“The Richard Armitage Dichotomy”

“The RA Dichotomy”: He has the looks of a leading man…

Photo: Robert Ascroft.

Photo: Robert Ascroft.

…with the soul of a character actor.

Photo: Robert Ascroft.

Photo: Robert Ascroft.

 

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About Richard Armitage US

Richard Armitage US is a respectful blog with a sense of humor (and a point of view) for fans of British-born actor Richard Crispin Armitage. Armitage is star of – among other productions – North & South, The Vicar of Dibley two-part series finale, Robin Hood, Spooks (MI-5 in the US), Chris Ryan’s Strike Back (Strike Back: Origins in the States),and his chilling portrayal of Francis Dolarhyde in Bryan Fuller’s Hannibal. Most recently, he has been seen in the popularly and critically acclaimed series Berlin Station, the second season of which is currently airing in the States on EPIX, with a slight delay in other international territories; it has not yet aired in the UK. His film appearances include starring roles in Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit trilogy, as Thorin Oakenshield; Into the Storm, as tornado-beleaguered Gary Fuller; and other films, including Urban and the Shed Crew (awaiting release), Sleepwalker (available on iTunes and Amazon Video in the States); Pilgrimage (available on DVD in the US and the UK), and Brain on Fire, based on Susannah Cahalan’s best-selling memoir, and to be seen on Netflix. He was nominated for the 2015 Best Actor Olivier Award for his portrayal of John Proctor in Arthur Miller’s classic play The Crucible, directed by Yael Farber at The Old Vic/London in-the-round. In 2016, he starred in Mike Bartlett's Love, Love, Love, directed by Michael Mayer, at New York's Roundabout Theatre. His next project is Julie Delpy’s My Zoe, in which he co-stars with Ms. Delpy, who also directs, and Daniel Brühl. His voice-performances of audiobooks are numerous, and range from Georgette Heyer to Charles Dickens, and characters ranging from Hamlet to Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde... to name just a few. See Audible.com for more. Although this page is US-based, we welcome RA’s fans from across the globe to join us here, and on Facebook and Twitter.

12 responses to ““The Richard Armitage Dichotomy””

  1. PreferNot2 says :

    Indeed, ACTOR, with capital letters. I’ve heard the extracts of Hamlet’s audiobook, and I’m simply astounded. I download weekley podcasts of BBC radio 4 Drama; those are really brilliant radio plays (last one Dante’s Inferno with John Hurt), but are made with several actors, sound effects, and so on. Richard makes everything just with his voice, no special effects, just pure acting. And you feel you are there! I will not comment it with details not to spoil but let me tell you something: I made a test with a friend who doesn’t speak English (and is not an AA member 😉 ): her textual words “I don’t understand a word of what he’s saying, but what a voice this man has!”

    I’m so glad he works not only in big productions but also in this kind of projects, maybe not addressed to big audiences, but of a very high quality. I have not talked about the novel… brilliant! We know what he’s capable, with his acting, to reduce the damage of a mediocre script, but, when the text is as good as this one we are talking of artistic perfection.

    • Richard Armitage US says :

      Yes, exactly! Here and on our Facebook site, we frequently tease and kid about his looks, his voice, and how they make us melt and swoon. But that’s all just a smokescreen for a group of people – people who are fiercely protective admirers – who know full well that he is first and foremost a profoundly gifted actor.

      Yes, he has the looks and bearing of a matinee idol, but his soul is old and deep and complex and profound.

      • PreferNot2 says :

        A very good looking smokescreen indeed. 😉

        BBC has announced Benedict Cumberbatch will play Richard III in the second Hollow Crown series, therefore being tall was not a handicap for the job. Let’s keep our fingers crossed for him to play any other part in that project.

  2. Richard Armitage US says :

    Oh, NO! Not the ubiquitous Benedict! This is heart-breaking. Did you read that Martin is *also* playing RIII on-stage in London? I know RA admires both of them – he praises their work frequently – but this has to hurt. My heart’s breaking, anyway.

