Stephen Graham

Stephen Graham (born 3 August 1973) is an English actor. He is perhaps best known for his role as Andrew "Combo" Gascoigne in This Is England (2006) and its television sequels This Is England '86 (2010), This Is England '88 (2011), and This Is England '90 (2015), as well as his roles as Tommy in Snatch (2000), Shang in Gangs of New York (2002), Anthony “Tony Pro” Provenzano in The Irishman (2019), and Scrum in the Pirates of the Caribbean films. On television, he has starred in the fifth series of Line of Duty on BBC One and as Al Capone in Boardwalk Empire on HBO.

Stephen Graham
Graham in August 2013
Born (1973-08-03) 3 August 1973
ResidenceIbstock, Leicestershire, England
Years active1990–present
Hannah Walters
(m. 2008)

Early life

Graham was born on 3 August 1973 in the Southdene area of Kirkby, Lancashire.[lower-alpha 1][1] He was raised by his mother, a social worker, and his stepfather, a mechanic who later became a paediatric nurse.[1] He maintained a good relationship with his biological father.[1] His paternal grandfather was Jamaican,[1][2] while his paternal grandmother was Swedish.[3] He attended Overdale Primary School in Kirkby, where he was encouraged to pursue an acting career at the age of eight by local actor Andrew Schofield, who had seen him perform as Jim Hawkins in a school production of Treasure Island.[1] He was subsequently introduced to Liverpool's Everyman Theatre at the age of 14, and would go on to train at the Rose Bruford College of Theatre & Performance.[1]


Graham has often portrayed characters from different British, Irish and American regions. He has played characters who are Cockney, Geordie, Scouse and Scottish, as well as an Irish gang member in 19th-century New York City, a 1930s Chicago bank robber, a Brooklyn mobster, a Texan, the short-fused English nationalist "Combo" in This Is England,[4] and a Jamaican gangster in Yardie.

Graham was nominated for an RTS Award for his work in The Street and a British Independent Film Award for his work on This Is England. He appeared in the music videos for "I Remember" by Deadmau5 and Kaskade,[5] both "Fluorescent Adolescent" and "When the Sun Goes Down" by the Arctic Monkeys, "Unlovable" by Babybird (directed by Johnny Depp), and Gazelle's single "Finger on the Trigger".[6] Graham also appeared in the music video "Soul Vampire" by Macclesfield-based neo-psychedelic band The Virginmarys, and the music video for "Turn" by Travis, also Kasabian's video "You're in Love with a Psycho". He appeared as an inmate within the open prison system for Goldie's "I Adore You" music video in 2017.

In 2011 Graham starred in the BBC Christmas show Lapland, but when the series was remade as Being Eileen, Graham's role was recast with Dean Andrews.[7][8] He also appeared on a promotional video for a DLC of the video game Call of Duty: Ghosts, titled "CODnapped".

In November 2019 Graham was the guest for BBC Radio 4's Desert Island Discs.[9]

Personal life

Graham married actress Hannah Walters on 6 June 2008. They met and began a relationship while training at the Rose Bruford College of Theatre & Performance and currently reside in Ibstock, Leicestershire, having previously lived in the Beckenham area of London. They have a son named Alfie and a daughter named Grace.[10]

Graham is a fan of Liverpool FC and has made several appearances on the Sky Sports football show Soccer AM.

Graham has struggled with depression, which once led to a suicide attempt: "In my early twenties, I suffered from really bad depression and tried to take my own life once. Thankfully, the rope snapped and I'm here today. But I know the loneliness, isolation and feeling you can't cope in the world."[1]

Graham is teetotal.[1] He suffers from dyslexia and has said that his wife reads scripts for him and helps him decide whether to accept or decline a role: "She says, 'We're doing this,' and I say, 'OK.' [...] If I can find socially aware, political things that are saying somethingwell, that's where I'm from. It's what I know. So it's where I've tried to keep my base."[1]



Year Title Role Notes
1990 Dancin' Thru the Dark Football Kid
1991 Blonde Fist Son
1997 Downtime Jacko
1998 Joint Venture Ace Short film
2000 Snatch Tommy
2001 Blow Dry Photographer
2001 The Last Minute DJ Banana
2002 Revengers Tragedy Officer
2002 Gangs of New York Shang
2003 American Cousins Henry
2003 Without You Billy Short film
2004 The I Inside Travis
2005 Pit Fighter Harry
2005 Goal! Des
2006 Scummy Man George Short film
2006 This Is England Andrew "Combo" Gascoigne Nominated—British Independent Film Award for Best Supporting Actor
2007 The Good Night Victor
2008 Filth and Wisdom Harry Beecham
2008 The Crew Franner
2008 Inkheart Fulvio
2009 The Devil's Wedding The Hotelier Short film
2009 Awaydays Godden
2009 The Damned United Billy Bremner
2009 Doghouse Vince
2009 Public Enemies Baby Face Nelson
2010 London Boulevard Danny
2011 Season of the Witch Hagamar
2011 Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides Scrum
2011 Texas Killing Fields Rhino
2011 Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy Jerry Westerby
2011 Being Eileen Pete Lewis
2012 Best Laid Plans Danny
2012 Blood Chrissie Fairburn
2014 Get Santa Barber
2014 Hyena David Knight
2015 A Patch of Fog Robert Green
2015 Orthodox Benjamin Executive producer
2017 Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales Scrum
2017 Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool Joe Turner Jr.
2017 Journey's End Trotter
2017 Funny Cow Mike
2017 The Man with the Iron Heart Heinrich Himmler
2018 Yardie Rico
2018 Walk like a Panther Mark Bolton
2019 Hellboy Gruagach Voice
2019 Rocketman Dick James
2019 The Irishman Anthony "Tony Pro" Provenzano Pending—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
2019 Boiling Point Chef Short film
2019 Pop Pop Short film
2020 Greyhound Post-production
2020 Venom 2 Filming


