James Norton: ‘My greatest fear? Rats. We had one swim up our loo recently. It was horrific’

by 24britishtvJuly 31, 2022, midnight 16

Born in London, James Norton, 37, studied theology at Cambridge University. In 2015, he was Bafta-nominated for his performance in Happy Valley, the BBC drama that is returning for a third series. His other television work includes War & Peace, Grantchester, McMafia, The Trial of Christine Keeler and The Nevers. His recent movies are Little Women, Nowhere Special and Rogue Agent, which is out on Netflix. He lives in London and is engaged to the actor Imogen Poots.

What is your greatest fear?

Rats. We had one swim up our loo recently, it was horrific.

Which living person do you most admire, and why?

Greta Thunberg, for obvious reasons.

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?

I have a habit of sabotaging the moment in pursuit of perfection.

What is the trait you most deplore in others?


What was your most embarrassing moment?

The years between 14 and 17. My teenage years were a disaster.

Aside from a property, what’s the most expensive thing you’ve bought?

A Rose Wylie painting.

What is your most treasured possession?

Insulin and sugar. I need to carry both with me. I am a type 1 diabetic.

Describe yourself in three words?

I choose one: Tigger.

What do you most dislike about your appearance?

My nose has been compared to a dodo.

What scares you about getting older?

Not being ready to die.

Who is your celebrity crush?

Mads Mikkelsen.

What is the worst thing anyone’s said to you?

I was bullied, but luckily I seemed to have blocked out the bullies.

Would you choose fame or anonymity?

Fame, for all the free snacks.

What is your guiltiest pleasure?

There is a drawer in our house that I keep stashed full of chocolate. My partner calls it “Mum’s treats”.

To whom would you most like to say sorry, and why?

My 13-year-old self, for all the resentment.

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?

I should this, I should that.

What is the worst job you’ve done?

I worked in the customer services department of a mobile phone gambling company and it was very depressing, because the people calling up were usually not happy.

If you could edit your past, what would you change?

I would have started therapy earlier.

When did you last cry, and why?

On a plane, watching a movie.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

Finding something that I love doing and getting paid for it.

What has been your closest brush with the law?

I got caught once …

How would you like to be remembered?

With smile lines.

What is the most important lesson life has taught you?

Don’t take it too seriously.

Tell us a secret

These questions terrify me.


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