Emily Watson

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Emily Watson
EmilyWatsonBAFTA07.jpg
Watson at the British Academy Film Awards in London's Royal Opera House, February 2007
Born Emily Margaret Watson
(1967-01-14) 14 January 1967 (age 47)
Islington, London, England
Occupation Actress
Years active 1991–present
Spouse(s) Jack Waters
(m. 1995–present; 2 children)

Emily Margaret Watson[1][2] (born 14 January 1967) is an English actress who gave an acclaimed debut film performance in Lars von Trier's Breaking the Waves. She is a two-time Academy Award nominee and a BAFTA Award winner.

Watson began her career on stage and joined the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1992. She received Academy Award nominations for Best Actress for her roles as Bes McNeil in the 1996 film Breaking the Waves and Jacqueline du Pré in the 1998 film Hilary and Jackie. In 2002, she returned to the stage in Twelfth Night at the Donmar Warehouse. Also at the Donmar in 2003, she starred in Uncle Vanya and was nominated for the Olivier Award for Best Actress. In 2011, she starred in the ITV drama Appropriate Adult, for which she won the British Academy Television Award for Best Actress (BAFTA).

Her other films include, The Boxer (1997), Angela's Ashes (1999), Gosford Park (2001), Punch-Drunk Love (2002), Red Dragon (2002), The Life and Death of Peter Sellers (2004), War Horse (2011) and The Book Thief (2013).

Early life[edit]

Watson was born in Islington, London, England. Her father, Richard, was an architect, and her mother, Katharine, was an English teacher at St David's Girls' School, West London.[3][4] She was brought up as an Anglican.[5] Watson has described her childhood self as a "Nice middle class English girl ... I'd love to say I was a rebellious teenager but I wasn't".[6]

Watson was educated at St James Independent Schools,[7] in west London, which she has described as a 'progressive' school.[8] She attended the University of Bristol, where she obtained a B.A. (1988, English).[citation needed] Following university, she trained at the Drama Studio London[9] and later received an M.A. (2003, honorary) from Bristol University.[citation needed]

Theatrical career[edit]

Watson's career began on the stage. Her theatre credits include The Children's Hour (at the Royal National Theatre), Three Sisters, Much Ado About Nothing and The Lady from the Sea. Watson has also worked with the Royal Shakespeare Company in A Jovial Crew, The Taming of the Shrew, All's Well That Ends Well and The Changeling.[10][11] In 2002, she took time off from cinema to play two roles in Sam Mendes' repertory productions of Uncle Vanya and Twelfth Night, first at Mendes' Donmar Warehouse in London and later at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. Her performance was widely acclaimed on both sides of the Atlantic and garnered her an Olivier Award nomination for Uncle Vanya.[12]

Film career[edit]

Film debut[edit]

Watson was virtually unknown until director Lars von Trier chose her to star in his controversial Breaking the Waves (1996) after Helena Bonham Carter dropped out "at the very last minute."[13] Watson's performance as Bess McNeill won her the Los Angeles, London and New York Critics' Circle Awards, the US National Society of Film Critics' Award for Best Actress, and ultimately an Oscar nomination.[14]

Subsequent career[edit]

Watson came to public notice again in another controversial role, as cellist Jacqueline du Pré in Hilary and Jackie, for which she learned to play the cello in three months,[3] and received another Oscar nomination. She also played a leading role in Cradle Will Rock, a story of a theatre show in the 1930s, directed by Tim Robbins. Though she won the title role of Frank McCourt's mother in the adaptation of his acclaimed memoir, Angela's Ashes, the film underperformed.[15] In 2001, she appeared alongside John Turturro in The Luzhin Defence and in Robert Altman's ensemble piece Gosford Park.[16] The following year, she starred as Reba McClane in the adaptation of Thomas Harris's The Silence of the Lambs prequel, Red Dragon, as the romantic interest of Adam Sandler in Paul Thomas Anderson's Punch-Drunk Love, and in the sci-fi action thriller Equilibrium alongside Christian Bale.

