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Actor whose reputation got tarnished for allegedly harassing 26 women

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Noel Clarke, once celebrated as a prominent British actor, writer, and director, has seen his reputation marred by a series of serious allegations that shook the entertainment industry. Known for his roles in popular television shows and films, Clarke’s rise to fame was marked by his dedication to promoting diversity and inclusivity in the industry.

However, his illustrious career took an unexpected turn when The Guardian (UK) published a comprehensive exposé in April 2021, laying bare claims of sexual misconduct, bullying and harassment made by 26 women against the actor.

So,  how did Noel Clarke’s journey suddenly nosedive from a promising talent to the centre of a major controversy, which led to an abrupt halt to his career?

Noel Clarke biography

Noel Clarke's face

Noel Anthony Clarke, born on December 6, 1975, is a British actor and filmmaker. He was born in Notting Hill, West London, England, to parents of Trinidadian descent. His mother, Gemma (née Clarke), was a nurse and part-time laundrette worker, while his father, Alphaeus Baptiste “Alf” Clarke, worked as a carpenter.

After his parents’ divorce, Clarke was raised by his mother in Ladbroke Grove on a council estate, where she still resides. During an appearance on the BBC genealogy series, “Who Do You Think You Are?” in 2018, Clarke discovered that his maternal great-grandparents immigrated from Saint Vincent to Trinidad, and his paternal grandmother, Menelvia Clarke (née Bedeau), emigrated from Grenada to Trinidad.

Clarke studied Media studies at the University of North London. He later attended acting classes at London’s Actors Centre.

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Noel Clarke career

Clarke has been featured in various recurring television roles. He portrayed “Wyman Norris” in the revived series, Auf Wiedersehen, Pet (2002–2004) and played “Mickey Smith” in the first two series of Doctor Who (2005–2006). He also starred in the Doctor Who audio series Dalek Empire: The Fearless, which was released from September to December 2007. In School Reunion, he became the show’s first black companion and reprised his role as “Mickey” in the episodes Journey’s End in 2008 and The End of Time Part 2 in 2010.

Apart from his Doctor Who-related work, Clarke has appeared in other television shows, such as Casualty and Metrosexuality. He even wrote an episode titled: Combat for the Doctor Who spin-off series Torchwood, and participated in the pilot, West 10 LDN, for BBC Three. Moreover, Clarke has showcased his acting talent on stage, earning the Laurence Olivier Award for “Most Promising Newcomer” in 2003 for his performance in the play “Where Do We Live” at the Royal Court Theatre.

Clarke began his filmmaking journey by penning the screenplay for Kidulthood, a film depicting the lives of teenagers in Ladbroke Grove, West London, and draws inspiration from his own experiences. The movie hit theatres on March 3, 2006. Despite some controversy, it earned praise and garnered £1,209,319 during its opening weekend.

The success of Kidulthood led Clarke to write, feature and make his directorial debut in Adulthood in 2008. Adulthood achieved financial success, grossing £1,203,319 in its UK opening weekend and an overall £6 million, making it the second-highest-grossing British film of 2008.

In 2009, Clarke’s achievements earned him a BAFTA award for the “Orange Rising Star” category and he was ranked 83rd in the MediaGuardian 100 list. Subsequently, he signed a deal with Icon in 2010.

After his BAFTA win, Clarke appeared in several low-budget and less successful British films, including Heartless, Doghouse, Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll (all 2009) and Centurion (2010).

Also in 2010, Clarke co-wrote and co-directed 4.3.2.1., a heist movie centred around four resourceful girls involved in a diamond theft. Despite featuring a star-studded cast, the film received mixed-to-negative reviews and did not perform well at the box office.

Clarke remained involved in mainstream British films, either as a co-writer or actor. He was involved in Fast Girls (2012) and Storage 24 (2012). Both films received mixed-to-positive reviews upon their release.

Following an uncredited and deleted appearance in the 2012 Marvel Comics film Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance, Clarke took on the role of “Thomas Harewood” in Star Trek Into Darkness (2013). In the movie, he portrayed a family man with a wife and a young daughter.

In 2015, Clarke ventured into creating a superhero series titled: The Troop for Titan Comics. The first issue hit the shelves in December 2015 and received critical acclaim.

In 2016, Clarke returned to take charge of writing, directing, co-producing and starring in Brotherhood, the third and final instalment in his Hood Trilogy, following Kidulthood and Adulthood. Brotherhood garnered mixed-to-positive reviews from critics and turned out to be a box-office success, earning £1.98 million in its opening week. It surpassed expectations with an overall gross of over £28.7 million in the UK, solidifying its place as the highest-grossing film in the trilogy.

In 2018, Clarke wrote and was featured in the police procedural series Bulletproof. Alongside Ashley Walters, he co-starred as NCA detectives Aaron Bishop and Ronnie Pike Jr., investigating dangerous criminals, drug dealers, traffickers, and armed robbers, under the supervision of their boss Sarah Tanner (Lindsey Coulson).

