Release Date: October 28, 2011
Studio: Columbia Pictures
Director: Roland Emmerich
Screenwriter: John Orloff
Starring: Rhys Ifans, Vanessa Redgrave, Joely Richardson
MPAA Rating: PG-13
RHYS IFANS (Edward De Vere, Earl of Oxford) is one of Britain’s finest contemporary actors. He was born and raised in Wales, attending youth ac ting schools at Theatre Clwyd, Mold, and appeared in many Welsh language television programs before embarking on his film career.
His breakout performance came in 1999 in Roger Michell’s Notting Hill, opposite Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant, for which he received a BAFTA nomination for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role. Prior to that, Ifans starred in Charles McDougall’s Heart, Kevin Allen’s Twin Town (along side his brother Llyr Evans), Anthony Hopkins’ August and Karl Francis’ Streetlife.
Since 1999, Ifans has appeared in more than 20 films, including Andy Hurst’s You’re Dead; Clare Kilner’s Janice Beard 45wpm; Edward Thomas’ Rancid Aluminium; Dominic Anciano’s Love, Honour and Obey; Ed Bye’s Kevin and Perry Go Large; Howard Deutch’s The Replacements; Steven Brill’s Little Nicky; Michel Gondry’s Human Nature; Ronny Yu’s Formula 51; Mike Figgis’ Hotel; Lasse Hallström’s The Shipping News; and Shane Meadows’ Once Upon A Time in the Midlands.
More recently, Ifans starred in Noah Baumbach’s Greenberg, with Ben Stiller; Gregor Jordan’s Informers; Jaco van Dormael’s Mr. Nobody; Jeff Balsmeyer’s Danny Deckchair; Shekhar Kapur’s Elizabeth: The Golden Age; Peter Webber’s Hannibal Rising; Francesca Joseph’s Four Last Songs; Martha Fiennes’ Chromophobia; Roger Michell’s Enduring Love, which earned him a nomination for Best British Actor Award by Empire magazine; and Mira Nair’s Vanity Fair.
On television, he played the role of Peter Cook in Terry Johnson’s “Not Only But Always,” for which he won the BAFTA for Best Actor. He also appeared in “Shakespeare Shorts”; “Trial and Retribution”; “The Two Franks”; “Judas and the Gimp”; “Night Shift”; “Spatz”; “Burning Love”; and “Review.” In 2005, Ifans made a guest appearance for the rock band Oasis in the video for their single “The Importance of Being Idle,” for which he accepted their award for Video of the Year at the 2005/6 NME Awards. He also starred in James Macdonald’s “A Number.”
In the theater, he has appeared at the Donmar Warehouse in Robert Delamere’s “Accidental Death of an Anarchist,” Patrick Marber’s “Don Juan in Soho,” and Michael Sheen’s “Bad Finger”; at the National Theatre in Matthew Warchus’ “Volpone” and Roger Michell’s “Under Milk Wood”; at the Duke of York Theatre in Hettie MacDonald’s “Beautiful Thing”; at the Royal Court Theatre in James MacDonald’s “Thyesters”; and at the Royal Exchange in Braham Murray’s “Smoke” and Ronald Harwood’s “Poison Pen.”
Ifans has recently been seen as DJ Gavin in the film Pirate Radio, a comedy about a pirate radio station in the North Sea, alongside Philip Seymour Hoffman and directed by Richard Curtis; and in Noah Baumbach’s Greenberg, alongside Ben Stiller.
Ifans’ latest roles saw him play Howard Marks, Britain’s most notorious drug dealer in Mr. Nice and Xenophillius Lovegood in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, directed by David Yates.
His latest projects include Passion Play, also starring Bill Murray, Mickey Rourke and Megan Fox, The Organ Grinder’s Monkey, directed by the Chapman brothers, and Neverland, playing Captain Hook alongside Anna Friel and Bob Hoskins.
Most recently, Ifans landed the lead role of the villain in The Amazing Spider-Man, propelling his career to new heights.
Ifans has just wrapped filming 5 Year Engagement, a comedy charting the ups and downs of a couple’s relationship, produced by Judd Apatow, also starring Jason Segel and Emily Blunt.
VANESSA REDGRAVE (Queen Elizabeth I) most recently appeared in Miral, directed by Julian Schnabel and released by The Weinstein Company on March 25, 2011. In May 2010, Redgrave appeared in the film Letters to Juliet directed by Gary Winick, opposite her husband, Franco Nero. In addition to Anonymous, Redgrave can next be seen in The Whistleblower opposite Rachel Weisz, which will be released by Samuel Goldwyn Films on August 5, 2011. She will also star in Ralph Fiennes’ directorial debut Coriolanus, in which she portrays the title character’s mother, Volumnia. Coriolanus will be released by The Weinstein Company in the US on December 2, 2011.
