Albert Finney

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Albert Finney
Born(1936-05-09) 9 May 1936 (age 77)
Salford, Lancashire, England
OccupationActor
Years active1958–present
Spouse(s)Jane Wenham (1957–61)
Anouk Aimée (1970–78)
Pene Delmage (2006–present)
ChildrenSimon.
 
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Albert Finney
Born(1936-05-09) 9 May 1936 (age 77)
Salford, Lancashire, England
OccupationActor
Years active1958–present
Spouse(s)Jane Wenham (1957–61)
Anouk Aimée (1970–78)
Pene Delmage (2006–present)
ChildrenSimon.

Albert Finney (born 9 May 1936) is an English actor. Beginning in the theatre, Finney was especially successful in plays by William Shakespeare before he switched to films. He achieved prominence in films in the early 1960s, his debut being The Entertainer, directed by Tony Richardson, who had directed him in theatre plays various times before. He became a leading Free Cinema figure, and has maintained a successful career in theatre, film and television. He is known for his roles in Saturday Night and Sunday Morning (1960), Tom Jones (1963), Miller's Crossing (1990), Big Fish (2003), The Bourne Ultimatum (2007), Annie (1982), and, in 2012, The Bourne Legacy and the James Bond film, Skyfall.

A recipient of BAFTA, Golden Globe, Emmy and Screen Actors Guild Awards, Finney has been nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor four times, for Tom Jones (1963), Murder on the Orient Express (1974), The Dresser (1983), and Under the Volcano (1984); and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in Erin Brockovich (2000).

Career[edit]

Finney is a graduate of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company. His career began in the theatre; he made his first appearance on the London stage in 1958 in Jane Arden's The Party, directed by Charles Laughton, who starred in the production along with his wife, Elsa Lanchester. Then in 1959 he appeared at Stratford in Coriolanus, replacing a sick Laurence Olivier (as Coriolanus).[1]

His first film appearance was a role in Tony Richardson's The Entertainer (1960), with Laurence Olivier, but he made his breakthrough with his portrayal of a disillusioned factory worker in Karel Reisz's film version of Alan Sillitoe's Saturday Night and Sunday Morning. This led to a series of "Angry Young Man" roles in kitchen sink dramas, before he starred in the Academy Award-winning 1963 film Tom Jones. Prior to this, Finney had been chosen to play T. E. Lawrence in David Lean's production of Lawrence of Arabia after a successful, and elaborate, screen-test that took 4 days to shoot. However, Finney baulked at signing a multi-year contract for Producer Sam Spiegel and chose not to accept the role.[2] The tremendous success of Tom Jones saw British exhibitors vote Finney the ninth most popular star at the box office in 1963.[3]

After Charlie Bubbles (1968), which he also directed, his film appearances became less frequent as he focused more on acting on stage. During this period, one of his high-profile film roles was as Agatha Christie's Belgian master detective Hercule Poirot in the 1974 film Murder On The Orient Express. Finney became so well known for the role that he complained that it typecast him for a number of years. "People really do think I am 300 pounds with a French accent" he said.

While being known for his dramatic roles, Finney appeared and sang in two musical films: Scrooge and the Hollywood film version of Annie, which was directed by John Huston, who would direct him once again in Under The Volcano two years later. He also sings in Tim Burton's Corpse Bride.

Finney made several television productions for the BBC in the 1990s, including The Green Man (1990), based on a story by Kingsley Amis, the acclaimed drama A Rather English Marriage (1998) (with Tom Courtenay), and the lead role in Dennis Potter's final two plays, Karaoke and Cold Lazarus in 1996 and 1997. In the latter he played a frozen, disembodied head.

Finney also made an appearance at Roger Waters' The Wall Concert in Berlin, where he played "The Judge" during the performance of "The Trial".

Even with his success on the big screen, Finney never abandoned his stage performances. He continued his association with the National Theatre Company at the Old Vic in London, where he performed in the mid-1960s in Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing and Chekov's The Cherry Orchard. He received Tony Award nominations for Luther (1964) and A Day in the Death of Joe Egg (1968), and also starred onstage in Love for Love, Strindberg's Miss Julie, Black Comedy, The Country Wife, Alpha Beta, Beckett's Krapp's Last Tape, Tamburlaine the Great, Another Time and, his last stage appearance in 1997, 'Art', which preceded the 1998 Tony Award-winning Broadway run. He won an Olivier Award for Orphans in 1986 and has won three Evening Standard Theatre Awards for Best Actor.[4]

In 2002 his critically acclaimed portrayal of Winston Churchill in The Gathering Storm won him BAFTA and Emmy awards as Best Actor.

