Samuel West Samuel West, sometimes billed as Sam West, (born June 19, 1966) is a British actor, the son of Prunella Scales and Timothy West. He studied English Literature at Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford, but was always destined for an acting career.
In 1992 he played the lower-middle-class clerk Leonard Bast in the Merchant-Ivory film adaptation of E.M. Forster's novel Howards End opposite Emma Thompson, Helena Bonham Carter and Anthony Hopkins.
In the 2001 film, Iris, Sam West played the young Maurice, and his father, Timothy West, the older Maurice. They also played the same character at different ages in the TV film Over Here in 1996. Sam West appears frequently on the stage, and has made a speciality of appearing in concert recitals: he performed the spoken lines from Shakespeare's Henry V, at the Last Night of the Proms in 2002. In 2003, he played Anthony Blunt in Cambridge Spies. In 2004 he appeared in the year's highest-rated miniseries on German television, "Die Nibelungen," which was released in the USA in 2006 as "Dark Kingdom: The Dragon King."
He is also much sought-after as a narrator of television documentaries, including the acclaimed series The Nazis: A Warning from History and The Planets, both in 1997.
In October 2004, he was appointed artistic director of the Sheffield Theatres, succeeding Michael Grandage.