|Intro||British actor and model|
Film, TV, Stage & Radio
|Birth||23 September 1976, Stockport, United Kingdom|
Robert James-Collier (born 1976) is an English actor and model. He is known for his roles as Thomas Barrow in Downton Abbey and as Liam Connor in Coronation Street.
James-Collier was born in Salford, Greater Manchester, as Robert Collier, but changed his name to Robert James-Collier to comply with the rules of Equity and avoid confusion with another actor of that earlier name. He was educated at St Patrick’s Roman Catholic High School in Eccles, Greater Manchester.
James-Collier has two degrees; he studied business at the University of Huddersfield and marketing at the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology.
Having no experience as an actor, James-Collier auditioned for the series Down to Earth. Stars Ricky Tomlinson and Denise Welch were convinced by his talent, and he got the part of the womanising pub landlord. In 2006, he appeared in New Street Law and played a small part as ‘Stud’ in Shameless series 3, episode 5 under the name of Rob Collier.
In 2006, he joined Coronation Street as Liam Connor, buying a share of the Underworld factory with his brother Paul. He left the show in October 2008. In an interview in early-2008, James-Collier announced he was leaving the soap but was planning to come back in the future. However, in June 2008, it was reported that the character of Liam was set to be ‘brutally’ killed off in the soap as part of a murder-mystery plotline where three well known residents would fall under suspicion for the crime. One of these would be Tony Gordon played by Gray O’Brien, who was in a relationship with Carla Connor played by Alison King in the show.
After leaving Coronation Street, James-Collier had a leading role as under butler (formerly first footman) Thomas Barrow in Downton Abbey, from 2010-15, and has appeared in the West End stage version of Calendar Girls.
James-Collier played Kevin O’Dowd in ITV’s 2016 crime drama, The Level. In 2017, James-Collier starred in British horror film, The Ritual, in which The Guardian described his performance as “a fierce screen presence”. He will also play a small role in Jessica Hynes directorial debut, The Fight.
In 2019, it was announced that James-Collier had been cast in the third series of Channel 4 school-drama Ackley Bridge as Martin Evershed.
James-Collier modelled for Argos, where he appeared in the Autumn/Winter 2007 and Spring/Summer 2008 catalogues.
He won the Sexiest Male award at the 2007 and 2008 British Soap Awards in addition to “Best Exit” at the 2009 British Soap Awards. He won Sexiest Male and Best Newcomer at the 2007 Inside Soap Awards.