The Info List - Geraldine James

Geraldine James, OBE (born 6 July 1950) is an English actress. For her role as Portia in the 1989 Broadway revival of The Merchant of Venice, she was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play and won the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Actress in a Play. She also won the Volpi Cup for Best Actress
Volpi Cup for Best Actress
at the 1989 Venice Film Festival for She's Been Away. Theatre director Peter Hall says James ranks amongst the great English classical actresses.[1] James has been nominated four times for the BAFTA
TV Award for Best Actress; for Dummy (1977), The Jewel in the Crown (1984), Band of Gold (1995) and The Sins (2000). She is also known as Mrs. Pincher, the breastfeeding mother in Little Britain
Little Britain
(2004). Her film credits include Gandhi (1982), The Tall Guy
The Tall Guy
(1989), Sherlock Holmes
Sherlock Holmes
(2009), Alice in Wonderland (2010), The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011) and 45 Years (2015).


1 Early life and family 2 Television appearances 3 Theatre appearances 4 Radio appearances 5 Film appearances 6 Awards 7 References 8 External links

Early life and family[edit] James was born in Maidenhead, Berkshire, to a cardiologist father.[2][3][4] She was educated at Downe House, a girls' independent school in Newbury, Berkshire. After graduating from the Drama Centre London in 1973, she began her career in repertory theatre. Television appearances[edit]

Shirley Glass in The Sweeney: Pay Off (1976) – TV debut Sandra X in Dummy (1977)[5] Barbara Kirk in The History Man
The History Man
(1980) Emma Hamilton in I Remember Nelson (1981) Sarah Layton in The Jewel in the Crown (1984) Lady Maud Lynchwood in Blott on the Landscape
Blott on the Landscape
(1985) Helen Field in Inspector Morse: Who Killed Harry Field (1991) Kristine Linde in A Doll's House
A Doll's House
(1992) Rose Garrety in Band of Gold (1995-1997) Eleanor Harker QC in Kavanagh QC
Kavanagh QC
(1995-1999) Beatrice in Rebecca (1997) Has a cameo role in Little Britain
Little Britain
as the mother of Harvey Pincher Gloria Green in The Sins (2000)[5] Yvonne Shaps in State of Play (2003) Recurring role as Lillith Hughes in Hex (2004) Lady Rowley in He Knew He Was Right (2004) Agatha Christie's Poirot
Agatha Christie's Poirot
- After the Funeral, (2005) as Helen Abernethie Hilary Rees-Benson: Former Liberal Democrat turned "Purple Alliance" Home Secretary in The Amazing Mrs Pritchard (2006) A Harlot's Progress (2006) Cornelia in Ancient Rome: The Rise and Fall of an Empire (2006) Barbara Turney in The Last Enemy (2008) Joanna the Concubine in Heist (2008) Gwendolen in the 2012 ITV adaptation of the Ruth Rendell
Ruth Rendell
thriller Thirteen Steps Down Milner: An MI5 spy in Utopia Channel 4
Channel 4
(2013 drama) Chief Constable Carolyn Jarecki in Black Work
Black Work
(2015 Drama) Julie Wells in The Five Television Series (2016) Marilla Cuthbert in Anne with an E (2017)

Theatre appearances[edit]

Portia opposite Dustin Hoffman
Dustin Hoffman
in the London and Broadway productions of The Merchant of Venice
The Merchant of Venice
by William Shakespeare.[6][7] Hedda Gabler at the Royal Exchange, Manchester
Royal Exchange, Manchester
in 1993.

Radio appearances[edit]

Date Title Role Director Station

000000002000-02-21-000021 February 2000 – 000000002000-03-03-00003 March 2000 The Hours

Gaynor Macfarlane BBC Radio 4
BBC Radio 4
Woman's Hour Drama

000000002003-03-21-000021 March 2003 Baldi: The Book Case Maggie Mark Lambert BBC Radio 4
BBC Radio 4
Afternoon Play

000000002003-04-19-000019 April 2003 Turtle Diary Neaera Gaynor Macfarlane BBC Radio 4
BBC Radio 4
Saturday Play

000000002005-01-01-00002005 The Raj Quartet Mildred Layton Jeremy Mortimer BBC Radio 4

Film appearances[edit]

