Monday, January 26, 2009

Male on Monday - James D'Arcy

A big pink heart welcome to Romance Prize finalist India Grey, with a fab new addition to our Male on Monday lineup....

If I had any willpower I wouldn't be here right now. Procrastination and internet-related-work-avoidance are two of the things I'm supposed to be giving up for the new year, (along with chocolate, wine, toast and butter, and being late for everything). But when it comes to this man it's a well known fact that I have no resistance at all, and the excuse to spread the love for James D'Arcy was just too irresistible!

Anyway, in an attempt to sound businesslike and detached I won't mention that he's 6'3" and has the broad shoulders and perfect bone-structure usually spotted in the Uffizi’s sculpture gallery. Instead I’ll start by telling you that he was born in Fulham, London in 1975 and went to uber-posh Christ's Hospital School on a scholarship (mmm... clever boy...). After school he went to Australia for a year and worked in the drama department of a school in Perth before returning to England for a three year course at LAMDA. He's quoted as saying that he fell into acting almost by accident, but I suspect that it probably had something to do with the fact that there aren't too many careers where his obvious talent for looking mouthwateringly hot in a frock coat would be so well used. Clearly, it would be criminal to let this go to waste.

His first major film role came in 1999 when he played bolshy young Private Daventry in William Boyd's WW1 film The Trench, alongside Daniel Craig, Cillian Murphy and Ben Whishaw. (Not exactly a laugh a minute, but definitely one to put on the lovefilm list) Following this he appeared in what was, by all accounts, (and our very own Kate Walker saw it!!) a total-kick ass production of Marlowe's Edward II at The Crucible in Sheffield, where he played the spoiled, sexy Piers Gaveston to Joseph Fiennes Edward, and was nominated for a prestigious Ian Charleson award for Outstanding Performance in a Classical Role. I can just imagine why...

His career moved up a gear and his TV parts got bigger and more prime-time (landing the title role in the 2001 BAFTA-winning Nicholas Nickleby sealed his reputation as a fine actor with a pair of clear green eyes that steal a scene without him even opening his mouth) while film offers seem to have been flooding in. Must-see highlights include the dark and sexy film Dot the i, with Natalia Verbeke and Gael Garcia Bernal in which he played Barnaby Caspian, a wealthy waster with a sinister double life, and Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, a swashbuckling, seafaring Boys-Own spectacular with Russell Crowe. (You can guiltlessly sit your other half in front of this and he'll be so caught up in the action that he'll never suspect you have an ulterior motive... unless, like me, your face takes on an avid, hungry expression every time Lt Pullings makes an appearance on the screen.) This was the first thing that I saw him in, although it wasn't until the TV series P.O.W hit UK TV screens in the autumn of 2003 that I really fell for him. Four years later I found myself thinking of captured WW2 pilot Jim Caddon when I began writing the book that was to become Mistress: Hired for the Billionaire's Pleasure, with its tall, dark RAF hero. These were some of the pictures I had pinned up above my computer... (Not the bouffant-haired car mechanic who appeared on the cover of the book, who is not Orlando Winterton at all, but a wicked impostor.)

Lately James has been seen in a rash of horror-slasher-blood-fest films, most notably Rise: Blood Hunter, where he played an extremely gorgeous bad-boy vampire opposite Lucy Liu. Sigh. Gorgeous, but do I want to sit through two hours of wall-to-wall gore to enjoy his spectacular cheekbones? No, I do not. Thank goodness for youtube for the edited highlights, and since Mr D'Arcy's next major screen outing is set to be the leading role in sci-fi series Virtuality I think I'll be relying on it more in the future. Sci fi! Honestly. Can a space suit ever be as darned hot as a pair of tight Victorian breeches? My instinct says no, although if there's one man who could persuade me....

Actually, there's one mystery that still puzzles me and I’m hoping you can help me out here… Given the talent and the green, green eyes and the brains and the strong, powerful shoulders why haven't I come across anyone else who's got a great big fangirly crush on him too? Either he's gorgeous or I'm delusional….

So… what’s the verdict?!

India Grey's Mistress: Hired for the Billionaire's Pleasure is coming out in the US as a Presents Extra in February so she’s just received a lovely box of author copies and would love to give some away! Email your address to and she’ll pick out five people to send one to. Romantic Times gave this book 4.5 stars and chose it as their Top Pick for the month, and it’s also made the shortlist for the RNA Romance Prize 2009.

India’s January release Taken for Revenge Bedded for Pleasure is available in the UK now. For more about this and other stuff check out her website or blog.


  1. Trust me, you are not alone. XD He's really a tall, cool drink of awesome.

  2. Dear India,

    I've had The Trench unwatched on the hard disc for about a year (Daniel related obviously). I think this could be the week it finally gets a viewing then!

    Procrastination isn't always bad is it?



  3. Cindy-- that's so good to know! (And you summarise his fine qualities so perfectly!)

    Too right, Rach. Procrastination is actually hugely underrated. In my experience it often leads to a clean kitchen floor, broader cultural references (thanks, youtube) and a whole lot of hero inspiration. How can that be a bad thing?!

  4. India - WOW!! That's REALLY great and very awesomely written!! I'm a big fan of James, and there are actually an entire forum of us.

  5. Thanks for spreading the love for James D'Arcy, India! You are not alone... Greetings from another James' fan (from!

    And hi, Cindy!

  6. Hi India! here's another forum memeber calling. You're not alone at all, I think you should visit our forum sometime... You're most welcomed to join us.

  7. Ahhh yes - Mr Darcy - lovely man, lovely actor. So is now the time to remind you how close I came to him when I saw him as Gaveston in Edward II in Sheffield?

    Good luck with the RNA Prize - and congratulations again



  8. Oh. My. Sainted. Aunt.

    There is a forum! A forum of James D'Arcy love! And YOU GUYS HAVE READ MY BOOK!

    Thanks so much for dropping by Ying and Anna and Housho and telling me of your existence! (At least I think it's a thank you... Suddenly a thousand new work-avoidance avenues have just opened tantalisingly up in front of me. How will I ever get any writing done, ever again?!!)

    I am not alone. *happy sigh*. Cooooool.

  9. LOL India fab post.

    I think you and James are giving Natasha and her Richard Armitage fandom a runs for its money.

  10. Hi India,
    James is definitely a hottie. I saw him a Miss Marple movie a couple of years ago and I had to google him to find out who he was.

  11. Kate-- sorry, our posts crossed. I hadn't forgotten the two hours you spent breathing the same air as gorgeous Gaveston, no. Does that kind of envy ever fade? You got a name check as the only other person I've ever come across who remotely understands the lure! (Until now, and the discovery of The Forum!!)

    Donna, I see that Natasha with her trifling, part-time, half-hearted fandom and I raise her... I'm not sure how yet, but I definitely will. If necessary.

    Thank you Jane-- d'you know, now I feel almost normal! Group therapy. I love it!

  12. This actor looks so much like
    the late Nick Drake it is
    remarkable,,,, wow, Nick was
    beautiful too