Sporting the kind of darkly mischievous good looks that often get him cast as randy, ne'er-do-well paramours, Rufus Sewell began his film career in the early '90s and soon emerged as one of England's most promising young actors. The son of an Australian animator who died when he was ten, Sewell was born in Twickenham, Middlesex, on October 29, 1967. He trained to become an actor at London's Central School of Speech and Drama, leaving the school after three years. After making a promising debut on the London stage with an award-winning performance in Making It Better, Sewell originated the role of Septimus Hodge in Tom Stoppard's Arcadia, which earned him a nomination for the prestigious Olivier Award. He also won acclaim on the other side of the Atlantic, winning Broadway's Theatre World Award for his performance in Translations.
In addition to his work on the stage, Sewell had been acting on both the large and small screen, making his film debut in 1991 with Twenty-One, in which he played Patsy Kensit's junkie boyfriend. In 1994 he caught the attention of American art house filmgoers with his role as a sweet-natured bus driver who becomes the object of Albert Finney's affections in A Man of No Importance; the same year, PBS viewers could see him star in the acclaimed adaptation of Middlemarch.