Year Title Role Notes
1990 Children's Ward Mickey Bell 2 episodes
1993 Heartbeat Barry Ward Episode: "Riders of the Storm"
1996 Devil's Food WPKV News Director Television film
1997 The Lakes Graham "Episode No.1.1"
1998 Brothers and Sisters Andrew
1998 Where the Heart Is Nick Bowen Episode: "Darkness Follows"
1998 Liverpool 1 Thewlis 2 episodes
1998 The Jump Peter McNulty 2 episodes
1998–2002 The Bill Jezzo / Jason Barrett 3 episodes
1999 Coronation Street Lee Sankey 5 episodes
2000 Forgive and Forget John Television film
2001 Band of Brothers Sgt. Myron "Mike" Ranney 2 episodes
2002 Flesh and Blood Eddie Television film
2004 Top Buzzer Lee 10 episodes
2005 M.I.T.: Murder Investigation Team Jason Phelps "Episode No.2.3"
2005 Last Rights Steve Miniseries
2005 Empire Bazzer Miniseries
2006–2007 The Innocence Project Andrew Lucas 6 episodes
2008 The Passion Barabbas 3 episodes
2008 Occupation Danny Ferguson 3 episodes
2008 The Street Shay Ryan 2 episodes
Nominated — RTS Award for Best Actor
2010 This Is England '86 Andrew "Combo" Gascoigne 4 episodes
2010–2014 Boardwalk Empire Al Capone 36 episodes
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series
2011 This Is England '88 Andrew "Combo" Gascoigne 2 episodes
2011 Walk like a Panther Mark Bolton 1 episode
2012 Accused Tony Episode: "Tracie's Story"
2012 Parade's End Vincent Macmaster 5 episodes
2012 Good Cop Noel Finch 4 episodes
2013 Playhouse Presents Len Episode: "The Call Out"
2015 This Is England '90 Andrew "Combo" Gascoigne 3 episodes
Nominated—British Academy Television Award for Best Actor
2016 The Secret Agent Chief Inspector Heat 3 episodes
2016 The Watchman Carl Television film
2017 Decline and Fall Philbrick 3 episodes
2017 Taboo Atticus 8 episodes
2017 Little Boy Blue Detective Superintendent Dave Kelly 4 episodes
2018 Save Me Fabio "Melon" Melonzola 6 episodes
2018 Action Team Gavril Episode: "Mind Games"
2019 Line of Duty John Corbett Series 5
2019 The Virtues Joseph 4 episodes
2019 A Christmas Carol Jacob Marley Miniseries
2020 White House Farm DCI Taff Jones
TBA The North Water Captain Brownlee

Music videos

Year Title Artist
2006 "When the Sun Goes Down" Arctic Monkeys
2007 "Fluorescent Adolescent" Arctic Monkeys
2008 "I Remember" Deadmau5 ft. Kaskade
2010 "Unloveable" Babybird
2017 "You're in Love with a Psycho" Kasabian
2018 "Finger on the Trigger" Gazelle
2019 "Wandering Star" Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds


  1. Before 1 April 1974, Kirkby was in Lancashire and not Merseyside.


  1. Arnstrong, Stephen (27 October 2019), "Stephen Graham interview: The teetotal actor on playing an alcoholic in The Virtues, his failed suicide bid, and playing a mobster in Scorsese’s epic The Irishman", The Times.
  2. Barkham, Patrick (30 June 2009). "'Gizza job, CBeebies'". The Guardian. Retrieved 30 April 2018.
  3. Cline, Rich (22 April 2007). "Shane Meadows discusses his most personal film to date, which is saying something". Shadows on the Wall. Retrieved 30 April 2018. Stephen Graham, who plays Combo, he has a mixed-race heritage. He has a Swedish grandmother, a fully Jamaican grandfather [...]
  4. Kermode, Jennie (23 February 2007), "Racism and rights of passage: Actor Stephen Graham discusses his role in this year's most talked-about British film, This Is England", Eye For Film.
  5. McAlpine, Fraser (10 May 2009). "Deadmau5 & Kaskade - 'I Remember'". BBC. Retrieved 30 April 2018.
  6. Banduk, Gazelle. "Gazelle - Finger On The Trigger" via YouTube.
  7. Munn, Patrick (13 September 2012). "BBC One Orders Follow Up To Christmas Comedy 'Lapland', Stephen Graham's Role Recast". TV Wise. Retrieved 30 April 2018.
  8. "Being Eileen". BBC. Retrieved 30 April 2018.
  10. Marlow, Lee; Smith, Daniel (20 February 2018). "Meet Stephen Graham, the Hollywood star who lives in a Leicestershire village". Leicester Mercury. Retrieved 30 April 2018.
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