Charlie Thomas Cox
15 December 1982
|Education||Bristol Old Vic Theatre School|
Charlie Thomas Cox (born 15 December 1982) is an English actor. He played the role of Matt Murdock / Daredevil in Netflix's Daredevil (2015–2018) and The Defenders (2017), Jonathan Hellyer Jones in the 2014 film The Theory of Everything and Owen Sleater in the second and third seasons of HBO's Boardwalk Empire (2011–2012). Cox's breakout role was as Tristan Thorn in the 2007 fantasy film Stardust, one of a series of roles he had during the first decade of his career in predominantly British films, television series, and theatre productions. He made his West End debut the next year in a revival of the Harold Pinter plays The Lover and The Collection. Following his success on screen in the 2010s, Cox acted in a 2019 stage production of Harold Pinter's Betrayal, first in the West End and then on Broadway.
Charlie Thomas Cox, the youngest of five children, was born in London, England, and brought up in East Sussex. He is the son of Patricia (née Harley) and Andrew Frederick Seaforth Cox, who is a publisher. He has one brother, Toby (born 1974), and three half-siblings from his father's first marriage: Emma, Zoe and Oliver.
Cox was raised Catholic and was educated at two independent boarding schools, Ashdown House School in the village of Forest Row in East Sussex and Sherborne School in the market town of Sherborne in Dorset. Growing up, Cox did not consider a career in acting and only seriously considered it during his last few years of schooling. After graduating Sherborne in 2001, he moved to London and began training at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School in Bristol the following year.
Early career (2002–2006)
Cox was cast in his first significant professional role at age eighteen in the psychological thriller Dot the i, released in 2003. Following filming, he enrolled at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School. In the summer following his first year of study, Cox auditioned and was cast as Lorenzo in the 2004 Al Pacino-vehicle The Merchant of Venice, breaking the school's policy of not allowing students to audition for outside productions. He eventually decided to not return to drama school and continued working, appearing in guest spots on TV and supporting roles in movies like the 2005 historical drama Casanova and the 2006 BBC sci-fi film A for Andromeda.
Prominence in television and film (2007–2014)
Cox's breakout role was as the main protagonist, Tristan Thorn, in the 2007 fantasy film Stardust which he starred in opposite Claire Danes. The film was successful with both critics and audiences globally and introduced Cox to a wider audience. He made his West End debut the following year in Harold Pinter's The Lover/The Collection at the Ambassadors Theatre in London. The production began previews on 15 January 2008 and opened on 29 January.
He was next seen in the 2008 film Stone of Destiny, in which he played Ian Hamilton, and the 2009 historical drama Glorious 39, both of which were widely released in the United Kingdom. In 2010, he played the title role in Kleist's The Prince of Homburg at the Donmar Warehouse in London. In September of that year, he played the closeted gay Duke of Crowborough in the first episode of the ITV drama series Downton Abbey. In 2011, Cox played the part of St. Josemaría Escrivá in the Roland Joffé film There Be Dragons and appeared as Ishmael in Encore's Moby Dick miniseries.
Also in 2011, Cox signed on to play a recurring role in the second season of the Martin Scorsese-produced HBO original series Boardwalk Empire as Owen Sleater, an Irish enforcer with ties to the IRA. His character became a regular for the series' third season, which was broadcast in September 2012. He received a Screen Actors Guild Award as part of the ensemble of the show in 2011 in addition to another nomination the following year.
In 2013, he starred in the independent film Hello Carter and in the BBC Cold War thriller Legacy. He was cast in a lead role in two separate CBS TV pilots, a political drama titled The Ordained in February 2013 and an untitled Wall Street show executive produced by John Cusak in February 2014. Neither was ordered to series. At the end of 2013, production began on the film The Theory of Everything, in which Cox portrays Jonathan Hellyer Jones, the second husband of Jane Hawking. The film premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in September 2014 and was nominated for Best Picture at the 2015 Academy Awards.
Cox portrayed Matt Murdock in Marvel's Daredevil TV series as well as the 2017 team-up miniseries event The Defenders, produced and released through Netflix. His performance was praised and given a Helen Keller Achievement Award for his role by the American Foundation for the Blind.
It was announced that Cox had been cast in the role in May 2014, and it was later reported that Marvel executives were eyeing him for it since 2012. Production on the first season began in Summer 2014 and it premiered on Netflix in April 2015. The show ran for three seasons and was produced over four years, concluding in late 2018. Cox has said that, given the opportunity, he would be interested in reprising the role of Matt Murdock in a future project, also noting his contractual obligations by Marvel Studios to do so. In December 2020, rumors began speculating about Cox reprising the role in Spider-Man: No Way Home.
