Fast Facts

  • Learned to tap dance at age 4 in order to correct pigeon toes.
  • Played cello with a youth orchestra.
  • Ran away to join a Budapest circus at age 17 in order to obtain his Equity Card. He stayed for six months, working with the jugglers and trapeze artists.
  • Studied musical theater as a young man; appeared in the stage productions Cats, 42nd Street and Annie Get Your Gun before attending drama school.
  • Acted with the Royal Shakespeare Company for a year and a half after drama school, appearing in such plays as Macbeth and The Duchess of Malfi. 
  • Worked an array of jobs before his acting career took off, including as an estate agent and a theatre usher.
  • Underwent actual waterboarding (a form of torture) for a scene in the British spy series Spooks (known as MI-5 in the U.S.).
  • Was named the Romantic Novelists' Association's 2009 Sexiest Thing on Two Legs, beating out such stars as Johnny Depp and Daniel Craig.


  • 2015, Olivier Awards — Best Actor: Nominee
  • 2015, Critics' Choice Awards — Best Guest Actor/Actress in a Drama Series: Nominee


  • Margaret Armitage — Mother
  • John Armitage — Father
  • Christopher Armitage — Brother


  • London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, London, England (1998)


  • Birth Name: Richard Crispin Armitage
  • Birth Place: Leicester, England
  • Profession: Actor

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