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Only Fools and Horses: Here’s what the 6 Damien Trotter actors have been up to from EastEnders role to Hollywood movie

In 1991, Del Boy and his partner Raquel Turner (Tessa Peake Jones) welcomed the newest Trotter into the world as baby Damien was born and luckily, the doting parents didn’t name their sprog ‘Rodney, after Dave’ as Trigger suggested.
Hooky dealer Del (David Jason) always looked at his son like a chip off the old block and a complete angel, but in Rodney’s (Nicholas Lyndhurst) eyes, his nephew was the Antichrist. Although teenage Damien became a savior to his uncle Rodney after he placed Cassandra’s birth control pills inside Uncle Albert’s urn and the pair consequently became parents to baby Joan in the final Only Fools and Horses episode in 2003.

In the space of 12 years, there were six actors who played the role of Damien Trotter, and it’s no surprise some of them went to star in popular TV shows and movies. So, here’s a look at actors who played the descendant of Peckham’s finest wheeler-dealer and what they have been up to since appearing on the show.
READ MORE: Gwyneth Strong is worlds away from Cassandra Trotter in EastEnders

Patrick McManus, Robert Liddement and Grant Stevens

Del Boy with Raquel, Rodney and baby Damien

Del Boy and Raquel have baby Damien together (Image: BBC)
Damien Trotter was born in 1991 during the episode Three Men, A Woman And A Baby, and was first played by actor Patrick McManus.

However, during the Miami Twice we see Damien get christened at the beginning of the episode and he is now played by Grant Stevens.
One year later, the Mother Nature’s Son Christmas special aired on TV, and this time around Damien was portrayed by Robert Liddement.

However, since their appearances on the hit show, not much else is known about either Patrick, Grant or Robert, which is no surprise considering they were small babies at the height of their fame.

Grant Stevens as baby Damien Trotter in Miami Twice
Grant Stevens as baby Damien Trotter in Miami Twice (Image: BBC)
Douglas Hodge

Douglas Hodge as Damien Trotter in Only Fools and Horses in the future
Douglas Hodge as Damien Trotter in Only Fools and Horses (Image: BBC)
The Heroes and Villains episode aired in 1996 and opens with Rodney’s futuristic dream where his ‘evil’ nephew Damien is head of the very powerful Trotters Independent Traders, who rule the Western world.
This particular scene is set in the year 2026 and Damien is now declaring war on China from their headquarters Trotters Towers.
Rodney, on the other hand, is a washed-up messenger whilst Uncle Albert’s body has been preserved and all he can say is his trademark phrase “During the war…” on an annoying constant loop.
Baddie adult Damien is played by actor Douglas Hodge who is a Hollywood movie star. The 62-year-old has also starred in some of television’s hottest shows including London’s Burning (1988), Spooks (2005), Skins (2010), Outnumbered (2010), and Black Mirror (2017) – to name a few.

Douglas Hodge attends the 28th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at Barker Hangar on February 27, 2022 in Santa Monica, California
TV and movie actor Douglas Hodge pictured earlier this year (Image: WireImage)
Douglas kicked off his very successful acting career in 1985 when he appeared in the series Smith & Jones before starring as Geoffrey in Sorry! a year later.
He’s also played many movie roles during his successful acting career, including Dan in The Descent Part 2 (2009), Sir Robert Loxley in Robin Hood (2010), and Paul Burrell in Diana (2013).
In 2019 Douglas played Alfred Pennyworth in Joker, which also starred Joaquin Phoenix and Robert De Niro. The same year, he also starred in Gemini Man which stars Will Smith in the lead role.
Most recently Douglas starred as Simon in the flick A Grand Romantic Gesture.
Jamie Smith

Jamie Smith as Damien in Only Fools and Horses
Jamie Smith as Damien in Only Fools and Horses (Image: BBC)
Actor Jamie Smith portrayed Damien between 1993 and 1996 as he starred in the episodes: Heroes and Villains, Modern Men and Time On Our Hands.
In Heroes and Villians, Damien famously asks Rodney if he ‘wants to play war’ as Rodney looks at him shell-shocked. Sadly little is known about the whereabouts of the young actor nearly 30 years after finding fame on the BBC sitcom.
Ben Smith

