BILLY Elliot star Jamie Bell is to become a father for the first time.

The 26-year-old actor, from Billingham, near Stockton, and his wife Evan Rachel Wood are expecting a child together, after marrying last year.

Wood's publicist Amanda Silverman confirmed the pregnancy and said the couple were "thrilled".

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Bell found fame as the talented young dancer in UK movie hit Billy Elliot, later to become a musical stage show.

Other movie successes have included Peter Jackson's King Kong remake and he provided the voice of Tintin in Steven Spielberg's The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret Of The Unicorn.

Bell and Wood - who starred in the acclaimed mini-series Mildred Pierce - first dated in 2005, and split a year later, although they went on to rekindle their relationship.