and Art Malik. He has also starred in many other British television dramas such as Murder Rooms, Randall & Hopkirk (Deceased), Rebecca, The Phantom of the Opera, Fingersmith and Bleak House (for which he received an Emmy nomination). He was name-checked in the British comedy series Absolutely Fabulous, as being slated to play the title character in The Life of Jesus Christ 2, which was filming in Morocco at the same time as the main characters of the series were there for a photo shoot. He also played Guy Spencer, the pro-Hitler propagandist, in the second installment of Foyle's War, and had an ongoing role as Dr. Maltravers in the ITV drama Trinity.
Dance made a guest appearance on the BBC drama series Merlin as the Witchfinder Aredian, and as a vainglorious version of himself in the third series of Jam & Jerusalem. He played Havelock Vetinari in the 2010 Sky adaptation of Terry Pratchett's Going Postal. He plays the role of Tywin Lannister in HBO's Game of Thrones, based on the Song of Ice and Fire novels by George R. R. Martin. Dance was wooed for the role by the producers whilst filming Your Highness in Belfast. Dance also played Conrad Knox on the British television series Strike Back: Vengeance as the primary villain in the series. He appeared in Paris Connections (2010) as the Russian oligarch Aleksandr Borinski. Dance made one of his earliest big screen appearances in the 1981 James Bond film For Your Eyes Only as evil henchman Claus, and in 1989 he played Bond creator Ian Fleming in Anglia Television's dramatised biography, Goldeneye (the name of Fleming's estate in Jamaica and a title later used for a James Bond film).
Screenwriting and directing
Dance's debut film as a writer and director was Ladies in Lavender (2004), which starred Judi Dench and Maggie Smith. In 2009, he directed his own adaptation of Alice Thomas Ellis's The Inn at the Edge of the World.
Dance married Joanna Haythorn in 1970. They had two children. After his marriage ended in 2004, he had a brief relationship with actress Sophia Myles who was 34 years his junior. Dance was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) on 17 June 2006. He became engaged to sculptor Eleanor Boorman in September 2010. They had a daughter, Rose, in March 2012, though the two subsequently separated.
- For Your Eyes Only (1981)
- Plenty (1985)
- The Golden Child (1986)
- Out on a Limb (1987)
- White Mischief with Greta Scacchi (1987)
- Good Morning, Babylon (1987)
- Hidden City (1987)
- Pascali's Island (1988)
- The Phantom of the Opera (1990)
- Alien 3 (1992)
- Kalkstein (Italy, 1992)
- Last Action Hero (1993)
- China Moon (1994)
- Kabloonak (1994, Paris Film Festival Award for Best Actor 1996)
- Century (1994)
- Shortcut to Paradise (Spain, 1994)
- Space Truckers (1996)
- Michael Collins (1996)
- What Rats Won't Do (1998)
- Don't Go Breaking My Heart (1998)
- Hilary and Jackie (1998)
- Gosford Park (2001)
- The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby (2001)
- Dark Blue World (2001)
- Black and White (2002)
- Ali G Indahouse (2002)
- Swimming Pool (2003)
- Dolls (2006)
- Scoop (2006)
- Starter for 10 (2006)
- The Contractor (2007)
- Ironclad (2011)
- Your Highness (2011)
- Midnight's Children (2012)
- Underworld: Awakening (2012)
- Patrick (2013)
- Justin and the Knights of Valour (2013)
- Bones of the Buddha (2013), narrator
- Viy (2013)
- The Imitation Game (2014)
- Child 44 (2014)
- Father Brown (one episode, "The Secret Garden") as Commandant Neil O'Brien (1974)
- The Jewel in the Crown as Guy Perron (1984)
- First Born as Edward Forester (1988)
- The Phantom of the Opera as Erik (1990)
- Rebecca as Maxim de Winter (1997)
- Foyle's War (one episode, "The White Feather") as Guy Spencer (2002)
- Fingersmith as Mr Lilly (2005)
- Bleak House as Mr. Tulkinghorn (2005)
- Marple: By the Pricking of My Thumbs as Septimus Bligh (2006)
- Jam & Jerusalem as himself (2009)
- Merlin (one episode, "The Witchfinder") as Aredian (2009)
- Trinity as Dr. Edmund Maltraver (2009)
- Going Postal as Havelock Vetinari (2010)
- Game of Thrones as Tywin Lannister (2011–present)
- Neverland as Professor Fludd (2011)
- Secret State (2012)
- Strike Back: Vengeance as Conrad Knox (2012)