In 2004, Watson received a Golden Globe nomination for her role as Peter Sellers's first wife, Anne Howe, in the HBO film The Life and Death of Peter Sellers. 2005 saw Watson starring in four films: Wah-Wah, Richard E. Grant's autobiographical directorial debut; Separate Lies, directed by Gosford Park writer Julian Fellowes; Tim Burton's animated film Corpse Bride, alongside Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter; and John Hillcoat's Australian-set "western", The Proposition. In 2006, she took a supporting role in Miss Potter, a biopic of children's author Beatrix Potter from Babe director Chris Noonan, with Ewan McGregor and Renée Zellweger, and also in an adaptation of Thea Beckman's children's novel Crusade in Jeans. In 2007, she appeared in The Water Horse: Legend of the Deep, an adaptation of the Dick King-Smith children's novel about the origin of the Loch Ness Monster.[17][18]

In 2008, Watson starred with Julia Roberts and Carrie-Anne Moss in Fireflies in the Garden,[19] and in screenwriter Charlie Kaufman's directorial debut, Synecdoche, New York.[20] In 2009 she appeared in the film Cold Souls, from first-time director Sophie Barthes,[21] and Within the Whirlwind, a biopic of Russian poetess and Gulag survivor Evgenia Ginzburg from The Luzhin Defence director Marleen Gorris.[22] Watson considers Ginzburg to be her best recent role; however, the film was not picked up for distribution.[23]

In 2010, she starred in Oranges and Sunshine, a film recounting the true story of children sent into abusive care homes in Australia, directed by Jim Loach, and also the following year (2011) in War Horse, an adaptation of Michael Morpurgo's prizewinning novel, directed by Steven Spielberg. She played Janet Leach in the ITV two-part film Appropriate Adult, about serial killer Fred West, for which she won a BAFTA.[3]

Scriptwriting[edit]

In 2007, Mood Indigo, a script written by Watson and her husband, was optioned by Capitol Films. The film is a love story set during World War II and concerns a young woman who falls in love with a pilot.[24]

Missed roles[edit]

Director Jean-Pierre Jeunet wrote the character Amélie for Watson to play (Amélie was originally named Emily) but she eventually turned the role down due to difficulties speaking French and a desire not to be away from home.[25] The role went on to make an international star of Audrey Tautou. She was also the first choice to play Elizabeth I in Shekhar Kapur's film Elizabeth, the role that won Cate Blanchett an Academy Award nomination.[26]

Although she has never appeared in a Harry Potter film, she is frequently confused with Emma Watson, the actress who plays Hermione Granger in the series. She has stated that she does not correct anyone who makes that mistake, as she is "quite flattered that people think I'm 21".[27]

Charity[edit]

Watson is a committed supporter of the children's charity the NSPCC. In 2004, she was inducted into the society's hall of fame for spearheading the successful campaign to appoint a Children's Commissioner for England.[28] Receiving her award in the crowded House of Commons, she actively spoke out against the possibility that the Children's Commissioner become a figurehead with little real power.[29] She is also one of the patrons of the London children's charity Scene & Heard.[30]

Family[edit]

Watson married Jack Waters, whom she had met at the Royal Shakespeare Company, in 1995. Their daughter, Juliet, was born in autumn 2005,[31] and her son Dylan in 2009.[23] Watson's mother fell ill with encephalitis shortly before filming commenced on Oranges and Sunshine. Watson returned home to England to attend to her, but she died five minutes before she arrived in London.[3]

Credits[edit]

Film and television[edit]

