Dance at the July 2012 London Film and Comic Con
Walter Charles Dance|
10 October 1946
Rednal, West Midlands, England
De Montfort University|
Plymouth College of Art
|Occupation||Actor, screenwriter, film director|
(m. 1970; div. 2004)
Eleanor Marion Perks
Walter Charles Dance, OBE (born 10 October 1946) is an English actor, screenwriter, and film director. Some of his most high-profile roles are Tywin Lannister in HBO's Game of Thrones (2011-2015), Guy Perron in The Jewel in the Crown (1984), Sardo Numspa in The Golden Child (1986), Jonathan Clemens in Alien 3 (1992), Benedict in Last Action Hero (1993), the Master Vampire in Dracula Untold (2014), Lord Havelock Vetinari in Terry Pratchett's Going Postal (2010), Alastair Denniston in The Imitation Game (2014), and Emperor Emhyr var Emreis in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt (2015).
Charles Dance was born in Rednal, West Midlands, the son of Eleanor Marion (née Perks), a cook, and Walter Dance (1874–1949), an electrical engineer who had previously served during the Boer War in South Africa. Growing up in Plymouth, he attended Widey Technical School for Boys (it closed when known as Widey High School in 1988) in Crownhill. Dance later attended The Leicester College of Arts (now known as De Montfort University), where he studied Graphic Design and Photography.
When Dance was about 3 years old, his father died. He had always thought that his father had been in his early fifties when this happened, but discovered that Walter was actually born 26 years earlier in 1874. In 2016 during filming of an episode for the genealogical series Who Do You Think You Are?. Dance also discovered that through his maternal line, he is of partial Belgian ancestry, descended from a family whose roots lay in Spa. His immigrant ancestor Charles François Futvoye (1777-1847) had been a pioneer in the art of Japaning during the early half of the 19th century, and a resident of Marylebone in London.
Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC)
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 the ITV 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 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. Though he turned down the opportunity to screen test for the James Bond role, in 1989 he played Bond creator Ian Fleming in Anglia Television's dramatised biography directed by Don Boyd, Goldeneye (the name of Fleming's estate in Jamaica and a title later used for a James Bond film).
He has also starred in many other British television dramas such as Edward the Seventh (as dissolute Prince Albert Victor, Duke of Clarence and Avondale, Edward VII's oldest son, and heir to the throne), Murder Rooms, Randall and Hopkirk, Rebecca, The Phantom of the Opera, Fingersmith and Bleak House (for which he received an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie). 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 instalment 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 played 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 while 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.
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.
|For Your Eyes Only||1981||Claus||John Glen|
|Plenty||1985||Raymond Brock||Fred Schepisi|
|The Golden Child||1986||Sardo Numspa||Michael Ritchie|
|White Mischief||1987||Josslyn Hay||Michael Radford|
|Good Morning, Babylon||1987||D.W. Griffith||Paolo and Vittorio Taviani|
|Hidden City||1987||James Richards||Stephen Poliakoff|
|Pascali's Island||1988||Anthony Bowles||James Dearden|
|Alien 3||1992||Clemens||David Fincher|
|Last Action Hero||1993||Benedict||John McTiernan|
|Century||1993||Professor Mandry||Stephen Poliakoff|
|China Moon||1994||Rupert Munro||John Bailey|
|Kabloonak||1994||Robert Flaherty||Claude Massot||Paris Film Festival Award for Best Actor|
|Shortcut to Paradise||1994||Quinn||Spanish film|
|Space Truckers||1996||Nabel / Macanudo||Stuart Gordon|
|Michael Collins||1996||Soames||Neil Jordan|
|The Blood Oranges||1997||Cyril||Philip Haas|
|What Rats Won't Do||1998||Gerald|
|Don't Go Breaking My Heart||1998||Frank||Willi Patterson|
|Hilary and Jackie||1998||Derek Du Pré||Anand Tucker|
|Gosford Park||2001||Raymond Stockbridge||Robert Altman|
|The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby||2001||Ralph Nickleby||Stephen Whittaker|
|Dark Blue World||2001||Wing Commander Bentley||Jan Svěrák|
|Black and White||2002||Roderic Chamberlain||Craig Lahiff|
|Ali G Indahouse||2002||David Carlton||Mark Mylod|
|Swimming Pool||2003||John Bosload||François Ozon|
|Scoop||2006||Mr. Malcolm||Woody Allen|
|Starter for 10||2006||Michael Harbinson||Tom Vaughan|
|The Contractor||2007||DCS Andrew Windsor||Josef Rusnak||Direct-to-video|
|The Commuter||2010||Traffic Warden||Short film to promote Nokia N8|
|Ironclad||2011||Archbishop Langton||Jonathan English|
|Your Highness||2011||King Tallious||David Gordon Green|
|Midnight's Children||2012||William Methwold||Deepa Mehta|
|Underworld: Awakening||2012||Thomas||Måns Mårlind
