MERYL STREEP (Clarissa Vaughan), a two-time Academy Awardâ winner and a recipient of twelve Oscarâ nominations, recently completed filming "Adaptation" starring opposite Nicolas Cage. Spike Jonze directed this much-anticipated follow-up to "Being John Malkovich. "
Born and raised in New Jersey, Streep began acting at Vassar, where she won the title role in the first college production for which she auditioned. An honors exchange program also allowed her to study in the drama department at Dartmouth. After graduating from Vassar, she attended the renowned Yale Drama School. She appeared in six of the seven plays presented annually by the Yale Repertory Company, earning a Masters of Fine Arts degree in 1975.
After a summer with the O'Neill Playwrights Conference in Connecticut, Streep moved to New York City and landed the ingenue lead in Joseph Papp's Lincoln Center production of "Trelawney of the Wells," delivering a powerful performance that stunned the critics. Before long, she received an Outer Critics' Circle Award, a Theater World Award and a Tony nomination for playing two different characters in a Phoenix Theater double bill of Arthur Miller's "A Memory of Two Mondays" and Tennessee Williams' "27 Wagons Full of Cotton. "
Streep performed in no less than seven plays during her first season in New York, including the New York Shakespeare Festival productions of "Henry V" as Catherine and "Measure for Measure" as Isabella. She then starred on Broadway in Kurt Weill's "Happy End" and won an Obie for her performance in the off-Broadway production, "Alice at the Palace. " During this period, Streep also won an Emmy for her portrayal of a devastated German wife in the miniseries "Holocaust," and made her feature film debut as Jane Fonda's snooty society friend in Fred Zinneman's "Julia. "
In her second screen role, Streep appeared opposite Robert De Niro in Michael Cimino's "The Deer Hunter," receiving her first Oscarâ nomination for her portrayal of a working-class Pennsylvania girl whose lonely, smalltown life is irrevocably altered by the Vietnam war.
Streep returned to the stage to play Katherine in "The Taming of the Shrew" opposite Raul Julia for Joseph Papp's Public Theater. After appearing in Woody Allen's "Manhattan" and Jerry Schatzberg's "The Seduction of Joe Tynan," Streep rounded out the year as Dustin Hoffman's troubled former wife in Robert Benton's acclaimed "Kramer vs. Kramer," for which she won an Academy Awardâ as Best Supporting Actress.
Since that time, Streep has worked with most of the film industry's top directors, including Karel Reisz ("The French Lieutenant's Woman"), Mike Nichols ("Silkwood," "Heartburn" and "Postcards From the Edge"), Alan J. Pakula ("Sophie's Choice"), Fred Schepisi ("A Cry in the Dark" and "Plenty"), Robert Zemeckis ("Death Becomes Her"), Curtis Hanson ("The River Wild"), Hector Babenco ("Ironweed"), Sydney Pollack ("Out of Africa"), Albert Brooks ("Defending Your Life") and Bille August ("The House of the Spirits").
In recent years, Streep has played such diverse characters as the tough mother of a tougher adolescent ("Marvin's Room"), a woman whose fatal illness draws her closer to her adult daughter ("One True Thing"), an Italian immigrant in the Midwest who strikes up a romance with an itinerant photographer ("The Bridges of Madison County"), an Irish spinster in the 1930s ("Dancing at Lughnasa") and real-life Harlem high-school music teacher Roberta Guaspari ("Music of the Heart"). In 1997, Streep was nominated for an Emmy for "First, Do No Harm," a television drama she co-produced and starred in. She recently completed filming the HBO miniseries of Tony Kushner's acclaimed play "Angels in America" under the direction of Mike Nichols.
Last year, Streep made a much-awaited return to the stage as Mme. Arkadina in Chekov's "The Seagull. " Mike Nichols directed the all-star cast, including Kevin Kline, Natalie Portman and John Goodman, for this New York Shakespeare Festival production in Central Park.
Married to artist/sculptor Don Gummer, Streep has four children.