In 1978, Redgrave won the Academy Award® and the Golden Globe Award, as well as awards from the Los Angeles Film Critics Association and the Kansas City Film Critics Circle, for her performance in the title role of Julia (directed in 1977 by Fred Zinnemann and adapted by Alvin Sargent from Lillian Hellman's novel of the same name).
She has received five additional Academy Award® nominations and eleven additional Golden Globe Award nominations, as well as been honored with a second Golden Globe Award win for her performance in the telefilm “If These Walls Could Talk 2” (for the segment written and directed by Jane Anderson). The latter performance also earned her an Emmy Award and a Screen Actors Guild Award. She had previously won an Emmy Award for her portrayal of Holocaust survivor Fania Fénelon in CBS’ “Playing for Time” (directed by Daniel Mann and adapted from Ms. Fénelon's autobiography), and has been nominated for an Emmy three additional times. “Playing for Time” was recently released on DVD.
Redgrave previously starred for David Hare in his film Wetherby, for which she was honored by the National Society of Film Critics with their Best Actress award. Her other films include director Fred Zinnemann's A Man for All Seasons; Michelangelo Antonioni's Blowup; Karel Reisz' Morgan: A Suitable Case for Treatment (for which she won Best Actress at the Cannes International Film Festival) and Isadora (earning her another Best Actress win at Cannes and honors from the National Society of Film Critics); Sidney Lumet's Murder on the Orient Express; Michael Apted's Agatha; Merchant Ivory's The Bostonians (for which she was cited as Best Actress from the National Society of Film Critics); Stephen Frears’ Prick Up Your Ears (for which she was named Best Supporting Actress by the New York Film Critics Circle); Simon Callow's The Ballad of the Sad Café; Marleen Gorris' Mrs. Dalloway (adapted from the Virginia Woolf novel by Eileen Atkins); her son Carlo Nero's “The Fever” for HBO Films; Roger Michell's Venus; Lajos Koltai's Evening; and, in 2008, Atonement, an Oscar® nominee for Best Picture. Her television work includes a recurring role on “Nip/Tuck” and the telefilm “The Day of the Triffids” for BBC1.
In addition to her other honors, Redgrave received a BAFTA Fellowship in 2010.
Redgrave’s numerous theatre credits include “Driving Miss Daisy” at the Golden Theatre on Broadway in New York from October 7, 2010 to April 9, 2011. Redgrave was nominated for a Tony Award® for this role in June 2011. Redgrave also appeared in “The Year of Magical Thinking” in the Broadway season of 2007 at the Booth Theatre. She received a Tony Award® nomination for her performance, adapted from Joan Didion’s award-winning book. Ms. Redgrave appeared on Broadway in the landmark 2003 production of “Long Day’s Journey Into Night,” for which she received the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play. Her other Broadway appearances include the acclaimed revivals of Tennessee Williams’ “Orpheus Descending” and Ibsen’s “The Lady From the Sea.”
Off-Broadway, Ms. Redgrave performed in the Public Theater production of “Antony and Cleopatra,” which she also directed, and “Vita and Virginia.” In her native England, her scores of major roles on the stage most recently include recreating “The Year of Magical Thinking” at the National Theatre; “Lady Windermere’s Fan” at the Theatre Royal, Haymarket starring alongside her daughter Joely Richardson; “The Tempest” for the RSC at Shakespeare’s Globe and “The Cherry Orchard” at the Royal National Theatre. In 1998, she and her brother Corin co-produced an early Tennessee Williams play, “Not About Nightingales,” which Ms. Redgrave discovered at the Royal National Theatre; directed by Sir Trevor Nunn, it then played at Circle in the Square. In 2005, Ms. Redgrave played Euripides’ “Hecuba” for the RSC, directed by Tony Harrison, at the Albery Theatre followed by the Kennedy Center and then at BAM. She has been honored with three Evening Standard Awards and the Olivier Award.
Redgrave has worked with UNICEF-UK as a Special Representative from 1993-1995, and has been a UNICEF Goodwill ambassador since 1995. Her continued work with UNICEF led to her involvement with UNHCR (United Nations High Commission for Refugees) in many countries, and with UNRWA (United Nations Relief Works Agency) in Gaza and the Palestinian refugee camps in the West Bank, and Lebanon. She is a member and supporter of Memorial and Za Prava Cheloveka, the two principal Russian human rights foundations, and also of Amnesty International and “Liberty,” which together comprise the leading human rights organizations in Britain.
