May. 5th, 1944
Salisbury, Wiltshire, England, UK
Guest TV Roles[none found]
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.
- Although a double needed to be used to make Rhys-Davies look much smaller than his shorter co-stars 'Viggo Mortensen' (qv) and 'Orlando Bloom' (qv), his height was exactly the right proportions to those of his hobbit co-stars and no body doubles were used in their shots together. The hobbits are supposed to average about 3' 6" (2 feet shorter than the actors who played them) and Gimli, at just over 4 feet tall, is about 2 feet shorter than the real Rhys-Davies.
- 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).
- Parents: Rhys Davies (a mechanical engineer) and Mary Margaretta Phyllis Jones (a nurse).
- Has lived with Lisa Manning since 2004. They have a daughter, Maia. Although he separated from his wife Susie in the early 1980s, he has not divorced her and has no plans to. She was diagnosed with Alzheimer's in 1995 and he remains close to her.
- September 2004 - Attended the Armaggeddon Pulp Culture Expo Convention in Wellington, New Zealand as a Lord of the Rings guest
- 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).
- 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.
- Lost the end tip of his left hand middle finger to the knuckle while changing out a van motor. During filming of _The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002)_ (qv), he was fitted with a gel tip for the finger. Rhys-Davies and the crew played a prank on director 'Peter Jackson (I)' (qv) by slicing the gel tip nearly in half and inserting prop blood inside. Rhys-Davies approached Jackson to tell him he was hurt and pulled open the tip, letting the blood flow out.