JULIANNE MOORE (Laura Brown), an actress of exceptional range, has delivered outstanding work in major studio films as well as independent features. She was most recently seen in Bart Fruendlich's "World Traveler" with Billy Crudup, Todd Haynes' "Far from Heaven" with Dennis Quaid, Lasse Hallstrom's "The Shipping News" with Kevin Spacey, Judi Dench and Cate Blanchett and as Clarice Starling in Ridley Scott's "Hannibal," opposite Anthony Hopkins, Gary Oldman and Ray Liotta.
The daughter of a military judge and a Scottish social worker, Moore was born in Fayetteville, N. C. and spent the early years of her life in over two dozen locations around the world with her parents before finally attending Boston University, where she earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. She then moved to New York where she worked extensively in theater, including major roles in Caryl Churchill's "Serious Money" and "Ice Cream/Hot Fudge" at the Public Theater. She appeared in Minneapolis in the Guthrie Theater's "Hamlet" and participated in workshop productions of Strindberg's "The Father" with Al Pacino and in Wendy Wasserstein's "An American Daughter" with Meryl Streep. During the 1980s, she made many appearances in TV movies and was a regular on such soap operas as "The Edge of Night" and "As the World Turns. "
Moore made her film debut in 1990 in "Tales From the Darkside: The Movie," and moved on to key supporting roles in "The Hand That Rocks the Cradle," "The Gun in Betty Lou's Handbag" and "The Fugitive. " Her breakthrough film was Robert Altman's "Short Cuts. " Since then, her work has brought her consistent acclaim and numerous honors. For her performance in "Boogie Nights," she received an Academy Awardâ nomination for Best Actress in a Supporting Role. She was also nominated for Independent Spirit Awards for both "Short Cuts" and "Safe. " In 1999, Moore received Oscarâ, Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild award nominations in addition to several critics' awards for her performance in Neil Jordan's "The End of the Affair" opposite Ralph Fiennes. She also received a Golden Globe nomination for her work in "An Ideal Husband. " For her role in Paul Thomas Anderson's "Magnolia," Moore garnered a SAG Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress.
Moore's other films include "The Big Lebowski," "The Myth of Fingerprints," "Jurassic Park: The Lost World," "Cookie's Fortune," "Vanya on 42nd St. ," "Surviving Picasso" (as Dora Maar), "Benny and Joon," "Nine Months," "Assassins," "A Map of the World," "Evolution" and the remake of "Psycho" directed by Gus Van Sant,
NICOLE KIDMAN (Virginia Woolf) starred in two of 2001's box-office smashes, "The Others" and "Moulin Rouge," and received an Oscarâ nomination and a London Film Critics Circle "Best Actress" Award for her performance in the latter, as well as dual Golden Globe nominations for both films. "The Other" also earned her a BAFTA nomination. Following "The Hours," Kidman starred in Lars Von Trier's "Dogville" and Robert Benton's "The Human Stain. " She is currently filming Anthony Minghella's "Cold Mountain. "
Born in Honolulu, Kidman was raised in Sydney, Australia, where both her parents were born. She began acting during her teens and made her cinematic debut in an Australian film, "Bush Christmas," at fourteen. She then began to mix her schoolwork with her acting, appearing in projects such as "Winners" and the miniseries "Five-Mile Creek. " Between films, Kidman studied at the Australian Theater for Young People in Sydney and the Philip Street Theater.
The much-lauded 1985 Kennedy-Miller miniseries "Vietnam" made her a virtual overnight star in Australia. Only 17 at the time, she was voted Best Actress of the Year by the Australian public and the Australian Film Institute. In addition to public and critical acclaim, her performance in the series also attracted the attention of filmmakers throughout Australia. Kidman's other notable Australian films since then include "Emerald City" (for which she received a Best Supporting Actress nomination from the Australian Film Institute), "Flirting" and the miniseries "Bangkok Hilton. " For the latter, Kidman once again received rave reviews, and was voted Best Actress of 1989 by the Variety Awards and the Australian public. She also appeared on stage playing lead roles in "Steel Magnolias" at the Sydney Seymour Center, for which she was nominated Best Newcomer by the Sydney Theater Critics and "Spring Awakening" at the Australian Theater for Young People.
