Sam Neill

  • 18 February 2005

Date of birth

14th September, 1947







Sam Neill Admits Auditioning For James Bond Was Like A "Bad Dream"

By Daniel Falconer in Movies / TV / Theatre on 11 March 2018

Sam Neill

The actor is happy to have missed out on the role of 007.

Best known for his roles in films such as 'Jurassic Park' and 'Dirty Deeds', actor Sam Neill could have had a very different career if one particular audition for a role he never really wanted actually went well. Asked by his agent to go to the call for an actor to replace Roger Moore in the James Bond film series, Neill would lose out on the job to Pierce Brosnan - who had to then forfeit the role because of his connections to a television series - but it's not something Neill regrets.

Image caption Sam Neill once auditioned for the role of James Bond

Neill and Brosnan were up against eventual role winner Timothy Dalton when it came to replacing Moore following his final Bond film 'A View To A Kill', and whilst Neill impressed some of those working behind-the-scenes, series producer Albert Broccoli didn't think he was the right man for the job.

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The Commuter Trailer

Every working day for the last ten years, insurance salesman Michael MacCauley has gotten the same commuter train. By now he's become quite familiar with his fellow passengers; the same faces, the same conversations, the same routine. Only the journey he's about to take is going to be far from the monotonous trip he's used to.

A new face shows up, taking her seat opposite Michael. She introduces herself as Joanna; an expert in the study of human behaviour, which she describes as primarily answering the question: What kind of person are you?

To the bewilderment of Michael, she proposes an experiment. Michael gets $75,000 in cash if he can locate the person on the train who doesn't belong there. She appears to know a lot more about him than any other stranger might and in the end he accepts her proposition.

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Thor: Ragnarok Trailer

With his friends and his hammer, Thor is virtually unbeatable by any creature in the known universe. But what about when he doesn't have either of those things? It only takes a run-in with afterlife goddess Hela for his hammer to be destroyed, apparently beyond repair. And when he is kidnapped by her people and taken to the planet Sakaar, he has no choice but to enter into a gladiator match to save the people of Asgard from Ragnarök; the fate of total destruction. To his initial delight, and to the confusion of everyone in the arena, his opponent turns out to be none other than the Incredible Hulk. But when he realises that this Hulk is hell-bent on destroying him, he realises that he has no choice but to fight his supposed friend to the death.

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MindGamers: One Thousand Minds Connected (Live) Trailer Trailer

Just how far can human scientific advancements go? That's the question in this intense story about a group of quantum theory students who manage to create a single unified network in the ether connecting all human minds. When they realise that, through quantum mechanics, motor function can also be transferred to other brains, they believe it to be the start of true intellectual freedom. This isn't the kind of discovery they want to profit from, however, and share it with the world in a bid to create equality between all men and women. Unfortunately, the meeting of technology with the brain has its risks - indeed, they are about to realise that this new advancement can be used for other, more nefarious purposes by powerful people: mind control.

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Tommy's Honour Trailer

Tommy Morris is an expert golfer who learned the sport from his father; the greens-keeper at The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews and a club maker by occupation. Despite Tommy's skill, he is still dismissed by club members for his own social standing. Not content with career prospects as a caddy, however, Tommy invites townsfolk to watch him play on his own green and soon becomes a local legend. His father is less pleased about this. A man who prides himself on knowing his place in the hierarchy, he is embarrassed by Tommy's insistence at defying unwritten social rules which comes to a head when he falls in love with a woman a class below him.

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'Jurassic World' Sequel Inspired By 'Jurassic Park' Quotations, Director Colin Trevorrow Reveals

By Elinor Cosgrave in Lifestyle / Showbiz on 22 September 2015

Jurassic Park Chris Pratt Jeff Goldblum Sam Neill

‘Jurassic World’ director Colin Trevorrow discusses the future of the franchise.

Colin Trevorrow, the director and co-writer of the summer blockbuster Jurassic World, shared the inspiration for the film’s sequel in a recent podcast. 39-year-old Trevorrow is currently co-writing (along with Derek Connolly) and producing the sequel to Jurassic World. A quotation by Jeff Goldblum’s character, Ian Malcolm, from the 1993 film Jurassic Park is where Trevorrow’s inspiration came from.

Colin Trevorrow at the L.A. premiere of Jurassic World in June 2015.

Read More: Jurassic World Director Colin Trevorrow Confirmed For Star Wars: Episode IX.

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Sam Neill and Aaron Paul - Arqiva British Academy Television Awards held at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane - Arrivals. - London, United Kingdom - Sunday 18th May 2014

A Long Way Down Review

By Rich Cline


With a darkly serious theme and a corny rom-com filmmaking approach, this film never quite comes together into something meaningful. The characters are full of possibilities, and the story catches the imagination, but director Pascal Chaumeil (Heartbreaker) never seems sure whether he's making a black comedy or an emotional drama.

