The characters Liam Connor on Coronation Street and Thomas Barrow in the British historic drama television series Downton Abbey, which aired on ITV in the UK in 2010 and on PBS in the US in 2011, are Rob James-Collier, a British actor and model. Rob has starred in several other television series and films including Shameless, Down to Earth, Perfect Day, Casualty, Moving On, Love Life, A Christmas Star, Spike Island, The Level, and many others.
He was born on 23 September 1976 in the city of Salford in the Manchester area. His birth name was Robert Collier before he changed it to Robert James-Collier to comply with the rules of the British Actors’ Equity Association (now simply known as Equity).
He attended Roman Catholic St. Patrick’s High School, Eccles, Greater Manchester, and later obtained two degrees; one from the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology and the other from the University of Huddersfield.
Rob actually came to the action by chance. According to him, he never had a game plan for his career because he got involved in it rather ad hoc.
His first attempt to act as a favor for a friend who asked him to stand in for an actor who didn’t show up for a movie shoot. With this little experience that impressed him, he began to take acting lessons when he was released from work.
In 2000, with no actual acting experience, Rob auditioned for the BBC One television series “Down to Earth” and was cast as the female pub owner after Denise Welch and Ricky Tomlinson realized his potential. In 2006 he was cast as Stud in the third series of Shameless, episode 5, called Rob Collier. In the same year, he also appeared in New Street Law.
Counting on these works, he began appearing at the Coronation Street of the British Soap Opera as Liam Connor and remained with the soap until early 2008, when he announced in an interview that he would leave the series, but plans to return in the future. However, in June it was reported that the character he played, Liam Connor, was killed in the soap and that three residents were under investigation for this crime.
After he left Coronation Street, Rob James-Collier was given a lead role as Thomas Barrow in the Downton Abbey television series from the British History Period, which was broadcast from 2010 to 2015. He also starred in the stage version of Calendar Girls in the West End, directed by Nigel Cole. In 2016 he starred in the British crime drama The Level as Kevin O’Dowd, followed by his leading role in the British horror film The Ritual as Hutch. In addition, the actor has also starred in several other films, including Perfect Day, Casualty, Moving On, Love Life, A Christmas Star, Spike Island, and many others.
Besides acting Rob is also active as a model. The handsome Brit has modeled for Argos and has appeared in their Autumn/Winter 2007 and Spring/Summer 2008 catalogs.
He is a two-time winner of the British Soap Awards for the sexiest man, and Rob James-Collier has also won the “Best Exit” at the British Soap Awards 2009 and the “Sexiest Male” and “Best Newcomer” at the Inside Soap Awards 2007.
Is Rob James-Collier Married and who is His Wife, and Son?
Rob James-Collier is not married but has a girlfriend, Lauren Chandiram, with whom he has a son; Milo James-Collier. Her son was born in 2010. The couple has already been together, but they have yet to talk about tying the knots as husband and wife. Rob describes Lauren as a great support for him.
Other Lesser Known Facts About Rob James-Collier
- His parents were so keen to give them an academic background that they put his siblings through university.
- He loves big sharks and has dived in South Africa with big white sharks in cages.
- Rob’s favorite movie is Jaws, and if he was a superhero he would be Captain Lethargic.
- He tries to read one classic book a month and loves everything that is old: books, buildings, people, etc.
- To Kissing co-actor Charlie Cox in Downton Abbey, Rob says it’s easier to kiss a man than to kiss a woman in a movie. In his opinion, when you kiss a woman you want to make it look and feel real, and at the same time, you want to be angry about overdoing it, which could lead to you taking advantage of her. But when he kisses a man, such thoughts don’t occur to him, except that he is more afraid of it looking fake, so he just concentrates on making it look real.