Sean Harris

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For the American football player, see Sean Harris (American football). For the English rock singer, see Diamond Head (band).
Sean Harris
Sean Harris on set.jpg
Harris in 2014
Born 1966
Bethnal Green, London, England, UK
Occupation Actor
Years active 1994–present

Sean Harris (born 1966) is an English actor, most famous for his role as Micheletto Corella in Showtime's television series The Borgias. Harris has appeared in several independent British films, most notably his performance as the Joy Division frontman Ian Curtis in the film 24 Hour Party People. He's also appeared in Brothers of the Head, Harry Brown, Brighton Rock, and critically acclaimed miniseries Red Riding Trilogy and Southcliffe. He broke into the mainstream with supporting roles as Fifield in Ridley Scott's Prometheus and Neil Jordan's The Borgias.

Life and career[edit]

Harris was born in Bethnal Green, London, but grew up in Norwich, Norfolk.[1] At age 23, Harris moved to London to train at the Drama Centre London from 1989 to 1992.[1] He appeared in the cult horror Creep, in which he played a psychopathic killer stalking the London Underground. Harris appeared in his first British feature film lead in the independent film Saxon, released in 2007. In Saxon, Harris plays a newly released inmate who returns home owing a huge debt that has been accumulating, with little time to settle the debt.

Other notable roles include serial killer Ian Brady, one of the notorious culprits of the Moors Murders, on ITV1's See No Evil: The Moors Murders, and Nick Sidney in the cult mockumentary Brothers of the Head. Harris played Joy Division singer Ian Curtis in Michael Winterbottom film 24 Hour Party People. He has also appeared in the 2007 film Outlaw and in the television film Wedding Belles by Irvine Welsh and Dean Cavanagh. Harris played the drug dealer Stretch in Harry Brown. Harris played small-time criminal Fred Hale in a new film adaptation of Brighton Rock, released in February 2011. Harris appeared in the British thriller film A Lonely Place to Die previously known as The Grave at Angel's Peak directed by Julian Gilbey.[2]

In 2002, Harris appeared in a short film, directed by Kevin Thomas, True Love (Once Removed). He played a troubled and lonely young man, Steven, with no prospects, who finds, via an illegal time-machine, the young woman who will grow up to become his eventual "true love", except that she is now only an 8-year old girl. Steven must find a way to place himself in a position to meet her in the future, knowing that he has no future prospects to meet her when she becomes a woman. The film won Best Short Film at both the Palm Springs and Houston Film Festivals and was selected for the Clermont-Ferrand, London Raindance and Los Angeles Short Film festivals and qualified for Oscar nomination in 2004.[3]

Harris appeared in a short film in 2010, Native Son, playing a troubled potato picker whose loneliness, social awkwardness and isolation from the townspeople leads to a one-time road-side event, and a quick decision, that has tragic consequences. The film was written and directed by Scottish director Scott Graham[4] and premiered the 2010 Cannes Film Festival. He played Fifield in the Ridley Scott 2012 science fiction film, Prometheus.

After The Borgias, Sean Harris went on to play the role of Campbell in the film Serena based on the bestselling novel of the same name by Ron Rash. Cast includes Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence. No date has been set for release in the United States. Harris then filmed Deliver Us From Evil with Eric Bana and Olivia Munn, directed by Scott Derrickson, and based upon the 2001 novel "Beware the Night" by Ralph Sarchie and Lisa Collier Cool. The film was released on July 2, 2014. Sean Harris was cast by Derrickson for Deliver Us from Evil, without an interview, based upon Derrickson having seen Harris' performance in Harry Brown.[5] His next role, in 2013, was for The Goob, a feature film in which Harris plays a womanizing stock car driver. The Goob is directed by Guy Myhill, (who also directed Harris in a 13 minute short in 2001, entitled The Bilsons about a not so funny small caravan of travelling circus clowns and a 1997 short film Two Halftimes to Hell). In 2010, Harris again worked with Myhill. Harris did a cameo appearance in a music video for the Norwich band the Black Sharks' debut album titled Lose Control.[6] The Goob was released at the Venice Film Festival on August 28, 2014.