- Toad of Toad Hall as Badger (1971)
- The Beggar's Opera as Wat Dreary (Chichester Festival Theatre, 1972)
- The Taming of the Shrew as Philip (Chichester, 1972)
- Three Sisters as Soliony (Greenwich Theatre, 1973)
- Hans Kohlhaus as Meissen (Greenwich, 1973)
- Born Yesterday as Hotel Manager (Greenwich, 1973)
- Saint Joan as Baudricourt (Oxford Festival, 1974)
- The Sleeping Beauty as Prince (1974)
- Travesties as Henry Carr (Leeds Playhouse, 1977)
- Hamlet as Fortinbras / Reynaldo / Player (RSC The Other Place 1975; The Roundhouse, 1976)
- Perkin Warbeck as Hialas / Astley / Spanish Ambassador (RSC The Other Place, 1975)
- Richard III as Catesby / Murderer (RSC The Other Place, 1975)
- Henry V as Henry V (RSC Glasgow and New York, 1975)
- Henry IV, Part One and Henry IV, Part Two as Prince John of Lancaster (RSC Stratford, 1975; Aldwych Theatre, 1976)
- As You Like It as Oliver (RSC Stratford, 1977; Aldwych, 1978)
- Henry V as Scroop / Williams (RSC Stratford, 1977)
- Henry VI, Part 2 as Buckingham (RSC Stratford, 1977; Aldwych, 1978)
- The Jail Diary of Albie Sachs as Whistling Guard / Freeman (RSC Donmar Warehouse, 1978; The Other Place, 1979)
- Coriolanus as Volscian Lieutenant (RSC Stratford, 1977)
- Coriolanus as Tullus Aufidius (Aldwych, 1978 and 1979)
- The Women Pirates as Blackie / Vosquin (RSC Aldwych, 1978)
- The Changeling as Tomazo (RSC Aldwych, 1978)
- Irma la Douce as Nestor (Shaftesbury Theatre, 1979)
- The Heiress as Morris Townsend (1980)
- Turning Over as Frank (Bush Theatre, 1983)
- Coriolanus as Coriolanus (RSC Stratford and Newcastle upon Tyne, 1989; Barbican Theatre, 1990)
- Three Sisters as Vershinin (Birmingham Rep, 1998)
- Good as John Halder (Donmar Warehouse, 1999)
- Long Day's Journey into Night as James Tyrone (Lyric Theatre, 2000)
- The Play What I Wrote as a guest star (Wyndham's Theatre, 2001–2002)
- Celebration as Richard (Gate Theatre, Dublin; Albery Theatre, 2005)
- The Exonerated (Riverside Studios, Hammersmith, London, 2006)
- Eh Joe as Joe (Parade Theatre, Sydney, 2006)
- Shadowlands as C. S. Lewis (Wyndham's Theatre, 2007 and Novello Theatre 2007–2008)
- Who's Who in the Theatre, 16th/17th editions, edited by Ian Herbert, Pitman/Gale 1977/1981
- Theatre Record and Theatre Record Indexes
- Halliwell's Who's Who in the Movies Fourth edition by John Walker, HarperCollins 2006 ISBN 978-0-00-716957-3
- Charles Dance's own CVs in various theatre programmes
- "Charles Dance is to marry his artist girlfriend". London: The Telegraph. 11 December 2013. Retrieved 24 Sep 2010.
- "Charles Dance Biography (1946-)". Filmreference.com. Retrieved 2012-11-12.
- "Charles Dance Biography - Yahoo! Movies". Movies.yahoo.com. Retrieved 2012-11-12.
- Nicholas de Jongh (9 October 2007). "Dance is poignant perfection - Theatre & Dance - Arts - London Evening Standard". Thisislondon.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-11-12.
- Holmwood, Leigh (15 July 2008). "ITV2 plans 'sex, drugs and murder' drama to follow Billie Piper hit series". guardian.co.uk (London). Retrieved 2008-07-15.
- 25 May 2009, 15:07 BST (25 May 2009). "Guest stars confirmed for 'Merlin' - Merlin News - Cult". Digital Spy. Retrieved 2012-11-12.
- Gibson, Linda (2010-05-25). "Interview Extra". TV Choice Magazine.
- "Game of Thrones: News - Charles Dance Cast as Tywin Lannister". Westeros.org. 29 July 2010. Retrieved 2012-11-12.
- "Strike Back: Vengeance on Sky 1 HD". Skymedia.co.uk. 15 August 2012. Retrieved 2012-11-12.
- "Top Gear returns to BBC Two at 8pm, featuring Warwick Davis, Charles Dance and Joss Stone". TV Newsroom. 2013-06-30. Retrieved 2013-07-06.
- Riggs, Thomas (2006). Contemporary Theatre, Film and Television, Volume 67. Gale / Cengage Learning. pp. 66–67. ISBN 978-0-7876-9040-3.
- Walker, Tim (24 September 2010). "Charles Dance is to marry his artist girlfriend". The Daily Telegraph (London: TMG). ISSN 0307-1235. OCLC 49632006. Retrieved 13 May 2011.
- Husband, Stuart (6 August 2007). "Curtain call for Miss Myles". The Guardian (London).
- The London Gazette: . 17 June 2006.
- Glennie, Alasdair (20 October 2012). "Dance splits from mother of his baby girl: Game of Thrones star ends relationship just months after daughter's birth". Daily Mail (London).