He also played the title role in the television series My Uncle Silas, based on the short stories by H. E. Bates, about a roguish but lovable poacher-cum-farm labourer looking after his great-nephew. The show ran for two series from 2000 until 2003.

A lifelong supporter of Manchester United, Finney narrated the documentary Munich, about the aircrash that killed most of the Busby Babes in 1958, which was shown on United's TV channel MUTV in February 2008.[5]

Personal life[edit]

Finney was born in Salford, Lancashire, the son of Alice (née Hobson) and Albert Finney, Sr., a bookmaker.[6] He was educated at Tootal Drive Primary School, Salford Grammar School and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.[7]

He has a son by his first wife, Jane Wenham: Simon, who works in the film industry as a camera operator.

From 1970 to 1978, he was married to French actress Anouk Aimée.

In May 2011, Finney disclosed that he had been receiving treatment for kidney cancer.[8][9]

Awards and honours[edit]

Finney turned down the offer of a CBE in 1980 and a Knighthood in 2000. He has criticised the honours system for "perpetuating snobbery".[10]

He has five Oscar nominations but has never won. He was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor four times, for Tom Jones (1963), Murder on the Orient Express (1974), The Dresser (1983), and Under the Volcano (1984); and was nominated for Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in Erin Brockovich (2000).

Julia Roberts mentioned Albert Finney in her Oscar acceptance speech for Best Actress in Erin Brockovich, thanking him and sharing the Oscar with him.

Finney has 13 BAFTA nominations (9 film, 4 TV), winning two:

In addition Finney received the BAFTA Fellowship in 2001.

He won an Emmy Award, for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Made for TV Movie, for his performance as Winston Churchill in HBO's The Gathering Storm. He had previously been nominated for the HBO telefilm The Image (1990).

He has received nine Golden Globe nominations, winning three:

For his work on Broadway, Finney has been nominated for two Tony Awards, both for Best Actor in a Play, for Luther in 1964, and A Day in the Death of Joe Egg in 1968. For the London stage, he won the Olivier Award, for Best Actor, for Orphans in 1986. He has won the Evening Standard Theatre Award for Best Actor three times, for A Flea in Her Ear in 1966, Tamburlaine the Great in 1976 and Orphans in 1986.

Other awards include: a Golden Laurel for his work on Scrooge (1970) and for his work on Tom Jones, for which he was the 3rd Place Winner for the "Top Male Comedy Performance" for 1964. He was honoured by the Los Angeles Film Critics' Association as Best Actor for Under the Volcano (which he tied with F. Murray Abraham for Amadeus), the National Board of Review Best Actor award for Saturday Night and Sunday Morning, and the New York Film Critics' Circle Best Actor award for Tom Jones.

Finney has won two Screen Actors' Guild Awards, for Best Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role, for Erin Brockovich, and as a member of the acting ensemble in the film Traffic. He was also nominated for The Gathering Storm, for Best Performance by a Male Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries, but did not win.

He won the Silver Berlin Bear award for Best Actor, for The Dresser, at the 34th Berlin International Film Festival in 1984.[11]

He won the Volpi Cup for Best Actor, for Tom Jones, at the Venice Film Festival.

Filmography[edit]

Film[edit]