Between filming seasons of Daredevil, Cox made his New York theater debut co-starring in the off-Broadway production of Incognito at the Manhattan Theatre Club. In late 2017, it was announced that Cox had joined the cast of Stripped, a thriller produced by Lorenzo di Bonaventura, who also produced Cox's early breakout film Stardust. The film was never produced. He also acted opposite Michael Caine, Jim Broadbent, Ray Winstone and others in the 2018 film King of Thieves, based on the true story of the 2015 Hatton Garden jewelry heist in London; the film reunites him with James Marsh, who directed him in 2014's The Theory of Everything.
After Daredevil surprisingly ended, Cox took the opportunity to star opposite Tom Hiddleston and Zawe Ashton in the West End production of Harold Pinter's Betrayal which opened on 14 March 2019 and closed on 8 June 2019. Cox was sought for the role by director Jaime Lloyd who had previously directed Cox in the 2008 production of the Pinter play The Lover and The Collection. The play transferred to Broadway with the original cast for a seventeen-week limited engagement, beginning previews on 14 August and closing on 8 December 2019.
Also during this period, Cox took part in some of his friends' projects. In late 2018, he acted in the short film The Knot, directed by Daredevil and The Defenders script supervisor Rebecca Schwab, and he appeared in a 2019 episode of Daredevil costar Deborah Ann Woll's Dungeons and Dragons internet show Relics and Rarities.
In September 2018, Cox married Samantha Thomas, Executive Vice President of Bron TV, with whom he has two children, daughter Elsie, born in 2016, and a second child born around March 2020. At the time of their marriage, they both worked for Marvel Television with Thomas as the Vice President of Original Programming and Cox starring in Daredevil. The family lives in Connecticut. Previously, Cox has lived in New York City, Los Angeles, and in the Chelsea and Highbury neighbourhoods of London.
|2003||Dot the i||Theo|
|2004||The Merchant of Venice||Lorenzo|
|2005||Things to Do Before You're 30||Danny|
|2006||The Maidens' Conspiracy||Diafebus|
|2008||Harry, Henry and the Prostitute||Harry||Short film|
|Stone of Destiny||Ian Hamilton|
|2009||Big Guy||Chuck||Short film|
|2011||There Be Dragons||Josemaría Escrivá|
|Nancy, Sid and Sergio||Sergio||Short film|
|2012||A Sunny Morning||Adam||Short film|
|2014||The Theory of Everything||Jonathan Hellyer Jones|
|Dracula Untold||Caligula||Scenes cut|
|2018||King of Thieves||Basil|
|2002||Judge John Deed||Young Vicar||Episode: "Everyone's Child"|
|2006||Lewis||Danny Griffon||Premise pilot|
|A for Andromeda||Dennis Bridger||Television film|
|2010||Downton Abbey||Duke of Crowborough||Episode: "1.1"|
|2011||Moby Dick||Ishmael||Miniseries; 2 episodes|
|2011–2012||Boardwalk Empire||Owen Sleater||Main role (season 3), supporting (season 2); 23 episodes|
|2013||The Ordained||Tom Reilly||Unaired pilot|
|Legacy||Charles Thoroughgood||Unaired pilot|
|2015–2018||Daredevil||Matt Murdock / Daredevil||Lead role; 39 episodes|
|2017||The Defenders||Miniseries; main role; 8 episodes|
|2005||'Tis Pity She's a Whore||Giovanni||Southwark Playhouse:
28 September – 22 October 2005
|2008||The Lover/The Collection||John/Bill||Ambassadors Theatre:
15 January – 3 May 2008
|West End revival|
|2010||The Prince of Homburg||The Prince of Homburg||Donmar Warehouse:
22 July – 4 September 2010
|Off-West End production|
|2016||Incognito||Henry Maison, Michael Wolf, Hans Albert Einstein, Ben Murphy, Freddy Myers, Greg Barraclough||Manhattan Theatre Club:
3 May – 10 July 2016
|Original Off-Broadway production|
|2019||Betrayal||Jerry||Harold Pinter Theatre:
5 March – 8 June 2019
|West End revival|
|Bernard B. Jacobs Theater:
14 August – 8 December 2019
Awards and nominations
|2012||Screen Actors Guild Awards||Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series||Boardwalk Empire||Won|
|2015||Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Motion Picture||The Theory of Everything||Nominated|
|Helen Keller Achievement Awards||Honoree||Daredevil||Won|
|2016||Saturn Awards||Best Actor in a Television Series||Nominated|
|Lucille Lortel Awards||Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play||Incognito||Nominated|
|2019||Saturn Awards||Best Actor in Streaming Presentation||Daredevil||Nominated|
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...actor Charlie Cox in 1982 (age 35)
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St Josemaria is played by the English actor Charlie Cox, who is a Catholic. "I've been brought up a Catholic."
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