Known as an intense actor of Stanislavski's system, Harris frequently remains unavailable for interviews while filming, preferring not to break with character.[7] However, his "method" allows him to film with few takes.[8] It was said that in preparing to play Brian Tobin of the Iceni Project for the TV Series, Five Daughters, Harris followed the real Brian Tobin around during pre-production.[9]

Harris has been collaborating with Montserrat Lombard. Together they are working on the screen plays for two short films called White and Imager. Harris will play the lead in the first of four installments in the series, and Montserrat Lombard (who directed Harris in the music video "Battles"), will direct. This will be Sean Harris' first collaborative screen play in which he will also act. The first short film, White, has completed filming. Harris also has completed filming of Macbeth, directed by Justin Kurzel with the film company See-Saw Films.[10] This summer Sean Harris filmed "Trespass Against Us", a feature film about three generations of an outlaw family, and conflicting cross-generational loyalties.[11] Harris is in negotiations with Paramount Pictures to play the villain in Mission: Impossible 5.[12][13]

Harris is represented by the Troika Talent Agency.[10]


Harris' television credits include Channel 4's drama series Cape Wrath as Gordon Ormond, the BBC series Ashes to Ashes as Arthur Layton, the Waking the Dead episode "Pietà" as former Serb war criminal Radovan Sredinić and as the corrupt Inspector Bob Craven in Channel 4's critically acclaimed Red Riding series. In the recent BBC TV drama Five Daughters, he played Brian Tobin, co-founder of The Iceni Project, a drugs treatment facility based in Suffolk. He appeared as the assassin Micheletto in The Borgias, a historical television series created by Neil Jordan. In 2013 he starred in the Channel 4 drama Southcliffe.[14] In 2014, he appeared as Joss Merlyn in the BBC's adaptation of Jamaica Inn.

Notable appearances[edit]

  • Music video for Mark Ronson's 2007 single "Stop Me".
  • Svengali, an Internet comedy series written by Dean Cavanagh. Harris played photographer Anton Blair.
  • Short film for Barbarossa's song "Battles", directed by Montserrat Lombard.

Podcast and interviews[edit]

  • Starry Constellation Magazine, July 2007. Sean Harris, in a telephone podcast interview, discusses Meadowlands, some of his other credits and characters, and his career.[15]



Year Title Role Notes
1997 Two Half-Times to Hell[10][16] Tom Short film
1997 Wet Work.[10][16] Sean Short film
2001 The Discovery of Heaven[10][16] Bart Bork
2001 The Bilsons[10] Perry Short film
2002 True Love (Once Removed) Steven Short film, won Best Short Film at Palm Springs and Houston Film Festivals
2002 Tom & Thomas Kevin
2002 24 Hour Party People Ian Curtis
2002 Pay Day[17] Andy Short film
2003 Nicotine Yellow[10][16][18] Diggie Short film
2004 Trauma Roland
2004 Creep Craig, the "Creep"
2004 The Hare[10] Soldier
2005 Asylum Nick
2005 Frozen Hurricane Frank
2005 Brothers of the Head Nick Sidney
2005 Isolation Jamie
2007 Outlaw Simon Hillier
2007 Saxon Eddie
2009 Harry Brown Stretch
2010 Native Son John Short film
2010 Brighton Rock Hale
2011 A Lonely Place to Die Mr Kidd
2012 Prometheus Fifield
2014 Deliver Us from Evil[19] Santino
2014 Serena Campbell Varying release dates.[20]
2014 The Goob Gene Womack Premiered at the Venice Film Festival on August 28, 2014.[21]
2014 '71[22][23] Captain Sandy Browning UK release date will be October 10, 2014.[24] U.S. release September 27 and 28, 2014 at the New York Film Festival.[25]
2014 White[26] Samuel Short film co-written by Sean Harris and Montserrat Lombard; post production; expected release October 2014 at the BFI London Film Festival's fall event.
2015 Macbeth Macduff Post-Production [10]
2015 Trespass Against Us[11] post-production
2015 Mission: Impossible 5 filming


