Ralph Fiennes

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Ralph Fiennes plays the role of Lord Voldemort in the Harry Potter films.

Ralph Fiennes [1] (né Wykeham-Fiennes; born 22 December 1962) is an English actor. He has appeared in such films as The English Patient, In Bruges, The Constant Gardener, Strange Days and Maid in Manhattan.

He is also well known for his portrayals of four infamous villains: Nazi war criminal Amon Göth in Schindler's List; serial killer Francis Dolarhyde in the 2002 film Red Dragon; Rameses II in The Prince of Egypt; and Lord Voldemort in the Harry Potter film series. Most recently, he appeared in The Reader (2008), In Bruges (2008) The Hurt Locker (2009) and as Hades in Clash of the Titans (2010).

He won a Tony Award and has been nominated twice for Academy Awards. He is also a UNICEF UK ambassador. He was praised by many for being a "perfect fit", for playing the role of Lord Voldemort in the Harry Potter saga.[2][3]

Contents

[edit] Early life

Fiennes was born in Ipswich, the eldest child of Jennifer Lash (1938–1993), a writer of English and Irish descent, and Mark Fiennes (1933–2004), a farmer and photographer whose father was industrialist Sir Maurice Fiennes (1907–1994).[4] His surname is of Welsh-Norman origin.[5]

[edit] Family

Fiennes is an eighth cousin of the Prince of Wales, and a third cousin of the adventurer Ranulph Fiennes. The eldest of six children, his siblings are actor Joseph Fiennes (Shakespeare in Love, Luther, FlashForward); Martha Fiennes, a director (in her film Onegin, he played the title role); Magnus Fiennes, a composer; Sophie Fiennes, a filmmaker; and Jacob Fiennes, a conservationist. His foster brother, Michael Emery, is an archaeologist. His nephew Hero Fiennes-Tiffin played young Lord Voldemort in Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince.

The Fiennes family moved to Ireland in 1973, living in West Cork and County Kilkenny for some years. Fiennes was educated at St Kieran's College for one year, followed by Newtown School, a Quaker independent school in County Waterford. They moved to Salisbury in England, where Fiennes finished his schooling at Bishop Wordsworth's School before attending Chelsea College of Art.[citation needed]

[edit] Career

Fiennes trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. He began his career at the Open Air Theatre, Regent's Park and, also during the late 1980s, the National Theatre before becoming a star in the Royal Shakespeare Company.[5] Fiennes first worked on screen in 1990 and then made his film debut in 1992 as Heathcliff in Wuthering Heights opposite Juliette Binoche, for which he received substantial acclaim and praise throughout Europe.[citation needed]

1993 was his "breakout year". He had a major role in the controversial Peter Greenaway film The Baby of Mâcon with Julia Ormond, which was poorly received. Later that year he became known internationally for portraying the amoral Nazi concentration camp commandant Amon Göth in Steven Spielberg's Schindler's List. For this he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.[5] He did not win the Oscar, but did win the Best Supporting Actor BAFTA Award for the role. His portrayal as Göth also earned him a spot on the American Film Institute's list of Top 50 Movie Villains. To look suitable to represent Amon Göth, Fiennes gained considerable weight, but he managed to shed that fat afterwards.[6]

In a subsequent interview, Fiennes recalled,
"Evil is cumulative. It happens. People believe that they’ve got to do a job, they’ve got to take on an ideology, that they’ve got a life to lead; they’ve got to survive, a job to do, it’s every day inch by inch, little compromises, little ways of telling yourself this is how you should lead your life and suddenly then these things can happen. I mean, I could make a judgment myself privately, this is a terrible, evil, horrific man. But the job was to portray the man, the human being. There’s a sort of banality, that everydayness, that I think was important. And it was in the screenplay. In fact, one of the first scenes with Oskar Schindler, with Liam Neeson, was a scene where I'm saying, You don’t understand how hard it is, I have to order so many-so many meters of barbed wire and so many fencing posts and I have to get so many people from A to B. And, you know, he’s sort of letting off steam about the difficulties of the job."[7]

In 1994, he portrayed American academic Charles Van Doren in Quiz Show. In 1996 he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor for the World War II-epic romance The English Patient in which he starred with Kristin Scott-Thomas.[5] Fiennes' work has ranged from thrillers (Red Dragon) to animated Biblical epic (The Prince of Egypt) to campy nostalgia (The Avengers) to romantic comedy (Maid in Manhattan) to offbeat dramedy (Oscar and Lucinda) and historical drama (Sunshine). In 1999, Fiennes returned to playing brooding, tormented lovers in Onegin and The End of the Affair.

