Big thanks go to Damian’s pal Jonsel Gourkan for tweeting the lovely picture below and inspiring today’s post.
Spot a certain ginger among a bunch of young actors playing in a celebrity football tournament around, according to Jonsel, 1995/96. Both he and Damian were playing for Royal Shakespeare Company and it is clear from the tweet that the competition on the football field was real. Well, we all know Damian knows his footie, don’t we?
It was 2009 when Damian played the lead role of Alceste in Martin Crimp’s modernized version of Moliere’s 17th century comedy. After his appearance in The Misanthrope he was not seen on stage again until American Buffalo six years later. Dare we say, The Misanthrope marked a turning point for Damian, the last one where he was the nearly A-list actor playing against decidedly A-list’er Keira Knightley. NOW, of course, he is not nearly anything but a full-blown highly sought commodity on stage and screen. In this post, I’ll tell you a bit about the play, then, beg your indulgence as I wax philosophical about the extent to which the themes of the play translate to Damian’s own career trajectory.
Matt Wolf, a theater critic who interviews Damian Lewis at Times Talks London in May 2014, spends quite some time talking to Damian about each and every play he has done to date at length, well, except for one: When it comes to Five Gold Rings, Wolf mentions it briefly and as more of a personal highlight than a professional one for Damian!
Matt Wolf: “One production at The Almeida called Five Gold Rings was perhaps not that successful except that it has the woman whom you ended up marrying so I would assume it was a success in that way.”
Damian takes quite a long break from stage – 6 years – after he does The Misanthrope with Keira Knightley and Tara Fitzgerald at Comedy Theatre. And after three seasons of Homeland, a season of Wolf Hall, three movies, an Emmy and a Golden Globe later, in 2015, he makes a wonderful comeback to stage as Walter “Teach Cole” in David Mamet’s American Buffalo… which also goes into history as the first (and second) time I see my favorite actor on stage. Continue reading “Throwback Thursday to Damian Lewis in American Buffalo”