Simon Paul Adams
20 December 1966
|Died||5 April 2021 54) (aged|
Faversham, Kent, England
|Alma mater||St John's College, Cambridge|
Paul Ritter (born Simon Paul Adams; 20 December 1966 – 5 April 2021) was an English stage and screen actor. He had roles in films including Son of Rambow (2007), Quantum of Solace (2008), Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (2009), and The Eagle (2011), as well as television programmes including Friday Night Dinner (2011–2020), Vera ,The Hollow Crown , The Last Kingdom, and Chernobyl .
Ritter was born Simon Paul Adams on 20 December 1966 in Gravesend, Kent. née Mooney), was a school secretary. His family were Catholic and he had four older sisters. Adams attended Gravesend Grammar School where he acquired an A Level in Theatre Studies. He went on to study Modern Languages at St John's College, Cambridge.His father Ken Adams, a toolmaker, worked at various power stations; his mother Joan (
After graduating, he went to the Deutsches Schauspielhaus in Hamburg, Germany.Upon returning to the UK, he took up the stage name Ritter, of German origin. He took up this name because another Simon Adams was registered with the acting trade union, Equity and he admired a German actor with the surname Ritter.
Ritter studied alongside the actor Stephen Mangan and they later acted together in the 2009 play The Norman Conquests .
Ritter's screen work included roles in Nowhere Boy , the 2007 television serial Instinct ,the comedy drama Pulling and the role of Pistol in Henry IV, Part II and Henry V in BBC Two's cycle of William Shakespeare's history plays, The Hollow Crown ; The Daily Telegraph described Ritter as "an actor who is surely destined for greatness very soon. His Pistol conveyed perfectly the shock of a man who reluctantly had left behind the rowdy cheer of Eastcheap, and found himself in middle age contemplating the melancholy of a medieval autumn." Ritter also played comic actor Eric Sykes in Tommy Cooper: Not Like That, Like This and took a lead role in BBC One's 2014 serialised Cold War spy drama, The Game .
From 2005 to 2006, Ritter played Otis Gardiner in the original Royal National Theatre production of Helen Edmundson's Coram Boy , for which he was nominated for an Olivier Award.He was nominated for a Tony Award in 2009 for his role in The Norman Conquests . In 2012, he appeared as the protagonist's father in the stage version of Mark Haddon's novel The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time at the National Theatre and in 2013 as John Major in the premiere of Peter Morgan's The Audience .
From 2011 to 2020, Ritter starred as Martin Goodman in the Channel 4 comedy series, Friday Night Dinner .
In 1996, Ritter married his wife, Polly Radcliffe, a research fellow at King's College London.He lived in Faversham, Kent. He had two sons, Frank and Noah.
Ritter died of a brain tumour on 5 April 2021, aged 54, in his home, surrounded by his family.Long-time friend Stephen Mangan tweeted: "Trying to find a way to talk about Paul Ritter and struggling. My friend since we were students together. So much talent and it shone from him even as a teenager. I was so lucky to know him and lucky too to work with him many times over the years. Wonderful man." Fellow actors from Friday Night Dinner also paid tribute. Writing in The Guardian , Tamsin Greig said she was "eternally grateful" to have known Ritter. Simon Bird said he always aspired to be like him whilst Tom Rosenthal called him an "ultimate professional".
A tenth anniversary retrospective of Friday Night Dinner will air later in 2021.
|1992||The Bill – Overdue||Tony Walgrave|
|1995||National Achievement Day 1995||Beach|
|1999||G:MT Greenwich Mean Time||Drug Buyer|
|2000||The Nine Lives of Tomas Katz||Dave|
|2002||Esther Kahn||Alman, the photographer|
|2005||On a Clear Day||Mad Bob|
|2007||Son of Rambow||Geography Teacher|
|Hannibal Rising||Prisoner Louis|
|Waking the Dead||Alan Pierce||TV series (Series 6, episode 7: "Mask of Sanity")|
|2008||The Other Man||Guy|
|Quantum of Solace||Guy Haines|
|2009||Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince||Eldred Worple|
|2011–2020||Friday Night Dinner||Martin Goodman||Series regular, all 37 episodes|
|2011||Great Expectations||John Wemmick|
|Land Girls||Frank Tucker|
|2011–2013||Vera||Dr Billy Cartwright|
|2011||Eliminate: Archie Cookson||Ennis Miller|
|2012||Comedy Showcase||Jim Costello|
|Dirk Gently||Oliver Reynolds|
|Henry IV, Part II||Ancient Pistol|
|Henry V||Ancient Pistol|
|2014||The Bletchley Circle||Professor Masters||TV series (episode: "Blood on their hands – Part 2")|
|Tommy Cooper: Not Like That, Like This||Eric Sykes|
|Chasing Shadows||Leonard Vance|
|The Game||Bobby Waterhouse|
|Mapp and Lucia||Reverend Kenneth Bartlett|
|Suite Française||Monsieur Dubois|
|Plebs||Angelo||TV series (Series 2, episode: "The Baby")|
|2015–2018||No Offence||Randolph Miller||Series regular, all 21 episodes|
|2015||Top Coppers||Harry McCrane|
|The Last Kingdom||King Peredur||Season 1, episode 6|
|We're Doomed! The Dad's Army Story||Jimmy Perry|
|2016||Their Finest||Raymond Parfitt|
|Neil Gaiman's Likely Stories||Dr. Benham/Martyn/Mr. Alman|
|Inferno||CRC Tech Arbogast|
|2017||Urban Myths||Dave||episode: "Bob Dylan: Knockin' on Dave's Door"|
|Philip K. Dick's Electric Dreams||Franklyn|
|2017–2020||Cold Feet||Benjamin Stevens|
|Hang Ups||Werner Lienhard|
|2019||Resistance||General Ormonde Winter|
|The Capture||Marcus Levy|
|2019–2020||The Trial of Christine Keeler||Jeremy Hutchinson||Defence barrister of Christine Keeler|
|2021||You Look Nice: The True Story of Friday Night Dinner||Himself||Post-production, posthumous release|
|TBA||Operation Mincemeat||Bentley Purchase||Post-production, posthumous release|
|2006||Olivier Awards||Best Performance in a Supporting Role||Coram Boy||Nominated|
|2009||Tony Awards||Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play||The Norman Conquests||Nominated|
|2019||Online Film & Television Association||Best Ensemble in a Motion Picture or Limited Series|
Shared with entire cast
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