MCM: Tom Hollander


Not a conventional hottie, Tom Hollander is a fine character actor who often plays bad guys and darker characters in historical costume movies and TV shows. He’s one of those quirky, smart fellows who turns up time and again and really makes a scene work just right. Thus, he deserves a Man Candy Monday too!


Sir John Ogelby in The Clandestine Marriage (1999)

Tom Hollander, The Clandestine Marriage (1999)

Osborne Hamley in Wives and Daughters (1999)

Wives & Daughters (1999)


Anthony Meredith in Gosford Park (2001)

2001 Gosford Park

George V in The Lost Prince (2003)

Tom Hollander, The Lost Prince (2003)

Sir Peter Lely in Stage Beauty (2004)

Tom Hollander, Stage Beauty (2004)


Etherege in The Libertine (2004)

Tom Hollander, The Libertine (2004)

Mr. Collins in Pride & Prejudice (2005)

Tom Hollander, Pride & Prejudice (2005)

Cutler Beckett in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest (2006) & At World’s End (2007)

Tom Hollander, Pirates of the Caribbean

Sir Amyas Paulet in Elizabeth: The Golden Age (2007)

Tom Hollander, Elizabeth: The Golden Age (2007)

King George III in John Adams (2008)

Tom Hollander, John Adams (2008)

John Ruskin in Desperate Romantics (2009)

Tom Hollander, Desperate Romantics (2009)

Duke of Windsor in Any Human Heart (2010)

Tom Hollander, Any Human Heart (2010)

Wilkie Collins in The Invisible Woman (2013)

Tom Hollander, The Invisible Woman (2013)

Dylan Thomas in A Poet in New York (2014)

Tom Hollander, A Poet in New York (2014)

Doctor Thorne in Doctor Thorne (2016)

Tom Hollander, Doctor Thorne (2016)

Cholmondeley in Taboo (2017)

Tom Hollander, Taboo (2017)


What’s your favorite historical costume movie or TV role of Tom Hollander’s?


About the author

Trystan L. Bass

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A self-described ElderGoth, Trystan has been haunting the internet since the early 1990s. Always passionate about costume, from everyday office wear to outrageous twisted historical creations, she has maintained some of the earliest online costuming-focused resources on the web. Her costuming adventures are chronicled on her website, TrystanCraft. She also ran a popular fashion blog, This Is CorpGoth, dedicated to her “office drag.”

14 Responses

  1. Cheryl from Maryland

    You didn’t mention his role as Guy Burgess in Cambridge Spies. Which also has Sam West as Anthony Blunt. Silly series; great performances. Otherwise, my vote goes to his portrayal of Ruskin in Desperate Romantics.

  2. Kate D

    I just saw Doctor Thorne yesterday and was delighted. Tom Hollander did an excellent job carrying the charming miniseries.

    It made me wonder how old Mr. Hollander was, since his character seemed such a wise, patient, gray-haired pillar of the community, but I didn’t think the actor could possibly be 50 at the time of filming! (I think he was 47 or 48 at time of filming, which means at 38 he was a very old Mr. Collins in the 2005 P&P!)

    He can do silly, he can do stately, he can do sweet. An actor I enjoy watching, even if he’s not on my “would put his poster on my wall” shortlist.

    • Trystan L. Bass

      Many of the MCMs that I enjoy posting are actors that have a range & that make me think! Just a hot bod or pretty face doesn’t do it for me ;)

  3. Melanie

    I’ve loved Tom Hollander since Wives and Daughters. Such a wonderful performance as Osborne Hamley. He completely sold me on the more sensitive, better looking brother, even playing against dreamy Anthony Howell.

    I also adore his scene in the kitchen with Sophie Thompson in Gosford Park, where he tries some of the jam. One of the tenderest moments in a story full of self-serving cynics. I rather think he’s wasted in villainous roles. He’s good at them, but even better at characters with soul.

  4. Susan Pola Staples

    Osborne Hamley in Wives and Daughters, Doctor Thorne, Ruskin and one of the infamous Cambridge Communist spies in Cambridge Spies, Guy Burgess. The trial scene where he waxes on Middlemarsh is brilliant.

  5. Charity

    I’ve seen everything except A Poet in New York — not for Hollander, but because he keeps showing up in costume dramas I want to watch!! XD

  6. Barb D

    He’s one of those great actors that disappear in a role, and you watch them going “I know him, but from what?”

  7. Sharon Broom

    Absolutely the best Mr. Collins ever. He also did a great job as a creepy villain in The Night Manager.

  8. shellieeyre

    Not a period piece, but he is absolutely outstanding in “Rev”, a British series in which he plays a vicar, with the splendid Olivia Coleman as his wife. There are turns from Simon McBurney as a waspish gay Archdeacon and Ralph Fiennes as a bishop; Liam Neeson shows up as Jesus …

  9. Lily Lotus Rose

    Oh, I love Tom Hollander! My answer is a bit of a cheat. My fave historical costume drama of his is “Possession” starring Gwyneth Paltrow and Aaron Eckhart. It’s (kind of) a cheat answer because Hollander’s small role is in the modern-day story rather than in the historical (Victoria-era) story.