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Paterson Joseph

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Paterson Joseph
Joseph at the reception for Sancho at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in 2015
Paterson Davis Joseph[1]

(1964-06-22) 22 June 1964 (age 60)
Willesden, Middlesex, United Kingdom[2]
Alma materLondon Academy of Music and Dramatic Art
Occupation(s)Actor, author
Years active1989–present
Notable workThe Secret Diaries of Charles Ignatius Sancho (2022)
OfficeChancellor of Oxford Brookes University
SpouseEmmanuelle Joseph
AwardsRSL Christopher Bland Prize

Paterson Davis Joseph (born 22 June 1964)[1][3] is a British actor and author. He was announced as Chancellor of Oxford Brookes University in October 2022.

Joseph appeared in the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) productions of King Lear and Love's Labour's Lost in 1990. On television he is best known for his roles in Casualty (1997–1998), as Alan Johnson in Channel 4 sitcom Peep Show (2003–2015), Green Wing (2004–2006), Survivors (2008–2010), Boy Meets Girl (2009), as DI Wes Layton in Law & Order: UK (2013–2014), as Holy Wayne in The Leftovers (2014–15), as DCI Mark Maxwell in Safe House (2015–2017), and as Connor Mason in Timeless (2016–2018). His film roles include The Beach (2000), Greenfingers (2001), Æon Flux (2005), The Other Man (2008) and Wonka (2023).

Joseph is also a writer, and his 2022 debut novel The Secret Diaries of Charles Ignatius Sancho won the 2023 Christopher Bland Prize awarded by the Royal Society of Literature.

Early life


Joseph was born on 22 June 1964 in Willesden Green, Middlesex, to parents from Saint Lucia.[4] He attended Cardinal Hinsley R.C. High School in north-west London, a predominantly Irish Catholic school.[5] He has described himself as a "terrible bunker" while at school, opting to spend the best part of two years in the local public library instead.[citation needed]

He worked briefly as a catering assistant at a hospital, before deciding to pursue acting as a profession. Joseph first trained at the Studio '68 of Theatre Arts, London (South Kensington Library), from 1983 to 1985 with Robert Henderson. He later attended the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA), before going on to perform for the Royal Shakespeare Company and The Royal National Theatre.[6]





In 1991, Joseph won second prize in the Ian Charleson Awards, for his 1990 performances of Oswald in King Lear, Dumaine in Love's Labour's Lost, and the Marquis de Mota in The Last Days of Don Juan, all at the Royal Shakespeare Company.[7] In 1992 he starred as Richard Henry in Blues for Mister Charlie by James Baldwin, directed by Greg Hersov at the Royal Exchange, Manchester.

Joseph's theatre credits include the title role in Othello at the Royal Exchange, Manchester, as well as parts in Henry IV, King Lear, and Hamlet for a performance in New York City.[8] In 2012 he played Brutus in a performance by the RSC of Julius Caesar set in Africa. In 2004 he undertook a project, filmed for Channel 4 in a documentary entitled My Shakespeare, to direct a version of Romeo & Juliet, using 20 young non-actors from the deprived Harlesden area of London.[9]

In 2006, he became a patron of OffWestEnd.com, a listings site for theatre outside the mainstream.[10] Other stage appearances in 2006 and 2007 include the leads in The Royal Hunt of the Sun and The Emperor Jones at the Olivier Theatre, London.[11][12] In 2015, Sancho: An Act of Remembrance, a solo play written and performed by Joseph and based on the life of Ignatius Sancho, was staged in Oxford and Birmingham, and toured in the US starting in October.[13][14][15]

In late 2019 and early 2020, Joseph starred as Ebenezer Scrooge at the Old Vic Theatre in London in their production of A Christmas Carol.



He has played many roles in British television programmes, both drama and comedy. These include Reuben in William and Mary, alongside Martin Clunes; Mark Grace in Casualty; the Marquis de Carabas in Neverwhere; Alan Johnson in Peep Show; Lyndon Jones in Green Wing; and Shorty in the first episode of Jericho.