The Dumb Waiter (1979) as Sally Bloody Kids (1980) as Ritchie's Wife Sweet William (1980) as Pamela Gandhi (1982) as Mirabehn The Tall Guy
The Tall Guy
(1989) as Carmen The Wolves of Willoughby Chase
The Wolves of Willoughby Chase
(1989) as Mrs Gertrude Brisket Prince of Shadows (1991) as Rebecca Osorio If Looks Could Kill – Teen Agent, (1991) as Vendetta Galante The Bridge (1992) as Mrs Todd Words Upon the Window Pane
Words Upon the Window Pane
(1994) as Mrs. Henderson Moll Flanders (1996) as Edna The Man Who Knew Too Little
The Man Who Knew Too Little
(1997) as Dr. Ludmilla Kropotkin Lover's Prayer (2001) as Mother An Angel for May (2002) Calendar Girls
Calendar Girls
(2003) as Marie Northanger Abbey (2007) as the narrator Sherlock Holmes
Sherlock Holmes
(2009) as Mrs Hudson Alice in Wonderland (2010) as Lady Ascot Made in Dagenham
Made in Dagenham
(2010) as Connie The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011) as Cecilia Vanger Arthur (2011) as Vivienne Bach Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows (2011) as Mrs Hudson 45 Years (2015) as Lena Alice Through the Looking Glass (2016) as Lady Ascot Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016) as Blue 3 Daphne (2017)


Year Nominated work Award Category Result Refs

1977 Dummy BAFTA
TV Award Best Actress Nominated [8]

1984 The Jewel in the Crown BAFTA
TV Award Best Actress Nominated

1989 She's Been Away Venice Film Festival Volpi Cup
Volpi Cup
for Best Actress Won [9][10]

1990 The Merchant of Venice Drama Desk Award Outstanding Actress in a Play Won

1990 The Merchant of Venice Tony Award Best Actress in a Play Nominated

1995 Band of Gold BAFTA
TV Award Best Actress Nominated

2000 The Sins BAFTA
TV Award Best Actress Nominated

James was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire
Order of the British Empire
(OBE) in the 2003 Queen's Birthday Honours.


^ "Geraldine James" (17 December 2001) Woman's Hour, Radio 4, BBC ^ Geraldine James Film Reference biography ^ http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-1162960/Geraldine-James-I-worry-Ill-turn-alcoholic-like-mother.html ^ https://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/profiles/geraldine-james-a-talent-to-surprise-559204.html ^ a b "James, Geraldine (1950-)" (2003) BFI Screenonline ^ "Hoffman as Shylock: London Critics Cool" (3 June 1989) New York Times ^ "'Merchant' role is jewel in James' crown" (29 Jan 1990) USA TODAY ^ "Television Actress in 1978" BAFTA ^ "Miss Geraldine James, OBE". Debrett's. Retrieved 21 January 2014. [permanent dead link] ^ "Triumph in Venice" (16 Sep 1989) The Guardian

External links[edit]

Geraldine James on IMDb "The Jewel That is James" – Interview by Jeremy Taylor for bmi Voyager October 2007 Q&A with Geraldine James in the Guardian

v t e

Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Actress in a Play

Ellen Burstyn
Ellen Burstyn
(1975) Rosemary Harris
Rosemary Harris
(1976) Irene Worth
Irene Worth
(1977) Jessica Tandy
Jessica Tandy
(1978) Constance Cummings
Constance Cummings
/ Carole Shelley
Carole Shelley
(1979) Pat Carroll (1980) Joan Copeland
Joan Copeland
(1981) Zoe Caldwell (1982) Jessica Tandy
Jessica Tandy
(1983) Joan Allen
Joan Allen
(1984) Rosemary Harris
Rosemary Harris
(1985) Lily Tomlin
Lily Tomlin
(1986) Linda Lavin
Linda Lavin
(1987) Stockard Channing
Stockard Channing
(1988) Pauline Collins
Pauline Collins
(1989) Geraldine James (1990) Mercedes Ruehl
Mercedes Ruehl
(1991) Laura Esterman (1992) Jane Alexander
Jane Alexander
(1993) Myra Carter (1994) Cherry Jones
Cherry Jones
(1995) Zoe Caldwell (1996) Janet McTeer
Janet McTeer
(1997) Cherry Jones
Cherry Jones
(1998) Kathleen Chalfant (1999) Eileen Heckart (2000) Mary-Louise Parker
Mary-Louise Parker
(2001) Lindsay Duncan
Lindsay Duncan
(2002) Vanessa Redgrave
Vanessa Redgrave
(2003) Viola Davis
Viola Davis
/ Phylicia Rashad
Phylicia Rashad
(2004) Cherry Jones
Cherry Jones
(2005) Lois Smith
Lois Smith
(2006) Eve Best
Eve Best
(2007) Deanna Dunagan (2008) Janet McTeer
Janet McTeer
(2009) Jan Maxwell
Jan Maxwell
(2010) Frances McDormand
Frances McDormand
(2011) Tracie Bennett (2012) Cicely Tyson
Cicely Tyson
(2013) Audra McDonald
Audra McDonald
(2014) Helen Mirren
Helen Mirren
(2015) Jessica Lange
Jessica Lange
(2016) Laura Linney
Laura Linney