Initially inspired by the film Bad Boys, the series faced challenges during development due to concerns that a show featuring two black police officers might not find acceptance in Britain. However, when the first season premiered on May 15, 2018, it received positive reviews and achieved successful ratings. This led to a second season, comprising seven episodes. Additionally, a three-part special set in South Africa was aired in January 2021.

Despite plans for a fourth series, the future of Bulletproof was cast into doubt following allegations of sexual misconduct and bullying against Clarke in late April 2021. Filming was suspended as Vertigo, the production company, initiated investigations into the allegations. Consequently, in May 2021, Sky One officially cancelled the series.

In 2021, Clarke took on the lead role and served as an executive producer in the ITV police procedural miniseries, Viewpoint. However, just before the broadcast of the fourth episode on April 29, 2021, The Guardian reported allegations of sexual harassment and intimidation made by 20 women against Clarke, which he denied. While the episode aired as scheduled, the finale of Viewpoint was withdrawn from its intended broadcast on April 30, 2021, and replaced with a new episode of It’ll Be Alright on the Night. The final episode was later made available on ITV’s on-demand platform, ITV Hub, alongside previous episodes, for a limited period without advertisements.

Sexual misconduct allegations

In April 2021, The Guardian published allegations made by 20 women against Noel Clarke, including claims of verbal abuse, bullying, and sexual harassment. By the following day, the number of women making accusations had increased to 26. Among the allegations, it was claimed that Clarke filmed a nude audition of Jahannah James without her consent and showed it to a producer who worked with him. The same producer accused Clarke of exposing his genitals to her in a car and groping her in an elevator the following day.

Actress Jing Lusi, who worked with Clarke in SAS: Red Notice, alleged that he sexually propositioned and threatened her. Other women claimed that Clarke pressured them into performing nude sex scenes and became angry if they refused.

In response to these claims, BAFTA suspended Clarke’s membership and his “Outstanding British Contribution to Cinema” Award. ITV decided not to broadcast the final episode of Viewpoint – in which Clarke had starred – and suspended international distribution of the series. Industry Entertainment dropped Clarke as their client and Sky ceased his involvement in any future productions.

Clarke issued a statement denying any sexual misconduct or criminal wrongdoing but admitted that he had made inappropriate remarks about the buttocks of an employee. He apologised for making anyone feel uncomfortable or disrespected and stated he would seek professional help to improve his behaviour.

In May 2021, Clarke faced further accusations from five women of sexual harassment on the set of Doctor Who and during a promotional event for the show. He denied these new allegations. As a result of the controversy, Sky and production company Vertigo Films decided not to proceed with any further series of Bulletproof.

The Metropolitan Police announced they would not proceed with a criminal investigation into the sexual harassment claims against Clarke. Subsequently, Clarke dropped the legal action he had taken against BAFTA over his suspension.

In a 2023 interview, Clarke asserted that some of the accusers were lying and claimed that certain conversations were taken out of context.

In July 2023, it was revealed that Clarke was taking legal action against The Guardian, seeking approximately £10 million in damages over eight articles. He filed a defamation lawsuit, citing reputational harm and specific financial losses.

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Noel Clarke movies

Noel Clarke

Here are some notable movies that he has been a part of:

  • “Kidulthood” (2006): This film marks Clarke’s debut as a screenwriter and actor. He played the role of “Sam Peel”, who returns home after being released from prison and finds himself caught up in the complexities of urban life, including gang violence, drugs, and relationships.
  • “Adulthood” (2008): A sequel to “Kidulthood,” this movie was also written by Clarke, who reprises his role as “Sam Peel”. It follows Sam’s attempts to move on with his life after facing the consequences of his actions in the first film.
  • “4.3.2.1” (2010): In this crime thriller, Clarke takes on the role of a small-time criminal, “Tee”. The movie revolves around four young women who find themselves embroiled in a series of interconnected events during a trip to New York.
  • “Storage 24” (2012): In this sci-fi horror film, Clarke stars as “Charlie”, who becomes trapped in a storage facility with his friends when a military plane crashes nearby, releasing a dangerous alien creature. The group must fight for survival as they are hunted by the extraterrestrial menace.
  • “The Anomaly” (2014): In addition to starring in this science fiction thriller, Clarke also directed and wrote the screenplay. He played the role of “Ryan”, a former soldier who wakes up in the back of a van with no memory of how he got there. As he tries to piece together his past, he discovers that he is part of a conspiracy involving mind control.
  • “Brotherhood” (2016): This film serves as the final instalment in Clarke’s “Hood” trilogy, following “Kidulthood” and “Adulthood”. Clarke reprises his role as “Sam Peel”, who is now facing new challenges as an adult.

Noel Clarke’s net worth

Noel Clarke at an event

Clarke has an estimated net worth of $3 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth

Noel Clarke family

Clarke lives in London with his wife, Iris Da-Silva, and they have four children.

Noel Clarke age

Clarke was born on December 6, 1975. He is currently 47 years old and will celebrate his 48th birthday in 2023.

Noel Clarke now

Reports of alleged sexual misconduct have plagued Clarke at the moment and he is determined to prove his innocence. Clarke has said that these ‘false reports’ has led to him losing approximately $13 million.

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