After his mother left the family when Carlyle was 4 years old, he and his father frequently moved, living in various communes.
Dropped out of school at the age of 16, but was inspired to study acting after reading Arthur Miller's The Crucible when he was 21.
Made professional stage debut as Oberon in a production of Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream.
Landed his first lead film role with Ken Loach's 1990 dramedy Riff-Raff; worked with the director again on 1996's Carla's Song.
In 1991, cofounded, with actors Caroline Patterson and Stuart Davies, the award-winning Raindog theater company, named for one of Carlyle's favorite albums: Tom Waits' Rain Dogs; has directed the group's productions of Macbeth and One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, among others.
Won Best Actor at the BAFTAs and British Actor of the Year at the London Film Critics Awards and was nominated for a Golden Satellite Award, all for his role in 1997's The Full Monty.
Voiced the characters Gabriel Belmont and Count Dracula on the 2010 video game Castlevania: Lords of Shadow.
1998, BAFTA Film Awards — Best Actor in a Leading Role: Winner
1997, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture: Winner
2006, Emmy — Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie: Nominee
Ava Carlyle — Daughter
Harvey Carlyle — Son
Liz McDonald — Mother
Pearce Joseph Carlyle — Son
Caroline Patterson — Ex-significant Other
Anastasia Shirley — Wife
Joseph Carlyle — Father
Attended Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, Glasgow, Scotland