Kidman first came to the attention of international audiences with her critically acclaimed performance in the 1989 thriller "Dead Calm," directed by Philip Noyce. Since then, she has become one of the most sought-after actresses in film. Her 1995 appearance in Gus Van Sant's "To Die For" brought her a Golden Globe as well as Best Actress Awards from the Boston Film Critics, the National Broadcast Film Critics, London Film Critics and the Seattle Film Festival. She also received a BAFTA nomination.
Kidman made her highly-lauded London stage debut in the fall of 1998, starring with Iain Glen in "The Blue Room," David Hare's modern adaptation of Schnitzler's "La Ronde," for director Sam Mendes and the Donmar Warehouse. The production, in which Kidman and Glen each took on five different roles, was the hit of the London theater season, and for her performance, Kidman won London's Evening Standard Award "for special and significant contribution to the London Theater. " She was also nominated in the Best Actress category for a Laurence Olivier Award. "The Blue Room" moved to Broadway for a smash limited run from November of 1998 through March of 1999.
In 1999, Kidman starred in Stanley Kubrick's last film, "Eyes Wide Shut. " In 1998, she appeared in Griffin Dunne's romantic comedy, "Practical Magic," and, in 1997, in Mimi Leder's international thriller, "The Peacemaker. " The year before, Kidman starred in Jane Campion's screen adaptation of Henry James' Portrait of a Lady. Her other films include "Billy Bathgate," for which she received a Golden Globe nomination, "Malice," "My Life," "Far and Away," "Batman Forever" and "Birthday Girl. "
ED HARRIS (Richard) earned an Academy Award® Best Actor nomination for "Pollock," his acclaimed directorial debut, in which he starred as the pioneering abstract expressionist Jackson Pollock. The film had its world premiere at the Venice Film Festival, followed by a North American debut at the Toronto Film Festival and the prestigious centerpiece slot at the New York Film Festival. "Pollock" was based on the Pulitzer prize-winning biography Jackson Pollock: An American Saga by Steven Naifeh and Gregory White Smith. It co-starred Marcia Gay Harden, who won the Best Supporting Actress Oscar® for her portrayal of Pollock's wife Lee Krasner and also featured Harris' wife, actress Amy Madigan, in the role of Peggy Guggenheim. He recently received acclaim for his portrayal of the mysterious government agent in Ron Howard and Brian Grazer's Academy Awardâ-winning "A Beautiful Mind. "
Since then, Harris starred opposite Jude Law in Jean-Jacques Annaud's "Enemy at the Gates" and opposite Joaquin Phoenix in the independent feature "Buffalo Soldiers. " Upcoming films for Harris are "Masked and Anonymous," "Radio" and "The Human Stain. "
Harris starred opposite Anne Heche in Agnieszka Holland's "The Third Miracle" and opposite Julia Roberts and Susan Sarandon in "Stepmom" for director Chris Columbus. For that performance, in tandem with his role in Peter Weir's critically acclaimed "The Truman Show," he won the 1998 National Board of Review award for Best Supporting Actor. He also won a Golden Globe Award and received an Oscar® nomination for Best Supporting Actor for "The Truman Show. "
Harris starred opposite Sean Connery and Nicolas Cage in the Simpson-Bruckheimer action blockbuster, Michael Bay's "The Rock," and appeared in the political thriller, "Absolute Power" opposite Clint Eastwood (who also directed) and Gene Hackman. He portrayed Gene Kranz in Ron Howard's acclaimed "Apollo 13," which garnered him the Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Supporting Actor as well as Academy Award® and Golden Globe nominations.
Harris' other films include "Borderline," George Romero's "Knightriders," "The Right Stuff," "The Firm," "Just Cause," "Glengarry Glen Ross," "State of Grace," "The Abyss," "Jacknife," "To Kill a Priest," "Walker," "Sweet Dreams," "Alamo Bay," "A Flash of Green," "Swing Shift" and "Under Fire. "
Among his television credits are HBO's "The Last Innocent Man" and "Running Mates" and Showtime's "Paris Trout. " Harris and Madigan co-produced and co-starred in a critically acclaimed film adaptation of Zane Grey's "Riders of the Purple Sage," which premiered on TNT in 1996. Harris was nominated for a Screen Actors Guild Award as Best Actor for his performance, and for their roles as both actors and producers, Harris and Madigan were presented with the prestigious Western Heritage Wrangler Award for Outstanding Television Feature Film.
