Blast from the past

James McAvoy’s essential movies (leading up to Atomic Blonde)


Atomic Blonde god a lot of publicity this summer. Charlize Theron was back in another bad ass role, the action and fight scenes were sick (so I’ve heard.. the movie comes out at the end of this month where i live) and besides the Academy award winner, there were some awesome names in the rest of the cast.

John Goodman, Toby Jones, Sofia Boutela and of course the Scottish charmer himself. Yup… You may also know him as Professor X but James Mcavoy is the second actor I’m reaaaaly excited about Atomic Blonde.

McAvoy in Atomic Blonde plays David Percival, an eccentric Berlin station chief who becomes an ally of Theron’s character and being a huge fan of the actor I wanna talk about his body of work leading up to Atomic Blonde.

Although his acting career started in the mid 90’s his big break on TV came in 2004 when he got the role of Steve Mcbride in the hit TV series Shameless. The popular series was later remade in an excellent American version (you should definitely check it out) but that was the year when his big break on screen came too.

He had a supporting role in Wimbledon (besides Paul Bettany and Kristen Dunst) but if you want to take a good look at his talent, by all means check out Inside I’m Dancing. You will laugh, you will cry (a lot) and you’ll get the AHA moment on why he became a Hollywood super star.

The Last King of Scotland is particular favorite of mine (along with Atonement), and truly one of the best performances in the early stages of his career, but Atonement brought him not just bigger recognition, it brought him a Golden globe nomination for best actor.

Wanted was cool, bat-shit and fun, The Last Station was the exact opposite. But it was 2011 when he got the role that defines him to this day. That of young Charles Xavier / Professor X in Matthew Vaughn’s X-Men: First Class.

Last year’s Split was a great surprise not just for his fans, but for the fans of M. Night Shyamalan as well, and this leaves me to ponder. What are James McAvoy’s best movies leading to Atomic Blonde?

Well… I’d love to know about you picks, bit this is my list. Here I go…

Bright Young Things – 2003

Directed by: Stephen Fry
Fun fact about it: The first (and as yet only) film directed by Stephen Fry.

Inside I’m Dancing – 2004

Directed by: Damien O’Donnell
Fun fact about it: James McAvoy would spend up to 12 hours a day in a wheelchair while filming.

The Last King of Scotland- 2006

Directed by: Kevin Macdonald
Fun fact about it: The black Mercedes presidential limousine used in the film had actually been Idi Amin’s.

Starter for 10 – 2006

Directed by: Tom Vaughan
Fun fact about it: James McAvoy and Benedict Cumberbatch would later co-star together in Atonement (2007).

Atonement – 2007

Directed by: Joe Wright
Fun fact about it: James McAvoy considered the script the best he had ever read.

Wanted – 2008

Directed by: Timur Bekmambetov
Fun fact about it: The graphic novel features superhero costumes worn by many characters, but the film eliminates them, except the leather attire worn by Wesley and The Fox.

The Last Station – 2009

Directed by: Michael Hoffman
Fun fact about it: Helen Mirren actually is descended from Russian aristocracy. Her great-great-grandmother was a countess.

X-Men: First Class – 2011

Directed by: Matthew Vaughn
Fun fact about it: Stan Lee does not make a cameo in this film. He was unable to participate, because “they shot it too far away.”

Filth – 2013

Directed by: Jon S. Baird
Fun fact about it: James McAvoy revealed in an interview that he would drink up to half a bottle of whiskey every night so that his character looked rough and hungover.

X-Men: Days of Future Past – 2014

Directed by: Bryan Singer
Fun fact about it: This the first X-men film ever to be nominated for an Oscar (Best Visual Effects).

Split – 2016

Directed by: M. Night Shyamalan
Fun fact about it: When Joaquin Phoenix and the production couldn’t reach a contract agreement, James McAvoy was cast in the lead.


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