Michael Sheen Becomes World’s First Not-For-Profit Actor

Hollywood star Michael Sheen has played roles in films like The Queen and Twilight, but now he’s taking up a role in the Welsh community. The actor and activist has announced he is now a ‘not-for-profit actor’ after selling his houses and giving the proceeds to charity.

A post shared by Michael Sheen (@michael_sheen_official)

The actor, 52, said organizing the 2019 Homeless World Cup in Cardiff was a turning point for him. The event aims to use football to inspire homeless people to change their lives and to change public perceptions of homelessness along with the issues around it.

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When funding for the $2.65 million project fell through at the last moment, Sheen told Big Issue that he sold his own houses to finance it.

Sheen revealed that the events were pivotal for him, realizing that he could improve his community and be beneficial to other people’s lives if he could continue to find work and earn money, “it’s not going to ruin me.”

“There was something quite liberating about going, all right, I’ll put large amounts of money into this or that, because I’ll be able to earn it back again. I’ve essentially turned myself into a social enterprise, a not-for-profit actor.”

While Sheen has more than one home, he sold the residence he was keeping in the United States and moved back to the Welsh countryside.

“I had a house in America and a house here and I put those up and just did whatever it took,” he told the Big Issue. “It was scary and incredibly stressful. I’ll be paying for it for a long time.”

The star is already putting his money where his mouth is, pledging $66,000 over five years to fund a scholarship to help Welsh students go to Oxford University.

A post shared by Michael Sheen (@michael_sheen_official)

Although the actor has found a new perspective, it’s not quite a sea-change. Throughout his career Sheen has worked with several social enterprise organizations. According to the BBC, in 2017, he set up the End High-Cost Credit Alliance to help people find more affordable ways of borrowing money.

The Good Omens star is a patron of several other British charities and was a vocal supporter of the United Kingdom’s socially democratic Labour party.

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Sources: Big Issue, BBC

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