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David Thewlis Biography

Birth Name:
David Wheeler
Birth Place:
Blackpool, Lancashire, England
Actor, director, writer

Fast Facts

  • Stage name Thewlis is his mother's maiden name
  • At 16, joined a punk-rock band called Door 66
  • Enrolled in drama school when his fellow band members announced they wanted to study drama
  • After filming Seven Years in Tibet with Brad Pitt, he was banned for life from entering China
  • Originally considered for the role of Quirrell in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, before he was cast as Lupin in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
  • Penned the novel The Late Hector Kipling (2007)
  • Had to stop doing research for his role as a Nazi in The Boy in the Striped Pajamas (2008) because the subject matter was giving him bad dreams
  • Fans sometimes mistake him for Welsh actor Rhys Ifans


  • 2017Emmy-Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Limited Series Or A Movie: nominated
  • 2014Screen Actors Guild Awards-Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture: nominated
  • 1996BAFTA Film Awards-Best Short Film: nominated
  • 1993Cannes Film Festival-Best Actor: winner
  • 1993National Society of Film Critics-Best Actor: winner
  • 1993New York Film Critics Circle-Best Actor: winner