Richard Dormer

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Richard Dormer
Richard Dormer (2009).jpg
Richard Dormer in The Gentlemen's Tea-Drinking Society (2009)
Born (1969-11-11) 11 November 1969 (age 45)
Lisburn, Northern Ireland
Nationality Northern Irish
Occupation actor, playwright
Years active 1991–present

Richard Dormer (born 11 November 1969) is a Northern Irish actor, playwright and screenwriter.

Early life[edit]

Dormer was born in Lisburn, Northern Ireland. He was accepted by the Royal College of Art, but chose a scholarship at the RADA school of acting in London. After living and working in London, he returned to Northern Ireland. He lives in Belfast and is married to director Rachel O'Riordan.[1]


Dormer gained notice following his performance as Northern Irish snooker star, Alex Higgins, in Hurricane in 2003, which he wrote and starred in. The production received praise from critics and even from Higgins himself and saw Dormer win The Stage award for best actor in 2003.[2][3][4] In 2004 Dormer won the Irish Times Best Actor Award for his performance in Frank McGuinness's Observe the Sons of Ulster Marching Towards the Somme and in 2005 completed a season with Sir Peter Hall at the Theatre Royal and performed in Bath in the George Bernard Shaw play, You Can Never Tell, William Shakespeare's, Much Ado About Nothing, Noël Coward's play, Private Lives, and in a production of Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot.[5]

Since, Dormer has written a number of plays including The Half and Gentleman's Tea Drinking Society which were produced through Belfast's Ransom theatre company. In 2012 Dormer was commissioned by the Abbey Theatre to write a production. Set in Brooklyn in the summer of 1969, Dormer's Drum Belly gives an insight into the dark edgy underworld of New York's Irish gangsters which opened April 2013 to mainly positive reviews and was published by Bloomsbury Publishing[6][7][8][9] Dormer has also provided the voices for over twenty BBC Radio 4 plays, documentaries and advertising campaigns.[10]


Following a run of film castings playing secondary characters, he was cast as the lead in the 2012 Good Vibrations which tells the story of Northern Ireland personality and punk rock visionary Terri Hooley. The film premièred at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival, was awarded Best Film at the Galway film awards, best screenplay, Dinard and nominated for the Outstanding Debut award at the 2014 British Academy of Film and Television Arts Awards.[11] The film was well received by critics gaining consistent reviews, most of which highlighted Dormer's performance as a strength.[12][13][14][15] Dormer's portrayal of Terri Hooley saw him nominated in the Best Actor award in the 2013 Irish Film and Television Awards. He has since played important roles in Yann Demange's critically acclaimed film '71 alongside Jack O'Connell and forthcoming Gerard Johnson directed Hyena, 2014.


Dormer has become a well known television actor, more recently playing key roles in the Cinemax drama series Hunted and BBC One's Hidden.[16][17] 2012 also saw Dormer taking over the role of Lord Beric Dondarrion, known as the "Lightning Lord", the leader of the "Brotherhood Without Banners" for Season 3 of HBO series Game of Thrones.[18]

Dormer can be heard as the voice of the Dad on the children's animated series Lily's Driftwood Bay. The series aired in May on Nick Jr. in the UK and on Sprout in the US. It will also air on RTE in Ireland, ABC Australia, KiKa in Germany, MTV in Finland, NRK in Norway, SVT in Sweden, and HOP! in Israel later this year. Broadcasters in Australia and the US are keeping the original voices to the series.[19]

In 2014 Dormer began filming on Sky Atlantic's Fortitude. Described as "their most ambitious project to date", he takes the role of Sheriff Dan Anderssen and stars alongside Stanley Tucci, Michael Gambon, Christopher Eccleston and The Killing's Sofie Gråbøl.[20] Fortitude aired on 29 January 2015.[21]


Year Title Role Notes
2015 11 Minutes Post-production
2014 Hyena Nick Taylor Post-production
2014 Shooting for Socrates Arthur Post-production
2014 '71 Eamon
2013 Dark Touch Henry
2013 'S.L.R Mr Verma Short
2012 Jump Johnny
2012 Good Vibrations Terri Hooley Nominated for IFTA best actor award
2010 Ghost Machine Taggert
2009 Scapegoat Narrator
2009 Five Minutes of Heaven Michael Featured at Sundance Film Festival
2009 Pumpgirl Hammy
2009 Best: His Mother's Son Ad Director
2006 Middletown Ned
2005 Mrs Henderson Presents Comic
2005 The Mighty Celt Ronan
2002 Puckoon Arthur Faddington
2002 The Escapist Denis' Brief
2001 Mapmaker Harry Hawcett
2000 A Further Gesture Joe
Year Title Role Notes
2015 Fortitude Sheriff Dan Anderssen
2014 Lily's Driftwood Bay Dad
2013 Game of Thrones Lord Beric Dondarrion
2012 Hunted Lewis Conroy
2011 Hidden Frank Hanna Television series shown on BBC One
2011 Justice George
2011 Brendan Smyth: Betrayl of Trust Chris Moore
2010 An Crisis Kyle Braid
2008 Last Man Hanging James Brown
2007 My Boy Jack Corporal John O'Leary ITV movie with Daniel Radcliffe
2003 Holy Cross Seamus
2000 Chihuahua Short
1993 The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles Civilian
1992 Soldier Soldier Cpt David Lutchens
1991 Casualty Rick Tomlinson


  1. ^ Hurricane, the story of Alex Higgins, back in Belfast, BBC News, 8 January 2011
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  3. ^ 20 questions with Richard Dormer. "What's on?". Retrieved 3 March 2012. 
  4. ^ Fisher, Phillip. "British Theatre Guide". Retrieved 3 March 2012. 
  5. ^ Billington, Michael. "The Guardian". 
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  10. ^ United Artists. "United Artists". Retrieved 4 March 2012. 
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  21. ^ Wagmeister, Elizabeth (December 19, 2014). "Pivot Sets Jan. 29 Premiere for Stanley Tucci Drama ‘Fortitude’". Variety. Retrieved December 26, 2014. 

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