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Samuel Barnett (actor)

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Occupation  Actor
Years active  2001–present

Name  Samuel Barnett
Role  Actor
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Born  25 April 1980 (age 35) (1980-04-25) Whitby, North Yorkshire, England
Education  London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art
Nominations  Tony Award for Best Lead Actor in a Play
Awards  Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play
Movies and TV shows  The History Boys, Desperate Romantics, The Lady in the Van, Bright Star, Beautiful People
Similar People  Jamie Parker, Sacha Dhawan, Stephen Campbell Moore, Frances de la Tour, Mark Rylance

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Samuel Barnett (born 25 April 1980) is an English actor. He has performed on stage, film, television and radio, and achieved recognition for his work on the stage and film versions of The History Boys by Alan Bennett. His television performances include roles in the BBC comedy Twenty Twelve and in the Showtime drama Penny Dreadful. On 29 March 2016 it was announced that he had been cast as Dirk Gently in the BBC America adaptation of the Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency book series by Douglas Adams.


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Early life

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Barnett was born in Whitby in North Yorkshire, England. He started performing at an early age before moving to London to study acting at LAMDA. Barnett is one of five children.


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Barnett appeared in the original London stage production of Alan Bennett's play The History Boys, as well as in the New York, Sydney, Wellington and Hong Kong productions and radio and film versions of the play. He had been involved in The History Boys from its very first reading.

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In 2009 he played John Everett Millais in the BBC series Desperate Romantics, and Joseph Severn in the film Bright Star.

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He appeared at the National Theatre in Women Beware Women by Thomas Middleton which ran from 20 April – 4 July 2010. From July 2012, he appeared in an all-male-cast as Queen Elizabeth in Shakespeare's Richard III at the Globe Theatre in London alongside Mark Rylance in the title role, also playing the role of Sebastian in Twelfth Night. The production transferred to the Apollo Theatre in the West End, opening 2 November 2012 and running for a limited engagement. Both Twelfth Night and Richard III transferred to Broadway in 2013 and played at the Belasco Theatre until February 2014. In the Broadway productions, Barnett reprised his role as Elizabeth Woodville in Richard III and took on the role of Viola (previously played by Johnny Flynn in London) in Twelfth Night.

Recognition and awards

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Barnett was nominated for Evening Standard Award as Most Promising Newcomer for his role in The Marriage of Figaro in 2002. He won Best Newcomer & Best Supporting Actor in a play at the Theatregoers Choice Awards for his work on the original production of The History Boys. He was nominated for the 29th annual Olivier Award for Best Performance in a Supporting Role. He won a 2006 Drama Desk Award and was nominated for a 2006 Tony Award for his work on the Broadway production.

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Barnett was nominated for the 2006 British Independent Film Award for Most Promising Newcomer (On Screen) for his work on the film version of The History Boys.

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In 2014, Barnett received a nomination for a Tony Award for Best Actor in a Play for his work in Twelfth Night.

Personal life

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Barnett is in a relationship with Adam Penford.


Samuel Barnett (actor) Wikipedia

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