MCM: Julian Sands


Julian Sands in historical costume movies can play quirky romantic or that hot kind of jerk. He charmed Helena Bonham Carter‘s character (and all of us!) in A Room With a View, but he’s played a ton of baddies in some really schlocky horror movies and had bit parts in a fair number of frock flicks as the snarky second fiddle. You probably didn’t realize he was still around. Why not refresh our memories of his appeal?



A Room With a View (1985) – George Emerson

A Room With a View (1985)

We all wanted to be swept up with a kiss in a field like that. Dreamy George was just what Lucy Honeychurch needed to loosen her metaphorical stays. sigh

A Room With a View (1985)


Gothic (1986) – Percy Bysshe Shelley

Gothic (1986)

I’ve mentioned before how this movie is very weird and kind of hot (in a horror film way). Typical for a Ken Russell production. The costumes come off about 10 minutes into the flick, and the crazy times start. Sands’ Shelley accompanies Gabriel Byrne’s Lord Byron here.


Impromptu (1991) – Franz Liszt

Impromptu (1991)

The casting is impeccable in this musical romp — Sands actually resembles Liszt, who was himself a hottie. So even as second fiddle, er, piano player, it’s all good.


Vatel (2000) – Louis XIV

Vatel (2000)

Am I the only one who likes this movie? Also, am I the only one who didn’t realize that was Julian Sands underneath this dark wig as the king? Well, it’s a great, quirky, slightly sad movie with AH-MAY-ZING costumes, and Sands’ character is ridiculous and imperious and just right.


Crossbones (2014) – William Jagger

Crossbones (2014)

Julian Sands played the governor of Jamaica in this Blackbeard reboot by NBC starring John Malkovich. The one season is on Amazon, and I’m tempted…


The Village (2014) – Lord Kilmartin

The Village (2014)

This BBC series set in the 1910s to 1920s never made it across the pond, but Sands was in a few episodes as a dastardly upper-crust fellow who called the shots (and threw some punches). Still lookin’ good.


Bonus Julian Sands video:

While looking for pix for this post, I discovered that Sands filmed a PSA for the Turtle Conservancy. It’s adorable!



Did I miss your favorite Julian Sands historical costume movie role? Do you love turtles? Share in the comments!


16 Responses

  1. Kendra

    You may be the only person who likes “Vatel” (zzzzzz wha’?) but YES YES to him in Room with a View!

  2. mmcquown

    Whatever Sands does, he does with utter conviction. Have you noticed these days that when producers want to sell the eerie and uncanny, they usually hire a Brit? Vide “Sleepy Hollow” and “Lucifer.”

  3. Donna

    You are not alone in your love of Vatel … but my love of it is in the kitchen and the table, not the clothes :-) … I’ve no use for 1700’s or 1800’s fashions :-)

  4. Sarah F

    When he turned his plate of food into a question mark in Room With A View I went “Yes! Absolutely! Will you be there? What are we doing oh wait I don’t care- just take me with you!”

  5. Penny H

    Another one who liked Vatel. And who didn’t know Julian Sands was Louis XIV. But who remembers the Tim Roth baddie.

    Rewatched Impromptu recently after reading Sarah’s write-up of last December. For some reason Liszt wasn’t connected with George Emerson in my brain.

  6. Deborah B

    I firmly believe that they a HUGE mistake not casting him as Lestat in Intervuew with a Vampire.

  7. Lily Lotus Rose

    Oh, I know that I am YEARS late in reading this post, but–YES! YES! YES! I am not into blonds, but Julian Sands is one of the sexist blonds of all time.(He is even sexier in person!) I have been into him ever since “Warlock” which I saw years before I saw “A Room with a View.” Plus–his voice and his accent–fans self…! My favorite frock flick of his is “A Room with a View.” I wish he were more popular, but his choices are questionable.

  8. Laura Gharazeddine

    I liked Vatel! Gorgeous film! Been waiting for it to come up on Netflix again.