Cary Elwes (D.O.B- 26 October 1962) is an English actor, screenplay writer, and a bestselling novelist. He has acted in numerous movies and his best known for his roles in Days of Thunder, The Princess Bride, and Saw. He also appears in television shows and has roles in The X-Files, Psych and The Art of More. Elwes spent most of his childhood in Westminster, London, also the place of his birth. He was the third born of Tessa Georgina Kennedy and painter Bede Evelyn Dominick Elwes. His siblings are
and painter Damian Elwes. He was raised as a Catholic. He was an altar boy at Brompton Oratory in London. Having spent his childhood in London, later he attended Harrow. He was a projectionist at school. After obtaining his graduation from Harrow, he moved to the US and studied drama at Sarah Lawrence College. As a student, he studied a range of topics including acting, history and philosophy and German Expressionist Film.
Despite his parents' affluence, Elwes wished to be self-independent and supplemented his income by working while in school. Ultimately, he dropped out of school just after two years to start his career in films. He also studied at the London Drama Centre. He made his film debut in Marek Kanievska's award-winning drama Another Country (1984). Based on that performance, Cary was chosen by renowned Director of The Royal Shakespeare Company, Trevor Nunn, to star opposite
Helena Bonham Carter
in the highly acclaimed historical epic Lady Jane (1986). He was chosen for the part of Westley in The Princess Bride (1987) after Rob Reiner saw him in Lady Jane (1986). He spent weeks training in fencing with both his left hand and right hand while performing acrobatics.
Having been a dramatic actor, he had never done a comedy prior to his acclaimed performance in The Princess Bride (1987). The phenomenal success of the movie got him a lot of offers to act in several costume period pieces. He rejected most of them as he didn’t want to get typecast and he later starred in several films as a villain, which include Leather Jackets (1992), Twister (1996),
The Jungle Book
(1994), Ella Enchanted(2004), The Riverman (2004) to name a few. He prepares intensely for most of his acting roles. He met his wife Lisa Marie, a stills photographer, in 1991 at a Malibu chili cook-off. He got engaged to her in 1997 and they married in the year 2000. Their daughter, Dominique, was born on April 24, 2007. He is an accomplished horseman. . He is interested in history and is politically active for causes such as environment protection and assisting Native American folks. He is also the ambassador for the Audrey Hepburn Children's Fund with UNICEF. As ambassador, he traveled to Banda Aceh, Indonesia for the documentary "The Children of the Tsunami", which was filmed 90 days after the tsunami of December 2003 to document the damage and recovery efforts. Cary is highly admired by peers and fans alike and considered to be one of the finest actors in the industry. As he says— "I take away something from every role. I'm still learning and that's what life is about."