Thomas Stanley Holland (born 1 June 1996) is an English actor and dancer. Holland is known for playing Spider-Man in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the title role in Billy Elliot the Musical in London’s West End, and for starring in the 2012 film The Impossible.
Early life and education
Holland was born in Kingston upon Thames, London, to Nicola Elizabeth (née Frost), a photographer, and Dominic Holland, a comedian and author. He has three brothers, twins Sam and Harry, three years younger, the latter of whom appears in the 2013 film Diana, and Patrick, eight years younger. His paternal grandparents were born on the Isle of Man and Ireland.
Holland was educated at Donhead, a Roman Catholic preparatory school in Wimbledon in South West London, followed by Wimbledon College, a voluntary aided Jesuit Roman Catholic comprehensive school (also in Wimbledon), up until December 2012. As of December 2012, he was attending The BRIT School for Performing Arts and Technology.
Holland began dancing at a hip hop class at Nifty Feet Dance School in Wimbledon. His potential was spotted by choreographer Lynne Page (who was an associate to Peter Darling, choreographer of Billy Elliot and Billy Elliot the Musical) when he performed with his dance school as part of the 2006 Richmond Dance Festival.
After eight auditions and subsequent two years of training, on 28 June 2008, Holland made his West End debut in Billy Elliot the Musical as Michael, Billy’s best friend. He gave his first performance in the title role on 8 September 2008, receiving positive notices.
In September 2008, Holland (together with co-star Tanner Pflueger) appeared on the news programme on channel FIVE and gave his first TV interview. The following year, he was featured on ITV1 show The Feel Good Factor. At the launch show on 31 January he and two other Billy Elliots, Tanner Pflueger and Layton Williams, performed a version of Angry Dance from Billy Elliot the Musical, after which Holland was interviewed by host Myleene Klass. He trained five British schoolboys for a dance routine he front for the final The Feel Good Factor show on 28 March 2009.
On 8 March 2010, to mark the fifth anniversary of Billy Elliot the Musical, four current Billy Elliots, including Holland, were invited to 10 Downing Street to meet the Prime Minister Gordon Brown. Holland was chosen to be a lead at the fifth-anniversary show on 31 March 2010. Holland had been appearing on a regular basis as Billy in Billy Elliot the Musical, rotating with three other performers, until 29 May 2010, when he finished his running.
In 2011, Holland was cast in the British version of the animated film Arrietty, produced by Japan’s Studio Ghibli. He provided a voice for the principal character Sho.
Holland made his feature film debut in The Impossible, directed by Juan Antonio Bayona, alongside Naomi Watts and Ewan McGregor. The film premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival on 9 September 2012 and was a critical and commercial success, earning $180.3 million worldwide and Holland won universal praise from critics and several awards such as the National Board of Review Award for Breakthrough Performance and London Film Critics Circle Award for Young British Performer of the Year.
Holland starred as Isaac in the drama film How I Live Now, which was released in the U.K. on 4 October 2013, co-starring Saoirse Ronan and co-starred as Tom Nickerson in the film In the Heart of the Sea (2015), directed by Ron Howard. Also in 2015, he appeared in BBC Two’s TV series Wolf Hall, as Gregory Cromwell.
On 23 June 2015, it was announced that Holland had been cast as Peter Parker / Spider-Man in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, first appearing in Captain America: Civil War (2016), The film was a massive critical and commercial success, grossing over $1.1 billion worldwide, making it the highest-grossing film of 2016, with Holland receiving critical praise.
In 2017, Holland co-starred alongside Charlie Hunnam in the drama film, The Lost City of Z, directed by James Gray. It was released in April 2017, receiving positive critical reception.
Holland will star in Spider-Man: Homecoming, reprising his role from Captain America: Civil War, set to be released on 7 July 2017. Holland is scheduled to appear in Avengers: Infinity War and its untitled sequel each scheduled to be released on 4 May 2018 and 3 May 2019, as well as the sequel to Homecoming which has a release date of 5 July 2019. Holland currently has a six-picture deal with Marvel Studios.
He was cast to play Samuel Insull in Alfonso Gomez-Rejon’s The Current War, which will be released on 22 December 2017. Holland was cast in the film adaptation of Patrick Ness’s bestselling YA series Chaos Walking as Todd Hewitt, alongside Daisy Ridley, which will be directed by Doug Liman. In May 2017, it was announced that he had been cast as a young Nathan Drake in the film adaptation of Naughty Dog’s Uncharted video game series.
Holland resides in London. He has a dog named Tessa. Tom is a supporter of Arsenal F.C and also practices gymnastics.