Dominic West

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Dominic West
Dominic West1.jpg
West in September 2008
Born(1969-10-15) 15 October 1969 (age 44)
Sheffield, Yorkshire, England
Years active1991–present
Spouse(s)Catherine FitzGerald (2010–present)
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From the BBC programme Front Row Interviews, July 2011[1]

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Dominic West
Dominic West1.jpg
West in September 2008
Born(1969-10-15) 15 October 1969 (age 44)
Sheffield, Yorkshire, England
Years active1991–present
Spouse(s)Catherine FitzGerald (2010–present)
Sorry, your browser either has JavaScript disabled or does not have any supported player.
You can download the clip or download a player to play the clip in your browser.
From the BBC programme Front Row Interviews, July 2011[1]

Dominic Gerard Fe West (born 15 October 1969) is an English actor. He is best known for his role as Detective Jimmy McNulty in the HBO drama series The Wire.

Early life[edit]

West was born into an Irish Catholic family[2][3] in Sheffield, Yorkshire, the son of George West, who owned a plastics factory, and Moya, a housewife.[4] West attended Eton College and Trinity College, Dublin.[2][5][6] He graduated from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London, in 1995.[citation needed]


Film and TV[edit]

West made his debut in 1991 in a short called 3 Joes.[citation needed] His other screen appearances include True Blue, Chicago, Richard III (1995 film) and Mona Lisa Smile. His most notable television role has been Baltimore police detective Jimmy McNulty on the HBO television police drama The Wire.

During his stint on The Wire, West directed the season 5 episode, "Took".[7]

In film, he portrayed the heavy metal guitarist Kirk Cuddy in the 2001 film Rock Star. In 2006 West made a guest appearance as an actor in a sketch in The Catherine Tate Show, alongside "Frankie Howerd impressionist". In 2007, he played the Spartan politician Theron in 300 and a detective in Hannibal Rising and then in 2010 a Roman General in Centurion. West also starred in the 1999 film version of William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream as Lysander.

West appeared in the role of Oliver Cromwell in the Channel 4 series The Devil's Whore. West played the villain, Jigsaw, in the 2008 film Punisher: War Zone. He also features in "Dr. West", the opening track on Eminem's 2009 album Relapse, as a doctor discharging Eminem from a rehab facility. West played the part over the phone in January 2009 while Eminem was recording it in a Miami studio.[8]

In December 2009, he starred as Hank in a radio adaptation of Eugene O'Neill's expressionist play The Hairy Ape for BBC Radio 3,[9] was a guest presenter on the BBC show Have I Got News for You, and ended the year alongside Joan Rivers and Sarah Jessica Parker with an appearance on Graham Norton's New Year's Eve Show.[10] West portrayed General Virilus in Neil Marshall's adventure thriller Centurion[11] and stars in the UK Ghost film The Awakening.[12]

In 2011, West appeared as a news presenter on the BBC-TV period drama series The Hour. He also played serial killer Fred West in the ITV series Appropriate Adult, giving a performance that the serial killer's daughter described as capturing the "evil essence of [Fred West] - his character, his mannerisms, even his gait."[13]

In 2012, West was offered the part of Mance Rayder in the HBO fantasy series Game of Thrones, but turned it down due to the amount of time he would have to spend away from his family.[14]


As a theatre actor, West has appeared as Konstantin in the Peter Hall-directed The Seagull (1996) at the Old Vic.[citation needed] In 2005, he returned to the stage to play Orlando in David Lan's As You Like It at the Wyndham's Theatre in London.[citation needed] He played Edward in Harley Granville Barker's The Voysey Inheritance directed by Peter Gill at the Royal National Theatre in 2006.[15] In late 2006 and early 2007, he played the lead role of Jan in Tom Stoppard's Rock 'n' Roll in London's West End.[citation needed]

Continuing his theatre work, he starred at London's Donmar Warehouse as the protagonist in Pedro Calderón de la Barca’s existential drama Life is a Dream, for which he received glowing reviews.[16]

