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Emma Thompson Biography

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Emma Thompson
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Emma Thompson Biography

Emma Thompson was born in London on April 15, 1959, into a family of actors - her father was Eric Thompson, who has passed away, and her mother, Phyllida Law, has co-starred with Thompson in several films (her sister, Sophie Thompson, is an actor as well). Thompson's wit was earlier cultivated by a cheerful, clever, creative family atmosphere, and she was a popular and successful student. She attended Cambridge University, studying English Literature, and was part of the university's Footlights Group, the famous group where, previously, many of the Monty Python members had first met.

Thompson graduated in 1980 and embarked on her career in entertainment, beginning with stints on BBC radio and touring with comedy shows. She soon got her first major break in television, on the comedy skit program "Alfresco" (1983), writing and performing along with her fellow Footlights Group alums Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie. She also worked on other TV comedy review programs in the mid-1980s, occasionally with some of her fellow Footlights alums, and often with actor Robbie Coltrane.

Thompson found herself collaborating again with Fry in 1985, this time in his stage adaptation of the play "Me and My Girl" in London's West End, in which she had a leading role, playing Sally Smith. The show was a success and she received favorable reviews, and the strength of her performance led to her casting as the lead in the BBC television miniseries "Fortunes of War" (1987) (mini), in which Thompson and her co-star, Kenneth Branagh, play an English ex-patriate couple living in Eastern Europe as the Second World War erupts. Thompson won a BAFTA award for her work on the program. She married Branagh in 1989, continued to work with him professionally, and formed a production company with him. In the late 80s and early 90s, she starred in a string of well-received and successful television and film productions, most notably her lead role in the Merchant-Ivory production of Howards End (1992), which confirmed her ability to carry a movie on both sides of the Atlantic and appropriately showered her with trans-Atlantic honors - both an Oscar and a BAFTA award.

Since then, Thompson has continued to move effortlessly between the art film world and mainstream Hollywood, though even her Hollywood roles tend to be in more up-market productions. She continues to work on television as well, but is generally very selective about which roles she takes. She writes for the screen as well, such as the screenplay for Ang Lee's Sense and Sensibility (1995), in which she also starred as Elinor Dashwood, and the teleplay adaptation of Margaret Edson's acclaimed play Wit (2001) (TV), in which she also starred.

Thompson is known for her sophisticated, skillful, though her critics say somewhat mannered, performances, and of course for her arch wit, which she is unafraid to point at herself - she is a fearless self-satirist. Thompson and Branagh divorced in 1994, and Thompson is now married to fellow actor Greg Wise, who had played Willoughby in Ang Lee's Sense and Sensibility (1995). Thompson and Wise have one child, Gaia, born in 1999.


Emma Thompson Trivia

Her daughter's name is Gaia Romilly Wise.

On Saturday 4th December 1999 Emma gave birth to her first child with boyfriend Greg Wise and jokingly called her "jane.com".

Living with Greg Wise. [1997]

Ranked #91 in Empire (UK) magazine's "The Top 100 Movie Stars of All Time" list. [October 1997]

Graduated from Camden School for Girls, and the all-women Newnham College of Cambridge University with a degree in English (1982). Jodhi May also attended Camden School for Girls.

Cambridge Footlights Revue (198?) with Hugh Laurie, Stephen Fry.

She co-wrote, co-produced, and co-directed Cambridge University's first all-female revue "Woman's Hour" in 1983.

Elder sister of Sophie Thompson.

Was named to the Board of Advisors for Cincinnati Shakespeare Festival (previously Fahrenheit Theater Company) in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Her mother is Phyllida Law, who has appeared in several movies with her.

Father is stage director Eric Thompson.

Was originally slated to play the role of "God" in Kevin Smith's Dogma (1999). She was unable to perform due to her pregnancy.

Turned down the Jodie Foster role in Anna and the King (1999).

She was initially cast as the lead in Basic Instinct (1992), but refused later on. About Sharon Stone's appearance she said: "As far as I can see, from Sharon Stone's love scene in Basic Instinct (1992), they molded her body out of tough Plasticine. She was shagging Michael Douglas like a donkey, and not an inch moved. If that had been me, there would have been things flying around hitting me in the eye".

Speaks French and Spanish fluently.

Lives across the street from her mother and down the street from her sister.

Her brother-in-law is Richard Lumsden, a British actor-comedian.

She was ranked fifth in the 2001 Orange Film Survey of greatest British film actresses.

One of only ten actors who have been nominated for both a Supporting and Lead Acting Academy Award in the same year for their achievements in two different movies. The other nine are Fay Bainter, Teresa Wright, Barry Fitzgerald (nominated in both categories for the same role in the same movie), Jessica Lange, Sigourney Weaver, Al Pacino , Holly Hunter, Julianne Moore and Jamie Foxx. Holly Hunter received her double-nomination in the same year that Thompson did.

Has one song dedicated to her and named after her, on famous French singer Georges Moustaki's album, "Moustaki", released in 2003.

She is the only person to have won Academy awards for both acting and writing. She won Best Actress for Howards End (1992), and Best Adapted Screenplay for Sense and Sensibility (1995).

Accepted the role of Professor Trelawny in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004) to impress her daughter, Gaia.

Shares birthday with Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004) co-star Emma Watson.

Read English Literature at Cambridge.

Keeps her Oscar statuettes in her bathroom

Her performance as Miss Kenton in The Remains of the Day (1993) is ranked #52 on Premiere Magazine's 100 Greatest Performances of All Time (2006).

She was a member of the Cambridge Footlights and in 1981, along with Stephen Fry, Tony Slattery, Hugh Laurie, Paul Dwyer and Paul Shearer, she became the winner of the first ever Perrier Award at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Played Hugh Grant's love interest in Sense and Sensibility (1995) and his sister in in Love Actually (2003).

Won both of her Oscars for films that also featured actors she would work with again in the Harry Potter films. Helena Bonham Carter, who appeared in Howards End (1992), also played Bellatrix Lestrange in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007). Alan Rickman, who appeared in Sense and Sensibility (1995), has played Professor Severus Snape in all the films so far.




 
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Emma Thompson News and Features 
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Watch the latest clip from ‘The Love Punch’. First things first, Pierce Brosnan and Emma Thompson still look charming as ever. Starring the two ac more...

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'12 Years A Slave', 'American Hustle' lead Golden Globe nominations. The nominations for the upcoming Golden Globe Awards throws up an incredible rang more...

‘Saving Mr. Banks’ clip starring Tom Hanks and Emma Thompson   - ApunKaChoice   - 412 days ago
Catch new video clip from ‘Saving Mr. Banks’. Do you know Walt Disney hates being called Mr. Disney and all his employees are on first name basis? more...

Charming as ever: Pierce Brosnan and Emma Thompson at TIFF 2013   - ApunKaChoice   - 473 days ago
Photos: ‘Love Punch’ premiere at Toronto International Film Festival. Watching the images of Pierce Brosnan (60) and Emma Thompson (54) from the p more...

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