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John Noble

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John Noble
Noble in 2012
Born (1948-08-20) 20 August 1948 (age 75)
Occupation(s)Actor, voice actor, theatre director
Years activesince 1988
SpousePenny Noble
Children3, including Samantha Noble

John Noble (born 20 August 1948)[1] is an Australian actor. He is best known for his roles as Denethor in The Lord of the Rings film trilogy (2001–2003), and Dr. Walter Bishop in the Fox science fiction series Fringe (2008–2013). His other television credits include the supernatural drama Sleepy Hollow (2013–2017) and the police procedural Elementary (2015–2019).

Noble has also lent his distinctively deep voice to animated and video game projects, particularly as Leland Monroe in Rockstar Games' L.A. Noire (2011), and Scarecrow in the DC Comics game Batman: Arkham Knight (2015).


Noble's early acting career started in theater throughout the 1970s and 1980s.[1] For 10 years, he was an artistic director for the Stage Company of South Australia.[1] Noble was a Trustee of the Adelaide Festival Centre and chairman of the Adelaide Festival of the Arts.[1] In 1979, he starred in Errol Flynn's Great Big Adventure Book for Boys at the Edinburgh Festival in Scotland.[1] In 1984, Noble received a nomination by South Australian Premier John Bannon, for the Young Australian of the Year award.[1]

Noble at age 40 made his film debut in the 1988 horror film The Dreaming.[1]

He made occasional appearances on the television series All Saints. His performance as Denethor in The Lord of the Rings trilogy result in him becoming better known to international audiences. He played Russian Consul Anatoly Markov in the sixth season of the US television series 24.

He won awards when starring as eccentric scientist Walter Bishop in the television series Fringe for 5 seasons (2008–2013).[1] Noble played Morland Holmes, father of Sherlock Holmes, in Elementary.[2] He was a series regular for season 4 with guest appearances in seasons 6 and 7.[2]

Noble has also done voice acting, usually portraying villains. He voiced the Dragon Spirit in M. Night Shyamalan's film The Last Airbender (2010), appeared as Real Estate tycoon Leland Monroe in Rockstar Games' L.A. Noire (2011),[3] and provided the voice for Unicron in the animated series Transformers: Prime and its conclusion film Transformers Prime Beast Hunters: Predacons Rising.

Noble has done voice-over work for numerous DC Comics projects, including the animated film Superman: Unbound (2013) as the supervillain Brainiac, the video game Batman: Arkham Knight (2015) as the primary antagonist Scarecrow,[4] and the television series Legends of Tomorrow as the demon Mallus. Additionally, Noble appeared as himself in the Legends of Tomorrow episode "Guest Starring John Noble".

Personal life[edit]

Noble divides his time between residences in New York City and Sydney, Australia, with wife Penny Noble. They have three children, Daniel Noble, Jessica Noble, and actress Samantha Noble. In 2011, Noble's hobbies were reported to be "music, painting, and narration".[5] He studies theoretical physics and requested that the writers of Fringe always keep things grounded in what could be scientifically feasible.[6]

In 2012, Noble was diagnosed with osteoporosis. His charity, Noble Bones, helps to raise awareness of the disease.[7]



Year Title Role Notes
1988 The Dreaming Dr. Richards
1989 A Sting in the Tale Prime Minister's minder
1990 Call Me Mr. Brown Sergeant
1993 The Nostradamus Kid General Booth
2000 The Monkey's Mask Mr. Norris
2002 The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers Denethor Seen only in the Extended Edition
2003 The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King Denethor Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Cast
Critics Choice Award for Best Acting Ensemble
National Board of Review Award for Best Cast
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
Nominated—Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast
2004 Fracture Howard Peet
2006 One Night with the King Prince Admantha
2006 Running Scared Ivan Yugorsky
2006 Voodoo Lagoon Ben
2010 Risen Eddie Thomas
2010 The Last Airbender Dragon Spirit Voice[8]

Nominated – Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Screen Ensemble (shared with the entire cast)

2013 Superman: Unbound Brainiac Voice, direct-to-video[9][8]
2014 The Mule Pat Shepherd
2021 The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It Father Kastner


