Born on June 27, 1986, in Ipswich, England, Sam Claflin pursued soccer before suffering an injury. He then turned to acting, and upon graduation from drama school starred in the miniseries The Pillars of the Earth. He has created buzz as an up-and-coming actor with featured roles in Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Snow White and the Huntsman, and The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.
A Young Soccer Player
Actor Sam Claflin was born on June 27, 1986, in Ipswich, Suffolk, England. Growing up in Norwich, he practiced soccer on a daily basis, with dreams of playing for a league, before shattering one of his ankles during a game with friends. He realized that he’d be unable to play professionally due to the injury, and so his parents encouraged him to pursue acting, another of his developing passions. Claflin went on to attend the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, graduating in 2009 and performing in theatrical productions like Tommy, As You Like It, The Man of Mode and Love Is.
Claflin made his screen debut in 2010 with the Starz TV miniseries The Pillars of the Earth, based on the Ken Follett novel of the same name. The series depicted a 12th-century multipronged power struggle revolving around the construction of an English cathedral, with Claflin playing a knight.
Working on 'Pirates of the Caribbean'
Claflin next appeared in the SyFy channel’s post-apocalyptic adventure The Lost Future and then portrayed fictitious writer Logan Mountstuart in the 2011 PBS miniseries Any Human Heart, costarring Jim Broadbent and Matthew MacFadyen. (The program would earn an award from the British Academy of Film and Television Arts.) The same year, Claflin returned to his childhood passion, depicting soccer player Duncan Edwards in United, a BBC TV-movie that chronicled the Manchester United club.
Claflin then got his biggest role to date, being cast in Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, co-starring Johnny Depp and Penelope Cruz. Claflin portrayed kind, hunky missionary Philip Swift, who finds himself enraptured by a mermaid (Astrid Bergès-Frisby). The actor was quickly becoming a known entity on Hollywood’s radar.
A Prince for 'Snow White'
2012 marked another major fantasy-film role for Claflin, this time as Prince William in Snow White and the Huntsman, in which an evil queen (Charlize Theron) sets out to destroy her stepdaughter (Kristen Stewart). The actor continued to garner work in his native Britain and starred in another BBC drama, Paula Milne's White Heat, which followed a group of London students over several decades.
Claflin again created film buzz when he was cast as Finnick Odair, a seafaring champion in 2013’s The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, directed by Francis Lawrence and co-starring Jennifer Lawrence, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Amanda Plummer, among others. The film represents the second installment of the best-selling dystopic trilogy written by Suzanne Collins. Claflin is also slated to appear opposite Jared Harris in the 2013 horror drama The Quiet Ones.
Keeping close to his roots, Claflin has aimed to maintain a fresh perspective on his career. "My parents don't have any show business links. My mum is a classroom assistant at the high school I went to, and Dad is an accountant and a finance manager for a charity radio station," Claflin told The Sun in 2011. "They are so far away from it. It is nice to be able to share it with them and to hold hands and scream together."
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