Joel McIlroy

Quick Facts

IntroAustralian actor
Is Actor
From Australia
Type Film, TV, Stage, Radio
Birth 8 August 1973, Sydney
Age47 years


Joel McIlroy (born 8 August 1973 in Sydney) is an Australian actor, best known for being the second actor to take on the role of Flynn Saunders, a character of the popular soap opera Home and Away. McIlroy took over the role of Flynn in 2003 after Martin Dingle-Wall left the role in 2002.

Early years

Joel McIlroy grew up in the Northern Beaches area of Sydney. McIlroy first appeared in various productions with the Forest Youth Theatre Company, acting in musicals from the age of 16 to 18. After starring in a Year 11 musical production with his high school, McIlroy decided that he wanted to become an actor. While still at school McIlroy went to the USA and studied in Los Angeles for six months. He later travelled around Europe before returning to Sydney to study acting.

At 20, McIlroy enrolled in the Australian Theatre for Young People (ATYP) and after completing four years’ study has had acting roles in theatre and television ever since. McIlroy appeared in the plays, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Henry V and The Hour We Knew Nothing of Each Other. He worked at student jobs to support himself during those years.


Many years later, he is still connected with the “Theatre for Young People.” After appearing in the short film, The Beat Manifesto, for the Australian Film and Television School (North Ryde, Sydney), McIlroy was nominated for an AFI Award. He also won the Lend Lease Scholarship from the “Australian Theatre for Young People.” McIlroy enrolled in a director’s course with the National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA). His acting career spanned various plays and guest roles in television: Water Rats (1996), All Saints (1998), as Brent Duffy for four episodes of the ABC TV drama Love Is a Four-Letter Word (2001), also as Bertie Jenkins in the ABC mini series Changi (2001) and as Chook in the feature film, Angst (2000).

He also directed two Sam Shepherd plays, Action and Fool for Love.

McIlroy’s acting career really took off when he joined Home and Away to replace Martin Dingle-Wall as Flynn Saunders. In 2006 he was nominated for a Silver Logie Award for the most popular actor on Australian television.