Anna Chancellor

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Anna Chancellor
Born(1965-04-27) 27 April 1965 (age 49)
Richmond, London, England
Years active1990–present
Spouse(s)Nigel Willoughby (1993–1998)
Redha Debbah (2010–present)
ChildrenPoppy Chancellor
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Anna Chancellor
Born(1965-04-27) 27 April 1965 (age 49)
Richmond, London, England
Years active1990–present
Spouse(s)Nigel Willoughby (1993–1998)
Redha Debbah (2010–present)
ChildrenPoppy Chancellor

Anna Chancellor (born Anna Theodora Chancellor, 27 April 1965) is an English actress.


Chancellor was born in Richmond, London, England, the daughter of the Hon. Mary Alice Jolliffe (daughter of William Jolliffe, 4th Baron Hylton) and John Paget Chancellor, grandson of John Chancellor. Through her mother's mother, Lady Perdita Rose Mary Asquith, Chancellor is the great-granddaughter of Raymond Asquith and the great-great-granddaughter of Prime Minister H. H. Asquith,[1][not in citation given] and through her father, she is the great-great-granddaughter of the 12th Earl of Winchilsea and Nottingham (a descendant of Thomas Cecil, 1st Earl of Exeter and William Cecil, 1st Baron Burghley). She is a second cousin, once removed of actress Helena Bonham Carter, through her mother's side. Her uncle is journalist Alexander Chancellor, the father of model Cecilia Chancellor, her six times great-aunt was author Jane Austen, herself a great-niece of James Brydges, 1st Duke of Chandos. She is also ten times a descendant of Mary Boleyn, twice of Richard Rich, 1st Baron Rich and once of John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough.[citation needed]

Through her great-grandfather, John Chancellor, she is a six times great-granddaughter of William Duff, 1st Earl Fife and his second wife, Jean Grant (1705-1788), daughter of James Grant, 6th Bt., by two separate lines of descent.

Chancellor was accepted into the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, but in her third year she became pregnant and dropped out.[citation needed] Her daughter with Scots poet Jock Scott, Poppy Chancellor, was born in 1987. When their relationship ended, she then married a cameraman, Nigel Willoughby, whom she had met in 1993 while shooting a Boddington's advertisement. However, they divorced in 1998.[citation needed] She is now married to Redha Debbah.[2]


Chancellor had a prominent role in the series Kavanagh QC. She is also known for her performance as "Duckface" in Four Weddings and a Funeral opposite Hugh Grant. She has also been noted for her work as Caroline Bingley in the 1995 BBC adaptation of Pride and Prejudice, and as Questular Rontok in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. In 2005, she joined the cast of the popular BBC One television drama series Spooks as a new regular character, Juliet Shaw. She has also appeared in The Vice, Jupiter Moon, Karaoke, Cold Lazarus, The Dreamers, and Tipping the Velvet, and has a starring role in the satirical black comedy Suburban Shootout. In 2011, she took a supporting role in the thriller serial The Hour, for which she received a British Academy Television Award for Best Supporting Actress nomination.[3]

In 2013, she received a Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actress nomination for her work on Private Lives.


She is one of the Honorary Patrons of the London children's charity Scene & Heard.[4]