It starts on New Year's Eve in London, as disgraced TV host Martin (Pierce Brosnan) decides to jump off a tower block. But he's interrupted by the arrival of the timid Maureen (Toni Collette), who is followed by the fiery Jess (Imogen Poots) and the secretive J.J. (Aaron Paul). Together, these four lost souls make a pact to stay alive for six more weeks until Valentine's Day, the next popular suicide date in the calendar. But their story leaks to the press, capitalising on Martin's notoriety and the fact that Jess is the daughter of a high-profile politician (Sam Neill). So they decide to escape to the sunshine for some peace.

Instead of playing this out as a brittle exploration of identity and societal expectations, the filmmakers opt for a romantic-comedy formula, with a four-way friendship standing in for the usual love story. This makes the film feel like a substandard Richard Curtis movie, constantly drifting into maudlin sentimentality. And director Chaumeil encourages the cast to overplay every scene, which makes it tricky to believe any of the characters.

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A Long Way Down Trailer

Martin Sharp is a disgraced TV presenter whose ambitions and family have been destroyed by his own stupid mistakes. Now feeling deeply lost and humiliated he finds that the only way to proceed is to commit suicide by leaping from the top of a London skyscraper aptly known as Topper's Tower. However, as he prepares to end his life on New Year's Eve, he is interrupted by Maureen, a middle-aged single mother also looking for a way out. Not only that, but the pair are soon joined by angst-ridden teenager Jess who also wants to jump from the roof, and then bemused pizza delivery boy and failed musician JJ after that. The four form a bond and sign a pact that they will not kill themselves before Valentine's Day in a bid to help each other get their lives back on track. When they decide to share their unusual story with the rest of the world, they become media stars and finally start to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

'A Long Way Down' is a heartwarming comedy drama based on the bestselling novel by Nick Hornby ('About A Boy', 'High Fidelity'). The screenplay has been adapted by Jack Thorne ('The Fades', 'This Is England') and the movie directed by Pascal Chaumeil ('Heartbreaker', 'Un plan parfait'). 'A Long Way Down' is due for release on March 21st 2014.

A Long Way Down Movie Review - Click here to read

Sam Neill - London Film Festival screening of Locke at the Odeon West End Leicester Square - London, United Kingdom - Friday 18th October 2013

Sam Neill - BFI London Film Festival: 'Locke' premiere held at the Odeon West End - Arrivals - London, United Kingdom - Friday 18th October 2013

Escape Plan Review

By Rich Cline


You know not to expect something deep and meaningful when a movie stars Stallone and Schwarzenegger, and indeed this is pretty much what we expect: a slick thriller that's utterly preposterous but not quite stupid. But the premise has a certain idiotic charm to it, and there are just enough clever touches to keep our brains engaged.

Stallone plays brilliant security expert Breslin, whose job entails being thrown into maximum-security prisons so he can find the weakness in the system. Clearly unbothered by being beaten and brutalised by guards and inmates, Breslin is backed up by a support crew (Ryan and Jackson) and his business partner (D'Onofrio) back in the office. But now the CIA wants Breslin to check out its new top-secret enemy combatant lock-down. To do this, Breslin must go off the grid. And when he realises that the evil warden Hobbes (Caviezel) isn't playing ball, he teams up with brilliant scientist inmate Rottmayer (Schwarzenegger) to, yes, plan an escape.

As the story develops we get the feeling that the screenwriters sat around thinking of ways they could make this prison increasingly impossible to believe. Indeed, one mid-film twist is so incredible that it actually makes us admire the writers' audacity. Arthouse director Halstrom gleefully indulges in all of this silliness, keeping the imagery sharp and cool while name-checking pretty much every cliche of both prison and heist movies. There's even a bit of political context in the way a private contractor is abusing the system to profit from the War on Terror.

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Peaky Blinders - Clips

Tommy Shelby is the ruthless and dangerous leader of Birmingham's Peaky Blinders gang; a group of criminals known for sewing razorblades into their caps. It's set on the brink of the 1920s following the war, amidst all the problems that post-war life brought - from communist revolutionaries to the start of an ever-growing economic problem. The Shelby family get through the economic crisis their own way; theft, illegal gambling and violence, but just how much is the British government going to put up with? With this kind of lawlessness going on around the streets of Birmingham, the chance of better future for the country looks slim. When Chief Inspector Campbell arrives in the city from Belfast, Tommy begins to wonder if he's finally met his match, though what he's most unprepared for are the dilemmas that the beautiful Grace Burgess will bring.

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Sam Neill and David Wenham - Sam Neill, David Wenham, Hollywood, California - Los Angeles Premiere of Legend of the Guardians The Owls of Ga'Hoole held at the Grauman's Chinese Theatre Sunday 19th September 2010

Sam Neill Monday 14th September 2009 Sam Neill leaving a party - The Toronto International Film Festival