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Since playing Ophelia in Hamlet at the Old Vic 45 years ago, Judi Dench has received worldwide acclaim for a career marked by outstanding performances in both classical and contemporary roles and notable for encompassing the full range of the stage, television, and motion pictures. She has won 10 BAFTA Awards to date.
Ms. Dench received the OBE (Order of the British Empire) in 1970 for services to the theatre, and subsequently became a DBE (Dame of the British Empire) in 1998. In 2005, she was awarded the Companion of Honour.
She won the Academy Award for her performance in John Madden’s Shakespeare in Love, in addition to a BAFTA Award and the National Society of Film Critics citation. An earlier collaboration with the director, Mrs. Brown, earned her Golden Globe and BAFTA Awards as well as an Academy Award nomination.
Ms. Dench was again an Academy Award and Golden Globe Award nominee for Lasse Hallström’s Chocolat (for which she won a Screen Actors Guild Award); Stephen Frears’ Mrs. Henderson Presents; and Richard Eyre’s Iris (for which she won a BAFTA Award) and Notes on a Scandal (for which she won a British Independent Film Award).
Her other feature film credits include David Hare’s Wetherby; Merchant Ivory’s A Room with a View (for which she won a BAFTA Award); David Jones’ 84 Charing Cross Road; Charles Sturridge’s A Handful of Dust (for which she won a BAFTA Award); Kenneth Branagh’s Henry V and Hamlet; Franco Zeffirelli’s Tea with Mussolini; Lasse Hallström’s The Shipping News; Charles Dance’s Ladies in Lavender; Joe Wright’s Pride & Prejudice, also for Focus Features; Rob Marshall’s Nine; six movies as spy boss “M” opposite either Pierce Brosnan or Daniel Craig as James Bond, the most recent of which was Marc Forster’s Quantum of Solace; and, currently in production, Simon Curtis’ My Week with Marilyn, in which Ms. Dench portrays the celebrated actress Sybil Thorndike opposite Michelle Williams as Marilyn Monroe and Kenneth Branagh as Laurence Olivier.
Her television work includes the long-running series As Time Goes By (starring opposite Geoffrey Palmer); the animated series Angelina Ballerina (starring opposite her daughter, Finty Williams); Gillies Mackinnon’s telefilm The Last of the Blonde Bombshells, for which she won BAFTA and Golden Globe Awards; and the two Cranford miniseries, respectively directed by Steve Hudson and Simon Curtis, for which she was an Emmy, BAFTA, and Golden Globe Award nominee and an Emmy Award nominee, respectively.
In recent years, Ms. Dench has starred onstage in David Hare’s Amy’s View (winning a Tony Award for her performance in the Broadway production, and receiving an Olivier Award nomination for her performance in the U.K. staging); Peter Hall’s stagings of The Royal Family, Hay Fever, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream; Michael Grandage’s staging of Madame de Sade, at the Donmar West End; Greg Doran’s staging of Merry Wives of Windsor: The Musical, at the RSC Stratford; David Hare’s The Breath of Life, at the Theatre Royal Haymarket, with Dame Maggie Smith; and All’s Well That Ends Well, at the RSC Stratford and then the West End.