James Frain


James Frain Trivia


  • Trivia

    • It took Frain a year to film Reindeer Games.

    • James reported that he wants to try directing in the future.

    • James said that when he was younger he was inspired by Daniel Day Lewis.

    • James Frain has seven brothers and sisters. He is the oldest sibling.

    • Frain deliberately choses complex characters to portray in films.

    • In Nothing Personal Frain played a terrorist and in 24 he played a man who was accused of working with terrorists.

    • James Frain acted with the Peter Hall Company in London's West End and Stratford-Upon-Avon's Royal Shakespeare Company in addition to his screen work.

    • James Frain has filmed five death scenes. Macbeth in Macbeth on the Stage, Jean Vigo in Vigo, Bassianus in Titus, Nick Cassid in Reindeer Games, and Paul Raines in 24.

    • "A poor man made tame to fortune's blows, who by the art of knowing and feeling sorrow am most pregnant to good pity," is one of Frain's favorite lines in King Lear.

    • James said that if he didn't become an actor he would have been a painter.

    • His favorite playwrights are David Mamet and Harold Pinter, his favorite book is Once in a House on Fire by Andrea Ashworth, and his favorite vacation spot is Naples, Italy.

    • In an interview he said his favorite co-star he has worked with is Doraly Rosen and his favorite director he has worked with is Howard Davie.

    • James said the role he would like to play the most is Hamlet.

    • James went into the audition for Shadowlands without finishing drama school. He had no idea he would win the role.

    • His first actual appearance on television was in 2004 mini-series Pilot Season.

    • James Frain has the same birthday as Michael Caine, Taylor Hanson, Mercedes McNab, Kylie Tyndall and Keaton Tyndall, Quincy Jones, and Chris Klein.

    • Frain still owns a stereo he bought with the money he made in his early years of acting on Shadowlands.

    • Most of Frain's siblings have artistic jobs including a photographer and graphic artist.

    • Before he decided to start acting, Frain had many low-paying "behind the scenes" jobs.

    • He has a certificate in stagefighting and in early 2002, during his run in King Lear he and Tom Hollander (as Edmund and Edgar) got to do some regular certified stagefighting with swords.

    • In 2000, James was nominated for a Genie Award (Best performance by an actor in a supporting role) for his role in Sunshine.

    • James is 6'.

  • Quotes

    • Frain: (On why he doesn't want to be famous) Most actors I would guess are playing the celebrity game to get access to work he says. Certainly no one I know is into fame, because then it becomes a dangerous game, a Faustian pact. I mean even doing interviews, I never used to think about that when I used to imagine being an actor.

    • James Frain: (On Almeida theater) Jonathan and Ian have managed to create a real sense of event around going to the theater - you always feel that something original and different will happen when you see something at the Almeida. That's because they are completely fearless and bold in both the things - either new plays or classics - and the people they choose to work with. They take risks and are always pushing in every direction. Their ambition is endless. I think it's also telling that they've now decided to leave. They recognise that theatre is about immediacy and that it always requires fresh blood to reinvent itself. What do you make of working in a converted bus shelter? It's great. I love the idea of performing in different and untraditional spaces. It is a bit tricky sometimes to judge the acoustics, though.

    • James Frain: (When asked who he would like to swap places with) I'd swap places with Richard Burbage or someone else in Shakespeare's original company so I could play all those wonderful parts for the first time.

    • James: (When asked if he prefers film or stage) It's sort of ridiculous to compare the two because they're so different. But I do prefer film. Film is about the spontaneous and natural moment. It should be the same in theater but it's not. Also, and I know this is opposite to what many people say, I think film is the actor's medium and theater is the director's. On stage, the director chooses what play is done and then determines the style and tone of the performance - it's all about the director's vision. With film, that's not so much the case and they never tell you to be anything but natural. In theatre, the term 'natural' is used in a disparaging fashion. I like to come back to the theater, though, because of the writing.

    • James Frain: (On filming The Count of Monte Cristo during the summer) It was a big Disney film we were shooting in Malta. Richard Harris was doing all the miserable stuff inside a prison, and I was doing all the fun stuff.

    • James: (When asked about what his role is in The Count of Monte Cristo) The horrid bad guy, of course...Oh no! Have I blown it!

    • James: (When asked why the British always play the bad guys) We're so evil, inherently. Didn't you see The Patriot?

    • James: Film is about the spontaneous and natural moment. It should be the same in theatre but it's not.