Birthplace: London, England
Nathaniel Parker (born 18 May 1962) is an English stage and screen actor best known for playing the lead in the BBC crime drama series The Inspector Lynley Mysteries, and Lord Agravaine in the fourth series of Merlin.
Nathaniel Parker was born in London, the youngest son of the businessman and one-time British Rail chairman Sir Peter Parker and Jillian, a GP and gardener, who wrote The Purest of Pleasures: Creation of a Romantic Garden. He has two older brothers, Alan, chairman of Brunswick Group, and Oliver, a film director, and a sister, Lucy. Parker joined the National Youth Theatre, and after training at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, became a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1986.
Parker portrayed Bassanio in Peter Hall's 1989 production of The Merchant of Venice in London and on Broadway, co-starring with Dustin Hoffman.
In 2000, he played Bob in Rupert Goold's West End revival of David Mamet's Speed-the-Plow.
Parker returned to the stage in 2013 for the production of The Audience, starring Helen Mirren, written by Peter Morgan and directed by Stephen Daldry. The play ran for four months at the Gielgud Theatre in London. It was also transmitted worldwide via National Theatre Live and was seen by more than 110,000 viewers in the UK and USA.
Parker played King Henry VIII in Wolf Hall (and Bring up the Bodies) for the Royal Shakespeare Company in 2014, earning a 2015 Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role for the London production and appearing in New York City when the show moved on to Broadway, where his performance received a Tony Award nomination.
Parker played Jack Weatherill in James Graham's This House at the Minerva Theatre, Chichester in September 2016 and took the same role to the Garrick Theatre in the West End of London on 19 November 2016.
In 1997, Parker portrayed King David in a made-for-TV film.
Parker played a variety of television costume drama roles, such as: Martin Jordan in the 1995 TV production of Joanna Trollope's A Village Affair, Gabriel Oak in the Granada/WGBH-TV co- production of Far From the Madding Crowd (1997), and Martin Tanley in the comedy film Beverly Hills Ninja (1997) with Chris Farley and Chris Rock. He also played Rawdon Crawley in a BBC version of Vanity Fair (1998). The New York Times reviewer Caryn James said of his performance: "More than anyone else in the series, Nathaniel Parker brings some complexity to his character." He also played Harold Skimpole in the BAFTA-winning BBC1 dramatisation of Bleak House (2005).
In a 2007 Radio Times interview, Parker said that his first big television break came in 1988 when he played a Battle of France pilot in ITV's six-part drama Piece of Cake. Another early role was Wilfred Owen in Derek Jarman's War Requiem, a 1989 film adaptation of Benjamin Britten's War Requiem. It co-starred Laurence Olivier, in his last screen role, as an old soldier. Four years later, Parker played Edward Rochester in John Duigan's 1993 film adaptation of Jean Rhys' Wide Sargasso Sea. Reviewing this 'prequel' to Jane Eyre, Vincent Canby said in his review that Parker: "is exceptionally good in a difficult, shadowy role".
From 2001 to 2007, Parker played the titular character in the long-running BBC1 crime series The Inspector Lynley Mysteries, perhaps his best-known role. His co-star was Sharon Small as his assistant, Detective Sergeant Barbara Havers. When the series premiered on PBS in 2002, The Wall Street Journal wrote that it was "fully worthy of the Mystery! label." During that time he also played Edward Gracey in Disney's film adaptation of The Haunted Mansion (2003), Albert Speer in the BBC production of 2006 Nuremberg: Nazis on Trial and Dunstan Thorn in the fantasy film Stardust (2007). Parker also starred briefly in St Trinian's (directed by his brother, Oliver).
In 2011, Parker joined the cast of Merlin, to play the character of Agravaine for all 13 episodes of the fourth series. He also appeared in the independent comedy-drama The Perfect Host, alongside David Hyde Pierce.
In 2012, Parker was cast alongside YouTube reviewer Stuart Ashen in the Alienware-sponsored sci-fi thriller series The Proxy. He also appeared as Chief Inspector Armand Gamache of the Sûreté du Québec in the film adaption of Louise Penny's murder mystery novel Still Life, set in rural Quebec. He also starred in the TV series, Me and Mrs Jones broadcast in 2012.
In July 2015, Parker played the domestic bully Dicky Carmichael in the BBC’s two-part television adaptation of Sadie Jones’ debut novel of the same name. In June 2015 it was announced that Parker would play the role of King Achish in ABC TVs series Of Kings and Prophets.
