Who is Sam Neill?
Sam Neill, actual name Nigel John Dermot, is a New Zealand actor, director, producer, and writer. He was born in Omagh, Northern Ireland, on September 14, 1947.
The Longford Lyell Award, the AACTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role, the New Zealand Film Award, and the Logie Award for Most Outstanding Actor have all been bestowed upon Neill. Sam has also been nominated for three Golden Globes and two Primetime Emmys. He has three children and one stepchild and resides in Alexandra, New Zealand.
|Full Name||Sam Neill|
|Profession||Actor, director, producer, and writer|
|Series Played||Landfall, Ashes, Sleeping Dogs, Jut Out of Reach, The Journalist, My Brilliant Career, Omen III: The Final Conflict, Possession, and many more|
Birthday and Zodiac
|Age (As in 2022)||74 years old|
|Date of Birth||September 14, 1947|
|Birth Place||Omagh, Northern Ireland|
|School/University||Christ’s College, Christchurch|
|Estimated Net Worth (As in 2021)||$18 million|
Family and Relationship
|Wife||Lisa Harrow (M. 1978–1989), Noriko Watanabe (M. 1989–2017)|
|Children||Elena Neill, Tim Neill|
Sam Neill Biography TimeLine
Sam Neill is a celebrated actor from New Zealand known for his work in film and television. He has appeared in numerous critically acclaimed productions, including “Jurassic Park,” “The Piano,” and “Peaky Blinders.” With a career spanning more than four decades, Neill has become a respected figure in the entertainment industry. Throughout his career, Sam Neill has been recognized with numerous awards and nominations, including a Golden Globe nomination for his role in “One Against the Wind.” He has also been awarded the New Zealand Order of Merit and the Australian Centenary Medal for his services to the entertainment industry. In addition to his acting work, Neill is an avid winemaker and owns a vineyard in New Zealand.
September 14, 1947: Sam Neill is born in Omagh, Northern Ireland.
1954: Neill’s family emigrates to New Zealand, where they settle in Dunedin.
1964-1965: Neill attends the University of Canterbury, where he studies English literature and political science.
1968-1970: Neill trains at the New Zealand National Drama School in Wellington.
1975: Neill lands his first major acting role in the film “Landfall.”
1977: Neill stars in the television series “The Sullivans,” which becomes one of the most popular shows in Australian history.
1981: Neill appears in the film “My Brilliant Career,” which earns critical acclaim and launches his international career.
1984: Neill stars in the film “The Bounty” alongside Mel Gibson and Anthony Hopkins.
1985: Neill stars in the film “Plenty” alongside Meryl Streep.
1990: Neill stars in the blockbuster film “Jurassic Park,” which becomes a massive commercial success.
1993: Neill stars in the film “The Piano,” which earns critical acclaim and wins multiple awards, including three Oscars.
1994: Neill stars in the film “Sirens” alongside Elle Macpherson and Hugh Grant.
1999: Neill stars in the film “Bicentennial Man” alongside Robin Williams.
2002-2004: Neill stars in the television series “The Tudors,” playing Cardinal Thomas Wolsey.
2012: Neill stars in the television series “Alcatraz.”
2013: Neill stars in the television series “Peaky Blinders” as the antagonist, Inspector Chester Campbell.
2015: Neill stars in the television series “And Then There Were None,” based on the Agatha Christie novel.
2017: Neill stars in the film “Thor: Ragnarok” as the character Odin.
In 1947, Neill was born in Omagh, Northern Ireland, to parents Priscilla Beatrice and Dermot Neill. His father was a third-generation New Zealander, while his mother was an Englishwoman. His great-grandfather, Percy Neill, emigrated from Belfast, Ireland, to Dunedin, New Zealand, in 1860. Sam was the son of a wine trader who imported French wine.
Neill’s father was stationed in Northern Ireland with the Royal Irish Fusiliers at his birth. Neill was born in the United Kingdom and Ireland but identified principally as a New Zealander.
His family relocated to New Zealand when he was seven years old, and he attended Christ’s College, a boarding school in Christchurch. Because there were so many other students named Nigel at school, he changed his name to Sam.
Sam Neill had no intention of pursuing a profession in cinema as a youngster. Instead, he considered entering the army. He also struggled with stammering as a youngster. Following high school, Sam enrolled at the University of Canterbury and Victoria University to study English Literature. Sam began performing from his high school in Canterbury.
Neil’s debut film was The City of Nowhere, which aired on New Zealand television (1971). He followed it up with a short film, The Water Cycle (1972), and the television film Hunt’s Duffer (1973). Telephone Etiquette is a film Neill wrote and directed for the New Zealand National Film Unit (1974). He also starred in the film Landfall (1976).
The film Sleeping Dogs (1977), Neill’s breakout performance in New Zealand, was the first local film extensively viewed abroad.
Neill travelled to Australia, where he appeared as a guest star on the television show The Sullivans. He played the romantic male lead opposite Judy Davis in My Brilliant Career (1979), a huge international success. He starred in some lesser-known Australian films, including The Journalist (1979), Just Out of Reach (1979), and Attack Force Z (1981), as well as television shows such as Young Ramsay and Lucinda Brayford.
In 1981, he had his first major worldwide part as Damien Thorn, the devil’s son, in Omen III: The Final Conflict; the same year, he performed an excellent lead role in Andrzej Zurawski’s cult film Possession. Following that, he has been in several foreign films, television dramas, and comedies.
Neill has been married twice. From 1980 through 1989, Neill was in a relationship with actress Lisa Harrow. From their previous marriage to actress Lisa, they had a son named Tim (born in 1983). Neill married make-up artist Noriko Watanabe in 1989, and they had one daughter, Elena (born in 1991). In early 2018, Neill was dating Australian political writer Laura Tingle after divorcing Watanabe in 2017.
Maiko Spencer, Watanabe’s first marriage’s daughter, is his stepdaughter. He fathered a son, Andrew, in his early 20s, who was adopted by someone else. Neill stated in 2014 that the two went seeking for one another and that their reunion was “much more grown-up” than imagined.
Honours and Awards
In the 1991 Queen’s Birthday Honours, Neill was named an Officer of the Order of the British Empire for his services as an actor. He was made a Distinguished Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit in the 2007 New Year Honours (DCNZM). When knighthoods were reinstated in the New Zealand royal honours system in 2009, people who had DCNZM or higher awards were offered the option of converting them to knighthoods. Neill opted not to do so, claiming that the title of Sir was “much too great, by far.”
In 2002, the University of Canterbury awarded an honorary Doctor of Letters to Neill. He was one of only 20 live persons to win an Arts Foundation of New Zealand Icon Award in 2020.
Did you know?
- Nigel John Dermot is Sam Neill’s actual name.
- He was born in Omagh, Northern Ireland, on September 14, 1947.
- His net worth is believed to be up to $18 million.
- Neill has been married twice.
- He stands 6 feet tall.