Paul Bettany

BATD ON May 05, 2009 AT 3:57 pm

Paul Bettany

Paul Bettany

British stud Paul Bettany is an actor that we never get sick of watching.  He made us laugh with A Knight’s Tale, cringe in fear with The Da Vinci Code, and made us fall in love with him in Wimbledon.  Our intuition is telling us that this accomplished actor has much more up his sleeve…       

Raised in Hertfordshire, Bettany packed up his things at age 19 to live on his own in London.  Earning little money as a guitar player, he soon decided to pursue a career in acting.  Taking up classes at the London Drama Centre in Chalk Farm, he studied the craft with rigor, ultimately paying off when he was cast in the West End production of “An Inspector Calls”.  This led to many more theatre roles for Bettany, including the Royal Shakespeare Company’s productions of “Romeo and Juliet”, “Richard III”, and “Julius Caesar”.  It was also during this time that he appeared as Bill Sikes in the BBC’s production of Oliver Twist. 

Paul With Wife Jennifer Connelly

Paul With Wife Jennifer Connelly

After appearing in a number of stage and TV productions including Coming Home (where he met and dated Emily Mortimer) and the Royal Court Theatre’s “Stranger’s House”, it became apparent that Bettany was suffering from a serious drug problem.  His addiction to cocaine reached its worst during his work on the David Copperfield mini series.  After completing the film and making a solid attempt to kick his drug habit, Bettany went on to star in the movie Gangster No. 1 in a performance that earned him widespread recognition as British Newcomer of the Year.  He was soon tapped to play the role of Geoffrey Chaucer in 2001’s A Knight’s Tale, a role that catapulted him onto the international scene.  Who can forget his comedic, yet steamy (naked and muddy) entrance in the film?  Impressed by Bettany’s performance, director Ron Howard cast the up and coming actor in his 2001 film, A Beautiful Mind.  During production, both Bettany and co-star Jennifer Connolly were in relationships, but the two quickly started dating when they found themselves single a year later.  The couple went on to wed two years later in a New Year’s Day ceremony and welcomed their son, Stellan, in 2003.  The pair are often seen strolling in their NYC neighbourhood, son and dog in tow.  If that’s not a Kodak moment I don’t know what is!
     
The British actor teamed up with another Beautiful Mind co-star, appearing in the Oscar nominated film Master and Commander alongside Russell Crowe in 2003.  After earning a BAFTA nomination for this role, Bettany went on to star in Dogville (2003), Wimbledon (2004), Firewall (2006) and The Da Vinci Code (2006).  In recent years he has conquered supporting roles in box office hits like The Secret Life of Bees (2008) and The Young Victoria (2009).  Up next, Bettany takes on the powerful role of Charles Darwin in the biopic, Creation.  The BBC-produced film co-stars wife Jennifer Connolly and fellow Brit actor Jeremy Northam and is set to hit theatres later this year.

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