Paul Bettany, born May 27, 1971, is an English actor. He’s known for his voice role as J.A.R.V.I.S. and as the Vision in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, specifically the movies Iron Man, Iron Man 2, The Avengers, Iron Man 3, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War. Take a look below for 30 more fun and interesting facts about Paul Bettany.
1. Bettany first came to the attention of mainstream audiences when he appeared in the British movie Gangster No. 1, and director Brian Helgeland’s movie A Knight’s Tale.
2. He has gone on to appear in a wide variety of movies, including A Beautiful Mind, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, Dogville, Wimbledon and the adaption of the novel The Da Vinci Code.
3. He has been nominated for various awards, including the BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role and a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture.
4. Bettany is married to American actress, Jennifer Connelly, with whom he has two children.
5. His most commercially successful movies have been The Avengers, which grossed over $1.5 billion, its sequel Avengers: Age of Ultron, which grossed over $1.4 billion, Iron Man 3, which grossed over $1.2 billion, Captain America: Civil war, which grossed over $1.1 billion, Avengers: Infinity War, and The Da Vinci Code, which grossed $758 million.
6. He was born in Shepherd’s Bush, west London, the son of Anne, a stage singer, theater teacher and stage manager, and Thane Bettany, a dancer, actor and drama teacher.
7. Initially, Bettany was raised Roman Catholic, although his church attendance drifted after his confirmation.
8. Later on, Bettany attended Methodist and Church of England congregations with his father, as the latter experimented with different Christian branches. However, Bettany eventually became an atheist.
9. While his father taught at the all-girls boarding school Queenswood School, near Hatfield, Hertfordshire, the family lived on the campus.
10. When Bettany was 16 years old, his brother Matthew died at the age of 8 after falling onto concrete from a tennis pavilion roof at Queenswood.
11. After his brother’s death, Bettany dropped out of school, left home, and went to live on his own as a street performer in London.
12. While in London, Bettany lived in a small flat and earned money by playing his guitar in the streets as a busker. After two years, he found a new job in a home for the elderly.
13. After working at a home for the elderly for a year, Bettany enrolled at the Drama Center in London.
14. He developed laryngitis after filming A Knight’s Tale because of all the yelling he had to do as Geoffrey Chaucer.
15. He acted for a year with the Royal Shakespeare Company.
16. Bettany has a stepson named Kai Dugan.
17. Bettany apparently turned down the role of the Tooth Fairy in Red Dragon in favor of a much more poorly paid role in Lars von Trier’s Dogville.
18. He has appeared in many theater productions, debuting in Stephen Daldry’s production of An Inspectors Calls, grabbing the American film industry’s attention in Joe Penhall’s Love and Understanding. He has also appeared in One More Waster Year and Stranger’s House.
19. He won the Evening Standard Film Award 2001 for Best Supporting Actor for his role as Geoffrey Chaucer in A Knight’s Tale.
20. Writer and director Brian Helgeland wrote the role of Chaucer in A Knight’s Tale specifically for Bettany. He “refused” to do the movie without him. The production companies didn’t think Bettany was known well enough, but Helgeland thought that if he backed down on his choice of Bettany, he would have to back down on everything else.
21. He had to wear a wig for The Da Vinci Code because, when they bleached his hair, the bleach burned bleeding holes in his head.
22. He gave up smoking in 2005 after seeing his two year old son, Stellan, imitating him with a pen.
23. His son’s godfather is the actor Charlie Condou, who starred with him in Dead Babies and Euston Road.
24. Bettany was the first choice to portray King George VI in The King’s Speech but after he turned it down Colin Firth, who went on to win the Best Actor Oscar for his performance, was cast instead.
25. Bettany was considered for the role of Lord Asriel in The Golden Compass. Some reports claimed that Nicole Kidman was eager to star in the movie as she wished to work with him again, having previously co-starred with him in Dogville.
26. He turned down the starring role of Dr. William Masters in Masters of Sex that went to Michael Sheen.
27. On January 1, 2003, Bettany married American actress Jennifer Connelly in Scotland. They first met when they starred together in A Beautiful Mind.
28. Bettany and Connelly didn’t become a couple until some time after the movie, as both were in other relationships during filming.
29. Jennifer Connelly was Bettany’s childhood crush since he first saw her as a teenager in the movie Labyrinth.
30. The September 11 terrorist attacks heightened his feeling that he should act on his feelings for her, and when he reached her after trying to contact her for two days, he asked her to marry him.