The Constant Gardener, another vehicle for Fiennes as brooding lover, was released in 2005 with Fiennes in the title role.[5] The film is set in Kenya, dealing in part with poor people in the slums of Kibera and Loiyangalani. The situation affected the crew to the extent that they set up the Constant Gardener Trust to provide basic education for children of these villages. Fiennes is a patron of the charity.[8]

Fiennes portrayed Lord Voldemort in the 2005 fantasy film Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. He kept the role for both Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, which will be released in two parts in 2010 and 2011. However, in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, there is a flashback scene in which Voldemort is an 11 year-old boy — the character was played by Hero Fiennes-Tiffin, Fiennes's nephew, for this scene.

Fiennes' 2006 performance in the play Faith Healer gained him a nomination for a 2007 Tony Award. In 2008, Fiennes worked with frequent collaborator director Jonathan Kent to play the title role in Sophocles's Oedipus the King at the National Theatre in London. In 2008, he played the Duke of Devonshire in the film The Duchess, and played the protagonist in The Reader.

In February 2009, Fiennes was the special guest of the Belgrade's Film Festival FEST. He filmed his version of Shakespeare's Coriolanus in the Serbian capital of Belgrade.[9]

Fiennes reunited with Kathryn Bigelow for her Iraq War opus, The Hurt Locker, released in 2009, appearing as an English mercenary. In April 2010, he played Hades, reuniting with his former co-star from Schindler's List, Liam Neeson, who played Zeus in Clash of the Titans, a remake of the 1981 film of the same name.

Fiennes is set to appear in the 2012 adaptation of the John le Carré novel, Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, directed by Tomas Alfredson, also starring Gary Oldman, Colin Firth and Tom Hardy.[10]

[edit] Personal life

Fiennes met English actress Alex Kingston while they were both students at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. After dating for ten years, they married in 1993. They divorced in 1997.[11]

In 1995, Fiennes began an affair with Francesca Annis, who he met when she played his mother Gertrude in the play Hamlet.[12] After 11 years together, the couple separated in February 2006, following Daily Mail's report claiming that Fiennes had had an affair with Romanian singer Cornelia Crisan.[12]

In February 2007, staff aboard a Qantas flight from Sydney, Australia to Mumbai, India caught Fiennes leaving an aircraft lavatory with 38-year-old flight attendant Lisa Robertson. At first denying allegations of a tryst, Robertson later confessed to having sex in the lavatory with Fiennes, whom she had met just hours before. Fiennes was en route to Mumbai, as a participant in AIDS awareness efforts for UNICEF. The organization retained Fiennes as an ambassador; Qantas fired Robertson.[13]