Film
Title Year Role Notes
A Summer Day's Dream 1994 Rosalie TV
Breaking the Waves 1996 Bess McNeill Bodil Award for Best Actress
European Film Award for Best Actress
Evening Standard British Film Award for Most Promising Newcomer
Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival President Award for Best Actress
London Film Critics' Award for Best British Newcomer of the Year
Los Angeles Film Critics Association’s New Generation Award
National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Actress
New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actress
Robert Award for Best Actress
Nominated – Academy Award for Best Actress
Nominated – BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role
Nominated – Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Actress
Nominated – Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Most Promising Actress
Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Actress - Motion Picture Drama
Nominated – London Film Critics' Award for Best British Actress of the Year
Nominated – Satellite Award for Best Actress - Motion Picture Drama
Metroland 1997 Marion
Mill on the Floss, TheThe Mill on the Floss 1997 Maggie Tulliver TV
Boxer, TheThe Boxer 1997 Maggie
Hilary and Jackie 1998 Jackie British Independent Film Award for Best Actress
London Film Critics' Award for Best British Actress of the Year (also for Angela's Ashes)
Nominated – Academy Award for Best Actress
Nominated – BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role
Nominated – Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Actress
Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Actress - Motion Picture Drama
Nominated – Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Actress
Nominated – Satellite Award for Best Actress - Motion Picture Drama
Nominated – Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role
Cradle Will Rock 1999 Olive Stanton Nominated – London Film Critics' Award for Best British Supporting Actress of the Year
Angela's Ashes 1999 Angela McCourt London Film Critics' Award for Best British Actress of the Year (also for Hilary and Jackie)
Nominated – BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role
Nominated – IFTA Award for Best Actress
Trixie 2000 Trixie Zurbo
Luzhin Defence, TheThe Luzhin Defence 2000 Natalia Katkov Nominated – British Independent Film Award for Best Actress
Nominated – London Film Critics' Award for Best British Actress of the Year
Gosford Park 2001 Elsie Broadcast Film Critics Association Award for Best Cast
Florida Film Critics Circle Award for Best Cast
Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast
Satellite Award for Best Cast – Motion Picture
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
Nominated – European Film Awards Audience Award for Best Actress
Nominated – Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast
Nominated – Satellite Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
Punch-Drunk Love 2002 Lena Leonard Toronto Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated – MTV Movie Award for Best Kiss (shared with Adam Sandler)
Nominated – Vancouver Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actress
Red Dragon 2002 Reba McClane Fangoria Chainsaw Award for Best Supporting Actress (2nd place)
London Film Critics' Award for Best British Supporting Actress of the Year
Nominated – Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated – Empire Award for Best Actress
Equilibrium 2002 Mary O’Brien
Boo, Zino and the Snurks 2004 Alanta Voice Only
Life and Death of Peter Sellers, TheThe Life and Death of Peter Sellers 2004 Anne Sellers Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries or Television Film
Nominated – Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actress – Series, Miniseries or Television Film
Separate Lies 2005 Anne Manning Nominated – London Film Critics' Award for Best British Actress of the Year
Wah-Wah 2005 Ruby Compton Nominated – British Independent Film Award for Best Actress
Corpse Bride 2005 Victoria Everglot Voice Only
Proposition, TheThe Proposition 2005 Martha Stanley Nominated – IF Award for Best Actress
Nominated – London Film Critics' Award for Best British Supporting Actress of the Year
Miss Potter 2006 Millie Warne
Crusade in Jeans 2006 Mary Vega
Water Horse: Legend of the Deep, TheThe Water Horse: Legend of the Deep 2007 Anne MacMorrow
Fireflies in the Garden 2008 Jane Lawrence
Memory Keeper's Daughter, TheThe Memory Keeper's Daughter 2008 Caroline Gil TV
Synecdoche, New York 2008 Tammy Gotham Award for Best Ensemble Cast
Independent Spirit Award's Robert Altman Award
Cold Souls 2009 Claire Nominated – Gotham Award for Best Ensemble Cast
Within the Whirlwind 2009 Evgenia Ginzburg
Cemetery Junction 2010 Mrs. Kendrick
Oranges and Sunshine 2010 Margaret Humphreys Satellite Award for Best Actress in a Motion Picture
Nominated-AACTA Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role
War Horse 2011 Rose Narracott
Appropriate Adult 2011 Janet Leach BAFTA TV Award for Best Actress
Golden Nymph for Outstanding Actress in a Miniseries
RTS Television Award for Best Actor (Female)
Nominated – Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Movie/Miniseries Actress
Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Miniseries or Television Film
Nominated – Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Miniseries or Television Movie
Anna Karenina 2012 Countess Lydia
The Politician's Husband 2013 Freya
The Book Thief 2013 Rosa Hubermann Nominated – Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actress - Motion Picture Drama
Belle 2013 Lady Mansfield
Everest 2015 Filming
Testament of Youth TBA Filming

Theatre[edit]

