British actor best known for playing Bill Otley in TV series Prime Suspect. In film he appeared in The Krays, Quest For Love and Prospero's Books.
Sandy Cowell said on 20/Dec/22
That’s rather ironic! Toms Bell and Hardy are next to each other on the Tom heights page, and they’re both 5ft9. The two actors starred in the best Kray films I’ve ever seen.
Tom looked quite short next to the brothers Kemp, so I’m wondering whether he was 5ft8 when the movie was made…..😏
I didn’t envy his fate one iota!
Miss Sandy Cowell said on 26/Aug/19
I've just seen an interesting documentary about the Kray twins and their crimes. It was narrated by and contained the information compiled and witnessed by Fred Dineage, who actually went to prison for his involvement in their misdoings.
It was a particularly engrossing account because this fellow knew them first hand. We saw pictures of all the gangsters and one of them was Jack (the hat) McVitie. He was a good-looking man and Fred assured us that he was a nice, decent sort; he should have known - he used to drink tea with the guy!
Let's just say that, in short, I don't quite think that Tom Bell did him justice in the 1991 film. He showed us a horrid piece of work in every single respect, booting his girlfriend out of a moving car and maiming her for life because she called him bald! The Krays were concerned and disgusted, arranging that the girl and her invalid mother were financially taken care of for life. What a slimy piece of a man McVitie came over to viewers of this movie, slurring his words in a way that was anything but amusing and, I've even heard, he
was a mass abuser of the drug amphetamine.
One thing that Fred DIDN'T leave out in his programme is that the infamous brothers did more good than bad. Children, women and vulnerable people were able to walk the East End streets in safety when the twins ruled the East End of London. That was unheard of before. (The protection racket money did just as much good to those who had to put their hands in their pockets as it caused inconvenience, and probably more).
Well, let's get back to Tom Bell and his portrayal of Jack McVitie. After tonight, I feel that he gave an incorrect representation of the true McVitie.
Whether Bell was instructed to act that way for the dramatisation, I do not know. I can honestly say, however, that the role coloured my opinion of the actor, and when I saw that he was actually 5ft8/9, I was surprised to say the least! All that wobbling about won't have helped matters, but if someone had told me that Tom Bell measured in at 5ft4 of 5, I wouldn't so much have flinched.
I think it's time to watch a couple of doses of 'Prime Suspect' now, if only to get the image of the slurring, vicious-tongued little man out of my mind! They were shown on TV earlier this year and I went out of my way to see the Helen Mirren ones, which I went on to buy. The contrast in Tom's acting is stark - and I can truly say that having those on one's CV would be a credit to anyone in the thespian profession.
Sandy Cowell said on 29/Nov/17
I've just seen the thumbnail picture of Tom and thought, "Never can that be the same man as the drip from 'The Krays"!
But it is, and I can see that I came along to make a comment on these very same lines just over six months ago!
If Tom was 5ft9 then, he can't be more than 5ft8 now! So I'll give him 5ft7.5!
Sandy Cowell said on 20/May/17
Ha ha! I didn't recognize him in his little picture just now!
Somehow, I think he has lost some height since those days! He can have 5ft8.
Sandy Cowell said on 13/Oct/16
I enjoyed his, slithering, whimpering performance in 'The Krays.'
I would have estimated about 5ft7.5 for him though as he looks short and squat, with short legs. And I can see him wearing a hat in 'The Krays', which tells me he might be trying to make himself look taller!
john adams said on 20/Nov/06
Now recently deceased.Had career stalled after heckling Prince phillip at a function.