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Sean Bean

Sean Bean

English actor
Sean Bean
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro English actor
A.K.A. Shaun Mark Bean
Is Actor Television actor Film actor Voice actor
From United Kingdom
Type Film, TV, Stage & Radio
Gender male
Birth 17 April 1959, Handsworth
Age 62 years
Star sign Aries
Residence Sheffield
Spouse: Melanie HillAbigail Cruttenden
Height: 1.7907 m
The details (from wikipedia)


Shaun Mark Bean (born 17 April 1959), known professionally as Sean Bean, is an English actor. After graduating from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, he made his professional debut in a theatre production of Romeo and Juliet in 1983. Retaining his distinctive Yorkshire accent, he first found mainstream success for his portrayal of Richard Sharpe in the ITV series Sharpe. Bean has since garnered further recognition for his performance as Ned Stark in the HBO epic fantasy series Game of Thrones, as well as roles in the BBC anthology series Accused and the ITV historical drama series Henry VIII. His most prominent film role was Boromir in The Lord of the Rings trilogy (2001–03).
Other roles include Alec Trevelyan in the James Bond film GoldenEye (1995) and Odysseus in Troy (2004), as well as roles in Patriot Games (1992), Ronin (1998), National Treasure (2004), North Country (2005), The Island (2005), Silent Hill (2006), Black Death (2010), Jupiter Ascending (2015) and The Martian (2015). As a voice actor, Bean has been featured in the video games The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, Sid Meier's Civilization VI, and the drama The Canterbury Tales, among several others. He has received several awards during his career and won an International Emmy for Best Actor. He has also been nominated for a BAFTA and Saturn Award.

Early life

Bean was born in Handsworth, a suburb of Sheffield, which was then part of West Riding of Yorkshire (the County of South Yorkshire was created in 1974). He is the son of Rita (née Tuckwood) and Brian Bean. He has a younger sister named Lorraine. His father owned a fabrication shop that employed 50 people, including Bean's mother, who worked as a secretary. Despite becoming relatively wealthy, the family never moved away from the council estate as they preferred to remain close to friends and family. As a child, Bean smashed a glass door during an argument, which left a piece of glass embedded in his leg that briefly impeded his walking and left a large scar. This prevented him from pursuing his dream of playing football professionally.

In 1975, Bean left Brook Comprehensive School with O Levels in Art and English. After a job at a supermarket and another for the local council, he started working for his father's firm with a day release at Rotherham College of Arts and Technology to take a welding course. While there, he stumbled into an art class and decided to pursue his interest in art. After attending courses at two other colleges, one for half a day and the other for less than a week, he returned to Rotherham College, where he subsequently enrolled in a drama course. After some college plays and one at Rotherham Civic Theatre, he won a scholarship to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA), starting a seven-term course in January 1981.


At the premiere of North Country at the 2005 Toronto International Film Festival

Bean graduated from RADA in 1983, making his professional acting debut later that year as Tybalt in Romeo and Juliet at the Watermill Theatre in Newbury. His early career involved a mixture of stage and screen work. As an actor, he adopted the Irish spelling of his first name. His first national exposure came in an advert for non-alcoholic lager. Between 1986 and 1988, he was a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company, appearing in productions of Romeo and Juliet, The Fair Maid of the West, and A Midsummer Night's Dream. He appeared in his first film, Derek Jarman's Caravaggio (1986), opposite Tilda Swinton, playing Ranuccio Tomassoni, followed in the same director's War Requiem (1988). In 1989, he starred as the evil Dominic O'Brien in The Fifteen Streets, where he gained a dedicated following.

During the late 1980s and early 1990s, Bean became an established actor on British television. He appeared in the BBC productions Clarissa and Lady Chatterley, and his role in the latter became noted for his sex scenes with Joely Richardson. In 1990, Bean starred in Jim Sheridan's adaption of the John B. Keane play The Field. Also in 1990, his role as the journalist Anton in Windprints examined the difficult problems of apartheid in South Africa. In 1996, he combined his love of football with his career to finally achieve his childhood dream of playing for Sheffield United, as Jimmy Muir in the film When Saturday Comes. Although the film was not critically acclaimed, Bean received credit for a good performance. In August 1997, Bean appeared in what became a famous Sky Sports commercial for the upcoming 1997-98 Premier League season. His football related work continued in 1998 when he narrated La Coupe de la Gloire, the official film of the 1998 FIFA World Cup held in France.

