Martin John Christopher Freeman (born September 8, 1971 in Aldershot, England) is a BAFTA-winning British actor who is best known for playing Deadpan Snarker, Charismatic Everyman, and/or Badass Adorable characters, such as John Watson in Sherlock and Bilbo Baggins in The Hobbit. He is made of jam, kittens, cuddly jumpers, and RAGE. Also, he is a hedgehog. He is also a terrible dresser (although opinion is divided about that, he does pick some outrageous outfits from time to time).
Some of his roles include:
- Jack in Love Actually
- Tim Canterbury in The Office
- Arthur Dent in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
- Dr John Watson in Sherlock
- Bilbo Baggins in The Hobbit
- Lord Shaftesbury in Charles II: The Power and the Passion
- Various roles in Bruiser
- Oliver in The World's End
- Lester Nygaard in Fargo
- Everett Ross in the Marvel Cinematic Universe
- Ricky C, a British gangster wannabe in Ali G Indahouse
- Dr. Williams in short film The Voorman Problem
- Milton Fruchtman in The Eichmann Show
- Andy in Cargo
- Paul in Breeders
As well as a killer deadpan delivery style, he has truly epic facial expressions of exasperation and despondency, such that he can take on other so-called leaders in the field and blow them out of the water!
When it was announced that he was to play Bilbo Baggins in Peter Jackson's movie version of The Hobbit, much of the fandom rejoiced. So did Jackson, who was so desperate for Freeman to play the eponymous Hobbit that he reworked his entire shooting schedule to allow Freeman time to film the second series of Sherlock, which was scheduled to film in the middle of shooting for the trilogy and which would have otherwise prevented Freeman from taking the role.
His biggest strength as an actor is considered a thing all of his own we don't even have a trope for, that might be described as "microexpression".
Not to be confused with Morgan Freeman who is also a brilliant character actor, but of completely different age, height, nationality and ethnicity.
Tropes Associated with Freeman's Roles:
- Audience Surrogate: As The Everyman, he often plays the role that acts as the audience's window into the work or setting.
- Deadpan Snarker: His characters tend to be incredibly snarky and truly deadpan.
- The Everyman: He is typecast as a fairly plain, down to Earth guy that gets caught up in fairly outlandish situations. Arthur Dent, Watson, Bilbo Baggins... he has played some of the most famous everymen in the world.