Joseph also appeared in the acclaimed drama Sex Traffic (2004), in the 2005 TV version of Kwame Kwei-Armah's acclaimed play Elmina's Kitchen and in the Doctor Who episodes "Bad Wolf" and "The Parting of the Ways" as Rodrick, a contestant on a futuristic version of The Weakest Link game show. He has also appeared in various supporting roles in Dead Ringers.[16] In 2006, he appeared in the television sketch show That Mitchell and Webb Look, in which he played Simon, a contestant on the game show Numberwang.[8]

In 2007, Joseph played Space Marshall Clarke in two series of the BBC sci-fi sitcom Hyperdrive, and was Benjamin Maddox in the BBC drama series Jekyll. Joseph also provided the voice of K.O. Joe in Chop Socky Chooks.

From 2008 to 2010, Joseph played Greg Preston in Survivors, the BBC remake of the 1970s science-fiction drama of the same name. Also in 2008, Joseph appeared as former hitman Patrick Finch in Series 1, Episode 5 of The Fixer.

Joseph played DI Wes Layton in Law & Order: UK from 2013 to 2014.

He played the messianic "Holy Wayne" Gilchrest on the original HBO dramatic series The Leftovers, which began airing in 2014, and General Arnold Gaines on You, Me and the Apocalypse.

He took up the main role of Connor Mason in the television series Timeless, which ended in 2018.[17]

In 2020, Joseph played the part of Home Secretary Kamal Hadley in the series of Noughts + Crosses.[18]

As voice actor, Joseph provided the narration for the National Geographic series Mega Cities from 2005 to 2011, Wild Russia in 2009 and the BBC Two documentary Inside Obama's White House in 2016.[19] He played Tyler in the BBC Switch film Rules of Love in 2010.



Joseph's first feature film role was as Benbay in Jim Sheridan's In the Name of the Father.

In 2000, Joseph appeared as Keaty in Danny Boyle's adventure drama film The Beach, which starred Leonardo DiCaprio. In the same year, he also appeared in The Long Run and Greenfingers.

In 2005, he portrayed Giroux in the science-fiction action film Æon Flux, which starred Charlize Theron. Then in 2008 he played a supporting role in The Other Man, opposite Liam Neeson and Antonio Banderas.

Joseph appears as villain Arthur Slugworth, part of an ensemble cast in the 2023 musical fantasy film Wonka, directed by Paul King.[20]

Joseph has also appeared in several short films, including Stop the World, directed by Richard Leaf. He voiced the character of Victor in the 2023 drama short film Bet Your Bottom Dollar[21] produced by British-Canadian filmmaker Jonathan Tammuz.

Voice work


In 2011, Joseph returned to Doctor Who, where he appeared in the audio drama Earth Aid, playing Victor Espinosa.[22] In November 2016 he played the title role in the BBC radio adaptation of the short story by Neil Gaiman, How the Marquis Got His Coat Back. Joseph had previously played the part of the Marquis de Carabas in the 1996 BBC TV six-part drama Neverwhere. He played the role of Colonel Arbuthnott in the Audible production of Murder on the Orient Express.

Joseph read the BBC Radio 4 abridgement of George Lamming's 1953 debut novel In the Castle of My Skin first broadcast in December 2020.[23]



Joseph has delivered such keynote public lectures as the Memorial 2007 Annual Lecture at the Institute of Commonwealth Studies[24] and at Lancaster University.[25]



In October 2022, Joseph's debut novel The Secret Diaries of Charles Ignatius Sancho was released, published by Dialogue Books.[26] The book charts the life of Charles Ignatius Sancho through fictionalised diary entries, letters and commentary. Writing in The New York Times, reviewer Thomas Mallon concluded: "With the conjuring tricks of historical fiction, Joseph has taken an actual man and, two and a half centuries later, made him as thoroughly himself, and as fully present, as he was the first time round."[27] The novel was shortlisted for the 2023 Jhalak Prize,[28] and won the 2023 RSL Christopher Bland Prize.[29][30]