YearTitleRoleNotes
1960The EntertainerMick Rice
1960Saturday Night and Sunday MorningArthur SeatonBAFTA Award for Most Promising Newcomer
National Board of Review Award for Best Actor
Nominated — BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role
1963Tom JonesTom JonesGolden Globe Award for Most Promising Newcomer
New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actor
Nominated — Academy Award for Best Actor
Nominated — BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
1964Night Must FallDanny
1967Two for the RoadMark Wallace
1968Charlie BubblesCharlie BubblesAlso director
1969The Picasso SummerGeorge Smith
1970ScroogeEbenezer ScroogeGolden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
1971GumshoeEddie GinleyNominated — BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role
1974Murder on the Orient ExpressHercule PoirotEvening Standard British Film Award for Best Actor
Nominated — Academy Award for Best Actor
Nominated — BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role
1975The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes' Smarter BrotherMan In Opera AudienceUncredited Cameo
1977The DuellistsFouche
1981LookerDr. Larry Roberts
1981WolfenDewey WilsonNominated — Saturn Award for Best Actor
1981LoopholeDaniels
1982AnnieDaddy Warbucks
1982Shoot the MoonGeorge DunlapNominated — BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama
1983The DresserSirSilver Bear for Best Actor
Nominated — Academy Award for Best Actor
Nominated — BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama
1984Under the VolcanoGeoffrey FirminLos Angeles Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor
London Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actor
Nominated — Academy Award for Best Actor
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama
1987OrphansHarold
1990Miller's CrossingLeo O'Bannon
1990Roger Waters - The Wall (Live in Berlin)The Judge
1992The PlayboysHegarty
1993Rich in LoveWarren Odom
1994The Browning VersionAndrew Crocker-HarrisBoston Society of Film Critics Award for Best Actor
1994A Man of No ImportanceAlfred Byrne
1996NostromoDr. Monyghan
1997Washington SquareDr. Austin Sloper
1999Breakfast of ChampionsKilgore Trout
2000Erin BrockovichEd MasryDallas-Fort Worth Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actor
London Film Critics' Circle Award for British Supporting Actor of the Year
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role
Nominated — Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated — BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Nominated — Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture
Nominated — Las Vegas Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated — Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated — Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor - Motion Picture
2000TrafficWhite House Chief of StaffScreen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
2003Big FishEdward Bloom, Sr.Nominated — BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture
Nominated — Saturn Award for Best Actor
2004Ocean's TwelveGaspar LeMarque(uncredited)
2005Corpse BrideFinis Everglot(voice)
2006A Good YearUncle Henry Skinner
2006Amazing GraceJohn Newton
2007The Bourne UltimatumDr. Albert Hirsch
2007Before the Devil Knows You're DeadCharles HansonGotham Award for Best Ensemble Cast
Nominated — London Film Critics' Circle Award for British Supporting Actor of the Year
2012The Bourne LegacyDr. Albert Hirsch
2012SkyfallKincade

Television[edit]

YearTitleRoleNotes
1959Emergency Ward 10Tom Fletcher4 episodes
1990The ImageJason CromwellTelevision movie
Nominated — Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie
1990The Green ManMaurice Allington3 episodes
Nominated — British Academy Television Award for Best Actor
1996KaraokeDaniel Feeld4 episodes
Nominated — British Academy Television Award for Best Actor
1996Cold LazarusDaniel Feeld4 episodes
Nominated — British Academy Television Award for Best Actor
1997NostromoDr. Monygham4 episodes
1998A Rather English MarriageReggieTelevision movie
Nominated — British Academy Television Award for Best Actor
2001-2003My Uncle SilasUncle Silas9 episodes
2002The Gathering StormWinston ChurchillTelevision movie
British Academy Television Award for Best Actor
Broadcasting Press Guild Award for Best Actor
Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie
Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film
Nominated — Satellite Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film
Nominated — Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Miniseries or Television Movie

Awards and nominations[edit]

