Ben Whishaw is a multi-award-winning British actor who graduated from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in Spring 2003. Ben went on to appear in Enduring Love, a film adaptation of Ian McEwan's novel directed by Roger Michel, and Layer Cake, a feature directed by Matthew Vaughn. In 2003, he also starred in the popular comedy-drama The Booze Cruise for ITV.
Ben is well known for playing the role of “Q” in Bond series hits No Time to Die, Spectre, and Skyfall as well as voicing the title role of “Paddington Bear” in the box office smash family movie, Paddington.
Ben made his West End debut at the National Theatre in their stage adaptation of Phillip Pullman's His Dark Materials and starred as Hamlet in Trevor Nunn's electric 'youth' version of the play at The Old Vic, for which he received tremendous critical acclaim and a Laurence Olivier nomination.
It was during this run that Perfume producer Bernd Eichinger and director Tom Tykwer discovered Ben’s extraordinary talent. Ben played the lead character Grenouille in the highly acclaimed Perfume which debuted in the UK in December 2006. Ben then shot a feature film called Stoned, in which he plays Keith Richards from the Rolling Stones. He also appeared in I’m Not There, Todd Haynes film portrayal of Bob Dylan’s life alongside the likes of Cate Blanchett, Richard Gere, and Christian Bale where he plays the young, poetic Dylan. We next saw Ben in Nathan Barley from director Chris Morris for TalkBack Productions. He returned to the theatre for Katie Mitchell’s version of The Seagull at the National Theatre in the Autumn of 2006, for which he again received great reviews.
Ben appeared in Brideshead Revisited which was released to critical acclaim in September 2008. The film featured Ben as Sebastian Flyte, a young, troubled aristocrat. The project was directed by Julian Jarrold and produced by Robert Bernstein. In 2008 Ben also starred in the hugely popular BBC drama Criminal Justice which saw him pick up the award for best actor at the 2009 Royal Television Society Awards, Best Actor at the International Emmy Awards 2009, and was nominated for ‘Best Actor at the 2009 BAFTA Television Awards. 2008 also saw Ben in The Idiot in which he played the lead at the National Theatre from the end of July.
2009 was another busy year for Ben, seeing him star as poet John Keats in Bright Star. The film focused on Keats’ relationship with Fanny Brawne, played by Abbie Cornish. Ben then played the lead at The Royal Court Theatre in Mike Bartlett’s play Cock - a story that takes a candid look at one man’s sexuality and the difficulties that arise when you realize you have a choice. Ben then played Ariel opposite Helen Mirren and Russell Brand in The Tempest.
Ben went on to star as Freddie Lyon in The Hour for the BBC opposite Dominic West and Romola Garai. This was followed by the lead role alongside James Purefoy and Patrick Stewart in the BBC's adaptation of Shakespeare’s Richard Ii, which was released in Summer 2012 and earned him a TV BAFTA. Ben replaced John Cleese as the new Q in the Bond movie, Skyfall alongside Daniel Craig and Ralph Fiennes. The beginning of 2013 saw the release of Cloud Atlas in which Ben starred alongside an all-star cast including Tom Hanks, Jim Sturgess, and Halle Berry. Ben also appeared on stage starring alongside Judi Dench in Peter and Alice which received rave reviews.
In 2014 Ben played the dark and tragic character of “Baby” in Jez Butterworth’s Mojo in the West End and was the lead in the sensationally moving independent film Lilting.
Premiering at the Venice Film Festival in 2015, Ben starred alongside Eddie Redmayne in the Danish Girl. Autumn 2015 saw Ben playing alongside Meryl Steep, Helena Bonham Carter, and Carey Mulligan in the eagerly anticipated Suffragette, returning to the role of "Q" in the next Bond film, Spectre, directed by Sam Mendes and on film alongside Colin Farrell and Rachel Weisz in the Sci-Fi thriller The Lobster produced by the BFI film fund production company which premiered at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival.
In November 2015 Ben also played the lead role in the BBC’s exciting new spy drama – London Spy. He then starred as Herman Melville in Warner Bros. In the Heart of the Sea. Ben finished on stage in the Bakkhai at the Almeida Theatre at the end of 2015 and moved straight to New York to appear in the broadway version of Arthur Miller’s The Crucible in early 2016.
2017 saw Ben reprise his role as the voice of Paddington Bear in Paddington 2. Ben also returned to the Almeida Theatre to appear in Against and played Brutus in Nicholas Hytner’s adaptation of William Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar at The Bridge Theatre opposite David Morrissey and Michelle Fairley.
In 2018, Ben starred opposite Hugh Grant in BBC’s (UK) and Amazon’s (US) A Very English Scandal. This performance saw Ben recognized with a Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor in a Series, Miniseries, or Motion Picture Made for Television; a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie; a BAFTA TV Award for Best Supporting Actor as well as the Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Movie/Miniseries.
Ben can also be seen playing “Michael Banks,” opposite Emily Blunt and Emily Mortimer in the much-anticipated sequel to Mary Poppins, titled Mary Poppins Returns for Disney.
In 2019, Ben returned to the stage to perform in Katie Mitchell’s Norma Jeane Baker of Troy alongside Renée Fleming at The Shed in New York City. Ben was also be seen opposite Tilda Swinton and Dev Patel in Armando Lanucci’s The Personal History of David Copperfield for FOX Searchlight, which premiered at the London Film Festival, Jessica Hausner’s Sci-Fi Drama Little Joe alongside Emily Beecham, and in 2020 Ben appeared in the fourth season of the incredibly popular FX crime drama series Fargo as Rabbi Milligan opposite Ewan McGregor and Billy Bob Thornton.
Ben went on to play the harrowing role of “Joseph” in Aneil Karia’s stripped-back thriller Surge. The story is set over 24 hours in London and follows Joseph on a bold and reckless journey of self-liberation.
Most recently Ben was seen in the lead role of Adam Kay in the BBC series adaptation of This is Going to Hurt. The series is based on the best-selling non-fiction memoir of the same name and follows junior doctor Adam Kay as he navigates his chaotic job in Obstetrics and Gynecology. The series is filled with hilarity and heart-lifting highs but also the reality of life as a junior doctor.