Johnny in America
"Actors are all different, we've all got different motors." Paddy Considine
British actor Paddy Considine, a former photographer, made quite a worthwhile film debut as Morell, a naive but eccentric and dangerous stranger in writer-director Shane Meadows’ comedy drama A Room for Romeo Brass (1999). He later gained more international exposure after starring as Johnny, an Irish immigrant who brought his family starting a new life in New York, in Jim Sheridan's Academy Awards-nominated romantic drama In America (2002; also featuring Djimon Hounsou), and playing Mike Wilson in Ron Howard's Academy Award-nominated biopic drama about former Heavyweight boxing champion James J. Braddock, Cinderella Man (2005).
The 5' 11" tall rising star will appear in the upcoming films Hot Fuzz and The Bourne Ultimatum.
Childhood and Family:
In Burton-on-Trent, Staffordshire, England, UK Paddy Considine was born on September 5, 1974 to a family with 6 children. He later grew up in Winshill, just outside Burton-on-Trent. His father died from cancer one week before filming began for In America (2002). Paddy attended Abbot Beyne School until 1990 before taking a Performing Arts course at Burton College, where he met now friend, actor/filmmaker Shane Meadows. Paddy went on to study photography at Brighton University where he earned a first class honors degree.
Paddy has a son named Joseph with wife Shelley.
Dead Man's Shoes
A former photographer, Paddy Considine made quite a worthwhile film debut as Morell, a naive but eccentric and dangerous stranger who comes between the two 12-year-old leads (Andrew Shim and Ben Marshall), in writer-director Shane Meadows’ comedy drama A Room for Romeo Brass (1999). He followed it up with the next year’s project, Pawel Pawlikowski's intimate drama Last Resort (2000), playing Alfie, an arcade owner in Northern England who began romancing a Russian émigré (played by Dina Korzun) after she was dumped by her fiancé. The role later won Paddy a Best Actor at the Thessaloniki Film Festival.
“I first got involved after Pawel saw me in ‘A Room For Romeo Brass’ and found what I did interesting. We then met in London and got on straight away. We were able to relate to each other. At that point, Alfie wasn't a character and we created him as we went along through workshops. I also have to say that I was out of work and Pawel took an interest in me and was very encouraging. I also liked the fact that Pawel, being a documentary maker, wanted to make a film about people and he got good performances because he treated us foremost like people.” Paddy Considine (on why he attracted to the role of Alfie).
More roles rolled in. Paddy was cast as the elderly charmer Frankie in writer-director David Kane's relationship comedy movie Born Romantic (2000; with Craig Ferguson, Ian Hart and Catherine McCormack), as Glen Marcus, the man who was haunted by the return of a local Welsh beauty queen he killed 14 years ago in Philippa Cousins' strangely dark crime comedy Happy Now (2001; with Ioan Gruffudd, Susan Lynch and Emmy Rossum), and as Hatfield recorder editor in writer-director Tony Grounds' poorly received nightmare-vacation film The Martins (2001; starring Lee Evans).
The next year saw the UK native gained a little more international exposure, thanks to the role of Joy Division/New Order manager Rob Groton in Michael Winterbottom's 24 Hour Party People, a funny biopic about Manchester's popular music community from 1977 to 1997. The film, which also stars co-starring with Steve Coogan and Shirley Henderson, was shown at the Cannes Film Festival and was nominated Golden Palm award. That same year, he also reunited with 24 Hour Party People co-star actress Shirley Henderson in Nick Willing's crime thriller Hypnotic (also released as Doctor Sleep), based on the book by Madison Smartt Bell.
Paddy eventually landed his first major leading role as Johnny, an Irish immigrant who brought his wife (played by Samantha Morton) and two young daughters (played by Sarah and Emma Bolger) starting a new life in New York, in Jim Sheridan's Academy Awards-nominated romantic drama In America (2002; also featuring Djimon Hounsou). Also in that year, he could be seen in Christopher Morris' 12-minute film, My Wrongs 8245-8249 and 117, and in Michael Baig-Clifford's 10-minute project, Bouncer.
In 2004, Paddy reteamed with A Room for Romeo Brass director Shane Meadows in the thriller applauded thriller Dead Man's Shoes, starring as Richard, a disaffected soldier returning to his small home town to exact revenge on his mentally disabled little brother's (played by Toby Kebbell) tormentors. The role handed him Best Actor awards at the Empire Awards and the Evening Standard British Film Awards. It also nominated him Best Actor at the British Independent Film Awards.
After supporting Natalie Press and Emily Blunt in writer-director Pawel Pawlikowski's BAFTA-winning romantic drama film based on a novel by Helen Cross, My Summer of Love (2004; Paddy played Press' once-hotheaded brother who became a religious fanatic in prison), Paddy went to co-star with Russell Crowe, Renee Zellweger and Paul Giamatti in Ron Howard's Academy Award-nominated drama film about the real life story of former Heavyweight boxing champion James J. Braddock, Cinderella Man (2005), playing the role of Mike Wilson. He then played the murderer of the debauched 1960s rock icon and Rolling Stones founder Bryan Jones (played by Leo Gregory) in Stephen Woolley's biopic Stoned (also in 2005).
Recently, in 2006, Paddy co-starred opposite Gary Oldman in Koldo Serra's suspense/horror set in 1978, Bosque de sombras (a.k.a. BackWoods). He also played Radha Mitchell’s husband in Scott Z. Burns' adaptation of Ken Kalfus’ book "PU-239 and Other Russian Fantasies," The Half Life of Timofey Berezin, in which he portrayed the title role. He just completed his upcoming project, Edgar Wright's action comedy Hot Fuzz (starring Simon Pegg and Nick Frost). He is currently filming Paul Greengrass' take on Robert Ludlum's novel, The Bourne Ultimatum, alongside Matt Damon.
Paddy, who formed the band She Talks To Angels alongside friend and actor-film director Shane Meadows, has also appeared in the British rock band Arctic Monkeys music video, "Leave Before The Lights Come On" as well as in the Coldplay video for "God Put A Smile On My Face" and Moloko's "Familiar Feeling".
"It's all about cutting your teeth. I would hate to be thrust into the middle of a big film and not deliver. There's young actors and they're put into these central roles and they're commanding armies - but they can't quite pull it off. I'd much rather do it in small steps and build it from there. But at least now, for me, when they're casting movies in America, the big question is, ‘Can he do an American accent?’ Well, that's answered now. He can do one, he can do a Thirties New Yorker." Paddy Considine.