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England, United Kingdom

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Rufus Sewell


Rufus Frederik Sewell (/ˈsuːəl/; born 29 October 1967) is a British film and stage actor. In film, he has appeared in Carrington (1995), Hamlet (1996), Dangerous Beauty (1998), Dark City (1998), A Knight's Tale (2001), The Legend of Zorro (2005), The Illusionist (2006), Amazing Grace (2006), The Holiday (2006), Paris, je t'aime (2006), The Tourist (2010), Judy (2019), The Father (2020), and Old (2021).


On television, he has appeared in Middlemarch (1994), Arabian Nights (2000), Charles II: The Power and the Passion (2003), John Adams (2008), Eleventh Hour (2008–2009), Zen (2011), The Pillars of the Earth (2010), Parade's End (2012), Victoria (2016–2017), The Man in the High Castle (2014–2019), and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (2019).


 In 2020, he also had a starring role in the Agatha Christie TV adaptation The Pale Horse. In 2023 he stars in the Netflix series The Diplomat.


On stage, he originated the role of Septimus Hodge in Tom Stoppard's Arcadia and the role of Jan in Stoppard's Rock 'n' Roll, with the latter earning him an Olivier Award win and a Tony Award nomination.


Sewell was born the son of Jo, a Welsh artist and classically trained pianist. His father was William John Frederick Sewell (1924–1978), an Anglo-Australian animator who was born in Australia to British parents and worked on the “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" segment of animation for The Beatles' Yellow Submarine film.


 His parents divorced when Sewell was five and his father died when he was 10. Sewell's mother subsequently lived at The Pelican, Laugharne, Carmarthenshire, formerly home to the parents of Welsh poet and writer Dylan Thomas. Sewell has said that he was a difficult teenager.


Sewell was educated at Trafalgar Junior School, a state junior school in Twickenham which he left in 1978. Whilst at Trafalgar Junior School he was a member of the drama club and he played the lead in Rumpelstiltskin, which he acted on his knees throughout.


Sewell went on to Orleans Park School, a state comprehensive school in Twickenham, which he left in 1984, followed by West Thames College, where a drama teacher sent him to audition for drama school. He later enrolled at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama in London.

Known for

The Father as Paul