Best known for his portrayal of Willoughby, dashing cad-in-residence of Ang Lee's 1995 adaptation of Sense and Sensibility, Greg Wise is equally (if not more so) known for his real-life relationship with Sense co-star Emma Thompson, with whom he has a daughter. A fixture of BBC period pieces big and small, Wise has the kind of dark, classic features that make him perfect for roles requiring waistcoats but have unfortunately made it difficult for him to cross over into films set in contemporary times.
Born May 15, 1966, Wise studied acting at Glasgow's Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, graduating in 1991. He got his first professional gigs on the stage, starring in Good Rockin' Tonight, a musical based on the life of TV producer Jack Good. He made his film debut in 1995 with two features, Lee's acclaimed adaptation of Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility, and Feast of July, another period drama that also cast him as a reckless and irresponsible young man. His onscreen reputation as a heartbreaker in breeches thus established, Wise spent the next couple of years concentrating his efforts on television miniseries.
The actor reemerged onscreen in 1998, starring alongside Thompson in the neo-noir-crime drama Judas Kiss. He also appeared in Mad Cows, a present-day comedy that had the dubious distinction of being regarded by most critics as the worst British film of the year. In 2000, he returned to TV period drama as Rodolphe Boulanger, another of literature's great bad lovers in a roundly praised adaptation of Madame Bovary.