Joe Alwyn

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Joe Alwyn
Joe Alwyn-2018.jpg
Alwyn in 2018
Joseph Matthew Alwyn

(1991-02-21) 21 February 1991 (age 30)
Other namesWilliam Bowery
Alma mater
Years active2015–present
RelativesWilliam Alwyn (great-grandfather)

Joseph Matthew Alwyn (born 21 February 1991)[1] is an English actor. He has starred in films such as Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk (2016), Operation Finale (2017), The Favourite (2018), and Harriet (2019).

Early life

Alwyn was born in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, England.[2] Raised in Tufnell Park and Crouch End, North London,[3][4] Alwyn is the son of a psychotherapist mother and a documentary filmmaker father.[5] He is the great-grandson of composer William Alwyn.

He was educated at the City of London School.[3] Although an "introverted" child,[6] he secretly wanted to be an actor.[7] He became a member of the National Youth Theatre in his late teens.[8] While studying English literature and drama at the University of Bristol,[6] he acted in two student productions at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.[9] After graduating in 2012, he completed a BA in acting at the Royal Central School of Speech & Drama.[8]


Within two weeks of his graduate showcase, in early 2015,[10][11] Alwyn was cast in the lead role of Ang Lee's 2016 war drama, Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk,[12][13] based on Ben Fountain's novel.[14] In 2017, he had a supporting role in the English drama film The Sense of an Ending.[15]

In 2018, he appeared in Yorgos Lanthimos' award-winning period drama The Favourite,[16] and additionally had supporting roles in Operation Finale,[17] Boy Erased,[17] and Mary Queen of Scots.[18] He received the Trophée Chopard alongside Elizabeth Debicki at the Cannes Film Festival that same year.[19] In 2019, he co-starred as slave owner Gideon Brodess in the biographical award-winning drama Harriet, about abolitionist Harriet Tubman[20] which had its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival on 10 September.[21] In December, Alwyn appeared as Bob Cratchit in the BBC/FX three-part miniseries A Christmas Carol.[22] He will appear in The Souvenir Part II,[23] the adaptation of Jojo Moyes's book The Last Letter from Your Lover[24] and will star opposite Emma Mackey and Fionn Whitehead in the Emily Brontë biopic Emily.[25]

Personal life

Since 2016, Alwyn has been in a relationship with American singer-songwriter Taylor Swift.[5][26][27] He has been referenced in much of Swift's music since 2016, including on her albums Reputation (2017), Lover (2019), Folklore, and Evermore (both 2020).[28][29][30] Alwyn stated he finds it "flattering" that Swift writes songs about him.[31] Two songs on Folklore, "Exile" and "Betty", were credited to a co-writer named William Bowery, which led to speculation that it was a pseudonym for Alwyn. Swift confirmed this theory in her concert film Folklore: The Long Pond Studio Sessions.[32] Alwyn (as Bowery) also co-wrote "Champagne Problems", "Coney Island", and the title track on Evermore.[33]



Year Title Role Director Notes
2016 Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk Billy Lynn Ang Lee
2017 The Sense of an Ending Adrian Finn Ritesh Batra
2018 Operation Finale Klaus Eichmann Chris Weitz
The Favourite Samuel Masham Yorgos Lanthimos Critics' Choice Movie Award for Best Acting Ensemble
Satellite Award for Best Cast – Motion Picture
Boy Erased Henry Wallace Joel Edgerton
Mary Queen of Scots Robert Dudley Josie Rourke
2019 Harriet Gideon Brodess Kasi Lemmons
2020 Miss Americana Himself Lana Wilson Cameo
TBA The Souvenir Part II Joanna Hogg Post-production
TBA The Last Letter from Your Lover Laurence Stirling Augustine Frizzell Post-production
TBA Catherine, Called Birdy Lena Dunham Filming


Year Title Role Network Notes
2019 A Christmas Carol Bob Cratchit BBC One Miniseries