Del Boy and Damien Trotter in Monte Carlo
Del Boy and Damien Trotter in Monte Carlo (Image: Mark Boudillon/BBC)
The last actor to take on the role of ‘devil child’ Damien was Ben Smith.
In 2001, Only Fools and Horses made an epic comeback after five years for three legendary Christmas specials. Actor Ben Smith took on the role of Damien Trotter in the episodes that followed the Trotters after they had become millionaires.
Since appearing in Only Fools, Ben has enjoyed a successful career in acting and now looks completely different from his days in Peckham.
Born in North London, the 32-year-old actor has appeared in many popular television shows including Teachers, The Bill, Help! I’m a Teenage Outlaw, Misfits, Doctor Who, Holby City, and Goodnight Mister Tom.

Ben Smith as Tegs in EastEnders in 2018
Ben Smith as Tegs in EastEnders in 2018 (Image: BBC)
He also played Reece Keys in the movie Passer By alongside the actor James Nesbitt. In 2008, Ben played Tegs Teague in EastEnders as the main leader of a gang called “the E20” who stole from the market, harassed Dot Branning, and tried to verbally abuse Shirley Carter.
During four episodes Tegs wreaked havoc in Albert Square and eventually stabbed Jay Brown before getting arrested. He was a right git, as Del Boy would say! In 2015, Ben appeared in an episode of Manchester crime drama No Offence, as well as playing a soldier in the TV short Native.
He also starred in the movie Come Out of the Woods in 2017 which follows three brothers struggling in Scotland.
Most recently Ben played the role of Robbie Lennox in the series Resistance (2019) which is the sequel series to the 2016 Rebellion, and set during the 1916 Easter Rising.

Ben Smith as Robbie Lennox and Aoife Duffin as Eithne in the RTE drama series Resistance
Ben Smith as Robbie Lennox and Aoife Duffin as Eithne in the RTE drama series Resistance (Image: RTE)
Resistance, a glossy RTE television drama that blends real and fictional characters, has shone a contemporary light on the guerrilla campaign led by Michael Collins that helped overthrow British rule in what became the Republic of Ireland a century ago.
Other notable TV and movie appearances include Silent Witness (2007), Nowhere Boy (2009), Whitechapel (2012), Scott & Bailey (2013), and many more.

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John Wayne

John Wayne Once Explained Why He Turned Down so Many ‘Petty, Mean’ Movies

Actor John Wayne is one of Hollywood’s most iconic figures to ever work in movies. However, he was very specific about the roles he would accept and the ones that he refused to involve himself in. Wayne once explained why he turned down so many potentially big movies that he described as “petty,” “small,” and “mean” through the evolution of Hollywood.

John Wayne played particular movie roles

John Wayne in one of his last movies 'The Shootist' alongside Ron Howard. He's wearing a Western outfit and holding a gun, pointing it out standing next to a stunned Howard.L-R: Ron Howard and John Wayne | Bettmann / Contributor

Wayne has over 180 acting credits to his name, spread across movies and television shows. He became a household name for the Western and war genres, ultimately contributing huge star power to the projects later in his career. However, Wayne also wasn’t afraid to speak up when he didn’t like something about the movies that wanted him involved. This held true for both prospective projects and ones that he already signed on for.
The actor ultimately turned down projects that earned attention at the Academy Awards, including High Noon. However, it wasn’t always because he didn’t like the roles themselves. Rather, Wayne was a patriot, who didn’t want anything to do with movies that he deemed insulting to the American image.

John Wayne explained why he turned down so many ‘petty, mean’ movies at the time

The official Wayne Twitter account shared a behind-the-scenes look at one of his movies, The Shootist. He talked about the state of violence in cinema, but he also touched on how he chose what to star in. The film hit theaters in 1976, so it’s worth taking the time period in mind for what he has to say about “modern” filmmaking.

