Emma Thompson began acting at Cambridge University and then moved into stage and television comedy. Her notable films include "Howards End," "In the Name of the Father," "The Remains of the Day," Disney's "Brave" and the popular "Harry Potter" and "Nanny McPhee" series.
Actress and writer Emma Thompson's career started with her successful role on the British television show "Alfresco" in 1983. She appeared with Robbie Coltrane, Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie, and others on the sketch comedy show. On the London stage, Thompson also enjoyed a long run in a revival of the 1930s musical "Me and My Girl."
In 1987, Thompson starred in two television productions. She worked with Coltrane again on "Tutti Frutti," which followed the misadventures of a fictional rock group known as the Majestics. In 1992, Thompson truly started to emerge with her powerful performance in "Howards End." She won several honors for her work on this film, including an Academy Award for Best Actress.
The following year Thompson shined in a more contemporary drama, "In the Name of the Father." Thompson also had a supporting role in "The Remains of the Day." Thompson received Academy Award nominations for both films.
By the mid '90s, she took on a great creative challenge by writing the screenplay for "Sense and Sensibility," based on the popular novel by Jane Austen. In this historical drama, Thompson played Elinor, one of the Dashwood sisters who are left to fend for themselves after the death of their father. Kate Winslet played her sister Marianne, and the two women set to improve their situation through marriage. The film earned raves from the critics.
The film, directed by Ang Lee, received eight Academy Award nominations. Both Thompson and Winslet earned nominations for their acting, and Thompson took home the award for Best Adapted Screenplay. Thompson then went on to win an Emmy Award for her guest appearance on the sitcom "Ellen." She played a fictionalized version of herself as a closeted lesbian who was pretending to be British.
In 2001, Thompson earned an Emmy Award nomination for her work with Mike Nichols on "Wit." The pair adapted the play, about a professor dying of cancer, for television. Thompson starred in the critically acclaimed production. Two years later, she earned more accolades for her multiple roles in the miniseries "Angels in America." An all-star cast, including Al Pacino and Meryl Streep, brought Tony Kushner's award-winning play to television.
Back on the big screen, Thompson appeared in two installments of the wildly popular "Harry Potter series." She also wrote and starred in the children's film "Nanny McPhee" and reprised the role in 2010's "Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang." Her screenplay was also used as the basis for a novel by the same title. She also voiced Queen Elinor in the 2012 Pixar film "Brave."
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