JOELY RICHARDSON (Young Queen Elizabeth I) is currently receiving exceptional reviews in New York for her off Broadway performance in Michael Weller's “Side Effects” at the Lucille Lortel theatre. Films she has recently completed, to be released later this year include David Fincher's The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo alongside Daniel Craig and Red Lights with Robert De Niro and Sigourney Weaver.
Richardson’s work over six seasons on “Nip/Tuck” merited two Golden Globe nominations for her performance as Julia McNamara; the series also won a Golden Globe.
Other theatre includes: “Lady Windermere's Fan” (Peter Hall / West End), “Miss Julie” (James Rudhin / Almeida), “Macbeth,” “Worlds Apart,” “Every Man in His Humor,” and “A Midsummer Night's Dream” (RSC).
Films include: The Last Mimzy (Bob Shaye), The Affair of the Necklace (Charles Shyer), The Patriot (Roland Emmerich), Maybe Baby (Ben Elton), 101 Dalmatians (Steven Herek), Event Horizon, Loch Ness and Sister My Sister (Nancy Meckler).
Other television includes: Catherine Parr in “The Tudors,” “Day of the Triffids” with Dougray Scott for the BBC, “Lies My Mother Told Me,” Wallis Simpson in Company Pictures' drama “Wallis and Edward” with Stephen Campbell Moore, Poliakoff's “The Tribe” with Jeremy Northam and Anna Friel, “The Echo,” and the title role in the 1993 production of “Lady Chatterley” opposite Sean Bean.
Richardson’s career started when she portrayed the younger version of her mother in the film Wetherby. After a leading role in Peter Greenaway's cult success Drowning by Numbers (1988), her career then saw leading roles in “Poirot,” Jim Henson's The Storyteller, a teacher on the verge of a nervous breakdown in the 1989 Channel 4 serial “Behaving Badly” and fictional Finnish Princess Anna in the 1991 screen comedy King Ralph. A year later, she appeared in Shining Through alongside her future brother in law, Liam Neeson.
Acclaimed internationally, DAVID THEWLIS (William Cecil) is one of the UK’s most versatile actors.
His breakthrough performance came in Mike Leigh’s Naked, for which he won awards for Best Actor at the Cannes Film Festival, the New York Film Critics Awards, the National Society of Film Critics Awards, the London Critics Circle Film Awards and the Evening Standard British Film Awards. He has starred in a range of critically acclaimed roles since.
Thewlis recently finished shooting two films: Warhorse, directed by Steven Spielberg, and The Lady, directed Luc Besson. Other recent film work includes: London Boulevard, directed by Bill Monahan; Mr. Nice, directed by Bernard Rose; Veronika Decides to Die, directed by Emily Young; and The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, directed by Mark Herman. Thewlis also plays the returning character of Professor Lupin in the Harry Potter films: The Prisoner of Azkaban, The Order of the Phoenix, The Half Blood Prince and The Deathly Hallows, parts 1 and 2.
Other film credits include: Paul Auster’s The Inner Life of Martin Frost, John Moore’s The Omen, Jordan Scott’s All the Invisible Children, Terrence Malick’s The New World, Ridley Scott’s The Kingdom of Heaven, Richard Donner’s Timeline, Paul McGuigan’s Gangster No. 1, Peter Hewitt’s Whatever Happened to Harold Smith? Bernardo Bertolucci’s Besieged, Joel and Ethan Cohen’s The Big Lebowski, Jean Jaques Annaud’s Seven Years in Tibet and John Frankenheimer’s The Island of Dr Moreau, Agnieszka Holland’s Total Eclipse, Rob Cohen’s Dragonheart, Mike Hoffman’s Restoration, Caroline Thompson’s Black Beauty, David Jones’ The Trial, Paul Greengrass’ Resurrected, Beeban Kidron’s Vroom David Caffrey’s Divorcing Jack and Short and Curlies and Life is Sweet, both for Mike Leigh.
On television, Thewlis recently played the twin roles of Joe and Harry in “The Street,” for which he was nominated as Outstanding Actor in a TV Series Drama at the 2008 Monte Carlo TV Festival. Other TV credits include “Dinotopia,” “Endgame,” “Dandelion Dead,” the award-winning “Prime Suspect III,” “Frank Stubbs,” “Journey to Knock,” “Filipino Dreamgirls,” “Skulduggery,” “A Bit of a Do,” “Road,” “Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit,” and “The Singing Detective.”
In addition to his screen work, Thewlis has also starred on stage in Sam Mendes’ “The Sea” at the Royal National Theatre, Max Stafford-Clark’s “Ice Cream” at the Royal Court, “Buddy Holly at the Regal” in Greenwich, “Ruffian on the Stairs/The Woolley” at Farnham, and “Lady and the Clarinet” at the Kings Head.