Year Title Role Notes
1994 Minder Dean TV series (1 episode: "Bring Me the Head of Arthur Daley")
1994 The Bill Matthew / Russell Hines / Stuart Kennedy TV series (3 episodes)
1995 Signs and Wonders Carl Maynard TV film
1995 The Vet Neil Fairbrother TV series (1 episode: "Home Truths")
1996 A Mug's Game Con TV series
1998 Kavanagh QC Mark Holmes TV series (1 episode: "Care in the Community")
1999 Jesus Thomas TV film
1999 Hot House[27] Cheddar TV film from a BBC series entitled "Acts of Passion"
2000 Casualty Tim Vanner TV series (1 episode: "Starting Over")
2001 The Hunt Clem Mackie TV film
2002 Judge John Deed Gerry Hewitt TV series (1 episode: "Political Expediency")
2003 The Vice Miles Wilson TV series (1 episode: "Control")
2003 Strange Robin Thomas TV series (1 episode: "Asmoth")
2006 See No Evil: The Moors Murders Ian Brady TV film
2007 Wedding Belles Adrian Collins TV film
2007 Ashes to Ashes Arthur Layton TV series (2 episodes)
2007 Meadowlands[28] Gordon Ormond TV series (3 episodes)
2009 Red Riding Trilogy Detective Superintendent Bob Craven TV film
2009 Law & Order: UK Roland Kirk TV series (1 episode: "Community Service")
2009 Waking the Dead Radovan Sredinic TV series (2 episodes)
2010 Five Daughters Brian Tobin TV series (3 episodes)
2011–2013 The Borgias Micheletto Corella TV series
2013 Southcliffe Stephen Morton TV Miniseries
British Academy Television Award for Best Actor
2014 Jamaica Inn Joss Merlyn TV Miniseries

Screen Plays[edit]

Year Title Notes
2014 White[26] Original story by Sean Harris; screen play co-written with Montserrat Lombard; short film
2015 Imager[26] Short co-written by Sean Harris and Montserrat Lombard; expected release 2015

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Work Result
2014 British Academy Television Awards Best Actor Southcliffe Won


  1. ^ a b "The Borgias Cast". Showtime. 
  2. ^ Cooper, Sarah. "A Lonely Place Gears up for Scottish Shoot,". Screen Daily, 13 May 2010. Retrieved January 2014. 
  3. ^ "Bandits Productions Kevin Thomas Films". Bandits Productions. Retrieved 21 January 2014. 
  4. ^ "Semainedelacritique Cannes Native Son World Premiere, 2010". Retrieved 21 January 2014. 
  5. ^ Dickson, Evan. "[Interview] Scott Derrickson". Bloody Disgusting, 1 July 2014. 
  6. ^ Briggs, Stacia (3 November 2010). "Norwich band's Vegas gamble pays off". Evening News 24. 
  7. ^ Long, Natalie, ed. (August 4, 2013). "GulfNews". Retrieved 21 January 2014. 
  8. ^ "Kiley's Krypt". Retrieved 21 January 2014. 
  9. ^ "BBC Suffok". April 20, 2010. 
  10. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Troika Talent Agency". Retrieved 19 January 2014. 
  11. ^ a b Sandwell, Ian. "Lionsgate Acquires Trespass Against Us". Screen Daily. Retrieved 19 May 2014. 
  12. ^ Fleming, Jr., Mike. "Paramount Courts Sean Harris for 'Mission: Impossible' 5". Retrieved 6 September 2014. 
  13. ^ Hollwedel, Zach. "24 Hour Party People Star Chosen for Mission Impossible 5 Villain". Retrieved 6 September 2014. 
  14. ^ Robinson, John (2013) "Southcliffe: the most harrowing drama on TV", The Guardian, 26 July 2013. Retrieved 21 August 2013
  15. ^ Steinberg, Jamie (July 2007). "Sean Harris, Building a Mystery". Starry Constellation Magazine. 
  16. ^ a b c d "Sean Harris Bio and Profile". Filmbug. Retrieved 19 January 2014. 
  17. ^ "Pay Day". British Film Institute, Film Forever. 2002. 
  18. ^ "Nicotine Yellow". British Council Film. 2003. 
  19. ^ Deliver Us From Evil at the Internet Movie Database
  20. ^ Serena (2014) at the Internet Movie Database
  21. ^ Rosser, Michael (July 22, 2014). "Venice Days unveils 2014 line-up". Screen Daily. 
  22. ^ 71 at the Internet Movie Database
  23. ^ Kemp, Stuart (April 15, 2013). "Jack O'Connell Signs for Northern Island Set Thriller". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  24. ^ "Heading for HOLLYWOOD: Love/Hate star Killian Scott’s new film ’71 will have American release". March 14, 2014. 
  25. ^ "The 52nd New York Film Festival". Film Society at Lincoln Center. 
  26. ^ a b c "Susin Films". IMDb. 
  27. ^ "Hot House". British Film Institute Collections. September 7, 1999. 
  28. ^ Meadowlands at the Internet Movie Database

External links[edit]