James McAvoy was born in the Scotstoun area of Glasgow, Scotland, in 1979 and is a graduate of the prestigious Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama. In his short career, he has tested himself with a wide variety of work, on stage, television and film and is regarded as one of the industry's most exciting acting talents.
Although McAvoy cut his teeth on small parts in high-profile projects like the hugely-successful HBO series, "Band of Brothers," he first came to prominence in the UK with the role of Josh in the Channel Four adaptation of Zadie Smith's popular novel, "White Teeth." Subsequently, he appeared in a several high-profile television projects: the Emmy Award-winning mini-series CHILDREN OF DUNE, co-starring Susan Sarandon; STATE OF PLAY, the BAFTA-winning BBC political drama series; and SHAMELESS, for which he was nominated in the Best Comedy Newcomer category at the 2004 British Comedy Awards.
McAvoy next appeared in the films BRIGHT YOUNG THINGS and INSIDE I'M DANCING, before starring in Disney's big budget film, THE CHRONICLES OF NARNIA: THE LION, THE WITCH, AND THE WARDROBE. The film became a massive international success and is one of the twenty highest grossing films of all time. McAvoy was nominated for Best British Actor in a Supporting Role at the 2006 London Film Critics Circle Awards for his performance. It also helped him win the Rising Star Award at the 2006 BAFTAs.
McAvoy earned critical acclaim for his leading role in Kevin Macdonald's THE LAST KING OF SCOTLAND. McAvoy was nominated for a BAFTA, a European Film Award, a BIFA and a London Film Critics Circle Award for his performance.
In 2007, McAvoy starred in the Oscar-nominated film ATONEMENT. An adaptation of the popular Ian McEwan novel, the movie was directed by Joe Wright and co-starred Keira Knightley, Saoirse Ronan, and Romola Garai. McAvoy received Golden Globe and BAFTA Best Actor nominations and won awards from The London Film Circle, the Santa Barbara Film Festival and the UK Regional Critics for the role.
In 2009, McAvoy returned to the stage at the Apollo Theatre in London's West End playing the two roles of Walker and his father Ned in Richard Greenberg's "Three Days of Rain" for which his performance attracted critical praise. In 2010, McAvoy was nominated for an Olivier Award in the category of Best Actor for the role.
Other film credits include STARTER FOR TEN, produced by Tom Hanks; PENELOPE with Reese Witherspoon; BECOMING JANE, with Dame Maggie Smith and Anne Hathaway; the worldwide hit WANTED, co-starring Morgan Freeman and Angelina Jolie; and the recently-released THE LAST STATION with Helen Mirren, Christopher Plummer, Paul Giamatti and Anne-Marie Duff.