Chancellor of Oxford Brookes University


In October 2022, Joseph was announced as the next Chancellor of Oxford Brookes University[31][32] (previous holders of the role including Helena Kennedy, Jon Snow, Shami Chakrabarti and Katherine Grainger) and was officially installed in May 2023.[33][34]

Personal life


Joseph lived in the Loire Valley, France, with his French wife Emmanuelle and their son, before moving back to his native London. He has sickle cell anaemia. [35][36][37][38] Joseph supports the Brazil national football team.[39]




Denotes works that have not yet been released
Year Title Role Notes
1989 Streetwise Dave 9 episodes
1990 South of the Border Julian Henry Episode 2.7
1992 Bunch of Five Compton Episode: "Dead at Thirty"
1992 The Bill Michael Tapscott Episode: "Soft Target"
Between the Lines Sgt. Viv Jones Episode: "Words of Advice"
1993 ScreenPlay Busi Episode: "Not Even God Is Wise Enough"
1994 Funky Black Shorts Ellis Episode: "Home and Away"
Soldier Soldier Fusilier Eddie Nelson Episode: "Changing the Guard"
Casualty Michael Episode: "Hidden Agendas"
1996 Neverwhere Marquis de Carabas 6 episodes
1997–98 Casualty Mark Grace 42 episodes
2000 Safe as Houses Gabriel James TV movie
2001 Armadillo Alan 3 episodes
Now You See Her Mark TV movie
Cold Feet Suggs Episodes: 4.5 and 4.6
2002 Waking the Dead Dermot Sullivan Episodes: "Life Sentence Part 1" and "Life Sentence Part 2"
Silent Witness Sergeant Terry Harding Episodes: "The Fall Out Part 1" and "The Fall Out Part 2"
Bodily Harm Undertaker Two 1 episode
2003 Loving You Felix Fisher TV movie
A Touch of Frost Colin Stokes Episode: "Close Encounters"
Ghosts of Albion: Legacy Nigel Townsend 7 episodes
2003–05 William and Mary Reuben 10 episodes
2003–15 Peep Show Alan Johnson 16 episodes
2004 Murphy's Law Dr. Mark Maddison Episode: "The Group"
Dead Ringers Mickey Stone 2 episodes
Ghost of Albion: Embers Nigel Townsend 5 episodes
Sex Traffic Martin 2 episodes
My Dad's the Prime Minister Detective Gary McRyan 6 episodes
My Shakespeare Self TV movie documentary
2004–06 Green Wing Lyndon Jones 9 episodes
2005 Dalziel and Pascoe Mr Alisdair Collinson Episodes: "Heads You Lose Part 1" and "Heads You Lose Part 2"
Elmina's Kitchen Deli TV movie
Doctor Who Rodrick Episodes: "Bad Wolf" and "The Parting of the Ways"
Rose and Maloney Harry Callaghan Episode: "Carl Callaghan"
Jericho Shorty Episode: "A Pair of Ragged Claws"
Open Wide Neil TV movie
2006 Mayo Dr. Rossi Episode: "Cast a Cold Eye"
2006-08 That Mitchell and Webb Look Various characters 8 episodes