Bean's critical successes in Caravaggio and Lady Chatterley contributed to his emerging image as a sex symbol, but he became most closely associated with the character of Richard Sharpe, the maverick Napoleonic Wars rifleman in the ITV television series Sharpe. The series was based on Bernard Cornwell's novels about the Peninsular War, and the fictional experiences of a band of soldiers in the famed 95th Rifles. Starting with Sharpe's Rifles, the series followed the fortunes and misfortunes of Richard Sharpe as he rose from the ranks as a Sergeant, promoted to Lieutenant in Portugal, to Lieutenant Colonel by the time of the Battle of Waterloo.

Bean was not the first actor to be chosen to play Sharpe. As Paul McGann was injured while playing football two days into filming, the producers initially tried to work around his injury, but it proved impossible and Bean replaced him. The series ran continuously from 1993 to 1997, with three episodes produced each year. It was filmed under challenging conditions, first in Ukraine and later in Portugal. After several years of rumours, more episodes were produced: Sharpe's Challenge, which aired in April 2006, and Sharpe's Peril, which aired in autumn 2008 and was later released on DVD. Both of these were released as two cinema-length 90 minute episodes per series. With a role as enigmatic Lord Richard Fenton in the TV miniseries Scarlett, Bean made the transition to Hollywood feature films. His first notable Hollywood appearance was that of an Irish republican terrorist in the 1992 film adaptation of Patriot Games. While filming his death scene, Harrison Ford hit him with a boat hook, giving him a permanent scar. Bean's rough-cut looks made him a patent choice for a villain, and his role in Patriot Games was the first of several villains that he would portray, all of whom die in gruesome ways.

In the 1995 film GoldenEye, Bean portrayed James Bond's nemesis Alec Trevelyan (MI6's 006). He played the weak-stomached Spence in Ronin (1998), a wife-beating ex-con in Essex Boys (2000), and a malevolent kidnapper/jewel thief in Don't Say a Word (2001). He was also widely recognised as villainous treasure hunter Ian Howe in National Treasure, and played a villainous scientist in The Island (2005). In the independent film Far North, he plays a Russian mercenary who gets lost in the tundra and is rescued by an Inuit woman and her daughter, whom he later pits against one another.

Bean's most prominent role was as Boromir in Peter Jackson's The Lord of the Rings trilogy. His major screen time occurs in the first installment, The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring. He appears briefly in flashbacks in The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers and The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, as well as in a scene from the extended edition of The Two Towers. Before casting finished, rumours circulated that Jackson had considered Bean for the role of Aragorn, but neither Bean nor Jackson confirmed this in subsequent interviews. Bean's fear of flying in helicopters caused him difficulties in mountainous New Zealand, where the trilogy was filmed. After a particularly rough ride, he vowed not to fly to a location again; in one instance, he chose to take a ski lift into the mountains while wearing his full costume (complete with shield, armour, and sword) and then hike the final few miles.

Other roles gave more scope for his acting abilities. In 1999's Extremely Dangerous, his character walked a fine line between villain and hero. He became a repentant, poetry-reading Grammaton cleric who succumbs to his emotions in 2002's Equilibrium, a quirky alien cowboy in 2003's The Big Empty, and a sympathetic and cunning Odysseus in the 2004 film Troy. He appeared with other Hollywood stars in Moby's music video "We Are All Made of Stars" in February 2002. In the same year, he returned to the stage in London performing in Macbeth. Due to popular demand, the production ran until March 2003.

Bean has done voice-over work, mostly in the British advertising industry. He has featured in television adverts for O2, Morrisons and Barnardos as well as for Acuvue and the Sci-Fi Channel in the United States. He also does the voice over for the National Blood Service's television and radio campaign. For the role playing video game, The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, he voiced Martin Septim. Bean's distinctive voice has also been used in the intro and outro segments of the BBC Formula 1 racing coverage for the 2011 and 2012 seasons.

Bean completed a one-hour pilot, Faceless, for US television. He has also appeared in Outlaw, an independent British production, and a remake of 1986 horror film, The Hitcher (released in January 2007); here he used an American accent again. In 2009, he appeared in the Red Riding trilogy as the malevolent John Dawson. He also appeared in Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief (2010), playing the role of Zeus, the king of Mount Olympus and god of the sky, thunder, and lightning. Also that year, Bean starred in Cash, playing the lead role of Pyke Kubic, a dangerous man determined to recover his wealth in a bad economy. Cash explored the role money plays in today's hard economic times. Bean also played the villain's twin brother, Reese.