  1. ^ "Joe Alwyn". Glamour. UK. Archived from the original on 8 January 2018. Retrieved 13 September 2017. Joe Alwyn (Joseph Matthew Alwyn) was born 21 February 1991
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b McLean, Craig (9 February 2017). "Joe Alwyn: the Crouch End boy taking Hollywood by storm". London Evening Standard. UK. Archived from the original on 9 February 2017. Retrieved 16 May 2017. ...26-year-old Crouch Ender...
  4. ^ Flynn, Paul (4 November 2016). "Joe Alwyn Was Destined To Be a Star". i-D. Archived from the original on 26 February 2017. Retrieved 19 May 2017.
  5. ^ a b Hattersley, Giles (27 September 2018). "Joe Alwyn On Fame, Romance, And His Blockbuster-Filled Autumn". British Vogue.
  6. ^ a b "Bright Future". Esquire. UK. 11 November 2016. Archived from the original on 21 May 2017. Retrieved 20 May 2017 – via Alt URL
  7. ^ Powers, John (16 August 2016). "Breakout Star Joe Alwyn on Landing the Role of a Lifetime". Vogue. Archived from the original on 9 June 2017. Retrieved 21 May 2017.
  8. ^ a b "Joe Alwyn on CSSD". Royal Central School of Speech & Drama. Archived from the original on 1 March 2017. Retrieved 30 July 2015.
  9. ^ Ford, Rebecca; Kit, Borys (25 February 2015). "Ang Lee's 'Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk' Finds Lead". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on 30 March 2016. Retrieved 20 May 2017.
  10. ^ "Royal Central School of Speech And Drama BA Acting Showcase 2015". The Stage. 26 January 2015. Archived from the original on 9 June 2017. Retrieved 21 May 2017.
  11. ^ Fear, David (11 November 2016). "Joe Alwyn: Meet the Breakout Star of 'Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk'". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on 17 November 2016. Retrieved 21 May 2017.
  12. ^ Erbland, Kate (10 November 2016). "Meet Joe Alwyn, Breakout Star of Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk". Archived from the original on 15 January 2017. Retrieved 19 May 2017.
  13. ^ Akel, Joseph (13 September 2016). "Front and Center with Joe Alwyn". VMan. Retrieved 21 May 2017.
  14. ^ Kroll, Justin (25 February 2015). "Ang Lee Picks Newcomer Joe Alwyn for TriStar's 'Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk'". Variety. Archived from the original on 28 February 2017. Retrieved 30 July 2015.
  15. ^ Fleming Jr, Mike (8 September 2015). "CBS Films Pre-Buys 'The Sense of an Ending' – Toronto". Deadline Hollywood. Archived from the original on 16 February 2017. Retrieved 15 September 2015.
  16. ^ Ford, Rebecca (3 March 2017). "'Billy Lynn' Star Joe Alwyn Joins Emma Stone in 'The Favourite' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on 4 March 2017. Retrieved 4 March 2017.
  17. ^ a b Kroll, Justin (8 September 2017). "'Billy Lynn' Star Joe Alwyn Joins Russell Crowe in 'Boy Erased,' Oscar Isaac in 'Operation Finale' (Exclusive)". Variety. Penske Business Media. Retrieved 24 August 2018.
  18. ^ "Joe Alwyn Joins Margot Robbie in 'Mary Queen of Scots' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 13 June 2017.
  19. ^ Keslassy, Elsa (16 May 2018). "Joe Alwyn, Elizabeth Debicki Receive Trophee Chopard at Cannes Film Festival". Variety. Retrieved 30 April 2020.
  20. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (13 September 2018). "Focus Features Moving Forward With Harriet Tubman Pic Starring Cynthia Erivo". Deadline. Retrieved 28 October 2019.
  21. ^ Lang, Brent (23 July 2019). "Toronto Film Festival: 'Joker,' 'Ford v Ferrari,' 'Hustlers' Among Big Premieres". Variety. Retrieved 28 October 2019.
  22. ^ Tartaglione, Nancy (28 November 2017). "Steven Knight To Adapt Charles Dickens Novels For BBC One; Ridley Scott, Tom Hardy Exec Producing". Deadline. Retrieved 4 November 2019.
  23. ^ Barfield, Charles (13 August 2019). "Harris Dickinson, Charlie Heaton & Joe Alwyn Cast In Joanna Hogg's Upcoming 'Souvenir' Sequel [Exclusive]". ThePlaylist. Retrieved 28 October 2019.
  24. ^ Nolfi, Joey (10 October 2019). "Felicity Jones, Shailene Woodley, Joe Alwyn join 'Last Letter From Your Lover' book adaptation". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 30 April 2020.
  25. ^ Wiseman, Andreas (21 May 2020). "Hot Cannes Package: Emma Mackey To Lead Cast As 'Wuthering Heights' Author Emily Brontë In Fresh-Faced Biopic From 'Harry Potter Producer & Embankment". Deadline. Retrieved 23 July 2020.
  26. ^ Poenisch, Emily (7 December 2018). "Prepare to See Joe Alwyn in, Well, Everything". Esquire.
  27. ^ Boucher, Ashley (24 May 2019). "Taylor Swift and Boyfriend Joe Alwyn Hold Hands as They Stroll the Streets of Paris". People.
  28. ^ Singh, Olivia; Samshian, Jacob (31 October 2019). "Everything we know about Taylor Swift's mysterious boyfriend and muse, Joe Alwyn". Insider. Retrieved 7 November 2020.
  29. ^ Hearon, Sarah (8 October 2020). "7 Times Taylor Swift May Have Referenced Joe Alwyn on 'Folklore'". US Weekly. Retrieved 7 November 2020.
  30. ^ "Taylor Swift's 'Long Story Short' Lyrics Reveal How Joe Alwyn Has Changed Her 4 Years Into Dating". Elle. Retrieved 13 December 2020.
  31. ^ Dresdale, Andrea (24 May 2019). "Joe Alwyn finds it 'flattering' that Taylor Swift writes songs about him". People. Retrieved 7 November 2020.
  32. ^ Aubrey, Elizabeth (25 November 2020). "Taylor Swift confirms the identity of 'Folklore' song co-writer William Bowery". NME. Retrieved 25 November 2020.
  33. ^ Wood, Mikael (10 December 2020). "Review: Taylor Swift's surprise LP 'Evermore' is more — and less — 'Folklore'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 11 December 2020.

External links