2006–07 Hyperdrive Space Marshal Clarke 7 episodes
2007–08 Mega Cities Narrator Episodes: "Hong Kong" and "Taipei"
2007 Jekyll Benjamin Lennox 4 episodes
Chop Socky Chooks KO Joe 26 episodes
2008–10 Survivors Greg Preston 12 episodes
2008 The Fixer Patrick Finch Series 1, Episode 5
Thrilla in Manila Narrator TV movie documentary
2008-09 World of Quest General Ogun 26 episodes
2009 Japan's Wild Secrets Narrator Tv movie documentary
The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency Cephas Buthelezi Episodes: "Beauty and Integrity" and "A Real Botswana Diamond"
Boy Meets Girl Jay Metcalfe 4 episodes
10 Minute Tales Paul Episode: "Let It Snow"
2010 Blood and Oil Ed Daly TV movie
Clash of the Continents Narrator Episode: "End of Eden"
Rules of Love Tyler TV movie
On Christmas Night Presenter Reading from the Gospel of John
2011 Case Histories Patrick Carter 2 episodes
Coming Up: Food English man 1 episode
Death in Paradise William 1 episode
2012 The Hollow Crown Henry V Duke of York TV film
Julius Caesar Brutus Live recording performance by RSC
Hustle Dexter Gold[40] Series 8, Episode 1
In Love with... Sir Robert Chiltern Episode: "In Love with Wilde"
2013 Wild Thailand Narrator 2 episodes
Wild Burma: Nature's Lost Kingdom Narrator 3 episodes
2013–14 Law & Order: UK DCI Wes Leyton Series 7–8
2014 Babylon Assistant Commissioner Charles Inglis Series 1
2014-15 The Leftovers "Holy" Wayne Gilchrest Season 1
Season 2, two episodes
2015 Thunderbirds Are Go Robert Williams (voice) 1 episode
You, Me and the Apocalypse General Arnold Gaines Main Role
Safe House Mark
2016 Inside Obama's White House Narrator 4 episodes
The Coopers vs the Rest Toby Pilot episode
2016–18 Timeless Connor Mason[17] 26 episodes
2017 Rellik Dr Isaac Taylor 6 episodes
2018 The Prosecutors: Real Crime and Punishment Narrator Episodes: "Modern Day Slavery" and "Prisons, Drugs and Drones"
Urban Myths Chuck D Episode: "Public Enemy (feat Kev Wells)"
2019 Grantchester Reverend Nathaniel Todd 1 episode
Counterpart Elan Episode: "You to You"
The End of the F***ing World Kevan 1 episode
Avenue 5 Harrison Ames 2 episodes
2020 Unprecedented George 1 episode
Noughts + Crosses Home Secretary Kamal Hadley 6 episodes
2021 Inside No. 9 Pantalone Episode: “Wuthering Heist”
The Mosquito Coast Calaca 2 episodes
Vigil Commander Neil Newsome, Captain of HMS Vigil 6 episodes
2022 That Dirty Black Bag Thompson 8 episodes
Unearthed Narratives Himself TV mini series
2023 Boat Story Samuel TV mini series
TBA Twilight of the Gods Loki 1 episode


