17 November 2019 14:44
The 46-year-old told Desert Island Discs he made the suicide attempt after moving to London from Liverpool in his 20s and struggling to cope with drama school. He said he was also still suffering from grief from when, as a teenager, his grandmother died and his mother had a still birth. He told the Radio 4 show: "I just had a breakdown. I'll never forget the moment when I was in my mum and dad's living room and they were trying to see what was happening with me and trying to understand it and I couldn't really talk. "I'll never forget the tears coming down both their faces, saying 'What can we do.
And then the next day I tried to hang myself. It was very calculated and I heard my nana's voice. "I know it sounds strange and weird... but it's my truth. I heard my nana's voice and she shouted 'Stephen' and I thought I had gone. "I just came to, opened my eyes and the rope had snapped, thankfully." Stephen's big break was playing racist skinhead Andrew "Combo" Gascoigne in 2006's This Is England. His own background is mixed race - his grandfather was Jamaican and his grandmother Swedish. And his stepfather, also mixed race, taught him to be proud of his culture. "There [were] times where, growing up, I was slightly unsure of where I fitted in. Sometimes I would be accepted by my white cousins... and my black cousins wouldn't really... do you know what I mean? "[My stepfather] just helped me see that who I am and what I am is good enough." Stephen's latest film role is in Martin Scorsese's The Irishman with Al Pacino and Robert De Niro.