The Earl of Southampton Henry Wriothesley
Played by Xavier Samuel
Henry Wriothesley, Earl of Southampton, was a generous patron of the arts and a well known fan of theater. Shakespeare dedicate works to him, and he was a particularly loyal friend to the Earl of Essex.
• To William Shakespeare: Why were Shakespeare's works dedicated to Southampton? What was the relationship between the two men? Could this patron of the arts be the "Fair Youth" of Shakespeare's sonnets?
• To the older Earl of Oxford: The Earls of Oxford and Southampton shared a love for the arts and theater. Both men had lost their fathers at a relatively young age, giving them another shared bond. But some historians are convinced that the two share an even deep connection.
• To the older Queen Elizabeth: The Earl of Southampton was a favored courtier of Elizabeth's, as they both loved theater and arts.
Over the past few years, Australian actor Xavier Samuel (Southampton) has generated international attention for his standout performances and is poised to become one of the most dynamic and versatile young actors of his generation.
Samuel was most recently seen in the third film in the blockbuster Twilight series, Eclipse in which he playEd Riley, a newborn vampire.
Samuel is currently in Australia shooting the film Drift opposite Sam Worthington. Drift is a drama set in the 1970's about two brothers who revolutionized the surfing industry. He has also completed production on the Australian films A Few Best Men, a comedy about a groom and his three best men and their adventures traveling to the Australian outback for the wedding, Bait, a thriller about a tsunami which traps a group of people in a supermarket along with a pack of tiger sharks and Road Kill, a supernatural thriller set in the Australian outback and directed by Dean Francis Both.