In February 2011, it was announced that he would take on the title role in Simon Gray's classic comedy, Butley, playing at the Duchess Theatre in London from 1 June 2011[17] and in the September he returned to his native Sheffield to play Iago to his former Wire co-star Clarke Peters's Othello at the Crucible Theatre.[18]

From mid December 2012 to January 2013 West starred as Professor Henry Higgins in My Fair Lady at the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield.[19]


In 2009, West starred in a series of online films known as "The Carte Noire Readers". Made to promote French coffee brand Carte Noire, they consist of actors reading love scenes from a selection of sources. West reads extracts from Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen; Lady Chatterley's Lover by D.H. Lawrence; High Fidelity by Nick Hornby; The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton; Life Class by Pat Barker; The Moment You Were Gone by Nicci Gerrard; and Something Childish But Very Natural by Katherine Mansfield.[20]

Personal life[edit]

In 1998, West and Polly Astor (the daughter of Michael Astor) had a daughter named Martha, who appeared in the 2009 film Creation.[21][22]

West and Catherine FitzGerald married in Glin, County Limerick, Ireland, on 26 June 2010.[23] They have three children together: Dora, Senan, and Francis.[citation needed] FitzGerald is an Anglo-Irish aristocrat, being the daughter of Desmond FitzGerald, 29th Knight of Glin, and was formerly married to Edward Lambton, 7th Earl of Durham.[2][24]

In November 2010, West was awarded an honorary degree for services to the Arts by Sheffield Hallam University,[25] and in November 2011, he was awarded the Honorary Patronage of the Philosophical Society of Trinity College, Dublin, where he graduated from with a degree in English in previous years.[26]

West was the leader of Team Canada/Australia for Walking with the Wounded, a fundraising event for wounded soldiers. He trekked to the South Pole against Team UK (led by Prince Harry) and Team America (led by Alexander Skarsgård). A few days into the trek, it was decided that the competition part of the race would be cancelled due to hazardous terrain and weather conditions, so the teams combined forces and continued. Alongside Harry, Skarsgård, and several wounded soldiers, West successfully made it to the South Pole on 13 December 2013.[27]



19913 JoesJoe SmokerShort film
1995Richard IIIHenry, Earl of Richmond
1996True BlueDonald Macdonald
1996Surviving PicassoPaulo Picasso
1997The GamblerAlexei
1997Diana & MeRob Naylor
1997Spice WorldPhotographer
1998Out of HoursDr. Paul FeatherstoneTelevision movie
1999A Midsummer Night's DreamLysander
1999Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom MenacePalace Guard
1999A Christmas CarolFredTelevision movie
200028 DaysJasper
2001The Life and Adventures of Nicholas NicklebySir Mulberry HawkTelevision movie
2001Rock StarKirk Cuddy
2002Ten Minutes OlderYoung Man
2002ChicagoFred CaselyBroadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Cast
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
Nominated—Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast
2003Mona Lisa SmileBill Dunbar
2004The ForgottenAsh Correll
2006StingrayLutherShort film
2007Hannibal RisingInspector Popil
2008Hold OnDelivery ManShort film
2008Punisher: War ZoneBilly
2009Breaking the MouldHoward FlorelyTelevision movie
2010CenturionGeneral Titus Flavius Virilus
2010Jackboots on WhitehallFiske
2010Words of the BlitzSir John Colville
2010From Time to TimeCaxton
2011Johnny English RebornSimon Ambrose
2011Arthur ChristmasLead Elf
2011The AwakeningRobert Mallory
2012John CarterSab Than
2013Boy Cried WolfHughieShort film
2013Burton & TaylorRichard BurtonTelevision movie
Pending—British Academy Television Award for Best Actor
Nominated—Satellite Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film
2015Testament of YouthMr. BrittainFilming


2002–2008The WireDetective James McNulty60 episodes
2006The Catherine Tate ShowActorEpisode: "#3.5"
2008The Devil's WhoreOliver Cromwell4 episodes
2011–2012The HourHector Madden12 episodes
Broadcasting Press Guild Award for Best Actor
Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film
Nominated—Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Movie/Miniseries Actor (2013, 2014)
2011Appropriate AdultFred West2 episodes


