English character actor Sam Spruell essayed a wide variety of tough, often ruthless roles in both UK and American features and television, including "The Hurt Locker" (2008), "Taken 3" (2014) and "The Bastard Executioner" (FX, 2015-15). Raised in London, Spruell studied at Hull University before making his stage debut with the National Theatre. His first screen credit came in Kathryn Bigelow's submarine drama "K-19: The Widowmaker" (2002), which preceded a lengthy stint as guest performer and occasional series regular on British television. He soon established himself as a character actor with great diversity, segueing from a mobster's vengeful son in the gritty "London to Brighton" (2006) to a husband struggling to conceive a child with his wife in the comedy-drama "Tick Tock Lullaby" (2007). By the following year, Spruell had made inroads to American features, landing supporting roles in Bigelow's Oscar-winning "The Hurt Locker" and Ed Zwick's "Defiance" (2008), and in 2012, he was cast as the sycophantic brother of Charlize Theron's evil queen in "Snow White and the Huntsman" (2012). The exposure afforded by these projects led to more substantive roles in his native England; Spruell was among the leads in the drama series "Mayday" (BBC One, 2013-), about the disappearance of a young woman in a small English town during the May Day Festival. By the following year, Spruell had appeared in a slew of projects, including Ridley Scott's "The Counselor" (2013) and as the villain in "Taken 3," while also maintaining a supporting role in the first season of "The Last Ship" (TNT, 2014-). His character, a paleobiologist, was killed at the conclusion of the season, allowing Spruell to join the cast of Kurt Sutter's historical action-drama "The Bastard Executioner" as a trusted friend of the series' hero, Wilkin Brattle (Lee Jones). Spruell was also featured as the infamous London gangster Jack "Jack the Hat" McVitie in Brian Helgeland's "Legend" (2015), about the notorious Kray brothers, who ruled Britain's underworld in the late '60s.