Who is Tuppence Middleton?
Tuppence is a British actress, perhaps best known for her roles in films such as “The Imitation Game” and “Jupiter Ascending”, and the Netflix series “Sense8”. Her career also includes notable performances in period dramas such as “War & Peace” and “Downton Abbey”, as well as a number of theater productions
Early Life and Education
Tuppence Middleton was born on 21 February 1987, in Bristol, England, to Nigel and Tina Middleton, and grew up in Clevedon, Somerset, England.
She was introduced to the world of performance at a very young age. Described as a shy and ‘nerdy’ child at school, Tuppence found youth theatre a perfect outlet for building her confidence. This interest the art carried through her years at Bristol Grammar School, and ultimately led her to study at the prestigious Arts Educational School in London, from which she earned an honors degree in Acting.
Roles in Movies
Tuppence made her film debut in 2008, in the short drama “Dance Lessons”. Her next role came in 2009 with the British comedy-drama, “Tormented”, in which she played Justine Fielding, a student grappling with a hauntingly vengeful spirit. The film marked a turning point in Tuppence’s career, earning her favorable reviews for her nuanced performance, and setting her on a trajectory for future successes.
Soon after, she starred in “Chatroom” (2010), a thriller about teenagers who meet in an online chatroom called ‘Chelsea Teens!’. In the following years, she appeared in movies such as “Clearskin” (2012), “Trance” (2014), and “The Love Punch” (2013).
Tuppence’s rise to international stardom was cemented with two high-profile roles. In “The Imitation Game” (2014), she portrayed Helen, a member of the team alongside Benedict Cumberbatch’s Alan Turing, tasked with breaking the Nazi’s Enigma code during World War II. Tuppence’s performance stood out, garnering her critical acclaim and widespread recognition.
Then her Hollywood breakthrough came with “Jupiter Ascending” (2015), centered on a young woman who discovers that she’s an heiress to an intergalactic dynasty. In this sci-fi epic from the Wachowski sisters, Tuppence portrayed Kalique Abrasax, an intergalactic aristocrat.
Two years later, Tuppence portrayed the mysterious Ms. Coulter in “The Current War”, an historical drama directed by Alfonso Gomez-Rejon, about the cut-throat competition to dominate the early market for electricity.
Despite these blockbuster roles, Tuppence never shied away from appearing in independent films, such as the 2019 “Fisherman’s Friends”, a heartwarming comedy-drama about a group of Cornish fishermen who gain unexpected fame.
In “Downton Abbey” (2019), the film continuation of the beloved British TV series, Tuppence joined the ensemble as Lucy Smith, then in the following year, she played a supporting role in the award-winning sci-fi horror “Possessor”, written and directed by Brandon Cronenberg.
Her latest film role was in another “Downtown Abbey” film spin-off, “Downtown Abbey: A New Era”, which follows the Crawley family during their journey to the South of France.
In 2023, she’s set to star alongside Ralph Ineson in the horror “Lord of Misrule”, and play one of lead roles in the upcoming biographical drama “The Motive and the Cure”, following the story of 1964 Broadway production of “Hamlet”.
Roles in TV Series
Tuppence made her TV series debut in 2008, when she appeared in an episode of the popular procedural drama “Bones”. In the following years, she made appearances in series such as “Sirens” (2011), “Sinbad” (2012), and “Black Mirror” (2013), before landing her first starring role in “Dickensian” (2015-2016), a period drama set in the world of Charles Dickens’ novels.
However, it was her work in Netflix’s sci-fi drama series “Sense8” that put Tuppence on the global map. Created by Lana and Lilly Wachowski and J. Michael Straczynski, the show ran for two seasons on Netflix from 2015 to 2018. It’s widely known for its ambitious concept, complex storytelling, and diverse, international cast.
Tuppence Middleton in War & Peace, 2015 pic.twitter.com/zf7reAJ2Pd
— best period drama (@favperioddrama) April 2, 2016
The series revolves around eight strangers from different parts of the world who, following a tragic death, suddenly become mentally and emotionally linked. They are able to communicate, share knowledge, skills and experiences with each other, effectively operating as a single entity across continents. In the series, Tuppence plays Riley Blue, Icelandic DJ living in London. Haunted by a troubled past, Riley is the emotional center of the group, and her story often reflects the series’ exploration of trauma, connection and empathy.
Continuing her venture into the realm of television, Tuppence took on roles in a couple of period dramas, further broadening her acting portfolio. In BBC’s adaptation of “War & Peace” (2016), Tuppence portrayed Helene Kuragina, the manipulative and hedonistic Russian aristocrat.
In 2020, she starred in the historical mini-series “The Defeated”, set in Berlin, Germany during the aftermath of WWII. More recently, in 2022, she starred alongside Martin Compston and Tommy Finnegan in the thriller drama “Our House”, playing the lead role of Fi Dawson, a woman investigating mysterious disappearance of her husband.
Despite her growing fame, Tuppence remains seriously private about her personal life, choosing to keep the focus on her work rather than her off-screen activities. In August 2022, she surprised the public by announcing that she’d given birth to her first child, with the Swedish film director, Mans Marlind.
Tuppence has been very open about her struggles with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), which she developed when she was 12 years old. In 2021, she did a series of interviews with the BBC Radio 4, revealing that she often struggles with breaking free of her self-imposed routines, to the point where she’s unable to leave the house.
Interesting Facts and Hobbies
When she’s not performing, Tuppence has a range of hobbies that keep her busy. An animal lover, she has a particular fondness for cats and owns a pet cat named Oscar.
Tuppence is also passionate about traveling and exploring new cultures. She’s often shared her experiences of visiting places such as India, Japan and Thailand, stating that these experiences have enriched her understanding of the world and her place in it.
Tuppence has revealed that she has a penchant for photography, and has often expressed her love for it, as evident on her Instagram page; she has further said that if she weren’t an actress, she might have pursued a career in the field.
One little-known fact about Tuppence is that she was named after the British slang for a two pence coin. Her mother thought the name was strong and original, a sentiment that Tuppence herself seems to embody in her work and personal life.
Despite sharing the last name with the Princess of Wales, Kate Middleton, Tuppence is not related to her in any way.
While Tuppence has been tight-lipped about her earnings, it’s estimated that her net worth stands at more than $4 million as of 2023, accumulated from her successful acting career. With a number of projects in the pipeline, this figure is only set to increase.