Childhood & Early Life
Jamie Dornan was born James Dornan on May 1, 1982, in Holywood, County Down, Northern Ireland, to Professor Jim Dornan and Lorna. His father is an obstetrician and gynaecologist. Jamie has two older sisters, Liesa and Jessica.
Dornan spent much of his childhood in the suburbs of Belfast. His mother died when he was 16 years of age. He attended ‘Methodist College’ where he participated in drama. Later, he enrolled at ‘Teesside University,’ but dropped out of the university to become an actor. He then moved to London to start his acting career.
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Jamie Dornan started his career as a model. In 2003, he modeled for ‘Abercrombie & Fitch.’ Subsequently, he landed many other offers and modeled for various fashion houses and retailers, including ‘Aquascutum,’ ‘Hugo Boss,’ and ‘Armani.’ He also did ad campaigns for popular brands, including ‘Dior Homme’ and ‘Calvin Klein.’ During this time, ‘New York Times’ labeled him ‘The Golden Torso.’
He landed his first acting role in Sofia Coppola’s historical drama ‘Marie Antoinette’ in 2006. In the film, he played the role of ‘Count Axel von Fersen,’ love interest of Marie Antoinette.
In 2008, he was seen in the ‘Hammer Horror’ production ‘Beyond the Rave.’ Besides acting, Dornan was also part of the folk band ‘Sons of Jim.’ He remained a crucial part of the band until its disbandment in 2008.
In 2009, Jamie Dornan appeared in the drama film ‘Shadows in the Sun.’ The film starred Jean Simmons in lead role. Dornan played the character of ‘Joe’ in the film.
In 2011, he played the role of ‘Sheriff Graham’ in the ABC television series ‘Once Upon A Time.’ He was much appreciated for his performance in the series. Though his character was killed in the episode ‘The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter,’ he returned as the ‘Huntsman from the Enchanted Forest’ for the final episode of the season, ‘A Land Without Magic.’
Dornan was next seen in British-Irish crime drama series ‘The Fall,’ portraying the character of ‘Paul Spector,’ a serial killer terrorizing Belfast. In May 2013, the show was renewed for a second season. People loved the way he brought realism and authenticity to his character. He did full justice to his role. Meanwhile, while shooting for ‘The Fall,’ he was cast for the role of ‘Colin’ in the film ‘Flying Home.’
In 2015, he appeared as ‘Christian Grey’ in the film ‘Fifty Shades of Grey.’ An erotic romantic drama based on the novel of the same name, the film was a big hit, breaking numerous box office records and earning over $571 million worldwide. The phenomenal success of the film led to its second and third instalment, both of which starred Dornan and released in 2017 and 2018 respectively.
After appearing in ‘Fifty Shades of Grey,’ Dornan was flooded with offers. In 2016 alone, he appeared in three films. He was first seen playing ‘Jan Kubiš’ in ‘Anthropoid.’ He followed it up with the character of ‘Pat Quinlan’ in ‘The Siege of Jadotville.’ Next, he starred as ‘Dr. Allan Pascal’ in the supernatural thriller ‘The 9th Life of Louis Drax.’
In 2017, Dornan was seen in the second instalment of the ‘Fifty Shades’ franchise, ‘Fifty Shades Darker.’ Unlike its predecessor, ‘Fifty Shades Darker’ was panned by the critics for its screenplay, acting, and narrative.
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Dornan’s projects in 2018 include ‘Untogether,’ ‘Fifty Shades Freed,’ and ‘Robin Hood.’ The same year, he was also seen alongside Peter Dinklage in the HBO television film ‘My Dinner with Hervé.’
In 2019, Dornan co-starred with Sebastian Stan and Shailene Woodley in the romantic drama film ‘Endings, Beginnings.’ He was also part of the science fiction horror film ‘Synchronic.’
In 2019, he was cast to play ‘Edgar’ in Josh Greenbaum's American comedy film ‘Barb and Star Go to Vista Del Mar.’ The same year, he was also cast to play the lead role of ‘Anthony Reilly’ in John Patrick Shanley's drama film ‘Wild Mountain Thyme.’
While Jamie Dornan has portrayed various characters in several films and television series, his most spectacular performance was delivered in ‘The Fall’ where he played a serial killer named ‘Paul Spector.’ A British-Irish crime drama, the series was a major hit, with the first two seasons receiving rave reviews. Though the third season was only a moderate success, the series was regarded as one of the most successful series in the UK television history.
He is also well-known for portraying ‘Christian Grey’ in the ‘Fifty Shades’ movie series. The movies ‘Fifty Shades of Grey,’ ‘Fifty Shades Darker,’ and ‘Fifty Shades Freed’ were huge box-office successes.