James Purefoy Height, Weight, Age, Body Statistics


Born Name

James Brian Mark Purefoy

Nick Name


James Purefoy at Comic-Con 2012
James Purefoy at Comic-Con 2012 (Genevieve / Flickr / CC BY 2.0)

Sun Sign


Born Place

Taunton, Somerset, England




James Purefoy went to the boarding school, Sherborne School. But he left Sherborne with just one O-Level and later got enrolled in a night school to earn 11 O-Levels.

He then started studying at the Brooklands College in Weybridge and left after completing his A-Levels.

He got enrolled at the Central School of Speech and Drama to study acting.


Actor, producer, and director


  • Father – Anthony Chetwynd
  • Mother – Shirley Purefoy
  • Siblings – Unknown


James Purefoy is represented by

  • London based Independent Talent Group Ltd.
  • Beverly Hills based Brillstein Entertainment Partners (Talent Management Company)




6 ft 1 in or 185 cm


85 kg or 187.5 lbs

Girlfriend / Spouse

James Purefoy has dated

  1. Fay Ripley (1983-1994) – James started going out with actress Fay Ripley in 1983. They had met on the sets of the college production of Romeo and Juliet. They were cast in the title roles and while playing reel couple, they eventually fell in love. They dated for about 11 years before deciding that they need to head in separate directions.
  2. Holly Aird (1995-2002) – Shortly after his split from Ripley, he started dating actress Holly Aird. Some tabloids claimed that the start of his relationship with Aird overlapped with his relationship with Ripley. They got married in 1996 in a private ceremony. In 1997, she gave birth to their son, Joseph. After their marriage, they started living in Hammersmith neighborhood of London. In May 2002, he moved out of their home and got officially divorced soon after.
  3. Gwyneth Paltrow (2002) – After the collapse of his marriage, he found solace in his relationship with American actress Gwyneth Paltrow. They had first met after Paltrow had temporarily moved to London to make her West End debut in the play Proof at the Donmar Warehouse. It was reported that they had hit it off instantly and he had asked her out on a date, which eventually extended to strings of dates.
  4. Piper Perabo (2004) – The British tabloids linked Purefoy with actress Piper Perabo in 2004. They had grown close while shooting for the movie, George and the Dragon.
  5. Mariana Tosca (2006) – James was rumored to be dating producer and social activist Mariana Tosca in 2006.
  6. Sienna Miller (2011) – In early months of 2011, it was claimed that James was having an affair with actress Sienna Miller. They had fallen for each other while working in Trevor Nunn’s critically-acclaimed production of Flare Path.
  7. Jessica Adams (2007-Present) – James started dating art historian, director, and producer, Jessica Adams in 2007. In 2012, she gave birth to their first daughter, Rose. They got married in a low-key ceremony held in Middle Chinnock, Somerset in July 2014. They welcomed two sons – Ned and Kit, into their family in 2017.
James Purefoy at Comic-Con San Diego International 2013
James Purefoy at Comic-Con San Diego International 2013 (Thibault / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0)

Race / Ethnicity


Hair Color


Eye Color

Dark Brown

Sexual Orientation


Distinctive Features

  • High forehead
  • Square jawline

Brand Endorsements

James Purefoy hasn’t done endorsement work for any brand.


His religious views aren’t known.

James Purefoy during Ironclad screening at Rochester Castle in 2011
James Purefoy during Ironclad screening at Rochester Castle in 2011 (The Local People Photo Archive / Flickr / CC BY 2.0)

Best Known For

  • Being cast in the role of Mark Antony in the historical drama TV series, Rome.
  • Having played the role of Joe Carroll in the drama TV series, The Following. He was cast in the lead role along with Kevin Spacey.
  • Having played the title role in the action adventure movie, Solomon Kane.

First Film

In 1995, he made his theatrical film debut in the drama movie, Feast of July.

First TV Show

In 1990, James Purefoy made his first TV show appearance in Illuminations episode of the drama TV series, Coasting.

Personal Trainer

James isn’t too particular about regularly hitting the gym. However, when he does have to prepare for a certain role, he gives his everything in the gym. For example, to prepare for the role of the medieval warrior in Solomon Kane, he was getting up at 5:45 am and working out in the gym till 8 am.

It was followed by 4 hours of long sword-fighting sessions and then, a horse-riding session of the similar duration. In the evening, he went for a long run.

He also makes changes to his diet as per his role requirements. While preparing for Solomon Kane (2010), he didn’t touch a drop of alcohol. To prepare for the role of Templar Knight in Ironclad (2011), he was put on a protein-rich diet that required him to eat a lot of meat.

In general, while on a diet, he makes sure that he stays away from refined flour. Therefore, bread and pasta becomes strictly off the table. He also stops eating rice and consuming anything that has high white sugar content.

James Purefoy Favorite Things

  • Cheese – Montgomery, Vacherin, and Stilton
  • Things – Fresh juice, Malt whiskey, Real ale (Otter), a pint of prawns, his armchair, and the view from One Tree Hill, over the Somerset Levels
  • Place in the British Isles – Somerset levels
  • Greatest Travel Luxury – 18-year-old bottle of Jameson Irish Whiskey
  • Best Hotel – Riad El Fenn in Marrakech
  • Walk – Anywhere on the Isle of Skye
  • Swim – In the rivers and streams in Yosemite National Park
  • Ride – On a well-trained film horse over Exmoor (Moorlands in South West England)
  • Drive – The Pacific Coast Highway from Big Sur to Los Angeles, or the Westway home
  • Meal Abroad – Buffet by the pool at Hotel Punta Rossa in San Felice Circeo
  • City – Rome
  • Place in Somerset – Burrow Hill, just outside Kingsbury Episcopi, or Ham Hill
  • Music Genre – Rock
  • Music Bands – Kings of Convenience, Athlete, Lynard Skynard, AC/DC, and Led Zeppelin
  • Books – Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray, War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy, and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Brontë
  • Actor – Phillip Hoffman or Daniel Day-Lewis
  • Actress – Janet McTeer and Helen McCrory
  • Season – Spring
  • Jelly Baby Color – Purple
  • Soccer Club – Yeovil Town FC
SourceTelegraph, Independent, BBC, Wikipedia
James Purefoy talking about Solomon Kane in September 2009
James Purefoy talking about Solomon Kane in September 2009 (Bryan Chan / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0)

James Purefoy Facts

  1. In 1997, the British television magazine declared him the hunk of the year after conducting a poll.
  2. He had undertaken a screen test for the role of James Bond in 1995 release, GoldenEye. However, Pierce Brosnan managed to beat him in that role.
  3. He was signed up as the lead in the action drama V for Vendetta but he decided to walk out of the project due to his creative differences with the producers of the movie.
  4. After leaving school, he worked as a porter at Yeovil District Hospital. He also briefly worked on a pig farm.
  5. One of his earliest jobs included splitting a log for a local landowner. However, he was fired from the job after he was found asleep in the shed while at work.
  6. He decided to study acting while studying at Brooklands Technical College because he needed a third subject.
  7. After leaving drama school, he worked with the Royal Shakespeare Company for several years.
  8. His first ever acting gig was to play the role of Alan Strang in the touring production of Equus. He was 17 years old at that time.
  9. While studying in public school, he wasn’t the best of students and often used to get canned. However, he blames his teachers and outdated education process at the school for his academic failure as he points out that he managed to earn 11 O-Levels while studying at night school.
  10. Follow him on Twitter.

Featured Image by Thibault / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0


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