Spotlight: 5 Things To Know About Damian Lewis
You may know ginger star of stage and screen Damian Lewis from Homeland, or remember him as the tormented Soames Forsyte in MASTERPIECE's The Forsyte Saga (2003). Now, find out these 5 little-known facts about the actor behind Wolf Hall's King Henry VIII in this "right royal" spotlight on Damian Lewis!
1. A motorcycle accident helped him connect with King Henry VIII.
Lewis found insight into his character King Henry, who sustained a severe concussion during a jousting match, in his own experience. In 1998, after his motorcycle was hit by a taxi on his return home from a performance of Much Ado About Nothing, Lewis found himself experiencing bouts of depression, outbursts, and inertia as a result of his concussion. He speculated to The Telegraph whether there's credence to the theory that Henry's character was changed as a result of his concussion.
2. Princes William and Harry Helped Him with Henry, Too.
In Henry's yearning for normality, Lewis told The Telegraph, he's taken inspiration from the current princes, observing how they conduct themselves in their royal duties as they simultaneously aspire to normalize their lives.
Incidentally, he was awarded the OBE (Order of the British Empire) in 2014 by fan Prince William.
3. Damian's One Degree to Downton
He appeared as Lord Capulet in Downton Abbey writer/creator Julian Fellowes' 2013 Romeo & Juliet (alongside Douglas Booth, Pip in MASTERPIECE's Great Expectations).
4. Oral History
His distinctive mouth has generated good-hearted ribbing everywhere from a Saturday Night Live skit to Lewis' own home, where his son reportedly teases him to open his mouth wider!
5. From Hamlet to Homeland
His Homeland character's name-check in the Jay Z track "F.U.T.W" delights the Eton-educated actor, who gets a thrill out of a career that crosses popular culture from Shakespeare to rap or, as he told The Huffington Post, "from the RSC to the Jay Z."