Happy Birthday Ross Kemp

Ross Kemp is a BAFTA award-winning British actor, author and journalist. He turned 48 years old this year and was born on 21 July 1964 in Essex. Kemp became a celebrity when he rose to fame after playing the role of Grant Mitchell in BBC’s Eastenders.

His gritty portrayl of tough guy Grant Mitchell in the popular BBC TV soap opera Eastenders for nearly ten years from 1990 won him the accolade of Best Actor in the British Soap Awards in 1999. Kemp made his debut on the show in February 1990. On-screen, Kemp, as Grant, was often at the centre of EastEnders’ plots, amongst them abusive marriages to Sharon Watts (Letitia Dean) and Tiffany Mitchell (Martine McCutcheon), and the “Sharongate” storyline, that saw Grant’s brother Phil Mitchell (Steve McFadden) conduct an affair with his wife.

Since leaving Eastenders, he has become better known for hard hitting investigative journalism such as “Ross Kemp in Afganistan” and “Ross Kemp on Gangs” which won Best Factual Series in the 2006 BAFTA Awards. The award-winning TV series saw Kemp interview gang members from around the world. The first series featured gangs and police corruption in Brazil, Māori gangs in New Zealand, neo-Nazi skinheads in California, gangsters in London, and teenagers from Blaenau Gwent.

The second series featured “MS13” from El Salvador, neo-Nazis in Russia, football hooligans in Poland, American “Bloods” and “Crips” gangs in St. Louis, and the Numbers gang in South Africa. The show returned in September 2008 for four more episodes, starting in the Los Angeles district of Compton. “Ross Kemp on Gangs” has also been released on DVD which you can purchase from all good retailers. In early 2007 Kemp published his experiences from the TV programme in book form, simply titled “Ross Kemp. Gangs”.

Kemp is a keen amateur rugby player and is known for his trademark bald head which adds to his hardman image on screen. However, not many people know that Kemp’s first television appearance was for an advert of Kellogg’s Fruit ‘n Fibre breakfast cereal – see below.

Images reproduced from wallpaperholic.blogspot.com, bafta.org and uk.askmen.com. Video reproduced from YouTube / PikerAds

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