Sean Bean

Sean Bean Biography

Sean Bean cast as Bond villain in Goldeneye

Sean Bean is a renowned English actor, born as Shaun Mark Bean on 17th April 1959 in Handsworth, Sheffield. As a youth, he had aspirations of becoming a professional footballer but an injury to his leg made it impossible.

In 1975, he left school with O levels in Art and English and worked at various jobs before enrolling in Rotherham College of Arts and Technology to study welding. He later discovered an art class and decided to pursue acting, eventually winning a scholarship to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) in 1981. Bean graduated from RADA in 1983 and made his professional acting debut that year.

Sean Bean’s early career involved a mixture of stage and screen work, with his first national exposure coming from an advert for Barbican non-alcoholic lager. In 1984, he starred in David and Jonathan and was a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company from 1986 to 1988. He appeared in his first television film, Winter Flight in 1984, and later starred in Caravaggio (1986) and The Fifteen Streets (1989).


During the late 1980s and early 1990s, he established himself as a renowned actor on British television, appearing in The Bill (1984) Clarissa (1991) Inspector Morse (1992), and Lady Chatterley (1993).

In 1996, Bean combined his love for football with his career to finally achieve his childhood dream of playing for Sheffield United in the film When Saturday Comes. In his earlier days, he was most closely associated with the character of Richard Sharpe, a maverick Napoleonic Wars rifleman in the ITV series Sharpe.

Sean Bean’s first major movie was in Patriot Games in 1992 alongside Harrison Ford. This was followed by a role in Shopping and Black Beauty both in 1994. Bean’s biggest break to date came in 1995 when he was cast as Bond villain and former MI6 Agent, Alec Trevelyan opposite Pierce Brosnan in his first casting as James Bond in GoldenEye.

He played various villainous roles in films like Essex Boys (2000), Don’t Say a Word (2001), National Treasure (2004), and The Island (2005). He also played Boromir in Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy in which he is best known for. Bean had a significant presence in the first film, The Fellowship of the Ring. He had brief appearances in The Two Towers and The Return of the King which he won a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture.

A selection Sean Bean’s other roles include, Extremely Dangerous, where he played a character straddling the line between hero and villain. He depicted a remorseful Grammaton cleric who gives into his emotions in Equilibrium (2002), a quirky alien cowboy in The Big Empty (2003), and a cunning and sympathetic Odysseus in Troy (2004). He also appeared in Moby’s music video We Are All Made of Stars (2002) with other Hollywood stars and returned to the stage in London for a performance in Macbeth that same year.

In Game of Thrones, Bean played Lord Eddard ‘Ned’ Stark in the first season of HBO’s adaptation of George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire novels. In 2012, he portrayed cross-dressing teacher Simon in the opening episode of the second season of British television series Accused, earning a Royal Television Society and BAFTA Best and Leading Actor awards respectively. He starred as Martin Odum, an FBI agent who adopts different identities for undercover missions, in the espionage series Legends.

From 2015 to 2017, Sean Bean appeared in the ITV Encore drama The Frankenstein Chronicles and several notable films, including Jupiter Ascending, Pixels, and The Martian. He won a BAFTA award for Best Actor for his role as troubled priest Father Michael Kerrigan in the BBC series Broken (2017), and won a 2021 BAFTA TV Award for Leading Actor in Time.

Sean Bean has a distinct and strong Yorkshire accent and has lent his voice to a nu,mber of commercials, movies and games. These include, TV ads for O2, Morrisons, Barnardos, Acuvue, and the Sci-Fi Channel in the United States. He is also the voice behind the National Blood Service’s television and radio campaign. In addition to these commercials, Sean Bean has also starred in a TV ad for the UK tea brand Yorkshire Tea.

In the world of gaming, Sean Bean has lent his voice to a number of popular video games, including GoldenEye 007, The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, Lego The Lord of the Rings, Papa Sangre II, and Sid Meier’s Civilization VI. He has also been the narrator for several video games and trailers, including Train Simulator 2014 and A Plague Tale: Innocence.

In his personal life, Sean Bean has been married five times and divorced four times. He married Ashley Moore on June 30, 2017.