[edit] Work

[edit] Filmography

Year Title Role Notes
1990 Dangerous Man: Lawrence After Arabia, AA Dangerous Man: Lawrence After Arabia T. E. Lawrence Television film
1991 Prime Suspect Michael (a victim's boyfriend) Television series
1992 Emily Brontë's Wuthering Heights Heathcliff
1993 Baby of Mâcon, TheThe Baby of Mâcon Bishop's son, TheThe Bishop's son
1993 Schindler's List Amon Göth
1994 Quiz Show Charles Van Doren
1995 Strange Days Lenny Nero Nominated — Saturn Award for Best Actor
1996 The English Patient Count László de Almássy
1997 Oscar and Lucinda Oscar Hopkins
1998 Avengers, TheThe Avengers John Steed
1998 Prince of Egypt, TheThe Prince of Egypt Rameses II
  • Nominated — Annie Award for Outstanding Individual Achievement for Voice Acting in an Animated Feature Production
1999 Sunshine Ignatz Sonnenschein
Adam Sors
Ivan Sors
1999 Onegin Evgeny Onegin Also executive producer
1999 End of the Affair, TheThe End of the Affair Maurice Bendrix
2000 Miracle Maker, TheThe Miracle Maker Jesus Christ
2002 Spider Dennis "Spider" Cleg
2002 Good Thief, TheThe Good Thief Tony Angel Uncredited
2002 Red Dragon Francis Dolarhyde Nominated — Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor
2002 Maid in Manhattan Christopher Marshall Nominated — Teen Choice Award for Choice Movie Liplock
2005 Chumscrubber, TheThe Chumscrubber Mayor Michael Ebbs
2005 Chromophobia Stephen Tulloch
2005 Constant Gardener, TheThe Constant Gardener Justin Quayle
2005 Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit Lord Victor Quartermaine Nominated — Annie Award for Best Voice Acting in an Animated Feature Production
2005 White Countess, TheThe White Countess Todd Jackson
2005 Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire Lord Voldemort Nominated — MTV Movie Award for Best Villain
2006 Land of the Blind Joe
2007 Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Lord Voldemort
2007 Bernard and Doris Bernard Lafferty
2008 In Bruges Harry Waters Nominated — British Independent Film Award for Best Supporting Actor
2008 Duchess, TheThe Duchess William Cavendish, 5th Duke of Devonshire
2008 Reader, TheThe Reader Older Michael Berg
2009 Hurt Locker, TheThe Hurt Locker Contractor Team Leader
2010 Cemetery Junction Mr Kendrick
2010 Clash of the Titans Hades
2010 Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang Lord Gray
2010 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 1 Lord Voldemort
2010 Wildest Dream, TheThe Wildest Dream George Mallory
2011 Coriolanus Coriolanus Also director and producer
2011 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2 Lord Voldemort Post-Production
2012 Wrath of the Titans Hades

[edit] Stage

  • Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare (1985) – Role: Curio – Directed by Richard Digby Day – New Shakespeare Company – Open Air Theatre in Regent's Park, London
  • A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare (1985) – Role: Cobweb – Directed by Toby Robertson – New Shakespeare Company – Open Air Theatre in Regent's Park, London
  • A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare (1986) – Role: Lysander – Directed by David Conville and Emma Freud – New Shakespeare Company – Open Air Theatre in Regent's Park, London and New Shakespeare Company's European Tour
  • Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare (1986) – Role: Romeo – Directed by Declan Donnellan – New Shakespeare Company – Open Air Theatre in Regent's Park, London
  • Six Characters in Search of an Author by Luigi Pirandello (1987) – Role: Son – Directed by Michael Rudman – National Theatre's Olivier Theatre, London
  • Fathers and Sons by Ivan Turgenev (1987) – Role: Arkady Nikolayevich Kirsanov – Directed by Michael Rudman – National Theatre's Lyttelton Theatre, London
  • Ting Tang Mine by Nick Darke (1987) – Role: Lisha Ball – Directed by Michael Rudman – National Theatre's Cottesloe Theatre, London
  • Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare (1988) – Role: Claudio – Directed by Di Trevis – Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon
  • The Plantagenets: Henry VI, The Rise of Edward IV, Richard III His Death by William Shakespeare (1988–1989) – Role: Henry VI, ghost of Henry VI – Directed by Adrian Noble – Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon and Barbican Theatre, London
  • King John (1989) by William Shakespeare – Role: Dauphin – Directed by Deborah Warner – The Other Place Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon and The Pit Theatre, London
  • The Man Who Came to Dinner by Moss Hart and George S. Kaufman (1989) – Role: Bert Jefferson – Directed by Ron Gene Saks – The Royal Shakespeare Company – Barbican Theatre, London
  • Playing with Trains by Stephen Poliakoff (1989) – Role: Gant – Directed by Ron Daniels – The Royal Shakespeare Company – The Pit Theatre, London
  • Troilus and Cressida by William Shakespeare (1990) – Role: Troilus – Directed by Sam Mendes – The Royal Shakespeare Company – Swan Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon
  • King Lear by William Shakespeare (1990) – Role: Edmund – Directed by Nicholas Hytner – The Royal Shakespeare Company – Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon
  • Love's Labour's Lost by William Shakespeare (1991) – Role: Berowne – Directed by Terry Hands – The Royal Shakespeare Company – Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon and Barbican Theatre, London
  • Hamlet by William Shakespeare (1995) – Role: Hamlet, with Francesca Annis as Gertrude – Directed by Jonathan Kent – The Almeida Theatre Company – Hackney Empire, London and Belasco Theatre on Broadway, NY
  • Ivanov by Anton Chekhov translated by David Hare (February–April 1997) – Role: Ivanov – Directed by Jonathan Kent – The Almeida Theatre Company – Almeida Theatre, London
  • Coriolanus by William Shakespeare (2000) – Role: Coriolanus – Directed by Jonathan Kent – The Almeida Theatre Company – Gainsborough Film Studios in Shoreditch, London and BAM Harvey Theatre in Brooklyn, New York City
  • Richard II by William Shakespeare (2000) – Role: Richard II – Directed by Jonathan Kent – The Almeida Theatre Company – Gainsborough Film Studios in Shoreditch, London and BAM Harvey Theatre in Brooklyn, New York City
  • The Play What I Wrote by Hamish McColl, Sean Foley and Eddie Braben (2001) – Role: Sir Ralph Fiennes – Directed by Kenneth Branagh – The Duo The Right Size – Wyndham's Theatre, West End
  • The Talking Cure by Christopher Hampton (2003) – Role: Carl Jung – Directed by Howard Davies – National Theatre's Cottesloe Theatre, London
  • Brand by Henrik Ibsen (2003) – Role: Brand – Directed by Adrian Noble – The Royal Shakespeare Company – Swan Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon and Theatre Royal Haymarket, West End
  • Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare (2005) – Role: Mark Anthony – Directed by Deborah WarnerBarbican Centre, London & tour
  • Faith Healer by Brian Friel (2006) – Role: Frank Hardy – Directed by Jonathan Kent – Gate Theatre, Dublin and Booth Theatre on Broadway, New York City
  • First Love by Samuel Beckett – Sydney Festival 2007
  • God of Carnage by Yasmina Reza (2008) – Role: Alain Reille – Gielgud Theatre, West End
  • Oedipus the King by Sophocles (2008) – Role: Oedipus – National Theatre, London