Thewlis is also known for his work as a director. His feature film Cheeky, which he also wrote and starred in was released by Guerilla Pictures in 2007, and previously his short film Hello, Hello, Hello, which he wrote and directed, was nominated for a BAFTA Award for Best Short Film.
Thewlis’ many achievements were recognised at the 2008 British Independent Film Awards when he received the prestigious Richard Harris Award for Outstanding Contribution to Film.
Outside of his screen work, Thewlis is also a recognized author. His first novel The Late Hector Kipling was published in 2007 to great critical acclaim.
Cast (in credits order)
Rhys Ifans ... Earl of Oxford
Vanessa Redgrave ... Queen Elizabeth I
Sebastian Armesto ... Ben Jonson
Rafe Spall ... William Shakespeare
David Thewlis ... William Cecil
Edward Hogg ... Robert Cecil
Xavier Samuel ... Earl of Southampton
Sam Reid ... Earl of Essex
Jamie Campbell Bower ... Young Earl of Oxford
Joely Richardson ... Young Queen Elizabeth I
Paolo De Vita ... Francesco
Trystan Gravelle ... Christopher Marlowe
Robert Emms ... Thomas Dekker
Tony Way ... Thomas Nashe
Julian Bleach ... Captain Richard Pole
Derek Jacobi ... Prologue
Alex Hassell ... Spencer
James Garnon ... Heminge
Mark Rylance ... Condell
Jasper Britton ... Pope
Michael Brown ... Sly
Ned Dennehy ... Interrogator
John Keogh ... Philip Henslowe
Lloyd Hutchinson ... Richard Burbage
Vicky Krieps ... Bessie Vavasour
Helen Baxendale ... Anne De Vere
Paula Schramm ... Bridget De Vere
Amy Kwolek ... Young Anne De Vere
Luke Thomas Taylor ... Boy Earl of Oxford (as Luke Taylor)
Isaiah Michalski ... Boy Robert Cecil
Timo Huber ... Boy Earl of Southampton
Richard Durdan ... Archbishop
Shaun Lawton ... Footman
Detlef Bothe ... John De Vere
James Clyde ... King James I
Christian Sengewald ... Cecil's Spy Servant
Jean-Loup Fourure ... Monsieur Beaulieu
Victoria Gabrysch ... Buxom Lady
Axel Sichrovsky ... Essex General
Katrin Pollitt ... Lady-in-Waiting
Patricia Grove ... Lady-in-Waiting
Laura Lo Zito ... Selling Maid
Gode Benedix ... Groundling
Nic Romm ... Usher
Henry Lloyd-Hughes ... Bear Baiter
Patrick Diemling ... Oxford's Servant
Patrick Heyn ... Oxford's Doctor
Nino Sandow ... Stage Manager (New York)
Craig Salisbury ... Dwarf / Puck
Rainer Guldener ... Quince
Trystan Wyn Puetter ... Bottom (as Trystan Pütter)
André Kaczmarczyk ... Titania
Jonas Hämmerle ... Child Oberon
Leonard Kinzinger ... Child Titania
Mike Maas ... Pole's Commander
Christian Leonard ... Stage Player: Shakespeare Company
Christian Banzhaf ... Stage Player: Shakespeare Company
Victor Calero ... Stage Player: Shakespeare Company
Martin Engler ... Stage Player: Shakespeare Company
Alfred Hartung ... Stage Player: Shakespeare Company
Oliver Kube ... Stage Player: Shakespeare Company
Christian Ludwig ... Stage Player: Shakespeare Company
Oliver Rickenbacher ... Stage Player: Shakespeare Company
Claudius von Stolzmann ... Stage Player: Shakespeare Company
Anna Altmann ... Lady Cecil
Carsten Berger ... Lord of Court
Ulrike Brandt ... Robert Cecil's Wife
Andreas Frakowiak ... Nobleman with feathered Hat
Claudia Funke ... Young Lady in Waiting
Elisabeth Milarch ... Dancing Lady
Dennis Oestreich ... Angry young man in theatre
Michael S. Ruscheinsky ... Elizabeth's Personal Guard
Antje Thiele ... Lady de Vere
Tom Wlaschiha ... Captain of the Guard
Alexander Yassin ... Javanese Nobleman
Martina Ysker ... Young Lady in Waiting
Joachim Paul Assböck ... Prison Guard (uncredited)
Oli Bigalke ... Essex Assassin (uncredited)
Hendrik Maaß ... Young Lord Of Court (uncredited)
Gesche Picolin ... Lady-in-waiting (uncredited)
Alexandra Surer ... Lady In Waiting (uncredited)
Studio photos, notes and videos © 2011 Columbia Pictures