May. 5th, 1944
Salisbury, Wiltshire, England, UK
Guest TV Roles
King Hugo (Voiced)
Laughing Spam Fritter
Grand Pabbie (Voiced)
Acclaimed British actor John Rhys-Davies graduated from the University of East Anglia and is probably best known to film audiences for his roles in the blockbuster hits Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) and Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989). He has also had leading roles in Victor Victoria (1982), The Living Daylights (1987) and King Solomon's Mines (1985).
Rhys-Davies, who was raised in England, Africa and Wales, credits his early exposure to classic literature for his decision to pursue acting and writing. he later refined his craft at London's renowned Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts. His television credits include James Clavell's "Shogun" (1980) and "Noble House" (1988), "Great Expectations" (1989), "War and Remembrance" (1988) and "Archaeology" (1991).
An avid collector of vintage automobiles, Rhys-Davies has a host of theater roles to his credit, including "The Misanthrope", "Hedda Gabler" and most of Shakespeare's works. He divides his time between Los Angeles and the Isle of Man.
- Every film he has made with 'Kiran Shah' has been nominated for Best Picture: _Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)_ (qv), _The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001)_ (qv), _The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002)_ (qv), _The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)_ (qv).
- Played the character of Malone in the TV Series _"The Untouchables" (1993)_ (qv). The character was played by 'Sean Connery' (qv) in the movie version _The Untouchables (1987)_ (qv). Both actors also played Richard the Lionheart, King of England, in separate versions of Robin Hood: Rhys-Davis in TV's _"Robin of Sherwood" (1984)_ (qv) and Connery (albeit uncredited) in _Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (1991)_ (qv). Connery and Rhys-Davies appeared together in between these projects in _Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)_ (qv).
- According to an article in the Sunday Herald Sun (Melbourne, Australia), December 14, 2003, the actors who played the members of the Fellowship of the Ring got a tattoo as a memento of their shared experiences, except for Rhys-Davies, who sent his stunt double instead. According to the BellaOnline body art website, the double was martial artist 'Brett Beattie' (qv), who in fact spent more film hours performing as Gimli the Dwarf.
- Ironically, he is actually taller than _The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001)_ (qv) co-stars 'Viggo Mortensen' (qv), 'Orlando Bloom' (qv) and 'Ian McKellen' (qv), yet he plays the Dwarf.
- John Rhys-Davies spent up to 5 hours a day putting on makeup for the role of Gimli in the Lord of the Rings trilogy. It was discovered early on that he was allergic to the prosthetics, so he could only put them on and work about every third day. The first week, it burned off the skin under his eyes.
- Two of his television movies have been followed up with similarly themed theatrical films starring 'Eric Bana (I)' (qv). He played "The Kingpin" in _The Trial of the Incredible Hulk (1989) (TV)_ (qv); the film _Hulk (2003)_ (qv) starred Bana. He played "King Priam" in _Helen of Troy (2003) (TV)_ (qv); 'Eric Bana (I)' (qv) played "Hector" in _Troy (2004)_ (qv).
- His son urged him to accept the role in _The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001)_ (qv).
- Children: Tom, Ben.