[edit] Selected television credits

[edit] Selected other projects, contributions

[edit] Awards and nominations

Awards
Nominations
  • 1994 – Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor – Schindler's List
  • 1994 – Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture – Schindler's List
  • 1994 – MTV Movie Award for Best Breakthrough Performance – Schindler's List
  • 1996 – Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast – The English Patient
  • 1997 – Academy Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role – The English Patient
  • 1997 – BAFTA Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role – The English Patient
  • 1997 – Golden Globe and Satellite Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama – The English Patient
  • 1999 – Annie Award for Outstanding Individual Achievement for Voice Acting in an Animated Feature Production – The Prince of Egypt
  • 2000 – BAFTA Film Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role – The End of the Affair
  • 2000 – Genie Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role – Sunshine
  • 2001 – ALFS Award for British Actor of the Year – The End of the Affair
  • 2003 – Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor – Red Dragon
  • 2003 – Teen Choice Award – Choice Movie Liplock (shared with Jennifer Lopez) – Maid in Manhattan
  • 2006 – BAFTA Award – Best Actor – The Constant Gardener
  • 2006 – Annie Awards – Best Voice/Animation – Wallace & Gromit – Curse of the Were-Rabbit
  • 2006 – MTV Movie Awards – Best Villain – Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
  • 2008 – Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – The Duchess

[edit] References

  1. [1]
  2. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 Fiennes, Ralph. Interview with James Lipton. Inside the Actors Studio. Bravo. 15 January 2006. (Interview). Retrieved on 10 April 2008.
  3. "It's Pronounced 'Rafe Fines'"
  4. [2]
  5. Coriolanus (2010) at IMDb]
  6. "Benedict Cumberbatch Joins 'Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy'". 16 August 2010. http://www.cinematical.com/2010/08/16/benedict-cumberbatch-joins-tinker-tailor-soldier-spy. Retrieved 4 September 2010. 
  7. Ellen, Barbara (7 July 2002). "Intensive care". The Observer. http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/2002/jul/07/features.magazine. Retrieved 7 April 2011. 
  8. 12.0 12.1 "Ralph Fiennes Splits from Longtime Partner". People. 8 February 2006. http://www.people.com/people/article/0,,1157581,00.html. Retrieved 7 April 2011. 

[edit] External links