1990Killing Dad or How to Love Your MotherBarmaid
Jupiter MoonMercedes PageTV series (50 episodes: 1990–1996)
1992Inspector MorseSally SmithTV series (1 episode: "Cherubim and Seraphim")
1993Agatha Christie's PoirotVirginie MesnardTV series (1 episode: "The Chocolate Box")
Comedy PlayhouseJuliaTV series (1 episode: "The Complete Guide to Relationships")
CenturyWoman in Police Station
1994Four Weddings and a FuneralHenrietta (Duckface) – Wedding Four
Tom & VivWoman
StaggeredCarmen Svennipeg
Princess CarabooMrs. Peake
EllingtonAlly StoneTV film
1995Pride & PrejudiceCaroline BingleyTV mini-series (6 episodes)
Kavanagh QCJulia PiperTV series (11 episodes: 1995–1997)
1996KaraokeAnna GriffithsTV mini-series (4 episodes)
Cold LazarusAnna GriffithsTV mini-series (3 episodes)
1997FairyTale: A True StoryPeter Pan
The Man Who Knew Too LittleBarbara Ritchie
1999The ViceDr. Christine WeirTV series (5 episodes)
HeartNicola Farmer
2000LongitudeMuriel GouldTV film
2001The CazaletsDiana MackintoshTV series (6 episodes)
CrushMolly Cartwright
2002Tipping the VelvetDiana LethabyTV series (2 episodes)
2003Georgian UnderworldNarratorTV series (1 episode: "Queer as 18th Century Folk")
What a Girl WantsGlynnis Payne
Doc Martin and the Legend of the CloutieNicky BowdenTV film
FortysomethingEstelle SlipperyTV series (6 episodes)
The DreamersMother
2004Agent Cody Banks 2: Destination LondonLady Josephine Kenworth
Blue DoveMaria BishopTV series (2 episodes)
Roman RoadMaddy BancroftTV film
2005The Hitchhiker's Guide to the GalaxyQuestular Rontok
The Best ManDana
A Waste of Shame: Shakespeare and His SonnetsAnne HathawayTV film
SpooksJuliet ShawTV series (15 episodes: 2005–2007)
2006Breaking and EnteringKate
RebusAmanda MorrisonTV series (1 episode: "Let It Bleed")
The Secret Life of Mrs BeetonElizabeth DorlingTV film
Suburban ShootoutCamilla DiamondTV series (11 episodes: 2006–2007)
2007Sherlock Holmes and the Baker Street IrregularsIrene AdlerTV film
St. TriniansMiss Bagstock
Christmas at the RivieraDianeTV film
2008My FamilyZelda NobbsTV series (1 episode: "Cards on the Table")
Agatha Christie's MarpleLydia HortonTV film
2009Law & Order: UKEvelyn WyndhamTV series (2 episodes)
2010Critical EyeLaura
Silent WitnessChief Supt. Karen SomervilleTV series (2 episodes)
MirandaHelenaTV series (Series 2 episode 4: "A New Low")
More Afraid of YouLucyshort
2011HustleWendy StantonTV series (1 episode: "As Good as it Gets")
Waking the DeadLucy ChristieTV series (2 episodes)
LewisJudith SuskinTV series (1 episode: "The Gift of Promise")
The HourLix StormTV series (12 episodes)
Nominated – British Academy Television Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated – Broadcasting Press Guild Award for Best Actress
HiddenElspeth VerneyTV series (4 episodes)
HysteriaMrs Bellamy
2012PramfaceJanet DerbyshireTV series
2013A Touch of ClothHope GoodgirlTV series (2 episodes)
How I Live NowAunt Penn
2014Death Knight Love StoryMiriaAnimated, motion-captured, fan-made Machinima film
Inside No. 9ElizabethEpisode 1, "Sardines"
Fleming: The Man Who Would Be BondSecond Officer MondayTV series (4 episodes)
Downton AbbeyLady Anstruther
Mapp and LuciaEmmeline 'Lucia' LucasTV series (3 episodes)
Penny DreadfulClaire IvesTV series (1 episode)
TBATestament of YouthFilming



Chancellor has played the role of Ann Smiley in a BBC dramatisation of the John le Carre novels The Honourable Schoolboy[7] and Smiley's People. [8]


  1. ^ Green – Aristocratic Anna
  2. ^ Lewis, Tim (21 August 2011). "The Observer – My life was chaotic. But it turned out OK.". London: Retrieved 2011-08-22. 
  3. ^ The Hour at IMDb
  4. ^ "Scene & Heard – Who We Are". 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-19. 
  5. ^ "Review of Private Lives". Time Out. Retrieved 15 July 2013. 
  6. ^
  7. ^ "The Complete Smiley – The Karla Trilogy, Book 2: The Honourable Schoolboy". BBC. Retrieved 26 October 2013. 
  8. ^ "The Complete Smiley: Smiley's People". BBC. Retrieved 26 October 2013. 

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