YearAssociationCategoryNominated workResult
1961BAFTA AwardsBest British ActorSaturday Night and Sunday MorningNominated
1961BAFTA AwardsMost Promising Newcomer to Leading Film RolesSaturday Night and Sunday MorningWon
1961National Board of ReviewBest ActorSaturday Night and Sunday MorningWon
1964Academy AwardsBest ActorTom JonesNominated
1964BAFTA AwardsBest British ActorTom JonesNominated
1964Golden Globe AwardsBest Actor – Motion Picture Musical or ComedyTom JonesNominated
1964Golden Globe AwardsNew Star of the Year – ActorTom JonesWon
1971Golden Globe AwardsBest Actor – Motion Picture Musical or ComedyScroogeWon
1972BAFTA AwardsBest ActorGumshoeNominated
1975Academy AwardsBest ActorMurder on the Orient ExpressNominated
1975BAFTA AwardsBest ActorMurder on the Orient ExpressNominated
1982Saturn AwardsBest ActorWolfenNominated
1983BAFTA AwardsBest ActorShoot the MoonNominated
1983Golden Globe AwardsBest Actor – Motion Picture DramaShoot the MoonNominated
1984Academy AwardsBest ActorThe DresserNominated
1984Golden Globe AwardsBest Actor – Motion Picture DramaThe DresserNominated
1985Academy AwardsBest ActorUnder the VolcanoNominated
1985BAFTA AwardsBest ActorThe DresserNominated
1985Golden Globe AwardsBest Actor – Motion Picture DramaUnder the VolcanoNominated
1985London Critics Circle Film AwardsActor of the YearUnder the VolcanoWon
1990Primetime Emmy AwardsOutstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a MovieThe ImageNominated
1991BAFTA TV AwardsBest Actor on TelevisionThe Green ManNominated
1994Boston Society of Film Critics AwardsBoston Society of Film Critics Award for Best ActorThe Browning VersionWon
1997BAFTA TV AwardsBest Actor on TelevisionCold LazarusNominated
1997BAFTA TV AwardsBest Actor on TelevisionKaraokeNominated
1999BAFTA TV AwardsBest Actor on TelevisionA Rather English MarriageNominated
2000Boston Society of Film Critics AwardsBoston Society of Film Critics Award for Best Supporting ActorErin BrockovichNominated
2001Academy AwardsBest Supporting ActorErin BrockovichNominated
2001BAFTA AwardsBest Actor in a Supporting RoleErin BrockovichNominated
2001Blockbuster Entertainment AwardsFavorite Supporting Actor – DramaErin BrockovichNominated
2001Chicago Film Critics Association AwardsBest Supporting ActorErin BrockovichNominated
2001Golden Globe AwardsBest Supporting Actor – Motion PictureErin BrockovichNominated
2001London Critics Circle Film AwardsBritish Supporting Actor of the YearErin BrockovichWon
2001Online Film Critics Society AwardsBest Supporting ActorErin BrockovichNominated
2001Satellite AwardsBest Supporting Actor – Motion PictureErin BrockovichNominated
2001Screen Actors Guild AwardsOutstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion PictureTrafficWon
2001Screen Actors Guild AwardsOutstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting RoleErin BrockovichWon
2002Primetime Emmy AwardsOutstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a MovieThe Gathering StormWon
2003BAFTA TV AwardsBest Actor on TelevisionThe Gathering StormWon
2003Broadcasting Press Guild AwardsBest ActorThe Gathering StormWon
2003Golden Globe AwardsBest Actor – Miniseries or Television FilmThe Gathering StormWon
2003Satellite AwardsBest Actor – Miniseries or Television FilmThe Gathering StormNominated
2003Screen Actors Guild AwardsOutstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Miniseries or Television MovieThe Gathering StormNominated
2004BAFTA AwardsBest Actor in a Supporting RoleBig FishNominated
2004Golden Globe AwardsGolden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion PictureBig FishNominated
2004Saturn AwardsBest ActorBig FishNominated
2007Gotham AwardsBest CastBefore the Devil Knows You're DeadWon
2008Broadcast Film Critics Association AwardsBest CastBefore the Devil Knows You're DeadNominated
2008London Critics Circle Film AwardsBritish Supporting Actor of the YearBefore the Devil Knows You're DeadNominated

References[edit]

  1. ^ Laurence Olivier, Confessions of an Actor,Orion, 1994, p243
  2. ^ "David Lean" by Stephen M. Silverman (Abrams, New York, 1992)
  3. ^ "Most Popular Films Of 1963." Times [London, England] 3 January 1964: 4. The Times Digital Archive. Web. 11 July 2012.
  4. ^ "Albert Finney: in Character". Quentin Falk. Robson Books. 2002.
  5. ^ timesonline.co.uk[dead link]
  6. ^ "Albert Finney Biography". filmreference.com. Archived from the original on 26 December 2008. Retrieved 2 April 2013. 
  7. ^ Quentin Falk (1993). Albert Finney in Character: A Biography. Robson Books. ISBN 0-86051-823-X. 
  8. ^ Eden, Richard (15 May 2011). "Film star Albert Finney won’t let cancer grind him down". The Daily Telegraph (telegraph.co.uk). Retrieved 2 April 2013. 
  9. ^ Taylor, Paul (30 November 2012). "Actor Albert Finney - son of Salford - loves to come home". Manchester Evening News (manchestereveningnews.co.uk). Retrieved 2 April 2013. 
  10. ^ "Revealed: secret list of 300 who scorned honours", The Sunday Times, 21 December 2003
  11. ^ "Berlinale: 1984 Prize Winners". berlinale.de. Retrieved 26 November 2010. 

External links[edit]