Raphael Coleman, child star from ‘Nanny McPhee’ and climate activist, dies at 25

Raphael Coleman
Raphael Coleman during the 2005 “Nanny McPhee” London premiere. The former child actor has died at 25.
(Ferdaus Shamim / WireImage)

Raphael Coleman, the former British child actor who starred in the film “Nanny McPhee” and later became a climate change activist, has died. He was 25.

His mother, Liz Jensen, reported his death Friday on social media.

“Rest in peace my beloved son Raphael Coleman, aka Iggy Fox,” she wrote on Twitter. “He died doing what he loved, working for the noblest cause of all. His family could not be prouder. Let’s celebrate all he achieved in his short life and cherish his legacy.”

Carsten Jensen, Coleman’s stepfather, wrote on Facebook that his stepson “collapsed without prior health problems in the middle of a trip and could not be restored.”


Coleman appeared alongside Emma Thompson and Colin Firth in the 2005 comedy-fantasy film “Nanny McPhee” as Eric Brown. He went on to play roles in the 2009 films “It’s Alive” and “The Fourth Kind” as well as the short “Edward’s Turmoil” that same year.

He then earned a bachelor’s degree in zoology from the University of Manchester before becoming a climate change activist with the environmental movement Extinction Rebellion.

“Iggy was a burning bright soul and he will be deeply missed by us all,” read a tribute on the movement’s website.

“As a child, he was old-wise, extremely literate and loved to lecture adults with his always astonishing knowledge,” Coleman’s stepfather wrote in his lengthy Facebook post, adding that “he played himself with great talent, a little redhead boy who was always mixing explosive chemical ingredients” as the brainy child in “Nanny McPhee.”

But his heart was not in acting, Carsten Jensen wrote. He “wanted to be a scientist, not to blow up something, as his figure in ‘Nanny Mcphee,’ but to save the planet.

“Death turned off raph, but it did not turn off the light that burned in him, because no one who has known him has been unaffected by it or will forget it, and that is how he lives on.”