Radio[edit]

  • The Wolves of Willoughby Chase (1994, radio)
  • Wuthering Heights (1995, radio series)

References[edit]

  1. ^ Emily Margeret Watson: Debretts
  2. ^ BFI Film and TV Database
  3. ^ a b c d Kate Kellaway (2011-03-20). "Emily Watson: 'I had to put a lid on my grief… bury it deep down'". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 2011-03-30. 
  4. ^ http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2014/feb/21/emily-watson-my-family-values
  5. ^ "Metroactive Movies | Emily Watson". Metroactive.com. 1996-12-04. Retrieved 2010-03-07. 
  6. ^ James Mottram (2011-03-25). "Emily Watson – A woman of substance who's still making waves". The Independent (London). Retrieved 2011-03-30. 
  7. ^ "Not a total jumping loony" Catherine Shoard, The Telegraph, 19 January 2003 From The Telegraph Newspaper.
  8. ^ Why Are They Famous The Independent newspaper
  9. ^ http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/celebritynews/my-perfect-weekend/9089070/My-perfect-weekend-Emily-Watson.html
  10. ^ "Emily Watson at Film Bug". Filmbug.com. Retrieved 2010-03-07. 
  11. ^ "Emily Watson at Film Reference". Filmreference.com. Retrieved 2010-03-07. 
  12. ^ London Theatre Guide: Paltrow and Watson nominated for Best Actress Olivier[dead link]
  13. ^ Transcribed from Sight & Sound Magazine, October 1996 issue. – Translated by Alexander Keiller. "Lars Von Trier (Breaking The Waves)". Industrycentral.net. Retrieved 2010-03-07. 
  14. ^ IMDB: Awards for Emily Watson
  15. ^ "Angela's Ashes". boxofficemojo.com. Retrieved 2011-03-30. 
  16. ^ "Emily Watson — IVTR". Findarticles.com. 2009-06-02. Retrieved 2010-03-07. [dead link]
  17. ^ "Emily Watson joins Miss Potter and Shantaram". Comingsoon.net. Retrieved 2010-03-07. 
  18. ^ Black Magic: The Waterhorse[dead link]
  19. ^ "Julia Roberts and Carrie-Anne Moss Plant Fireflies in the Garden". Movieweb.com. 2007-02-09. Retrieved 2012-12-26. 
  20. ^ "First Synecdoche Pic". joblo.com. Retrieved 2008-02-25. 
  21. ^ "Watson, Giamatti join ARTE Cinema's 'Souls'". Hollywoodreporter.com. 2008-01-23. Retrieved 2010-03-07. [dead link]
  22. ^ "Emily Watson to Star as Russian Dissident Eugenia Ginsburg in Gorris' Within the Whirlwind". Emmanuel Levy. Retrieved 2008-02-25. 
  23. ^ a b Rees, Jasper (2011-03-26). "Emily Watson: 'I’m a character actor – who gets laid'". The Telegraph (London). Retrieved 2011-03-30. 
  24. ^ Dawtrey, Adam (2007-10-24). "'Enemies,' 'Ranch' lead Capitol slate". Variety. Retrieved 2007-11-01. 
  25. ^ "Amelie Director, Jean-Pierre Jeunet – Je Voudrais Une Oscar". Efilmcritic.com. 2006-10-24. Retrieved 2010-03-07. 
  26. ^ Archerd, Army (1999-02-18). "'Jackie' thesp sez she's no 'Elizabeth'". Variety.com. Retrieved 2010-03-07. 
  27. ^ Chris Ryan. "Emily Watson, War Horse Star, is Not Emma Watson and has Never Appeared in a Harry Potter movie". moviefone. Retrieved 2011-12-29. 
  28. ^ "NSPCC Hall of Fame 2004: Emily Watson". Nspcc.org.uk. Retrieved 2010-03-07. 
  29. ^ "Celebrating five years of FULL STOP campaign". nspcc.org.uk. 2004-10-13. Archived from the original on 2008-05-03. Retrieved 2010-03-07. 
  30. ^ "Scene & Heard – Who We Are". sceneandheard.org. 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-19. 
  31. ^ The great pretender.

External links[edit]