Matthew Robert Smith was born in Northampton, England. He attended the Northampton School for Boys, and later, Alton College. Initially Smith had a promising football career which was cut short due to a back injury, after which he switched to acting. He studied Drama and Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia, graduating in 2005.
In January 2009, Matt Smith was announced as playing the eleventh incarnation of the Doctor in BBC's longrunning Doctor Who series. The choice was surprising at the time, given that Smith was relatively unknown, and at 26 years old he was the youngest actor ever cast as the lead role in the show. Smith ultimately completed his run on Doctor Who and left the show in the 2013 Christmas special.
In June 2015, Smith was cast to portray Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, in the Netflix royal drama The Crown. Smith played the role for first two seasons - the series was structured so that it had a rotating cast, with new older actors taking over the roles as the characters aged. The role was taken over by Tobias Menzies in the third and fourth season, while Jonathan Pryce will play the role in the final two seasons.
- Game of Thrones Official Twitter, December 11th 2020.