James Ryan (actor)

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James Ryan

James Ryan is a South African actor, writer and director.


Ryan garnered international attention early in his career, starring in the 1977 film, Kill or Be Killed. Ryan appeared as a martial arts fighter in the alternate world film. He reprised the role 5 years later, in Kill and Kill Again, starring alongside Miss World winner, Anneline Kriel. The sequel proved a major box office success for a low-budget South African feature, reaching no.2 on the American box office and grossing $802 900 after two weeks in American theatres.[1]

In 1984 , he had the title role in Go for Gold which also starred Tamara Franke and Cameron Mitchell.[2] He played the part of a long distance runner called Johnny who lived at home with his mother and abusive stepfather. Two things that mean a lot to him are his girlfriend Trish and his running. He has a solid influence in his champion runner friend Victor (played by M'zwandile Ngxangane). He comes to the attention of Phillip Pritchard who is a business man. He risks losing the things that are dear to him,[3] as Pritchard is forcing him to choose between them and fame and fortune.[4]

In 1989, he starred in Space Mutiny, a South African science-fiction action film. A year later he appeared alongside Susan Sarandon and Harvey Keitel in The January Man. In 1991, he wrote and starred in The Last Hero.

In 1994 he landed a role as in Halifax f.p: Hard Corps, an Australian television drama that won two Australian Film Institute awards. A year later he returned to the Martial Arts film genre, with a role in Kickboxer 5.

In 1998, he appeared in the Australian television drama and sequel Halifax f.p: Afraid of the Dark, the acclaimed drama earned several Logie and Australian Film Institute nominations.

The following year he appeared in the From Dusk Till Dawn sequel, From Dusk Till Dawn 2: Texas Blood Money. Since then he has appeared in films such as Red Lipstick, Global Effect and Sterne über Madeira a German television 2-part drama alongside fellow South African, Moira Lister.


  1. ^ Jani Allan (1980s). Face Value. Longstreet.
  2. ^ British Film Institute - Go for Gold (1984), Film Details
  3. ^ Herald & Review, Sunday, July 4, 1993 - Page 91 Friday Movies
  4. ^ Running Movies - Go For Gold

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