ACTORStanding out among the internationally acclaimed cast of the spring’s blockbuster miniseries “the Bible” is Darwin Shaw, the British actor whose moving performance brings to life the disciple Peter, who grew to be a brother of Jesus and the first Pope of the Christian church. Cast by Executive Producers Mark Burnett and Roma Downey in their production for a History Channel, Shaw perhaps understood the metamorphosis of the simple fishermen Simeon into the apostle Peter because he experienced his own metamorphosis from accomplished Emergency Medicine specialist to actor, starring in stage and screen.
Born in Brampton Cumbria Shaw is the grandson of a vicar and son of a social worker/nurse and special needs teacher and race relations advisor for the BBC. He attended King’s College in London, graduating in medicine and moving on to specialities in orthopaedics, general surgery and respiratory medicine. The focus and dedication required by the studies would serve him well when he was inspired to change the course of his life.
During a professional hiatus into New York, Shaw read The Artists Way, Julia Cameron’s book on the creative process and inspired him to attend an acting class. The die was cast. For a time he juggled his medical career and his classes, but when his first professional audition won him the role of Adam in the Story of Creation shot in Cape Town, the decision was finally made between art and science.
Back in England is accepted by the oldest drama school in the world, the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art.
Shaw’s first role after graduating from LAMDA was in Deborah Warner’s production of Julius Caesar at the Barbican theatre with a cast which included Ralph Fiennes, Fiona Shaw and Simon Russell Beale. His first feature film was Casino Royale (2006), directed by Martin Campbell and introducing Daniel Craig as the new 007, and he has since worked with award-winning directors Mike Newall, Andrew Stanton and Ridley Scott.
A passionate explorer, Shaw has travelled through Africa, the Middle East, South America and – on a classic 1957 motorcycle – across India. For his portrayal of St. Peter, he steeped himself in the history of the Church, and spending time at The Vatican, at the saint’s tomb and in a monastery, silently observing the lives of orthodox monks.
He resides between Los Angeles and London