“The whole idea of our business is illusion and they’re getting away from that,” Wayne said. “They’re putting electric squibs in livers and blowing them up in slow motion and then having blood all over everything. I mean, it’s not that there’s more violence in pictures today. It’s that it’s done with such bad taste that people turn their stomachs, not their emotional insides are affected. It turns their stomach. I just don’t want to play anything petty or small or mean. I don’t mind being rough and tough and cruel, but in a big way, no little petty things.”

The actor believed that cinema should be family-friendly

Wayne had a very firm stance when it came to violence in the movies. The rating board once even reached out to the actor to get his input. However, Wayne didn’t want any part in it because he didn’t think a rating system was necessary. He believed that Hollywood should make motion pictures aimed at the whole family.

Wayne starred in a wide variety of movies that included violence, but they never reached the extremes of what he talked about while filming The Shootist. Today’s filmmaking would certainly give him a shock if he were to see how much some movies push the boundaries and make audiences squirm.

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John Wayne

John Wayne Once Confessed the ‘Stupidest Damn Thing I Ever Did in My Life’ Involving His Romance

Actor John Wayne had three wives over the course of his life. However, the couples would always go through various hardships. Wayne always publicly embraced family life and would combine his image as a father with his tough, Western one. The actor once confided in a friend and told them the “stupidest damn thing” he ever did over the course of his lifetime.

John Wayne married his second wife 3 weeks after his divorce became final

John Wayne and Esperanza Baur, the second wife over the course of his life smiling sitting in a car wearing hats

L-R: John Wayne and Esperanza ‘Chata’ Baur | Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Marc Eliot’s American Titan: Searching for John Wayne touched on personal and professional aspects of the actor’s life. The divorce from his first wife, Josephine, was finalized on December 26, 1945. However, that certainly didn’t stop the actor from jumping into another relationship soon after. Wayne married Esperanza Baur, also called Chata, exactly three weeks after his divorce in the Unity Presbyterian Church of Long Beach, which is where his mother married her second husband, Sidney Preen. Actor Ward Bond was Wayne’s best man.

However, everything in Wayne’s life would change when he returned to Los Angeles after his honeymoon with his new wife. They purchased a new home in Van Nuys, California, and made sure to have a separate room for his mother-in-law. As a result, the newly-married couple started to have some difficulties.

John Wayne said that marrying Chata was the ‘stupidest damn thing I ever did in my life’

American Titan: Searching for John Wayne mentioned that Chata wanted to get a real role in a movie, but Wayne didn’t want her to have the life of a movie star. As a result, he told her that she belonged at home. Chata didn’t take this very well and turned to alcohol, developing an addiction.

Wayne ultimately turned to Bond to complain about Chata and his mother-in-law speaking Spanish and their desire for a bigger home. His new wife and her mother would often sleep in the same bed, forcing the actor to sleep on the couch in the living room.

Eliot wrote that Wayne took pride in his physical appearance and kept it in a specific condition for the camera. His ex-wife also took care of her physical appearance, but Chata refused to remove her facial hair, as she had a bit of a mustache. She also wouldn’t bathe very often and refused to shave her legs, which would make Wayne angry. Their arguments became increasingly frequent, which Wayne told Bond.

“Our marriage was like shaking two volatile chemicals in a jar,” Wayne said, admitting that marrying Chata was “the stupidest damn thing I ever did in my life!”

The actor would marry one final time

Wayne’s life moved on past Chata, as they divorced in 1954. Tragically, she died from a heart attack in 1961. Wayne married one final time to Pilar Pallete in the same year that he divorced Chata. They would ultimately remain married until the actor died in 1979, although they no longer lived together. The couple separated, but it was never legally so.

Meanwhile, Wayne became romantically involved with his former secretary, Pat Stacy, until his death.

