Mark Christopher Wingett
1 January 1961
Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire, England, UK
Wingett was born in Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire. His father was an officer in the Royal Navy, and the family moved to wherever he was stationed, including Malta and Singapore, but mostly in Portsmouth.
Wingett wanted to act from his youth and joined the National Youth Theatre. His film debut came in 1979 when he played Dave, a reckless and rebellious mod, in Quadrophenia. Because the film was X-rated, he was too young to watch it legally.
In 1983 he made his first appearance as PC Jim Carver in "Woodentop", which became the pilot episode for The Bill. He was one of four actors in "Woodentop" who returned in the series' first complete season. He played Jim Carver in around 780 episodes, from 1984 until his departure in 2005 which ended 21 years on The Bill. Jim Carver was central to several major plotlines on The Bill, including the character's struggles with alcoholism, gambling and as a victim of domestic violence. Wingett made a brief return in March 2007 to coincide with the departure of Trudie Goodwin, then the only other remaining original cast member.
In 2005 he appeared in the BBC One soap opera EastEnders as Mike Swann, the father of Mickey Miller and Dawn Swann, initially for a week-long stint. He returned to the soap in late 2005, leaving in March 2006. Also in 2005 he appeared as Terry Molloy, a London gangster who had turned Queen's evidence on his cohorts following a robbery in the Heartbeat episode A Fresh Start.
Wingett provides the voiceover for the British television version of the hit American TV series American Chopper aired on the Discovery Channel. He also appeared in the "Spartacus" episode of the BBC's Heroes and Villains as the gladiator trainer Lentulus Batiatus.
In addition to acting, Wingett has directed several stage productions. In 2010, he directed the play Good to Firm by Ed Waugh and Trevor Wood at the Customs House, South Shields. In 2000, Wingett directed the play Lone Star by James McLure, in a production which toured Australia and starred his fellow Bill cast members Russell Boulter and Huw Higginson.
Wingett's partner is Sharon Martin, a makeup artist. They have a daughter, Jamila, and a stepson Benny from Martin's previous relationship. The couple separated in 2000 after Yvonne Williams, a fire-eater who had appeared on The Bill as an extra, went to the press detailing her affair with Wingett over a number of years., but had reconciled by 2003 after a two-year separation. They both worked on the 2012 film Snow White and the Huntsman, with Martin as head of the makeup department and Wingett playing the character of Thomas.
Wingett's sister, Fiona Wingett, is a magazine editor. She was the editor of New Idea magazine in Australia in the mid-1990s, then returned to Britain to edit the Personal magazine for the Sunday Mirror. His brother, Matthew Wingett, wrote several episodes of The Bill in the 1990s. His first episode, "Thicker than Water" was submitted under the false name "Matthew Brothers", so that it would not receive favourable treatment because of their relationship.
In 2018, Wingett recorded a two-part interview for The Bill Podcast celebrating his life and career.
TV and filmography
- Far from the Madding Crowd (2015) – Bailiff no. 1
- The Lost Choices (2015) – Dave
- Salting the Battlefield (2014) – Football supporter
- Hollyoaks (2013) – Frank Symons
- Walking with the Enemy (2013) – Sorenzi
- Run For Your Wife (2012) – Man outside cafe
- Snow White and the Huntsman (2012) – Thomas
- Intruders (2011) – Dave
- Banged Up Abroad (2011) – Chris
- War of the Dead (2011) – David Selzman
- Doctors (2010) – Martin Proudfoot
- Break Clause (2010) – Giles Davis
- Missing (2009–2010) – Danny Hayworth
- Franklyn (2008) – Frank Grant
- Beyond the Rave (2008) – Ed's dad
- EastEnders (2005–2006) – Mike Swann
- Heartbeat (2005) – Terry Molloy
- C.A.T.S. Eyes (1986) – Rider
- The Bill (1984–2005, 2007–2010) – PC/DC/DS Jim Carver
- Take Three Women (1982) – Kenneth
- Private Schulz (1981) – Walter
- Play for Today (1980) – Third youth
- The Professionals (1980) – Big punk
- Breaking Glass (1980) – Tony
- Fox (1980) – Lee
- Quadrophenia (1979) – Dave
- The Music Machine (1979) – Second heavy
- Mark Wingett at the British Film Institute
- Kingsley, Hilary (1994). The Bill: The First Ten Years. London: Boxtree. ISBN 1852839570.
- Lamb, Liz (8 September 2010). "Life after The Bill as star returns to the North". The Newcastle Journal. Retrieved 21 March 2013.
- Eustice, Kerry Ann (2 January 2008). "Wingett makes his Mark in panto". News Shopper. Archived from the original on 21 April 2013. Retrieved 21 March 2013.
- Green, Kris. "487: Jim Carver returns to Sun Hill". Digital Spy. Retrieved 19 March 2013.
- Green, Kris. "Ex-'Bill' actor to appear in 'EastEnders'". Digital Spy. Retrieved 19 March 2013.
- "Episode 5: Spartacus". Heroes and Villains. BBC. Retrieved 19 March 2013.
- "Missing". BBC Press Office. 14–20 March 2009. Retrieved 19 March 2013.
- McKew, Maxine: The Bill turns 16, The 7.30 Report (ABC TV), 18 October 2000.
- The Times BFI London Film Festival -The Last King Of Scotland: Opening Gala, Getty Images, 18 October 2006.
- Carroll, Sue (29 October 2003). "I stopped drinking but got addicted to sex.. it nearly cost me my world; EXCLUSIVE HOW BILL STAR MARK BEAT ALL HIS DEMONS". The Mirror. Retrieved 20 March 2013.
- Wright, Matthew (15 June 2000). "O 'ELL O 'ELL; Two-timing Bill star Mark is booted out after wife discovers his double life". The Mirror. Retrieved 20 March 2013.
- Index to Motion Picture Credits: SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, 2012.
- Burstall, Emma (9 December 2006). "Get out more". The Guardian. Retrieved 19 March 2013.
- Cowlett, Mary (10 September 1999). "MEDIA: Two leave Sunday Mirror mag". PR Week UK. Retrieved 19 March 2013.
- Lynch, Tony (1992). The Bill the inside story of the successful police series seen on ABC TV. London: Boxtree. ISBN 0 7333 0196 7.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 14 June 2013. Retrieved 13 July 2013.