Biography: Ralph Fiennes
Ralph Fiennes recently completed his portrayal of the evil Lord Voldemort in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2, the finale of the blockbuster film franchise. Fiennes had also played Voldemort in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1.
Upcoming, Fiennes stars in Mike Newell‘s screen adaptation of Charles Dickens‘ Great Expectations, with Helena Bonham Carter and Jeremy Irvine, and in the highly anticipated Skyfall, the next film in the Bond series, from director Sam Mendes. He recently made his feature film directorial debut with a contemporary version of Shakespeare’s political thriller Coriolanus, in which he also starred with Gerard Butler and Vanessa Redgrave. In 2010, Fiennes first played Hades in the hit Clash of the Titans, with Liam Neeson and Sam Worthington.
Fiennes has been honored with two Academy Award® nominations, the first in 1994 for his performance in Steven Spielberg‘s Oscar®-winning Best Picture, Schindler’s List. Fiennes’ chilling portrayal of Nazi Commandant Amon Goeth also brought him a Golden Globe nomination and a BAFTA Award, as well as Best Supporting Actor honors from numerous critics groups, including the National Society of Film Critics, and the New York, Chicago, Boston and London Film Critics associations. Four years later, Fiennes earned his second Oscar® nomination, for Best Actor, in another Best Picture winner, Anthony Minghella‘s The English Patient. He also garnered Golden Globe and BAFTA Award nominations, as well as two Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Award® nominations, one for Best Actor and another shared with the film’s ensemble cast.
In addition, Fiennes won a British Independent Film Award, an Evening Standard British Film Award and a London Film Critics’ Circle Award and earned a BAFTA Award nomination for his work in the 2005 drama The Constant Gardener, directed by Fernando Meirelles. In 2008, he received dual British Independent Film Award nominations, both for Best Supporting Actor, for his performances in The Duchess, for which he also received a Golden Globe nomination, and In Bruges. In addition, he earned Emmy, Golden Globe and SAG Award® nominations for his work in the HBO movie Bernard and Doris, opposite Susan Sarandon.
His long list of film credits also includes the award-winning drama The Reader, with Kate Winslet; Kathryn Bigelow‘s Oscar®-winning The Hurt Locker; James Ivory‘s The White Countess; Aardman’s Oscar®-winning animated film Wallace & Gromit in The Curse of the Were-Rabbit; Red Dragon; the Neil Jordan-directed films The End of the Affair and The Good Thief; David Cronenberg‘s Spider; Martha Fiennes‘ Chromophobia and Onegin; István Szabó‘s Sunshine; Maid in Manhattan; the animated The Prince of Egypt; The Avengers; Oscar and Lucinda; Bigelow’s Strange Days; Robert Redford‘s Quiz Show; and Wuthering Heights, which marked his film debut.
A graduate of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, Fiennes began his career on the London stage, including two seasons with the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC). In 1995, Fiennes opened as Hamlet in Jonathan Kent‘s production of the Shakespeare play, winning a Tony Award when the production moved to Broadway. His subsequent theatre credits include Ivanov, again under Kent’s direction; the title roles of Shakespeare’s Richard II and Coriolanus; Christopher Hampton‘s The Talking Cure, in which he originated the role of Carl Jung; the title role in Ibsen’s Brand at the RSC; and Julius Caesar, playing Mark Anthony.
In 2006, he reunited with Jonathan Kent to star in Brian Friel‘s Faith Healer, which opened in Dublin before moving to Broadway, where Fiennes earned a Tony nomination for his performance. In 2008, Fiennes starred in the West End debut of Yasmina Reza‘s play God of Carnage. Later that year, he starred in Samuel Beckett‘s one-man show, First Love, at New York’s Lincoln Center, followed by Kent’s production of Oedipus, at the National Theatre in London. Fiennes returned to the West End in August 2011 to star in Shakespeare’s The Tempest, directed by Trevor Nunn.
This biography/filmography of Ralph Fiennes is courtesy of Warner Brothers and Wrath of the Titans