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Robert Thomas Powell (Salford, England, June 1, 1944) is a British television and film actor, famous for his role in Jesus of Nazareth cinema.
He was born in Salford (Manchester), is the son of Kathleen Davis and John Wilson Powell, and studied at the University of Salford.
It started with a small role in the original version of The Italian Job; but had to wait a few years for his first success, in a series of science fiction of the BBC, Doomwatch, in 1970. Continuing with the genre of suspense, he filmed the interesting film The Asphyx in 1973 with Robert Stevens.
On August 29, 1975 Powell married his girlfriend Barbara “Babs” Lord, dancer of Pan’s People. They did it as a resource to avoid visa problems when she visited him in Morocco (the filming site of the Jesus of Nazareth miniseries).
On November 23, 1977, they had their first child, Barney, followed in 1979, by a daughter, Kate.
Incarnated the son of God in the miniseries Jesus of Nazareth filmed in Tunisia and which aired during March and April 1977, Powell played the role of replacement for lead actor Laurence Olivier, Christopher Plummer, Rod Steiger and James Mason. Powell was nominated for a prize, and won a TV Times award
In 1978 he played the lead role of engineer Richard Hannay in the third version of the film The Thirty-Nine Steps.
In 1980 he appeared in the film Harlequin, with which he won the Best Actor Award at the Paris Film Festival. In 1982 he won the Best Actor Award at the Venice Film Festival for his role in Imperativ.
He also played the role of Victor Frankenstein, in the movie Frankenstein, in 1984.
In 1986 he had a great television success with the miniseries Shaka Zulu that tells the story of Shaka, a Zulu tribal chief who at the beginning of the 19th century initiated a revolutionary process against the British colonizers in what is now South Africa.
In 1992 Powell starred in the New Zealand film Chunuk Bair, based on the First World War, in which he played a sergeant named Frank Smith.
Today it appears less frequently; but his voice is heard in the voices of credits, publicity, as well as narrator of the television programs. He has also narrated many audio books, including an abridged version of The 39 Steps, several Alan Garner books, and several abbreviated novels from The Talking Classics Collection (The Classics Speak collection). Powell has also lent his voice to musical works, such as the album La Rime Ancient Mariner, or the rock opera of 2002 The Mastiff of the Baskervilles, where he played the role of John Watson. He also did the narration of a Rick Wakeman album called The Cost of Life.
At the beginning of 2005 he appeared regularly again in the television series. On February 9, 2008 he worked as the narrator of Peter and the wolf (of Prokofiev) with the Huddersfield Philharmonic Orchestra.
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