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Michael Sheen — things you didn't know about the actor

Welsh actor Michael Sheen.
Welsh actor Michael Sheen. (Image credit: Getty Images)

Welsh star Michael Sheen has been on our screens a lot lately, appearing opposite David Tennant in Good Omens and Staged. He's also appeared in Fox's Prodigal Son, and even took on the iconic role of Chris Tarrant in ITV's Quiz.

Plus, he's starred in films like Frost/Nixon, Nocturnal Animals, and The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn. But how much do you know about Michael Sheen?

1. Michael Sheen was offered a spot on a football team

Believe it or not, Michael Sheen was offered a place on the Arsenal youth football team when he was 12. Sadly though he was forced to turn it down as his father thought he was "too young" to play and they didn't want to relocate.

However, he later said he was grateful for his parents’ decision, as the chances of forging a professional football career were "so slim".

2. He's played a British Prime Minister three times

But did you know Michael Sheen has played former British Prime Minister Tony Blair three times? The first time he stepped into the role was in Peter Morgan's The Deal, a TV movie about his political union with the man who succeeded him as PM, Gordon Brown (played by David Morrissey). 

Then, in Morgan's 2006 biopic The Queen he starred opposite Helen Mirren as Tony Blair encourages the Queen to rethink her public response to Princess Diana's death.

Three years later, he reprised the role again in The Special Relationship, another of Peter Morgan's TV movies about Tony Blair's bond with President George W. Bush (played by Dennis Quaid).

Michael Sheen

Michael Sheen with writer Peter Morgan and actor Dennis Quaid at the 2010 premier of The Special Relationship. (Image credit: Getty Images)

3. He started out on the stage before TV and film

Before graduating from RADA in 1991 with a BA in Acting, Michael's first role was When She Danced at the Globe Theatre while he was still in his third year of study. The following year, he starred opposite Kate Beckinsale in Romeo and Juliet, where he received critical acclaim and a MEN Theatre Award nomination.

Michael has previously said that he feels “slightly more at home” on the stage, and has a number of iconic roles under his belt. 

Michael Sheen

Michael in Faith Healer at The Old Vic in London in 2020. (Image credit: Getty Images)

4. Michael is also a director

In 2001, Michael Sheen directed Passion in Port Talbot. He starred in it too, as it followed Michael and the hundreds of people from all over Port Talbot who participated in a modern retelling of the tale of the crucifixion. 

The documentary was split into three parts and aired on BBC1, exploring how the actor influenced this ambitious piece of theatre.

5. Michael Sheen is involved in a lot of charity work

When he's not performing, Michael's also heavily involved with lots of charities. He has taken part in Soccer Aid for UNICEF in 2012, is an ambassador of the environmental charity Keep Wales Tidy, and is a patron of Scene & Heard, NSPCC's Child's Voice Appeal, Healing The Wounds, and The Relationships Centre.

Michael Sheen

Michael playing in the 2012 Soccer Aid with Mike Myers and Aston Merrygold. (Image credit: Getty Images)

6. He once worked at a fast food restaurant

Like many of us, Michael once worked in a fast food joint to support his career. He spent time working at a Welsh fast-food restaurant called Burger Master before he moved to London to start training at RADA.

7. He's good friends with David Tennant in real life

Given their on-screen chemistry in Staged and Good Omens, it's hardly surprising that the two actors are good friends off-screen too. Speaking to The Times, Michael explained how Good Omens brought them together. He said: "That period was longer than anything I’ve done before in my life. That’s when David and I really got to know each other.”

Michael Sheen's Fact File

Answers to the most frequently asked questions about the actor....

How old is he?

Michael Sheen is 51 years old. His birthday is 5 February 1969.

Is he married? 

No, Michael Sheen is currently not married. He has been in a relationship with Anna Lundberg since 2019.

Does he have children?

Michael has two children; Lily Mo Sheen and Lyra Sheen.

Where was he born?

Michael Sheen was born in Newport, Wales.

How tall is he?

Michael Sheen is 1.78 m tall.

Twitter: @michaelsheen

We work hard to ensure that all information is correct. Facts that change over time, such as age, will be correct, to the best of our knowledge, at the time of the last article update.