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Greek-born actor Theo James is UN ambassador for refugees

Featured Greek-born actor Theo James is UN ambassador for refugees

Greek-born actor Theo James was appointed Global Goodwill Ambassador by the UN High Commission.

The actor, who rose to fame from his starring role in the Netflix series 'The Gentlemen', as well as the series 'The White Lotus', has been supporting UNHCR since 2016 and has traveled to Greece, France and Jordan to meet asylum seekers and refugees, according to the organization's press release.

Proud of his new role - What he said about his Greek grandfather
Accepting his new role, the actor said: “I am very proud to be joining UNHCR as a Goodwill Ambassador. My own family's experience has given me an understanding of the sacrifices and struggles refugees face. During World War II, my grandfather was forced to flee in a small boat from Greece to Syria, and his courage and resilience inspired me to help make a difference in the lives of displaced people."

"Nobody chooses to be a refugee," James added, reflecting on his experiences meeting families fleeing war. “But we can all choose how we respond to people in need of shelter, whose lives depend on it. Refugees arrive in new countries with skills, qualifications and ideas, they just need the opportunity to contribute. My grandfather was accepted and offered refuge by the Syrian people, which allowed him to rebuild his life as a doctor and give something back. That is why it is important for me to stand in solidarity with the refugees who have fled the conflicts today and help share their stories. They need our support now more than ever."

Who is the Greek-born actor Theo James
Theodore Peter James Kinnaird Tapticlis (Theodore Tapticlis), as his full name is, was born in the green High Wycombe, a town not far from London. Largely, however, in Asket, a picturesque village in Buckinghamshire.

His father Philip Tapticlis is a business consultant, while his mother Jane Marty worked in the NHS. James attended Aylesbury Grammar School, before taking a philosophy degree at Nottingham University. After graduating, he went on to train at the Bristol Old Vic Theater School. There he met his future wife, Ruth Kearney, an Irish actress who also studied there.

According to L'Officiel, James worked as a bartender and lifeguard before becoming a professional actor. In fact, one of his grimmest jobs early in his career was cleaning the homes of the deceased for the NHS.


Writing for GQ about his family history, Theo revealed: "I was looking through some of my long-forgotten possessions and found a picture of my grandfather, Nikos."

“He was Greek and served in the British Navy during WWII. But in 1941, as a young doctor-in-training, he was forced to flee the Nazis as they swept through Greece and occupied Athens."

"In a tiny boat with a dozen others, he crossed the dangerous waters of the Aegean in mid-November and landed in Turkey. From there he made his way, along with thousands of others, to Syria, where he found safety in Damascus."