15 year old English actor,Asa Butterfield, is best known for starring in the Holocaust film The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas (2008), playing Norman in Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang (2010), and taking the title role in Martin Scorsese’s fantasy Hugo (2011). He will also be portraying “Ender Wiggin” in the upcoming film adaptation of the science fiction novel Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card, which is scheduled to be released in 2013.
Butterfield first started acting at the age of 7 on Friday afternoons after school at the Young Actors Theatre, in his hometown. Later, he secured minor roles in the 2006 television drama After Thomas and the 2007 film Son of Rambow. In 2008 he also had a guest role-playing “Donny” in Ashes to Ashes.
In that same year, he played the lead role in The Boy in the Striped Pajamas. Director Mark Herman said that they came across Butterfield early on in the audition process, as Butterfield was on the first audition tape Herman received and he was the third hopeful he met in person. Producer David Heyman and director Mark Herman were looking for someone who was able to portray the main character’s innocence, so they asked each of the children what they knew about the Holocaust. Butterfield’s knowledge was slim and it was purposely kept that way throughout filming so it would be easier for him to convey his character’s innocence.
He starred as Norman Green in Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang (2010), working together with Emma Thompson. The film received positive reviews along with his performance. He subsequently played the main character “Hugo Cabret” in Martin Scorsese’s 3-D film Hugo, which was filmed from June 2010 to January 2011.
Check out Asa Butterfield in Martin Scorsese’s Hugo