Denotes works that have not yet been released
Year Title Role Director Notes
1993 In the Name of the Father Benbay Jim Sheridan
2000 The Long Run Gasa Jean Stewart
The Beach Keaty Danny Boyle
Greenfingers Jimmy Joel Hershman
2004 The Baby Juice Express Sean Boetang Michael Hurst
2005 Æon Flux Giroux Karyn Kusama
2008 The Other Man Ralph Richard Eyre
2011 Stop the World Pat Richard Leaf Short film
2015 Between Lambs and Lions President Nebuchadnezzar Ted Wilkes
Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny Narrator Rhodri Huw
2019 Since Yesterday Old friend Alexander Bradley Short film
2022 Daddy's Girl Saul Jessica Magaye
Geronimo Doctor Geraint Morgan
2023 Bet Your Bottom Dollar Victor Brandon Ashplant
The Velveteen Rabbit King Jennifer Perrott and Rick Thiele
Wonka Arthur Slugworth Paul King


Year Play Role Venue Notes
1987–88 Raping the Gold Leon Bush Theatre
1988-89 The Tempest Adrian Donmar Warehouse
1989 Whale 1st Inuit Lover Lyttelton Theatre, National Theatre
Soloman & the Big Cat Soloman The Young Vic
1990 The Last Days of Don Juan Marquis de Mota Swan Theatre Press performance; second prize in the Ian Charleson Awards
Troilus and Cressida Patroclus Press performance
King Lear Oswald Royal Shakespeare Theatre Second prize in the Ian Charleson Awards
Love's Labour's Lost Dumaine
1990-91 The Last Days of Don Juan Marquis de Mota Barbican Theatre
Love's Labour's Lost Dumaine
King Lear Oswald
1991 King Lear Theatre Royal, Newcastle Press performance
The Last Days of Don Juan Marquis de Mota Newcastle Playhouse
Love's Labour's Lost Dumaine
Troilus and Cressida Patroclus Press performance
Love's Labour's Lost Dumaine Barbican Theatre
The Last Days of Don Juan Marquis de Mota Pit London
King Lear Oswald Barbican Theatre
Troilus and Cressida Troilus Pit London Taking over Troilus from Ralph Fiennes; press performance
The Pretenders Haakon Press performance
1991–92 The Pretenders Barbican Theatre
1992 The Recruiting Officer Mr Worthy Olivier Theatre
Blues for Mister Charlie Richard Henry Royal Exchange, Manchester
1995 Hamlet Horatio Hackney Empire and Belasco Theatre
1996–97 Henry IV Part I and Part II Henry Percy / Pistol Theatre Royal, Bath and The Old Vic UK tour
2000 A Doll's House Torvald Ambassadors Theatre, London
2001 Les Blancs Tshembe Matoseh Royal Exchange, Manchester Best Actor, Barclays TMA Awards 2001
2002 Othello Othello Royal Exchange, Manchester
2003 Elmina's Kitchen Deli Cottesloe Theatre
2005 The Emperor Jones Brutus Jones, Emperor Gate Theatre
2006 The Royal Hunt of the Sun Atahualpa Olivier Theatre
2007 The Emperor Jones Brutus Jones, Emperor
Saint Joan Cauchon
2012 Julius Caesar Brutus Royal Shakespeare Theatre Set in Africa; live recording performance by RSC
2015 Sancho: An Act of Remembrance Charles Ignatius Sancho Oxford, Birmingham and US tour A one-man show conceived, written and performed by himself
2019-20 A Christmas Carol Ebenezer Scrooge The Old Vic

Audio and radio

Year Play Role Station Notes
1998 Twelfth Night Feste Arkangel Complete Shakespeare
1999 Titus Andronicus Aaron
2005 Troilus and Cressida Troilus BBC Radio 3
2011 Earth Aid Victor Espinosa BBC radio Doctor Who spin-off produced by Big Finish Productions
2016 How the Marquis Got His Coat Back Marquis de Carabas BBC radio Reprising his role from the 1996 BBC TV six-part drama Neverwhere.
Strangeness in Space The Puppetmaster Podcast series 1 episode
2017 Murder on the Orient Express Colonel Arbuthnott Amazon
2020 In the Castle of My Skin Narrator BBC Radio 4
2020-21 The Sandman The Demon Choronzon Podcast series 21 episodes
2021 Getting Better - The Fight for the NHS King George VI 2 episodes
2022 Chelmsford 123: The Revival Functio 3 episodes
Severus Septimius Severus BBC Radio 4


Year Body Award Nominated work Result Ref
2023 EdiPlay International Film Festival, Paris Best Supporting Actor Bet Your Bottom Dollar Won [41]
2024 New York Movie Awards Gold Award - Actor Won [42]
Paris Film Awards Silver Award - Actor Won [43]