Year Title Role Notes
1991 Police Rescue Sergeant Episode: "Hostage"
1993 Time Trax Mr. Michaels Episode: "One on One"
1997 Big Sky Graham James Episode: "Future Past and Present"
1998 Water Rats Dr. Harry Episode: "Epiphany"
1998–2004 All Saints Dr. John Madsen 32 episodes
1999 Airtight Sorrentino Television film
2000 Tales of the South Seas Christian Ambrose Episode: "Trent in Love"
2000 Virtual Nightmare Dad Television film
2001 Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's The Lost World Inspector Robert Anderson Episode: "The Knife"
2001 The Bill Commander Warren Episode: "Beech on the Run"
2001–2006 Home and Away Dr. Helpman 9 episodes
2002 Young Lions Adam Gallagher 4 episodes
2002 Stingers Michael Kranz Episode: "Disgraceful Conduct"
2002 The Outsider Fergus Hunter Television film
2004 The Mystery of Natalie Wood Irving Pichel Television film
2002 Superfire [it] Paul Baylis Television film
2006 Stargate SG-1 Meurik Episode: "Camelot"
2007 Journeyman Wine Connoisseur Episode: "Winterland"
2007 The Unit The CEO Episode: "Pandemonium – Part 2"
2007 24 Anatoly Markov 3 episodes
2007 Pirate Islands: The Lost Treasure of Fiji Blackheart 13 episodes
2008–2013 Fringe Walter Bishop / Walternate 100 episodes
Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor on Television
Nominated—Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
Nominated—Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor – Series, Miniseries or Television Film (2008–09)
Nominated—Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor on Television (2010, 2012–13)
2011–2012 Dark Matters: Twisted But True Himself 16 episodes
2011 Transformers: Prime Unicron Voice, 3 episodes[8]
2013 The Good Wife Matthew Ashbaugh 2 episodes
2013 Transformers Prime Beast Hunters: Predacons Rising Unicron Voice, television film[8]
2013–2017 Sleepy Hollow Henry Parrish 22 episodes
2013 Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries Edward Stanley Episode: "Murder Under The Mistletoe"
2014 Rake Clayton Post 2 episodes
2014 Devil's Playground Bishop McNally 6 episodes
2015 Forever Aubrey Griffin Episode: "The Last Death of Henry Morgan"
2015–2019 Elementary Morland Holmes 16 episodes
2017–2018 Legends of Tomorrow Mallus, himself 7 episodes
2017–2018 Salvation Nicholas Tanz 7 episodes
2017 The Librarians Monsignor Vega Episode: "And the Dark Secret", season 4
2018 The Blacklist Raleigh Sinclair III 2 episodes
2019 The Resident Elliot Festervan Episode: "Broker and Broker"
2020 Hunters Frederic Hauser Episode: "The Pious Thieves"
2020 The Boys Sam Butcher Episode: "Butcher, Baker, Candlestick Maker"
2021 Debris Otto Episode: "Celestial Body"
2021–2022 Star Trek: Prodigy The Diviner Voice; 18 episodes[8]
2021 Cowboy Bebop Caliban 3 episodes
2023 Totally Completely Fine Wilkinson 3 episodes
2023 Fired on Mars Falco Voice; episode: "Marsiversary"
TBA Severance Upcoming season

Video games[edit]

Year Title Voice role Notes
2009 The Saboteur Bishop [8]
2011 L.A. Noire Leland Monroe
2013 Infinity Blade III The Worker of Secrets
2015 Batman: Arkham Knight Jonathan Crane / Scarecrow

Other work[edit]

  • Artistic Director of Stage Company of South Australia 1977–1987
  • Head of Drama, Brent St. School of Arts (Sydney) 1997–2000

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Association Category Nominated work Result
2003 National Board of Review Best Cast The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King Won
2004 Broadcast Film Critics Association Awards Best Cast Won
Critics' Choice Awards Best Cast Won
Phoenix Film Critics Society Awards Best Cast Nominated
Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture Won
2008 Satellite Awards Best Supporting Actor – Series, Miniseries or Television Film Fringe Nominated
2009 Satellite Awards Best Supporting Actor – Series, Miniseries or Television Film Nominated
2010 Saturn Awards Best Supporting Actor on Television Nominated
2011 Critics' Choice Television Awards Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series Won
Saturn Awards Best Supporting Actor on Television Won
2012 Critics' Choice Television Awards Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series Nominated
Saturn Awards Best Supporting Actor on Television Nominated
2013 Saturn Awards Best Supporting Actor on Television Nominated
2016 15th National Academy of Video Game Trade Reviewers (NAVGTR) awards Performance in a Drama, Supporting (as "Scarecrow") Batman: Arkham Knight Nominated


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i "John Noble Biography". Starpulse.com. Archived from the original on 22 February 2014. Retrieved 14 February 2014.
  2. ^ a b "John Noble Joins 'Elementary' Season 4 as Series Regular". 3 July 2015.
  3. ^ Nick Broughall (17 December 2010). "How L.A. Noire Conquered The Uncanny Valley with a Tech Called MotionScan". Gizmondo.
  4. ^ Saed, Sherif (7 May 2015). "Batman: Arkham Knight voice cast includes Breaking Bad and Twilight Saga actors". VG247. Archived from the original on 7 May 2015. Retrieved 7 May 2015.
  5. ^ Bill Keveney (29 April 2011). "Universes collide in Bishops' world". USA Today. McLean, Virginia: Gannett. p. 8D.
  6. ^ "The Soapbox Office Podcast: Episode 9: Running Crank". www.soapboxoffice.com. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
  7. ^ "Exclusive Interview with John Noble!". 5 July 2016.
  8. ^ a b c d e f "John Noble (visual voices guide)". Behind The Voice Actors. Retrieved 9 March 2024. A green check mark indicates that a role has been confirmed using a screenshot (or collage of screenshots) of a title's list of voice actors and their respective characters found in its opening and/or closing credits and/or other reliable sources of information.
  9. ^ Sands, Rich (7 January 2013). "First Look: Matt Bomer Gets Animated for Superman: Unbound". TV Guide. Retrieved 7 January 2013.

External links[edit]