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Chris Barrie - What a Guy!

by Caroline Seawright

 

[ Rimmer, in his green uniform ] Name: Christopher Jonathan Barrie
Date of Birth: 28th March, 1960
Place of Birth: Hanover, West Germany

Plays: Arnold J. Rimmer in Red Dwarf

This is the comic genius who plays Arnold Rimmer from Red Dwarf, Gordon Brittas from The Brittas Empire and Gary Prince from A Prince Among Men. He's also known for his impressions (he was the voice of various characters in Splitting Images), and has appeared in numerous adverts.

In my opinion, Chris is a wonderful actor. He seems to be quite witty, and above all, he's a gentleman. Very British, despite being born in Germany.

He is also something of a sex symbol, it seems. Many, many female fans on the internet tend to drool over him (rather than just chatting about him)... the only problem with this is that, being very British, he's more embarrassed over this than anything else.

His hobbies include various out door activities and exercising... and his love for classic cars and other assorted vehicles. He might be downsizing his collection, though (at one point, he had at least 42 cars!). Also, he enjoys photography.

Here's a quick run-down of his history:

  • His early education took place in Northern Ireland, where he developed comedy as a way of fitting in with the 'cool' people.
  • He went to a Methodist boarding school in Belfast, and became Head Boy in his final year.
  • At school, he was the lead in 'Dial M for Murder'.
  • Deciding to head somewhere in life, he took up a business course at Brighton Polytechnic, and dropped out.
  • His career took off with a job as a grave filler at Wycombe Cemetery - he wasn't qualified enough to dig the graves!
  • His other career paths included being an import-export clerk, an estate agent, a trolley collector at a supermarket, a job in the sports department of Harrods, a job at the Reject Shop, a van driver and also the highly sort after job of dole bludger.
  • As a way to get impressionism out of his system, he appeared on David Essex - he got £178 for three minutes!
  • In 1987, he met his first wife, an Italian girl called Monica, and married.
  • In 1987 he started Red Dwarf, which is still going strong.
  • Unfortunately, he realised that his marriage to Monica was more about passion than love, and they split up in 1990.
  • It was the same year that he started working on the Brittas Empire, which ended up running for seven years.
  • He met a fashion buyer called Aleks in a bus stop at Waterloo Station (during a bomb scare), and they started dating on and off.
  • He started to work on a new series, called Prince Among Men, which has yet to be shown in Australia.
  • On December 3, 1997, he married Aleks.
  • Currently lives in a village in Berkshire, England.
  • He's got two dogs - Cocoa (a Labrador) and Dexter (an Alsation).

He would enjoy doing a romantic role, but he feels that playing characters like Rimmer, Brittas and Prince leave him with little chance of this. I (and many other fans) support him all the way, and would love to see him in this role!

What the future holds for Mr Barrie, we shall just have to wait and see - but he is now back in Red Dwarf 8, and willing to take part in the Red Dwarf movie... so hopefully we will be seeing much more of this actor!

News 12/12/00 - It seems that Chris Barrie will be in the Tomb Raider movie, as Lara's butler!

Mr Barrie, regarding trying out for the movie, said, "I'd forgotten about it, and I read somewhere that Tomb Raider was starting to shoot - it reminded me that I'd been to the casting! I thought, 'Oh well, bang goes another one. Hey-ho, such is life.' And lo and behold I get this call that they want me on board! So you don't really ask questions about what went before. You just get there, hit your marks and do your lines."

[ Chris Barrie - doesn't he look the part for a romantic role? ]


Red Dwarf Images Copyright © 1989-2000 Grant Naylor & the BBC All Rights Reserved


© Caroline 'Kunoichi' Seawright 2000 - present

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