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  5. ^ "Paterson Joseph - Doctor Who Guide". guide.doctorwhonews.net. Doctor Who Guide. Retrieved 14 November 2022.
  6. ^ Joseph, Paterson. "Paterson Joseph: Film and TV actor". speakersforschools.org. Speakers for Schools. Retrieved 16 November 2022.
  7. ^ "Timely tributes for a new generation of actors", Sunday Times, 13 January 1991.
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  12. ^ Nightingale, Benedict (30 August 2007). "The Emperor Jones". The Times. London: Times Newspapers. Retrieved 25 January 2009.
  13. ^ Hemley, Matthew (15 July 2015). "Paterson Joseph one-man show to play UK ahead of US tour". The Stage.
  14. ^ Joseph, Paterson (14 September 2015). "Paterson Joseph on Sancho: The First Black Briton to Vote". The Guardian.
  15. ^ "Leon Levy BAM Digital Archive: Production: Sancho: An Act of Remembrance [2015f.01270]". levyarchive.bam.org.
  16. ^ "That Mitchell and Webb Look" (Press release). BBC. 29 August 2006. Retrieved 25 January 2009.
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  18. ^ "Noughts + Crosses (2020– ) Full Cast & Crew". IMDb.
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  20. ^ "Paterson Joseph - Contributor Biography". www.dialoguebooks.co.uk. 27 December 2022. Retrieved 27 December 2022.
  21. ^ Grobar, Matt (29 November 2022). "Paterson Joseph Boards Indie Drama 'Bet Your Bottom Dollar' From Director Brandon Ashplant". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 22 December 2022.
  22. ^ "2.06 Doctor Who: Earth Aid". Big Finish.
  23. ^ "In the Castle of My Skin by George Lamming". BBC Radio 4. Retrieved 1 January 2021.
  24. ^ "Memorial 2007 Annual Lecture – Seeing is Believing: Memorial as Story (with images)". Institute of Commonwealth Studies. 28 September 2023. Retrieved 13 November 2023.
  25. ^ "Lancaster University Public Lecture series welcomes actor and author Paterson Joseph". 23 October 2023. Retrieved 13 November 2023.
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  27. ^ Mallon, Thomas (11 April 2023). "The Picaresque Life of an 18th-Century Black English Polymath". The New York Times.
  28. ^ "Jhalak Prize 2023 shortlists announced". Books+Publishing. 20 April 2023. Retrieved 1 June 2023.
  29. ^ "Paterson Joseph Wins the 2023 RSL Christopher Bland Prize". The Royal Society of Literature. 8 June 2023. Retrieved 12 June 2023.
  30. ^ "Chancellor of Oxford Brookes, Paterson Joseph, wins prestigious 2023 RSL Christopher Bland Prize". Oxford Brookes University. 8 June 2023. Retrieved 13 November 2023.
  31. ^ "Actor Paterson Joseph announced as the next Chancellor of Oxford Brookes University". Oxford Brookes University. 11 October 2022. Retrieved 12 June 2023.
  32. ^ "Paterson Joseph to become Oxford Brookes University chancellor". BBC News. 12 October 2022. Retrieved 13 November 2023.
  33. ^ "Actor and author Paterson Joseph installed as Chancellor of Oxford Brookes University". Oxford Brookes University. 25 May 2023. Retrieved 13 November 2023.
  34. ^ "Actor Paterson Joseph installed as Chancellor of Oxford Brookes University". ITV News. 25 May 2023.
  35. ^ Deacon, Michael (21 April 2009). "Interview: Paterson Joseph on Boy Meets Girl". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 21 May 2010.
  36. ^ Laws, Roz (10 January 2010). "Survivors star Paterson Joseph on chips, coal mines and cycling". birminghammail. Retrieved 16 July 2017.
  37. ^ "Sky 1 - Sky.com". sky.com.
  38. ^ Greenstreet, Rosanna (29 February 2020). "Interview | Paterson Joseph: 'The worst thing anyone's said to me? You're thick'". The Guardian.
  39. ^ "Paterson Joseph Talks About Racism in Football | Dear Lovejoy Podcast". 4 July 2018. Archived from the original on 21 December 2021 – via YouTube.
  40. ^ "Programme Information: Hustle". BBC Media Centre. London. January 2012.
  41. ^ "EdiPlay International Film Awards". epliff.com. Retrieved 21 February 2024.
  42. ^ "New York Movie Awards". newyorkmovieawards.com. Retrieved 21 February 2024.
  43. ^ "Paris Film Awards". parisfilmawards.net. Retrieved 5 June 2024.