    • gwyn says :

      I feel the exact same way. This is RA dream and yet it has been taken from him. What does he have to do to get his dream ?

      • Richard Armitage US says :

        I think RA would have been the first person to stop whatever he was doing when he heard the news and call both Benedict and Martin with his sincere congratulations. I, however, am less generous.

        There was an interesting piece in The Hollywood Reporter (THR) about Kevin Spacey’s career. I wonder if RA could take some lessons from it…
        http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/kevin-spacey-house-cards-star-692706

        • gwyn says :

          You are totally correct. He will bear no grudge. Just we who feel it should have been his part, will feel slightly bereft that we shall not see him play this part. Well for the moment, anyway. He also lost out to Aiden again with.the amazing part of Poldark.
          When will we see him play another dream part. But this time in the UK. Hopefully, Urban and the shed crew will be his making yet again.
          I wish them all great luck in their new roles . But want to see RA get his wish sooner than later…

        • PreferNot2 says :

          I fully understand what you both say, and I was the first to be enthusiast about the possibility of him being Gloucester the second Hollow Crown project, but I will steal a Hamlet’s quotation: “there are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy”. We all are disappointed for not seeing Richard as Richard III but we should be able to have a little chat with BBC producers and the responsibles of the projects about why he has not gotten the job. About Martin Freeman playing Richard III in theatre, I’m really curious to read the reviews because he’s the last actor in the world (although he’s brilliant) I could imagine playing Gloucester.

          What I mean is, that one thing are our dreams (including his) and other reality.

          What I sincerely hope now is that he could be strong enough as Kevin Spacey (thank you for the article! 🙂 ) and starts not “saying yes to everything”. I know he had to until a few years ago, he had to earn his living, but I sincerely hope he will keep on making more “Urban” kind of projects and that he keeps on moving forward and not backwards, like an Scottish actor I appreciate so much but that nowadays only appears in my google alerts as a gossip topic. 😦

        • Richard Armitage US says :

          Wasn’t that Kevin Spacey piece a revelation? I’m still absorbing it!

          Well, *I* have a new dream for RA…. well, an old dream but a new character. I’ve always thought he be terrific on Game of Thrones. I reeeally wanted him to play Stannis Baratheon, but Stephen Dillane got that role, and his performance is terrific. The recent announcement that GoT has been renewed for two more seasons (following its current run), got my mind working on who RA could play in the later books. And I know exactly who want RA should be: Griff (Jon Connington). It’s as if the part were written for him. He’s only made a relatively brief – in the world of George RR Martin – appearance so far, but it’s a memorable one, and the character should be around for a while. Griff is heroic, tragic, and has a secret… Plus there’s bonus of Griff’s died-blue hair that would perfectly suit RA’s blue eyes! 😉

        • PreferNot2 says :

          I read all the GOT books in a row a year and a half ago and I don’t remember that character! I will check it when I arrive home. My daydream reverie is seeing him playing Ulysses when comes back to Ithaca. I even wrote something about it 🙂

  3. PreferNot2 says :

    Ubiquituous, but talented. If they do as with the previous Hollow Crown, there will be a single Gloucester for both Henry VI and Richard III plays, therefore the part is only one and the candidates so many. Most probably given nowadays’ quotations if Gloucester was not Benedict Cumberbatch would be Michael Fassbender, another ubiquituous talented. ;-), but should Richard not obtain a single part in all the second Hollow Series it would be a real pity and my heart will be broken also. 😦

    It’s always a pleasure to share comments with you, greetings from Italy.

    • Richard Armitage US says :

      Yes, but does Benedict have to be offered *every* role available? Besides RA, there are loads of talented actors available and, I’m sure, eager to give RIII a shot! I think Michael Fassbender is *much* more discriminating in the roles he plays. Since “Hunger” in 2008, he seems to prefer edgy films. And he’s working on Macbeth now. His only exception seems to have been Jane Eyre.

      I also enjoy our conversations! Greetings to you from soggy Atlanta!

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