English actor David Thewlis will reportedly play Ares, the god of war, in the upcoming 'Wonder Woman' solo film. English actor David Thewlis will reportedly play Ares, the god of war, in the upcoming 'Wonder Woman' solo film. English actor David Thewlis will reportedly play Ares, the god of war, in the upcoming 'Wonder Woman' solo film. (Photo: Featureflash Photo Agency / Shutterstock)

From 'Harry Potter' to 'Wonder Woman,' fun facts about David Thewlis

DC Comics' new big bad villain has a long history with the arts.

After months of rumors and tantalizing hints from action-packed trailers, we finally know the name behind the main villain in "Wonder Woman."

According to sources, British actor David Thewlis will assume the human form of Ares, the Greek god of war. While we don't know for sure, it's likely that Thewlis' character will be joined by some other minor villains, such as the masked Spanish actress Elena Anaya, to put his world-ending plans in motion. Based on new pictures of the Ares toy, it's clear that Wonder Woman, played by Israeli actress Gal Gadot, will have her hands full.

To learn more about Thewlis and his journey from punk rocker to "Harry Potter," check out some of the fun facts we've gathered on "Wonder Woman's" new bad guy below:

He was the first choice for Remus Lupin in 'Harry Potter'

Actor David Thewlis as Remus Lupin in the "Harry Potter" film franchise. Actor David Thewlis as Remus Lupin in the 'Harry Potter' film franchise. (Photo: Warner Bros.)

When Mexican filmmaker Alfonso Cuarón went about putting together the cast for the 2004 film "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban," his top choice to play the werewolf Remus Lupin was Thewlis.

“I had such a nice time making it," he told Moviehole. "The whole crew were just really, really lovely. All the costume people, the make-up girls, the kids…even my driver.”

Despite enduring makeup sessions that lasted sometimes more than six hours, Thewlis says the experience of playing a werewolf overall was worth it. "It was good to do and I can say at least once in my career I’ve done the whole werewolf transformation thing," he added. "But it wasn’t really fun to do; it’s really uncomfortable. But was great."


He was also a punk rocker

A young David Thewlis showing off his musical skills in the UK drama series "Young, Gifted, and Slack."A young David Thewlis showing off his musical skills in the UK drama series 'Young, Gifted and Slack.' (Photo: Young, Gifted and Slack)

Before he had dreams of making it as an actor, Thewlis took a stab at making it on the music scene. During the rise of punk rock in the mid-1970s, a teenage Thewlis fronted a band called Door 66 that played in pubs and clubs around Lancashire, England.

"I used to think we were good until someone sent me a DVD of us playing, and I thought, 'It's a good job I gave it up to become and actor,' he told The Independent. "I'd spent my whole life thinking we were really good, and now I know we were terrible."

Without this start in the arts, however, Thewlis may have never fallen into acting. In an effort to better their band's exposure, the group enrolled in a local music and drama school. When they split up, Thewlis decided to spend the year giving drama a shot. Needless to say, that experiment proved successful.


He lives in a former Victorian ballroom

David Thewlis has used Clerkenwell, an area in central London, as his main home base for more than a decade. David Thewlis has used Clerkenwell, an area in central London, as his main home base for more than a decade. (Photo: Stephen/Flickr/Creative Commons)

For more than a decade, Thewlis has lived in a central London neighborhood known as Clerkenwell. Unlike other apartments in the area, his is rather unusual in that it was once a Victorian ballroom. In an interview with the Clerkenwell Post, Thewlis says that such a space was not easy to fill.

"The previous owner had it rather nice," he recalled. "But when I picked up the keys and saw it empty, I thought, what am I supposed to do with it now! I just saw a big room, with a kitchen, two smallish bedrooms and a mezzanine gallery. It’s got very high ceilings, ornate stucco work, wooden floors. Everything I needed for it was big – I needed a big chair, a big sofa, a big table… It’s taken me years to make it cozy."


He's a published author

David Thewlis published "The Late Hector Kipling" in 2007. David Thewlis published 'The Late Hector Kipling' in 2007. (Photo: The Late Hector Kipling)

In 2007, Thewlis published "The Late Hector Kipling," a dark satirical piece of comedy that takes place in the contemporary art world and chronicles the fragile and destructive ego of an artist. The book was well-received, with the Guardian's book critic Francesca Segal praising the actor for his ability to uncover the darker layers of human relationships.

"Thewlis has written with a black and cynical honesty about the triumph of bitter competitive destruction over our own will to succeed, as most around us aspire not simply to do well, but to do better as we stumble," she wrote.

While Thewlis says he's not necessarily driven to give up acting and pursue writing, "The Late Hector Kipling" might not be his only novel. In a 2007 interview, he mentioned he was in the early stages of writing a second book. "I always really did want to be a writer of short stories and novels," he told Vice. "Even before I wanted to be an actor, that was my ambition."


He is often mistaken for fellow actor Rhys Ifans

David Thewlis (left) is often mistaken with fellow English actor Rhys Ifans.David Thewlis (left) is often mistaken with fellow U.K. actor Rhys Ifans. (Photo: Shutterstock/Wiki Commons)

Thewlis says that it's not uncommon for him to be mistaken for Welsh actor Rhys Ifans.

In addition to co-starring alongside Thewlis as Xenophilius Lovegood in "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1," Ifans has also appeared in "The Amazing Spider-Man" and the romantic comedy "Notting Hill."

''Twice a week,'' Thewlis told the Telegraph, ''people come up to me and say, 'You were great in Notting Hill.' I sometimes accept the compliment. Rhys Ifans gets the same with me. The public seem to think we are the same person.''

Ironically, after breaking up with Thewlis in 2010, British actress Anna Louise Friel entered into a three-year relationship with ... Rhys Ifans.

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