Jonny Lee Miller's career: From Trainspotting's Sick Boy to John Major in The Crown

26 June 2021, 14:00

Jonny Lee Miller's career: From Trainspotting's Sick Boy to John Major in The Crown
Jonny Lee Miller's career: From Trainspotting's Sick Boy to John Major in The Crown. Picture: Shutterstock

By Emma Clarke

Netflix has just announced that Jonny Lee Miller will be joining season five of The Crown, playing Prime Minister John Major.

Best known for playing Sick Boy (or later "Simon") in the Trainspotting franchise, actor Jonny Lee Miller has turned his hand to many different roles throughout his career.

But his latest gig, which will see him play Prime Minister John Major in Netflix's hugely successful series, The Crown, is perhaps one of the most unusual projects he's taken up so far.

Also joining the cast for season 5 is Imelda Staunton as Queen Elizabeth; Jonathan Pryce as Prince Philip; Lesley Manville as Princess Maragret; Olivia Williams as Camilla Parker Bowles; and Elizabeth Debicki as Princess Diana. It has also been reported that Dominic West will be playing Prince Charles.

From Trainspotting to The Crown: we document Jonny Lee Miller's illustrious acting career thus far...

Who is Jonny Lee Miller?

Born in Kingston-upon-Thames in November 1972, 48-year-old Jonny Lee Miller is a film, television and theatre actor best known for playing Sick Boy in Trainspotting.

The same year he starred in the film, Miller married Angelina Jolie, before the pair separated 18 months later. They remain good friends.

He then went on to marry Michele Hicks in 2008, with whom he shares a son called Buster Timothy Miller. The pair divorced in 2018.

Alongside his impressive acting career, Jonny is an avid runner, regularly participating in marathons .

Jonny Lee Miller played Sick Boy in Trainspotting
Jonny Lee Miller played Sick Boy in Trainspotting. Picture: Trainspotting

What has the Trainspotting star been in?

His very first acting role was in Doctor Who back in 1982, in which he played Kinda Child.

Jonny then went on to feature in various television series, including Mansfield Park, Keeping Up Appearances, Casualty and The Bill. He even played Jonathan Hewitt in two episodes of EastEnders!

However, in 1996, Miller finally got his big break when he bagged himself the role of Sick Boy in Danny Boyle's Trainspotting.

Sick Boy was the best friend of Ewan McGregor's character, Renton. The film - which was one of the highest-grossing films the year of its release, and received a nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay at the Oscars - is considered one of the greatest British movies of all-time.

Not only does it delve into the dark underbelly of 90's Edinburgh, Trainspotting is a harrowing portrayal of drug abuse and addiction.

In 2017, Miller reprised his role in the sequel, T2 Trainspotting, in which his character seeks forgiveness from Renton after betraying him all those years before.

More recently, you may have seen Miller in crime drama Dexter, in which he played Jordan Chase. He also played Sherlock Holmes in the Elementary TV series, Mr Knightley in Emma, and the titular character in Eli Stone.

When is season 5 of The Crown released on Netflix?

The official release date for season 5 has yet to be confirmed, but Variety reported earlier this year that filming would commence in July 2021.

Season 4 landed on the streaming site in November 2020 and season 3 came out on November 17, 2019 - so it's likely the new episodes will arrive in the autumn of 2022.

The Crown seasons 1-4 are available to stream on Netflix now.


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