Parker is a voiceover artist and has done work on audiobooks, including Eoin Colfer's children's Artemis Fowl series, the first three books in Charlie Higson's Young James Bond series, and The Gardens of The Dead by William Brodrick. He read Mark Haddon's novel A Spot of Bother for BBC Radio Four's Book at Bedtime and played Axel in Jules Verne's Journey to the Centre of the Earth, first broadcast on BBC Radio Four Extra on 20 November 2011 and again on 12 November 2012. He has also voiced numerous video games and made many radio appearances as an interviewee and in radio dramas. A complete listing of Parker's extensive audio work can be found online.
Parker is married to actress Anna Patrick. The couple live in Gloucestershire with their two daughters.
Unless noted otherwise, details of Parker's film and television work can be found here.
|1988||Piece of Cake||Flying Officer 'Flash' Gordon||Six parts|
|1989||Inspector Morse: "Deceived By Flight"||Jamie Jasper|
|1989||Never Come Back||Desmond Thane||Three parts|
|1989||War Requiem||Wilfred Owen||with Laurence Olivier and Tilda Swinton|
|1990||Harry Enfield's Television Programme||"Fire Man"||Episodes 1-4|
|1990||Heroes II: The Return||Ivan Lyon|
|1990||Hamlet||Laertes||with Mel Gibson|
|1991||Absolute Hell||Sam Mitchum|
|1991||Agatha Christies's Poirot: "The Affair at the Victory Ball"||Chris Davidson|
|1991||The War that Never Ends||Alcibiades|
|1991||The Black Candle||Lionel Filmore|
|1992||Look at It This Way||Miles||Three parts|
|1992||The Bodyguard||Clive Healy||with Kevin Costner and Whitney Houston|
|1993||The Vision Thing||Michael Fisher|
|1993||Rik Mayall Presents: Dancing Queen||Nigel|
|1993||Wide Sargasso Sea||Edward Rochester|
|1994||For One Night Only:Errol Flynn||Errol Flynn|
|1994||Squanto: A Warrior's Tale||Thomas Dermer|
|1994||Dangerous Games||Thomas Cranmer|
|1995||A Village Affair||Marin Jordan|
|1995||A Touch of Frost - "Quarry"||Stephen Milmore|
|1995||Othello||Cassio||with Laurence Fishburne|
|1995||A Little Loving||Greek God Pan|
|1996||The Short Cut||Ross||Short film|
|1997||Beverly Hills Ninja||Martin Tanley|
|1997||Into Thin Air: Death on Everest||Rob Hall|
|1997||The Bible: David||David|
|1998||Far from the Madding Crowd||Gabriel Oak||Four episodes|
|1998||Vanity Fair||Rawdon Crawley||Parts 2 - 6|
|1999||Trust||Andrew Pearce||Part 1|
|1999||McCallum - "Beyond Good and Evil"||Dan Gallagher||Series 3|
|2000||Lover's Prayer (aka All Forgotten)||Vladimir's Father|
|2000||Pretending to be Judith||James Lovel|
|2001-2007||The Inspector Lynley Mysteries||Inspector Thomas Lynley||23 Episodes|
|2003||The Haunted Mansion||Master Gracy||with Eddie Murphy|
|2003||The Private Life of Samuel Pepys||Charles II|
|2004||Happy Birthday Oscar Wilde||Himself|
|2005||Bleak House||Harrold Skimpole||Parts 1 & 2|
|2005||Fade to Black||Guido Viola|
|2006||Nuremberg: Nazis on Trial||Albert Speer||1 episode|
|2006||A Class Apart||Anthony Troth|
|2007||I Really Hate My Job||Guy II||Cameo role|
|2007||St. Trinian's||Chairman of the National Gallery||Cameo role|
|2008||Hotel Babylon - "Is Love Really in the Air?"||Alexander Crawfield||Series 3 episode 2|
|2009||Malice In Wonderland||Harry Hunt|
|2009||The Perfect Host||Detective Morton|
|2009||The Courageous Heart of Irena Sendler||Dr Juliusz Majkowski|
|2009||Land Girls||Lord Lawrence Hoxley||Series 1|
|2009||Lewis - "The Dead of Winter"||Lieutenant Philip Coleman||Series 4 - ITV|
|2009||My Family||Uncle Richard||BBC; Christmas episode 2009|
|2010||The Domino Effect||Tramp|
|2010||Tell Me||Dr. Anton Sharple|
|2010||The Chronicles of Narnia (Dawn Treader)||Caspian IX||Cameo role|
|2012||The Proxy||Peter Baker|
|2012||The Charles Dickens Show||Doctor Guffquatt|
|2012||Me and Mrs Jones||Tom Marshall|
|2012||Still Life: An Inspector Gamache Mystery||Chief Inspector Armand Gamache|
|2014||The Outcast||Dickie Carmichael|
|2015||The Proxy: Enhanced Full Cut||Peter Baker||Actor|
|2016||Of Kings and Prophets||King Achich||Episodes:
"Offerings of Blood"
"Let The Wicked Be Ashamed"
|2018||Swimming with Men|
|2018||Swords and Sceptres|
Unless noted otherwise, details of Parker's theatre work can be found here.
