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‘Since my Dad died, it’s lit this extra fire within me, this extra burner of wanting to succeed,’ says actor Jamie Dornan

The star said his Dad ‘was the greatest of men’

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Jamie Dornan at the premiere of "Belfast" at the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)

Jamie Dornan at the premiere of "Belfast" at the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)

Jamie Dornan with his father Jim.

Jamie Dornan with his father Jim.

Jamie Dornan

Jamie Dornan

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Jamie Dornan at the premiere of "Belfast" at the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)

Jamie Dornan has said becoming a father made him more ambitious in his acting career.

The Belfast man is married to English musician Amelia Warner and the couple have three daughters together.

Dornan landed his murderous role on The Fall in 2013, not long after the couple tied the knot.

“I’m more ambitious than I’ve ever let on before. Part of it is becoming a parent. It’s like a necessity to deliver and provide, very caveman-esque, ‘I must succeed for these precious little people’.

“Also, since my Dad died, it’s lit this extra fire within me, this extra burner of wanting to succeed.

“But for some reason, since he’s gone, I have a weird thing of wanting to prove something to myself, to prove some sort of succession that is impressive,” he told The New York Times.

The actor’s father, Dr Jim Dornan, died of Covid-19 in March of this year, he was 73 years old.

“He was the greatest of men, so kind and wonderful, and he gave so much time and honesty and respect to everyone he met.

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“There’s elements that I hope have rubbed off on me, that I’m really trying to take on through for the rest of my life,” he said.

The Fifty Shades of Grey star left Belfast at the age of 19, although the city is still home, he said: “When you say ‘home’, you still mean Belfast.”

Dornan’s new film Belfast premiered in his native city on November 4 in the Waterfront Hall.

“It was crazy; I really felt physically sick leading up to it,” he said.

The film was written and directed by Kenneth Branagh and influenced by his own experience of growing up in the city.

It is set in 1969 and follows the life of nine-year-old Buddy and his family as they contend with life during the Troubles.

It is filmed in black and white and stars Judi Dench as Dornan’s mother. He said he embodied some of his father’s best qualities in his character, Pa, because he could “recognise the goodness”.

Speaking of watching the screening for the first time with a Belfast audience, he said: “It was the first time I watched it where I wasn’t going, ‘God, I hate my face. Why’d I do it that way? Is my nose really that bent? Should I not act anymore?’”

Branagh, the film’s director, used his introduction to dedicate the premiere to the late Dr Jim Dornan.

“It kills me that he’s not able to go on this part of the journey with me, but life happens.

“As Dad would’ve instilled in us more than anything, you do just have to put one foot in front of the other and march on,” he said.


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