Bean starred in the first season of Game of Thrones, HBO's adaptation of the A Song of Ice and Fire novels by George R. R. Martin, playing the part of Lord Eddard Stark. Bean and Peter Dinklage were the two actors whose inclusion show runners David Benioff and D. B. Weiss considered necessary for the show to become a success, and for whose roles no other actors were considered. His nuanced portrayal of what could have been a stereotypical "noble leader" character won him critical praise; as The A.V. Club's reviewer put it, he "portrayed Ned as a man who knew he lived in the muck but hoped for better and assumed everyone else would come along for the ride." HBO's promotional efforts focused on Bean as the show's leading man and best-known actor. The photograph of him as Ned sitting on the Iron Throne holding his greatsword was used for promotional posters and on the cover of the first season's DVD box set as well as the cover of a tie-in reedition of the novel A Game of Thrones.

In August 2012, Bean appeared as cross-dressing teacher Simon in the opening episode of the second season of UK television series Accused, a role which would earn him a Royal Television Society best actor award. He starred in Soldiers of Fortune and the 2012 film Cleanskin, in which he plays a secret service agent faced with the task of pursuing and eliminating a suicide bomber and his terrorist cell.

He appeared in Tarsem Singh's Snow White film, Mirror Mirror, which was released in the U.S. in March 2012. Bean reprised his role as Christopher Da Silva in the Silent Hill film sequel Silent Hill: Revelation. He co-starred in the ABC drama series Missing, which premiered in early 2012.

Bean starred in the espionage television series Legends as Martin Odum, an FBI agent who takes on various fabricated identities to go undercover. The show was cancelled after its second season. An intensive viral marketing campaign was centred on the hashtag #DontKillSeanBean, focusing on the various deaths of his past characters and promising his character in Legends would not suffer the same fate. The campaign culminated with a Funny or Die exclusive video featuring Bean filming a scene for the show where he's become so accustomed to dying on screen that he expects his character to die a bizarrely gruesome death despite the simplicity of the scene.


Often described as "down to earth", Bean has retained his Yorkshire accent despite now living in London. Partly because of his role as Sharpe, he is also described as a sex symbol. He was voted the UK's second sexiest man in 2004, placing just behind his Lord of the Rings co-star Orlando Bloom. He admits he does not mind being considered as a "bit of rough" by women. In addition to his image as a sex symbol and an admitted "bit of rough", he has developed a reputation as a loner, a label he considers unfair. He has described himself instead as quiet, and interviewers confirm that he is a "man of few words", with one interviewer calling him "surprisingly shy". Although he admits he can be a workaholic, he relaxes with a book or listens to music in his spare time, and is a talented pianist. He is also a keen gardener, welder, and sketcher.

Acting style

Despite being professionally trained, Bean adopts an instinctive style of acting that some say makes him especially well-suited to portraying his characters' depths. He has said that the most difficult part is at the start of filming when trying to understand the character. After achieving this, he can snap in and out of character instantly. This ability to go from the quiet man on set to the warrior Boromir "amazed" Sean Astin during filming of The Fellowship of the Ring. Other fans include directors Mike Figgis and Wolfgang Petersen, who described working with Bean as a "beautiful thing".

Personal life

Bean has been married and divorced four times. He married his secondary school sweetheart Debra James on 11 April 1981. The marriage ended in divorce in 1988. Bean met actress Melanie Hill at RADA, and they married on 27 February 1990. The couple's first daughter was born in October 1987; their second was born in September 1991. Bean and Hill's marriage ended in divorce in August 1997. During the filming of Sharpe, Bean met actress Abigail Cruttenden, and they married on 22 November 1997. Their daughter was born in November 1998. Bean and Cruttenden divorced in July 2000.

Bean began dating actress Georgina Sutcliffe in 2006. After cancelling their planned January 2008 wedding on the eve of the ceremony for "personal reasons", he married Sutcliffe at the Marylebone Register Office in London on 19 February 2008. During allegations that Bean physically abused Sutcliffe in 2009, domestic disturbances resulted in the police being called to their home in Belsize Park on three occasions. Bean and Sutcliffe's separation was announced on 6 August 2010, and the divorce was finalised on 21 December 2010.

Bean has been a fan of Sheffield United since he was eight years old, and has a tattoo on his left shoulder that reads "100% Blade". He opened their hall of fame in 2001 and, after making a six-figure contribution to the club's finances, was on their board of directors between 2002 and 2007 to help raise the profile of the club. He stepped down in 2007 to "go back to being an ordinary supporter" where he feels at home. During his time there, he had some issues with Neil Warnock, former manager of Sheffield United, after Warnock claimed that Bean stormed into his office and shouted at him in front of his wife and daughter when the club had just been relegated from the Premier League. Bean denies it, calling Warnock "bitter" and "hypocritical". He wrote the foreword and helped to promote a book of anecdotes called Sheffield United: The Biography. He also follows Yorkshire County Cricket Club.

