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How Philip Winchester Makes Brawling an Art Form

The American actor has discovered a new rush with shows like "Strike Back" and "The Player."
Jeff Lipsky

Having split his time growing up on a ranch in Montana and in a small town in the English countryside, Philip Winchester blends the brashness of the American who breaks stuff and the polite wink of an Englishman who also cleans up after himself.

The 34-year-old actor recently channeled those skills alongside Wesley Snipes in NBC’s The Player. Winchester says he’s revelled in working alongside action royalty. “Wesley is a real-life ninja,” he gushes. “My whole childhood was based on his movies. We really got into the nuts and bolts of being a badass on camera.”

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Winchester realized he had a knack for fake fighting early on in his career. “In drama school I learned I wasn’t as good as I thought I was,” he explains. “But I loved stage combat, and I knew that would pay the bills.” So far, so good. Those fight skills have led to roles on Crusoe, Camelot, Fringe, and Cinemax’s recently wrapped fifth and final season of Strike Back. Diehards fear not, Winchester says there’s a follow-up movie in the works.

Last February, Winchester became a dad—little did he know his baby girl would pack a bigger punch than his sparring partners. “She gave me this toothless grin, and it felt like I’d been hit with a bat,” he says. Keep in mind this is from a guy who knows what it feels like to really be hit with a baseball bat.

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The Outfit: Blending cotton with cashmere, this hand-tailored sport coat from Hickey Freeman brings some well-deserved luxury to a closet staple. Thanks to a full canvas construction and double-faced fabric, this is the rare blazer that’s lightweight but still holds it structure.

“It can be worn with a wool pant, a five-pocket trouser, or even denim for a more casual look,” says Hickey Freeman designer Arnold Silverstone.

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