Williams at the 60th Berlin International Film Festival, 2010
|Born||Olivia Haigh Williams
26 July 1968
Camden Town, London, England
|Spouse(s)||Rhashan Stone (m. 2003)|
|Children||Esmé Ruby, Roxana May|
Olivia Haigh Williams (born 26 July 1968) is an English film, stage and television actress who has appeared in British and American films and television series.
Early life 
Williams was born in Camden Town, London. Both of her parents are barristers. Williams was educated at South Hampstead High School, an independent school for girls in Hampstead in North London, followed by Newnham College at the University of Cambridge, from which she graduated with a degree in English literature. She then studied drama at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School for two years and spent three years at the Royal Shakespeare Company.
After graduation, Williams worked with the Royal Shakespeare Company in both Stratford-upon-Avon and London. In 1995, she toured the United States in a production of Shakespeare's Richard III starring Ian McKellen. Her first significant appearance before the cameras was as Jane Fairfax in the British TV film Emma (1996), based on Jane Austen's 1816 novel.
Williams made her film debut in 1997's The Postman, after doing a screen test for Kevin Costner. She later won the lead role of Rosemary Cross in Wes Anderson's Rushmore (1998). She then starred as Bruce Willis' wife in the blockbuster The Sixth Sense (1999), a film she would later parody during her brief appearance in British sit-com Spaced. Since then, Williams has appeared in several British films, including Lucky Break (2001), The Heart of Me (2002), for which she won the British Independent Film Award for Best Actress, and An Education (2009). She played Mrs. Darling in the 2003 film adaptation of Peter Pan. Williams was uncredited for her role as Dr. Moira MacTaggert in the 2006 film X-Men: The Last Stand.
In 2010, she won acclaim for her performance as Ruth Lang in Roman Polanski's The Ghost Writer, winning the National Society of Film Critics Award, London Critics Circle Film Award for best supporting actress and was runner-up for best supporting actress at the Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards.
In Hanna (2011), she played Rachel, a bohemian mother travelling across North Africa and Europe, who comes into contact with the eponymous teen assassin, who is on the run. The film starred Saoirse Ronan, Eric Bana and Cate Blanchett, and was a critical and sleeper hit.
Selected works 
|Film or series||Role||Awards and nominations|
|Van der Valk (1972–1973, 1977, 1991–1992)
|The Ruth Rendell Mysteries (1987–2000)
"The Speaker of Mandarin"
"The One with Ross's Wedding: Part 1" and "The One with Ross's Wedding: Part 2"
|Felicity - one of the bridesmaids|
|2000||Jason and the Argonauts||Hera|
|Spaced (1999, 2001)
|2004||Agatha Christie – A Life in Pictures||Agatha Christie|
|2006||Krakatoa – The Last Days||Johanna Beijerinck|
|2008||Miss Austen Regrets||Jane Austen|
|2011-2012||Case Sensitive||DS Charlie Zailer|
|Production||Role||Awards and nominations|
|1995||Richard III (c. 1591)
by William Shakespeare
|2003||Love's Labour's Lost (c. 1595–1596)
by William Shakespeare
Olivier Theatre, Royal National Theatre, London
|2003||The Hotel in Amsterdam (first performed 1968)
by John Osborne
Donmar Warehouse, London
|2006||The Changeling (1653)
by Thomas Middleton and William Rowley
|2011||In a Forest, Dark and Deep
by Neil LaBute
Vaudeville Theatre, London
Personal life 
Williams had a seven-year relationship and then engagement to the actor Jonathan Cake which ended two weeks before their planned wedding. In 2003, she married the actor and playwright Rhashan Stone, with whom she has two daughters.
After filming The Postman, she spent time in Bolivia studying spectacled bears in the rainforest. Since 2006, she has written occasional travel reports for the "Independent Traveller" section of the British newspaper The Independent on Sunday.
- Gilbert, Gerard (15 November 2009). "Olivia Williams: 'I just do what I'm told'". The Independent (London). Retrieved 15 November 2009.
- Hodgkinson, Will (2001-01-20). "Dead good : Returning from Hollywood to star in British movies would be a step back for most, but Sixth Sense star Olivia Williams was tempted by sex, drugs and cruelty". London: The Guardian.
- British Independent Film Awards - 2003 Winners
- Andreeva, Nellie (2008-04-03). "Olivia Williams cast in 'Dollhouse'". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on 10 May 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-16.
- Opening Lines
- Bassett, Kate (2003-03-02). "Love's Labour's Lost, NT Olivier, London; Honour, NT Cottesloe, London; The Green Man, Bush, London; Accidental Death of an Anarchist, Donmar Warehouse, London : Parting is such sugary sorrow". The Independent.
- Bassett, Kate (2003-09-21). "The Hotel in Amsterdam, Donmar Warehouse, London; A Woman of No Importance, Haymarket Theatre Royal, London; The Recruiting Officer, Garrick, Lichfield : Charming, funny... and totally vile". The Independent. Taylor, Paul (2003-09-22). "The Hotel In Amsterdam, Donmar Warehouse, London : Lounging around can be highly entertaining". The Independent.
- Williams, Olivia (2006-05-04). "Diary of a nervous star : Olivia Williams, star of 'The Sixth Sense', is appearing on stage in 'The Changeling'. In her tour diary, she says it's scarier than Hollywood". London: The Independent. Coveney, Michael (2006-05-17). "The Changeling, Barbican, London". The Independent. Bassett, Kate (2006-05-21). "The Changeling, Barbican, London : Lost in the labyrinth". The Independent.
- Paddock, Terri (2010-11-22). "Matthew Fox Gets Lost in LaBute Forest". whatsonstage.com.
- Costa, Maddy (9 January 2008). "Maddy Costa talks to actor Olivia Williams". The Guardian (London).
- Hoggard, Liz (2003-04-13). "How we met? Olivia Williams & Susanna Paisley". The Independent on Sunday (republished on LookSmart).
- Ojumu, Akin (1999-07-04). "Everyone's talking about... Olivia Williams". London: The Observer.
Further reading 
- "Getting personal with Olivia Williams". London: The Guardian. 1999-08-17.
- Matheou, Demetrios (1999-08-20). "Olivia in La-La land: For years she was a jobbing actor in regional theatre. Then Olivia Williams got the call from Kevin Costner. She's never looked back". London: The Guardian.
- Brett, Anwar (2003-04-23). "Olivia Williams: The Heart of Me". bbc.co.uk.
- Tennant, Laura (2003-04-25). "Olivia Williams: Growing up in public". London: The Independent.