Bean has a tattoo of the number nine on his shoulder, written using Tengwar, in reference to his involvement in the Lord of the Rings films and the fact that his character was one of the original nine companions of the Fellowship of the Ring. The other actors of "The Fellowship" (Elijah Wood, Sean Astin, Orlando Bloom, Billy Boyd, Ian McKellen, Dominic Monaghan, and Viggo Mortensen) have the same tattoo. John Rhys-Davies, whose character was also one of the original nine companions, arranged for his stunt double to get the tattoo instead.

Bean has received multiple articles of fan mail intended for Rowan Atkinson, who played Mr. Bean.

Bean is a supporter of Jeremy Corbyn and of the 'old labour' party (pre Tony Blair).



Year Title Role Notes
1984 Winter Flight Hooker
1986 Caravaggio Ranuccio
1988 Stormy Monday Brendan
1989 How to Get Ahead in Advertising Larry Frisk
1989 The Fifteen Streets Dominic O'Brien
1989 War Requiem German Soldier
1990 Windprints Anton
1990 Field, TheThe Field Tadgh McCabe
1992 Patriot Games Sean Miller
1994 Shopping Venning
1994 Black Beauty Farmer Grey
1995 GoldenEye Alec Trevelyan / Janus
1996 When Saturday Comes Jimmy Muir
1997 Anna Karenina Vronsky
1998 Ronin Spence
1998 Airborn Dave Toombs
1999 Bravo Two Zero Andy McNab
2000 Essex Boys Jason Locke
2001 Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, TheThe Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring Boromir Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast
Nominated—Empire Award for Best British Actor
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
2001 Don't Say a Word Patrick Koster
2002 Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, TheThe Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers Boromir Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast
Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast
Nominated—DVDX Award for Best Audio Commentary (New for DVD) (shared with others)
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture Extended Edition only
2002 Equilibrium Errol Partridge
2002 Tom and Thomas Paul Shepherd
2003 Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, TheThe Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King Boromir Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Cast
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
2003 Big Empty, TheThe Big Empty Cowboy
2004 National Treasure Ian Howe
2004 Troy Odysseus
2005 North Country Kyle
2005 Flightplan Captain Marcus Rich
2005 Island, TheThe Island Dr. Merrick
2006 Dark, TheThe Dark James
2006 Silent Hill Chris Da Silva
2007 Hitcher, TheThe Hitcher John Ryder
2007 Outlaw Danny Bryant
2007 Far North Loki
2010 Black Death Ulric Screamfest Horror Film Festival Trophy for Best Actor
Nominated—Chainsaw Award for Best Actor
2010 Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief Zeus
2010 Cash Pyke Kubic
Reese Kubic
2011 Death Race 2 Markus Kane
2011 Age of Heroes Jones
2012 Cleanskin Ewan
2012 Soldiers of Fortune Dimidov
2012 Mirror Mirror The King, Snow White's father
2012 Silent Hill: Revelation Christopher Da Silva / Harry Mason
2014 Wicked Blood Frank Stinson
2015 The Snow Queen 2: The Snow King Arrog Voice
2015 Any Day Vian
2015 Jupiter Ascending Stinger Apini
2015 Pixels Corporal Hill
2015 The Martian Mitch Henderson
2016 The Young Messiah Severus
2016 Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV King Regis Voice