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John Wayne

John Wayne Was a ‘Big Prankster’ With James Caan on ‘El Dorado’

Actor James Caan once talked about what it was like working with legendary actor John Wayne on El Dorado. The then-young actor didn’t initially get along with the Western star. However, they would ultimately develop their relationship in unexpected ways, as Wayne turned into a “big prankster” with Caan on the set. It’s a whole other side to the iconic actor that the world didn’t get to see very often.

John Wayne and James Caan co-starred in ‘El Dorado’

'El Dorado' James Caan as Mississippi and John Wayne as Cole Thornton wearing Western outfits surrounded by barrels

L-R: James Caan as Mississippi and John Wayne as Cole Thornton | FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images

Wayne and Caan co-starred in Howard Hawks’ 1966 American Western called El Dorado, which was loosely based on Harry Brown’s novel called The Stars in Their Courses. The story begins when a heartless tycoon named Bart Jason (Edward Asner) brings in a group of thugs to claim the MacDonald family’s home right from under them. However, the town’s sheriff is too drunk to lend his aid.

An elder gunfighter named Cole Thorton (Wayne) agrees to lend his aid when he hears about the situation. He makes a trip to El Dorado, but he isn’t alone. Mississippi (Caan) joins to clean up the sheriff in time for the inevitable shootout to come.

John Wayne and James Caan turned into ‘big pranksters’ on the set

The official Wayne Twitter account tweeted an interview with Caan, where he talked about filming El Dorado. However, the situation that unfolded is anything but expected, as the tweet referred to Wayne as a “big prankster.”

“Wayne told me every time, he says, ‘Take a step, turn around.’ So, I do it and Hawks would yell ‘Cut’ and come walking, they’d reset everything, which took a half hour,” Caan recalled. “He’d go, ‘Look, kid, when you say the line, just go.’ ‘All right, coach. I’m sorry.’”

Caan continued: “Now, he walks, he does, as he’s walking back to the camera, he goes, ‘Now, look, kid. Don’t take a whole step. Just take a half a step and then turn around and give me that look you give me.’ I still have no idea what the freaking look is. I think I was smiling, just laughing at him. Action, everything starts up again, I take a half a step, turn around: ‘Cut!’ (Laughs). He comes up, yelling, ‘What’s the matter with you? Can’t you just say the line and go?’ ‘Coach, I’m really sorry. I don’t know what happened. I had a brain fart, something.’”

However, the next interaction would nearly put Wayne and Caan on very bad terms.

“He starts walking back and he goes, ‘Now look, kid,’ and I turn around and [Robert] Mitchum grabbed me, I was going to hit him,” Caan said. “From that day, we were … he knew what he was doing, you know? He was having a good time at my expense.”

The relationship between Wayne and Caan made a sudden turn for the hilarious when they started to play jokes on one another, but it clearly confused Hawks.

“But as a week went by, I’d be off camera and Hawks would be next to me, and Duke would be sitting there. Right in the middle of my scene, I’d go, (mouths) ‘You stink’ and he’d laugh. ‘Oh, what’s the matter there?’ ‘Oh, nothing. Sorry.’ It just became who can screw up who.”

Caan concluded: “Like, one day, you remember those wooden dressing rooms they had? I’d come to lunch, my dressing room’s locked. I go, ‘Excuse me, guys, how come it’s locked? I can’t get in there.’ ‘Well, here’s the key.’ Garbage just came out. He’d just pile it with garbage. He was like a 12-year-old kid.”

‘El Dorado’ became a box office success

John Wayne Wanted to Make His Home Alarm a Hilarious Tape Recording of His Voice: ‘I See You, You Son of a B****’

El Dorado would ultimately prove to be a success for both Wayne and Caan. The film earned critical praise, but the legendary Western actor often gave off the impression that he didn’t care what they had to say. Wayne would prefer for the audience to enjoy what he put up on the silver screen. Luckily, he would be in luck with El Dorado, which was a commercial success.

This particular Western would become one of Wayne’s more iconic genre pieces. Even his final movie, The Shootist would incorporate footage from it.

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