  1. ^ "Dominic West". Front Row Interviews. 3 July 2011. BBC Radio 4 Extra. Retrieved 18 January 2014.
  2. ^ a b c Andrew Anthony (26 October 2008). "Andrew Anthony talks to actor Dominic West | Television & radio | The Observer". London: Guardian. Retrieved 2012-03-10. 
  3. ^ Wilde, Jon (19 July 2009). "Taking it to The Wire with Dominic West". London: Daily Mail. Retrieved 19 October 2010. 
  4. ^ Gliatto, Tom (5 August 2002). "Deceptive Detective". People Magazine. Retrieved 31 May 2011. 
  5. ^ Philby, Charlotte (21 March 2009). "My Secret Life: Dominic West, actor, 39". London: Retrieved 26 August 2009. 
  6. ^ Emily Sheridan (9 March 2012). "Dominic West: 'Old Etonian is a stigma slightly above paedophile' | Mail Online". London: Retrieved 2012-03-10. 
  7. ^ "'The Wire': The Dominic West perspective -". Los Angeles Times. 17 February 2008. 
  8. ^ "'The Wire' star Dominic West on Eminem's 'obsessive' love of the show". Entertainment Weekly. 28 May 2009. Retrieved 3 March 2012. "over the phone from London in January while Em was in a Miami studio." 
  9. ^ "Drama on 3". BBC Radio 3. 2009. Retrieved 2009-12-09. 
  10. ^ "Jump for Latest Centurion Clip". 22 March 2010. Retrieved 2010-10-07. 
  11. ^ "Official Domestic One-Sheet: Neil Marshall's Centurion". Retrieved 2010-10-07. 
  12. ^ "Early Sales Art: The Awakening". 14 May 2010. Retrieved 2010-10-07. 
  13. ^ "TV portrayal of killer leaves daughter scared". Yahoo!. Retrieved 25 August 2011. 
  14. ^ Ryan, Maureen (3 August 2012). "'Game Of Thrones': Dominic West Of The 'Wire' Rejected A Role On The HBO Drama". Huffington Post. 
  15. ^ "Dominic West on playing Edward Voysey - What's On Extras". National Theatre. Retrieved 2012-03-10. 
  16. ^ Spencer, Charles (14 October 2009). ""Telegraph Review of "Life is a Dream"". London: Retrieved 2010-10-07. 
  17. ^ Thorpe, Vanessa (20 February 2011). "Dominic West to revive classic stage role". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 2011-05-04. 
  18. ^ Benedictus, Leo (22 September 2011). "What to say about ... Othello with Dominic West and Clarke Peters". London: the Guardian. Retrieved 2011-09-29. 
  19. ^ Crucible's MY FAIR LADY, Starring Dominic West and Carly Bawden, Aiming for West End, May 2013?
  20. ^ "Dominic West reads sexy scenes" 8 July 2009 (Retrieved: 26 August 2009)[dead link]
  21. ^ "Andrew Anthony talks to actor Dominic West | Television & radio | The Observer". London: GMG. 26 October 2008. ISSN 0261-3077. OCLC 60623878. Retrieved 29 January 2012. 
  22. ^ "Dominic West's daughter to make big screen debut | Mail Online". (London). 11 September 2009. Retrieved 29 January 2012. 
  23. ^ "Wire actor West marries long-term Irish partner | Irish Examiner". 28 June 2010. Retrieved 2012-03-10. 
  24. ^ Kay, Richard (5 March 2009). "Party over for fixer to the stars". The Daily Mail (London). Retrieved 25 December 2009. 
  25. ^ "The Wire star Dominic West to receive honorary degree". BBC News (London). 4 October 2010. 
  26. ^ O'Connell, Edel (23 November 2011). "Wire' star pays tributes to wife as he visits alma mater". Irish Independent (Dublin). 
  27. ^ "Prince Harry completes South Pole charity trek". Daily News (New York). 15 December 2013. Retrieved 15 December 2013. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Patrick Brennan
Henry VII actor
Succeeded by
Aidan Quinn
Preceded by
Ross Yearsley
Lysander actor
(from A Midsummer Night's Dream)

Succeeded by
Ashley Wood
Preceded by
Martin Hyder
Oliver Cromwell actor