v t e

Volpi Cup
Volpi Cup
for Best Actress


Katharine Hepburn
Katharine Hepburn
(1934) Paula Wessely
Paula Wessely
(1935) Annabella (1936) Bette Davis
Bette Davis
(1937) Norma Shearer
Norma Shearer
(1938) Luise Ullrich
Luise Ullrich
(1941) Kristina Söderbaum
Kristina Söderbaum
(1942) Anna Magnani
Anna Magnani
(1947) Jean Simmons
Jean Simmons
(1948) Olivia de Havilland
Olivia de Havilland
(1949) Eleanor Parker
Eleanor Parker
(1950) Vivien Leigh
Vivien Leigh
(1951) Ingrid Bergman
Ingrid Bergman
(1952) Lilli Palmer
Lilli Palmer
(1953) Maria Schell
Maria Schell
(1956) Dzidra Ritenberga (1957) Sophia Loren
Sophia Loren
(1958) Madeleine Robinson (1959) Shirley MacLaine
Shirley MacLaine
(1960) Suzanne Flon
Suzanne Flon
(1961) Emmanuelle Riva
Emmanuelle Riva
(1962) Delphine Seyrig
Delphine Seyrig
(1963) Harriet Andersson
Harriet Andersson
(1964) Annie Girardot
Annie Girardot
(1965) Natalya Arinbasarova
Natalya Arinbasarova
(1966) Shirley Knight
Shirley Knight
(1967) Laura Betti
Laura Betti


Darling Légitimus
Darling Légitimus
(1983) Pascale Ogier
Pascale Ogier
(1984) Valeria Golino
Valeria Golino
(1986) Kang Soo-yeon (1987) Isabelle Huppert/ Shirley MacLaine
Shirley MacLaine
(1988) Peggy Ashcroft/ Geraldine James (1989) Gloria Münchmeyer
Gloria Münchmeyer
(1990) Tilda Swinton
Tilda Swinton
(1991) Gong Li
Gong Li
(1992) Juliette Binoche/ Anna Bonaiuto
Anna Bonaiuto
(1993) Maria de Medeiros/ Vanessa Redgrave
Vanessa Redgrave
(1994) Sandrine Bonnaire/Isabelle Huppert/ Isabella Ferrari
Isabella Ferrari
(1995) Victoire Thivisol (1996) Robin Tunney
Robin Tunney
(1997) Catherine Deneuve
Catherine Deneuve
(1998) Nathalie Baye
Nathalie Baye
(1999) Rose Byrne
Rose Byrne
(2000) Sandra Ceccarelli (2001) Julianne Moore
Julianne Moore
(2002) Katja Riemann
Katja Riemann
(2003) Imelda Staunton
Imelda Staunton
(2004) Giovanna Mezzogiorno
Giovanna Mezzogiorno
(2005) Helen Mirren
Helen Mirren
(2006) Cate Blanchett
Cate Blanchett
(2007) Dominique Blanc
Dominique Blanc
(2008) Kseniya Rappoport
Kseniya Rappoport
(2009) Ariane Labed
Ariane Labed
(2010) Deanie Ip (2011) Hadas Yaron
Hadas Yaron
(2012) Elena Cotta
Elena Cotta
(2013) Alba Rohrwacher
Alba Rohrwacher
(2014) Valeria Golino
Valeria Golino
(2015) Emma Stone
Emma Stone
(2016) Charlotte Rampling
Charlotte Rampling

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 22352259 LCCN: no97024594 ISNI: 0000 0001 1750 6188 GND: 1081921226 SUDOC: 085743925 BNF: cb1418


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