In today’s cast spotlight, we focus on 3 actors with a strong theatre background, as well as prominent roles in some genre favorites. The staff of is proud to welcome them to the Middle-earth family!

Trystan Gravelle | Thusitha Jayasundera | Simon Merrells

Trystan Gravelle is a Welsh actor who studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London. Just weeks after graduating, he accepted a position with the Royal Shakespeare Company, appearing in productions for ‘Romeo and Juliet’, ‘Hamlet’, ‘Love’s Labour’s Lost’ and ‘King Lear’, as well as several more of the Bard’s works. In 2006 he appeared in the Harold Pinter play ‘The Birthday Party’, and in 2011 co-starred in the Mike Bartlett play ’13’ for the National Theatre.

Trystan Gravelle

In 2011 he appeared as Christopher Marlowe alongside Vanessa Redgrave, David Thewlis, and Ryan Ifans in the film ‘Anonymous’, a fictionalized version of the life of Edward de Vere, Earl of Oxford, which theorizes that he was the actual author of William Shakespeare’s plays.

TV roles include the excellent period drama ‘Mr. Selfridge’, ‘The Terror’, ‘A Discovery of Witches’, ‘Exile’, and ‘The Aliens’.

Thusitha Jayasundera is a Sri Lankan actress based in the UK, and also a graduate of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. She appeared in the National Theatre adaptation of ‘War Horse’, as well as ‘Dreams of Violence’ for the Soho Theatre. Last summer Thusitha received great reviews playing Mrs. Webb in the Thornton Wilder classic ‘Our Town’ at the Open Air Theatre, Regent’s Park, London.

Thusitha Jayasundera

Thusitha has also appeared on several British television shows including ‘The Bill’, the BBC hospital drama ‘Holby City’, ‘Broadchurch’, ‘Silent Witness’, ‘Doctor Foster’, and most recently, as Neha on ‘Humans’.

Simon Merrells is an English film, television and stage actor best known for his portrayal of Marcus Licinius Crassus alongside new cast member Cynthia Addai-Robinson, Manu Bennett (Azog in ‘The Hobbit’ trilogy), and Craig Parker (Haldir in ‘The Lord of the Rings’ trilogy) in ‘Spartacus: War of the Dammed’.

Simon Merrells as Crassus in ‘Spartacus: War of the Dammed’

Simon has appeared in several productions for the National Theatre and the Royal Shakespeare Company, including ‘Much Ado About Nothing’, ‘Coriolanus’, and ‘The Comedy of Errors’ (alongside his brother Jason). In addition to his role in ‘Spartacus’, he has also appeared in ‘Good Omens’, ‘DC’s Legends of Tomorrow’, ‘The Tomorrow People’, and the British mini-series ‘Knightfall’. Film credits include the 2010 remake of ‘The Wolfman’, ‘Judas Ghost’, ‘Billionaire Ransom’, and ‘The Rise of the Krays’.

Editor Note: Join as we focus on the recent cast member announcements for Amazon TV’s The Lord of the Rings inspired TV series. Throughout the month, and as part of our Tolkien Advent Calendar celebration, we will be taking a deep-dive into their previous work, relating that to the world of J.R.R. Tolkien. Today’s calendar is below!

Day 5 of’s Tolkien Holiday Advent Calendar