Mbatha-Raw at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival
|Born||Gugulethu Sophia Mbatha
April 21, 1983
Oxford, Oxfordshire, England, UK
Gugu Mbatha-Raw (born Gugulethu Sophia Mbatha; June 30, 1983) is a British stage and film actress. Working in British television and stage productions, Mbatha-Raw first gained prominence in a recurring role in Doctor Who, playing companion Martha Jones's sister. She soon gained attention in American productions, beginning with a supporting role in the Tom Hanks comedy Larry Crowne, and main star roles in short lived television series Undercovers and Touch.
Mbatha-Raw earned critical acclaim for her performance in the drama Belle, receiving numerous accolade nominations from critics worldwide.
Gugu Mbatha-Raw was born Gugulethu Sophia Mbatha in Oxford, England. Her surname is made up of both her parents’ and her first name is the shortened version of ‘Gugulethu’, a contraction of igugu lethu that means ‘Our Treasure’ in Zulu. Her mother, Anne Raw, is an English nurse, and her father, Patrick Mbatha, is a doctor originally from the Republic of South Africa. Mbatha-Raw grew up in the small town of Witney in Oxfordshire, and attended The Henry Box School, before moving to London to train at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in 2001.
Mbatha-Raw played minor roles on television series such as Bad Girls (2006), Doctor Who (2007) and Marple (2007). One of her earliest breakthroughs in drama was in Romeo and Juliet at the Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester in 2005 playing Juliet opposite Andrew Garfield as Romeo. Mbatha-Raw was nominated for best actress in the Manchester Evening News Theatre Awards for her portrayal of Juliet and also played Cleopatra in Antony and Cleopatra at the same theatre in 2005.
She starred in Amma Asante's 2013 film Belle, playing the eponymous historical character, Dido Elizabeth Belle, a mixed-race aristocrat in 18th century Britain. The film debuted at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival where it was acquired by Fox Searchlight. It was eventually given a release in 2014. Mbatha-Raw was nominated for numerous awards for her work on the film including two British Independent Film Awards Best Performance by an Actress in a British Independent Film which she won and Most Promising Newcomer. She was also nominated for a Satellite Award for Best Actress.
In 2014, Mbatha-Raw also starred in Beyond the Lights. The film debuted at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival. For her work in Beyond the Lights Mbatha-Raw was nominated for Best Actress at the 2014 Gotham Awards.
Mbatha-Raw is set to star in the upcoming biopic Concussion, starring Will Smith, the story of Dr. Bennet Omalu, the forensic neuropathologist who first discovered extensive brain damage in NFL players and tried to put a stop to it.
|2004||Holby City||Collette Hill|
|Walk Away and I Stumble||nurse|
|Doctor Who||Tish Jones||4 episodes|
|Doctor Who Confidential||Herself||Interviewee|
|Marple||Tina Argyle||In Ordeal by Innocence;)|
|2008||Lost in Austen||Piranha|
|Trial & Retribution||Jenny Miller|
|2009||Fallout||Shanice Roberts||Part of Channel 4's Disarming Britain series|
|2005||Antony and Cleopatra||Royal Exchange in Manchester||Cleopatra|
|Romeo and Juliet||Juliet Capulet|
|2009–2010||Hamlet||Donmar West End and Broadway||Ophelia||Opposite Jude Law|
|Year||Title||Role||Station / Notes|
|2006||Living with the Enemy||Sophie/Various||BBC Radio 4, broadcast 14 November – 19 December 2006|
|2009||Choice of Straws||Michelle||BBC Radio 4, Saturday Play, broadcast on 19 September 2009|
- Births, Marriages & Deaths Index of England & Wales, 1916-2005.; at ancestry.com
- Elber, Lynn (22 September 2010). "`Undercovers' colorful mission: bring change to TV". BusinessWeek. Retrieved 28 February 2014.
- Gugu Mbatha-Raw at the Internet Movie Database
- <As told by Gugu Mbatha-Raw in an interview with Jimmy Kimmel on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, 11/12/14/>
- Taylor, Ben (23 April 2014). "5 things about ‘Belle’ Gugu Mbatha-Raw". Swide.
- "Gugu Mbatha-Raw — The 50 Hottest Biracial Women". Complexmag.ca. 12 June 2012. Retrieved 28 February 2014.
- Louise Wise, "Hear her roar", The Sunday Times,1 June 2014.
- Gardner, Lyn (15 September 2005). "Romeo and Juliet - Royal Exchange, Manchester". The Guardian. Retrieved 2012-04-07.
- Dehn, Georgia (28 May 2009). "Hamlet with Jude Law at Wyndham's Theatre: Gugu Mbatha-Raw is mad for it". The Telegraph. Retrieved 2012-04-07.
- John, Emma (31 May 2009). "Jude, don't make her mad". Retrieved 27 November 2014.
- Oldenburg, Ann (4 November 2010). "NBC cancels 'Undercovers' after 13 episodes". USA Today. Retrieved 4 November 2010.
- Carter, Bill (4 November 2010). "NBC Cancels ‘Undercovers’". New York Times. Retrieved 4 November 2010.
- Andreeva, Nellie (10 June 2011). "'Undercovers' Star Gugu Mbatha-Raw Set As Female Lead In Fox's Pilot 'Touch'". Deadline.com. Retrieved 10 June 2011.
- Mbatha-Raw, Gugu Star Pulse
- Obenson, Tambay A. "Gugu Mbatha-Raw Will Be "Belle" In Slavery Pic Based On Mixed-Race Woman Raised In Aristocratic Family". Shadow and Act. Indiewire. Retrieved 28 February 2014.
- "2014 Gotham Award Nominations Revealed". The Hollywood Reporter. 23 October 2014. Retrieved 28 October 2014.
- "Gugu Mbatha-Raw stars in Beyond the Light, premiering at TIFF".
- Gugu Mbatha-Raw joins Kiefer Sutherland in FOX's 'Touch'
- Gugu Mbatha-Raw at the Internet Movie Database
- Profile of Gugu Mbatha-Raw at the Wayback Machine (archived 13 February 2008), originally from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art website