|Patrick||2013||Doctor Roget||Mark Hartley|
|Justin and the Knights of Valour||2013||Legantir||Manuel Sicilia||Voice|
|Bones of the Buddha||2013||Narrator||Voice|
|Viy||2013||Lord Dudley||Oleg Stepchenko||Credited as Charlz Dens|
|Dracula Untold||2014||Master Vampire||Gary Shore|
|The Imitation Game||2014||Commander Alastair Denniston||Morten Tyldum|
|Victor Frankenstein||2015||Frankenstein||Paul McGuigan|
|Michiel de Ruyter||2015||Charles II||Roel Reiné|
|Woman in Gold||2015||Sherman||Simon Curtis|
|Child 44||2015||Major Grachev||Daniel Espinosa|
|Pride and Prejudice and Zombies||2016||Mr. Bennet||Burr Steers|
|Me Before You||2016||Stephen Traynor||Thea Sharrock|
|Ghostbusters||2016||Harold Filmore||Paul Feig|
|Despite the Falling Snow||2016||Old Alexander||Shamim Sarif|
|Underworld: Blood Wars||2016||Thomas||Anna Foerster|
|That Good Night||2017||The Visitor||Eric Styles|
|Fanny Lye Deliver'd||2017||John Lye||Thomas Clay||Post-production|
|Viy 2: Journey to China||2018||Lord Dudley||Oleg Stepchenko||Post-production|
|Godzilla: King of the Monsters||2019||Michael Dougherty||Filming|||
|Denotes films that have not yet been released|
|Father Brown||1974||Commandant Neil O'Brien||ITV||Episode: "The Secret Garden"|
|Edward the Seventh||1975||Prince Eddy||ITV||2 episodes|
|The Jewel in the Crown||1984||Guy Perron||ITV||5 episodes|
|Out on a Limb||1987||Cpt. Truman||BBC||2 episodes|
|First Born||1988||Edward Forester||BBC||3 episodes|
|Goldeneye||1989||Ian Fleming||ITV||2 episodes|
|The Phantom of the Opera||1990||Erik/The Phantom||NBC||2 episodes|
|Rebecca||1997||Maxim de Winter||ITV||2 episodes|
|The Real Spartacus||2000||Narrator||Voice
|A History of Britain||2000||Winston Churchill||BBC||Voice
Episode: "The Two Winstons"
|Foyle's War||2002||Guy Spencer||ITV||Episode: "The White Feather"|
|Henry VIII||2003||Duke of Buckingham||ITV||Television film|
|Saint John Bosco: Mission to Love||2004||Marquis Clementi||Television film|
|Fingersmith||2005||Mr. Lilly||BBC||2 episodes|
|Bleak House||2005||Mr. Tulkinghorn||BBC||12 episodes|
|To the Ends of the Earth||2005||Sir Henry Somerset||BBC||Episode: "Close Quarters"|
|Last Rights||2005||Richard Wheeler||Channel 4||3 episodes|
|Marple: By the Pricking of My Thumbs||2006||Septimus Bligh||ITV||Episode: "By the Pricking of My Thumbs"|
|Fallen Angel||2007||David Byfield||3 episodes|
|Consenting Adults||2007||John Wolfenden||BBC||Television film|
|Merlin||2009||Aredian||BBC||Episode: "The Witchfinder"|
|Trinity||2009||Dr. Edmund Maltraver||ITV2||8 episodes|
|Going Postal||2010||Havelock Vetinari||Sky 1||2 episodes|
|This September||2010||Edmund Aird||2 episodes|
|Game of Thrones||2011–2015||Tywin Lannister||HBO||27 episodes|||
|Neverland||2011||Dr. Richard Fludd||Syfy||Episode: "Part 1"|
|Secret State||2012||John Hodder||Channel 4||4 episodes|
|Strike Back: Vengeance||2012||Conrad Knox||Sky 1||10 episodes|
|Was It Something I Said?||2013||Narrator||Channel 4||Guest (one episode)|
|Rosamunde Pilchers's Shades of Love||2013||Edmund Aird|
|The Great Fire||2014||Lord Denton||ITV||4 episodes|
|Childhood's End||2015||Karellen||Syfy||3 episodes|||
|Deadline Gallipoli||2015||General Ian Hamilton||Showcase||2 episodes|
|And Then There Were None||2015||Justice Lawrence Wargrave||BBC One||3 episodes|
|The Woman in White||2018||Mr. Fredrick Fairlie||BBC 1||5 episodes|
|Hang Ups||2018||Jeremy Pitt|
|The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt||2015||Emperor Emhyr var Emreis||Voice|||
|The Fourth Protocol||1985||Frederick Forsyth||Narrator||0886461340||Voice|||
- 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 Biography (1946–)". Filmreference.com. Retrieved 2012-11-12.
- "Charles Dance - Biography". Yahoo! Movies. Archived from the original on 15 October 2012. Retrieved 12 November 2012.
- "TheGenealogist featured article on Charles Dance". TheGenealogist. Retrieved 13 July 2017.
- Nicholas de Jongh (9 October 2007). "Dance is poignant perfection – Theatre & Dance – Arts – London Evening Standard". Thisislondon.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-11-12.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 4 October 2015.
- 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. Archived from the original on 21 April 2013. Retrieved 12 November 2012.
- "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.
- "British Film Council: Charles Dance".
- 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.
- London Gazette issue 58014 17 June 2006 page 10
- N'Duka, Amanda (May 18, 2017). "'Game Of Thrones' Alum Charles Dance Joins 'Godzilla: King Of The Monsters'". Deadline Hollywood. Archived from the original on May 18, 2017. Retrieved May 18, 2017.
- "Game of Thrones: Cast". HBO. Archived from the original on September 1, 2016. Retrieved May 18, 2017.
- "'Game of Thrones' actor to star in major Syfy miniseries". Entertainment Weekly's EW.com.
- "The Witcher – News". CD Projekt Red. Retrieved 2016-07-18.
- "The Fourth Protocol". Dh Audio. 1985.