|1981||Richard III||Richard III||National Youth Theatre|
|1982||Macbeth||Macbeth||National Youth Theatre|
|1984||Trumpets and Drums (based on The Recruiting Officer)||Captain Brazen||London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art|
|1985||Claw||Ludsby||Theatre Clwyd / Mold||Theatre Clwyd / Mold|
|1985||Trumpets and Drums (based on The Recruiting Officer)||Captain Brazen||Theatre Clwyd / Mold||Theatre Clwyd / Mold|
|1986||Romeo and Juliet||Tybolt||Young Vic, London||Old Vic||11.02.86|
|1986||The Gift||Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC)||Swan Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon|
|1986-1987||The Winter's Tale||Florizel||RSC||Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon, Tyne Theatre, Newcastle upon Tyne, Barbican Theatre, London|
|1986-1987||Every Man in His Humour||Wellbred||RSC||Swan Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon, Mermaid Theatre, London, The People's Theatre, Newcastle upon Tyne|
|1986-1987||The Rover||Don Pedro||RSC||Swan Theatre Stratford-upon-Avon, The People's Theatre Newcastle upon Tyne|
|1986||Richard III||Harry Percy||RSC||Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon, Tyne Theatre, Newcastle upon Tyne, Barbican Theatre, London|
|1987||The Storm||Vanya Kudryash||RSC||Pit, London|
|1987||A Midsummer Night's Dream||Lysander||RSC||Barbican Theatre, London|
|1989||The Merchant of Venice||Bassanio||Peter Hall Company||Phoenix Theatre, London, 46th Street Theater, New York||(UK) 01.06.1989, (US) 20.12.1989 to 24.02.1990|
|1997||Cargo Cult||Barbican Theatre||02.09.1987|
|1999||50 Revolutions||Oxford Stage Company||Whitehall Theatre, London||07.09.1999 to 25.09.1999|
|2000||Speed the Plow||Duke of York's Theatre, London||29.06.2000 to 19.08.2000|
|2008||Quartermaine's Terms||Quartermaine||Bill Kenwright 2008 Ltd.||Theatre Royal, Windsor; New Victoria Theatre, Woking; The Richmond Theatre, Theatre Royal, Bath, Theatre Royal, Brighton||13.05.2008 to 21.06.2008|
|2013||The Audience||Gordon Brown||Gielgud Theatre, London||15.02.2013 to 15.06.2013|
|2013/14||Wolf Hall||Henry VIII||RSC||Swan Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon||11.12.2013 to 29.03.2014|
|2013/14||Bring Up the Bodies||Henry VIII||RSC||Swan Theatre, Stratford-Upon-Avon||19.12.2013 to 29.03.2014|
|2014||Wolf Hall||Henry VIII||RSC||The Aldwych Theatre, London||10.05.2014 to 04.10.2014|
|2014||Bring Up the Bodies||Henry VIII||RSC||The Aldwych Theatre, London||10.05.2014 to 04.10.2014|
|2015||Wolf Hall 1 & 2||Henry VIII||RSC||Winter Garden Theater, New York||20.03.2015 to 05.07.2015|
|2016||This House||Jack Weatherill||Headlong||Minerva Theatre, Chichester||25.09.2016 to 29.10.2016|
|2016||This House||Jack Weatherill||Headlong||Garrick Theatre, London||19.11.2016 to 25.02.2017|