Jack O’Connell

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Jack O’Connell was born on August 1, 1990 in Alvaston, Derby, England in the United Kingdom to his parents Allison J. Gutteridge and John Patrick O’Connell. Her mother is English who worked for the airline British Midland; and his father is Irish, who worked on the British railways for Bombardier until he passed away from pancreatic cancer in 2009. Jack’s younger sister, Megan, is also an actress. He took an interest in acting during drama classes at the Television Workshop in Nottingham when he was 13. When Jack was 16, he left Saint Benedict’s Catholic School with two General Certificates of Secondary Eduction (GSCEs) in drama and English. When Jack started auditioning in London, he would end up sleeping on the street because he wasn’t able to afford a hotel room. He moved to Hounslow in London after getting a job as a farmhand in Cobham, Surrey to support himself between acting jobs.

Jack began his career in 2005 appearing in an episode of the the television show “Doctors”, where he played Connor Yates in its seventh season. The same year, he played Ross Trescot in four episodes of “The Bill”. His stage debut came that same year after a rendition of the play The Spider Men by the Television Workshop was selected to be performed at the Royal National Theatre in London. In 2006, he made his film debut in This Is England, a film about a young boy becoming friend with a gang of skinheads, playing Pukey Nicholls. He also played the role of Chris in the short film Black Dog that same year. Jack appeared on “Waterloo Road” as Dale, “Holby City” as Davey Hunt, and Jack Norton on “Wire in the Blood” in 2007, repectively. He played a 15-year-old pupil involved in a sexual relationship with his teacher in the play Scarborough, first performed at the Edinburgh Festival before its transfer the following year to London’s Royal Court Theatre. David Benedict of Variety commented that Jack’s “sincere grasp of Daz’s innocent tenderness is, paradoxically, a sign of the character’s — and the actor’s — unexpected maturity.” His next film Eden Lake was released in 2008, starring Kelly Reilly and Michael Fassbender, where Jack portrayed the role of Brett.

In 2009, he played the role of Shepherd Lad in parts one and two of the “Wuthering Heights” television mini-series. Next, he played Bobby Brewer in the short film Wayfaring Stranger before the crime drama film Harry Brown, where he played Marky. He impressed Michael Caine, who shouted “star of the future!” at him during filming. Jack joined the television series “Skins” in 2009, playing James Cook, where he would return throughout the series until his last appearance in its seventh season. He played the Thug in The Hardest Part short film in 2010, along with portraying the role of Robert in the television movie Dive, which earned him critical praise. In 2011, Jack would star alongside Sam Caflin and Dean Andrews in the film United, where he played Bobby Charlton. He would next play the lead role on the television mini-series The Runaway, as Eamonn. The same year, Jack portrayed Dylan in the film The Weekender, as well as Man 10 in the war drama The Somnambulists.

Jack portrayed the role of Kurtis in the 2012 film Tower Block, a thriller about residents of Tower Block 31 being killed by a sniper one-by-one after witnessing a murder. The film received mixed reviews, but Jordan Mintzer from The Hollywood Reporter singled him out as “the standout [of the cast]” as the building’s protection racketeer. His next film Private Peaceful was released, where Jack portrayed Charlie Peaceful. He played the lead role in The Liability as Adam, where his character agrees to driving for his mother’s gangster boyfriend. The Independent stated his breakthrough performance came in 2013’s Starred Up, where he played Eric Love. Jack received widespread critical acclaim for his role, stating his “mad-dog incarnate” portrayal as “a star-is-born performance” in the film by Rolling Stone’s Peter Travers.

Jack’s next role came in the 2014 film ’71, where he portrayed the role of Gary Hook, about a young and disorientated British soldier is accidentally abandoned by his unit following a riot on the deadly streets of Belfast. He next portrayed the Calisto in 300: Rise of an Empire, also starring Lena Headey and Sullivan Stapleton. The same year, he would star in his first major Hollywood film Unbroken, directed by Angelina Jolie, playing Louis Zamperini. Jack received critical acclaim for his role and became the tenth recipient of the BAFTA Rising Star Award, as well as the Breakthrough Awards from the National Board of Review.

In 2016, Jack starred alongside George Clooney and Julia Roberts in the Jodie Foster-directed film Money Monster, playing Kyle Budwell. He portrayed Jan Kubis in the biographical thriller The Man with the Iron Heart in 2017, alongside Jason Clarke and Rosamund Pike. The film revolves around a suicide mission to assassinate Reinhard Heydrich, the hideous mastermind behind the “Final Solution.” The same year, Jack starred opposite Alcia Vikander and Dane DeHaan in the historical romance film Tulip Fever, in which he played the role of Willem Brok. He also returned to television in 2017 for the mini-series “Godless”, appearing in all seven episodes as Roy Goode. In 2018, he starred in the film Trial by Fire as Todd, based on the tragic and controversial story of Cameron Todd Willingham, who was executed in Texas for killing his children. Jack also performed alongside Sienna Miller in the live production of Tennessee Williams’ “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” in 2018.

In 2019, he appeared in the film Seberg, starring Kristen Stewart, as Jack Solomon. The film revolves around French New Wave icon Jean Seberg, who was targeted by the FBI in the 1960s becausese of her involvement with the civil rights activist Hakim Jamal. The same year, Jack portrayed Lion in the film Jungleland, also starring Charlie Hunnam.

Jack’s next film Little Fish is expected to still be released in 2020, where he plays Jude, opposite Olivia Cooke. The film revolves around Emma and Jude trying to hold their relationship together while a memory loss virus spreads around them. He started filming the mini-series “The North Water”, in which he plays the main character Patrick Summer, an ex-army surgeon who becomes a ship’s doctor on a while expedition to the Arctic.