Year Title Role Notes
1984 The Bill Horace Clark Episode: "Long Odds"
1985 Exploits at West Poley Scarred Man Television film
1986 The Practice Terry Donlan 2 episodes
1988 The Storyteller The Prince Episode: "The True Bride"
1988 Troubles Capt. Bolton Television film
1989 The Jim Henson Hour Prince Episode: "Musicians"
1990 Screen Two Vic Episode: "Small Vones"
1990 Lorna Doone Carver Doone Television film
1990 Wedded Man Television film
1991 4 Play Smith Episode: "In the Border Country"
1991 Screen One Gabriel Lewis / Jack Morgan 2 episodes
1991 Clarissa Lovelace 4 episodes
1992 Inspector Morse Alex Bailey Episode: "Absolute Conviction"
1992 Fool's Gold: The Story of the Brink's-Mat Robbery Micky McAvoy Television film
1992 My Kingdom for a Horse Steve Television film
1993 Sharpe's Rifles Sergeant/Lieutenant Richard Sharpe Television film
1993 Sharpe's Eagle Captain Richard Sharpe Television film
1993 Lady Chatterley Mellors 4 episodes
1993 A Woman's Guide to Adultery Paul 3 episodes
1994 Jacob Esau Television film
1994 Sharpe's Company Captain Richard Sharpe Television film
1994 Sharpe's Enemy Major Richard Sharpe Television film
1994 Sharpe's Honour Major Richard Sharpe Television film
1994 Scarlett Lord Richard Fenton 3 episodes
1995 Sharpe's Gold Major Richard Sharpe Television film
1995 Sharpe's Battle Major Richard Sharpe Television film
1995 Sharpe's Sword Major Richard Sharpe Television film
1996 Decisive Weapons Narrator Documentary
1996 Sharpe's Regiment Major Richard Sharpe Television film
1996 Sharpe's Siege Major Richard Sharpe Television film
1996 Sharpe's Mission Major Richard Sharpe Television film
1997 Sharpe's Revenge Major Richard Sharpe Television film
1997 Sharpe's Justice Major Richard Sharpe Television film
1997 Sharpe's Waterloo Lieutenant Colonel Richard Sharpe Television film
1998 The Canterbury Tales The Nun's Priest Voice
Episode: "Leaving London"
1999 Bravo Two Zero Andy McNab Television film
1999 Extremely Dangerous Niel Bryne 4 episodes
1999 The Vicar of Dibley Himself Episode: "Spring"
2003 Henry VIII Robert Aske Television film
2004 Pride Dark Voice
Television film
2006 Faceless Eddie Prey Unaired pilot
2006 Sharpe's Challenge Lt Col Richard Sharpe Television film
2007 Once Upon a Time in Iran Narrator Documentary
2008 Crusoe James Crusoe 4 episodes
2008 Sharpe's Peril Lt Col Richard Sharpe Television film
2009 Red Riding John Dawson 2 episodes
2010 Lost Future, TheThe Lost Future Amal Television film
2011 Game of Thrones Eddard "Ned" Stark 9 episodes
Portal Award for Best Actor (Television)
IGN Award for Best TV Hero
IGN People's Choice Award for Best TV Hero
Nominated—EWwy Awards for Best Actor
Nominated—Saturn Award for Best Actor on Television
Nominated—Scream Award for Best Fantasy Actor
Nominated—Scream Award for Best Ensemble
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series
2012 Missing Paul Winstone 8 episodes
2012 Accused Simon / Tracie Episode: "Tracie's Story"
International Emmy Award for Best Actor
Royal Television Society Best Actor Award
Nominated—BAFTA TV Award for Best Actor
2013 Family Guy Portrait Griffen Voice
Episode: "No Country Club for Old Men"
2014 Robot Chicken Dr. Doom, North, Heathcliff Voice
Episode: "Catdog on a Stick"
2014–2015 Legends Martin Odum 20 episodes; also producer
Nominated—People's Choice Award for Favorite Cable TV Actor
2015–present The Frankenstein Chronicles John Marlott 6 episodes; also co-producer
2016 The Untamed The Stranger Voice
26 episodes
2016 Wasted Himself Multiple episodes
2016 Roman Empire: Reign of Blood Narrator Documentary

Video games

Year Title Role
1997 GoldenEye 007 Alec Trevelyan (likeness)
2002 The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers Boromir
2006 The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion Martin Septim
2012 Lego The Lord of the Rings Boromir
2013 Papa Sangre II Narrator/Guide
2014 Train Simulator 2014 Narrator for the trailer
2015 Kholat Narrator
2015 Life Is Feudal Narrator
2016 Sid Meier's Civilization VI Narrator

Music videos

Year Artist Title Role
2002 Moby "We Are All Made of Stars" Himself

Awards and honours

In 2013, Bean was named best actor at the Royal Television Society awards and won an International Emmy Award for his role in Accused. He received three separate awards in 2004 as part of the ensemble cast in The Return of the King from the Screen Actors Guild, the National Board of Review, and the Broadcast Film Critics Association.

In his home city of Sheffield, he has received several honours and acclaims, including an honorary doctorate from Sheffield Hallam University in 1997 and a Doctor of Letters in English Literature from the University of Sheffield in July 2007. He was selected as one of the inaugural members of Sheffield Legends (the Sheffield equivalent of the Hollywood Walk of Fame) and a plaque in his honour has been placed in front of Sheffield Town Hall. Bean commented: "I did get a doctorate from Sheffield Hallam University about 11 or 12 years ago so now I'm a double doctor. But this was wonderful, especially from my home city."

The contents of this page are sourced from Wikipedia article. The contents are available under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license.
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