Born in Tenafly, New Jersey, Harris attended Columbia University for two years and then attended the University of Oklahoma, where he began to study acting. In 1973, he moved to California and entered the California Institute of the Arts, graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree.
Harris made his New York stage debut in Sam Shepard's "Fool for Love," for which he earned the 1983 Obie Award for Outstanding Actor. He garnered a Tony nomination and the Drama Desk Award for his Broadway debut in George Furth's "Precious Sons. "
Harris has won two Los Angeles Theater Critics Association Awards, the first for "Prairie Avenue" and the second for Murray Mednick's "Scar. " His other Los Angeles stage credits include "A Streetcar Named Desire," "The Grapes of Wrath," "Hamlet" and "Sweet Bird of Youth. "
In the fall of 1994, Harris appeared off-Broadway in the New York Shakespeare Theater's production of Sam Shepard's "Simpatico" and won the Lucille Lortel Award for Best Actor. Harris returned to Broadway in the fall of 1996 for a limited run engagement opposite Daniel Massey in Ronald Harwood's acclaimed drama, "Taking Sides. "
TONI COLLETTE (Kitty), born in Sydney, Australia, became an international name in the title role of P. J. Hogan's 1994 hit "Muriel's Wedding," for which she received a Golden Globe nomination and won the Australian Film Institute Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role and the Film Critics Circle of Australia Award for Best Actress.
Most recently, she was seen with Hugh Grant in "About a Boy" and with Ben Affleck and Samuel L. Jackson in Paramount's "Changing Lanes. " She also appeared with Jackson in Paramount's hit action thriller, "Shaft," and shortly afterward, made her New York stage debut in 2000 in the Michael John LaChiusa/George C. Wolfe Broadway musical "The Wild Party," for which she received a Tony nomination.
Her breakthrough American film was M. Night Shyamalan's "The Sixth Sense," in which she played the mother of Haley Joel Osment. Her performance brought her an Academy Awardâ nomination for Best Supporting Actress.
She made her film debut in Mark Joffe's "Spotswood" opposite Anthony Hopkins. She went on to star in "Cosi," "Lilian's Story," for which she won the Australian Film Institute Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role, and "Emma," alongside Gwyneth Paltrow, with whom she was reunited in "The Pallbearer. " Her other films include "The James Gang," "The Boys," "Hotel Splendide," "Clockwatchers," Todd Haynes' "Velvet Goldmine" and Peter Greenaway's "8˝ Women. "
In 2001, she appeared with Dennis Quaid, Greg Kinnear and Andie McDowell in the HBO production of the play, "Dinner with Friends. "
Collette has just completed filming the Australian project, "Japanese Story," shot in Western Australia.
CLAIRE DANES (Julia) recently completed production on "Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines" for director Jonathan Mostow opposite Arnold Schwarzenegger and Nick Stahl. Danes plays Stahl's love interest in the film, which will be released by Warner Bros. in the summer of 2003.
Danes can currently be seen in Burr Steers' critically acclaimed "Igby Goes Down" starring opposite Kieran Culkin, Susan Sarandon, Jeff Goldblum and Ryan Phillippe.
Her other film credits include: Jonathan Kaplan's "Brokedown Palace," Scott Silver's "The Mod Squad," Billie August's "Les Miserables," Theresa Connelly's "The Polish Wedding," Francis Ford Coppola's "The Rainmaker," Oliver Stone's "U-Turn," Baz Luhrman's "William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet," Micheal Pressman's "To Gillian on her 37th Birthday," Billy Hopkins' "I Love You, I Love You Not," Jodie Foster's "Home for the Holidays," Jocelyn Moorehouse's "How to Make an American Quilt" and Gillian Armstrong's adaptation of Louisa May Alcott's "Little Women. "
Danes first came to prominence in Ed Zwick and Marshall Hershkovitz's critically acclaimed "My So-Called Life," where she starred as Angela Chase in the ABC series. The role earned Danes an Emmy nomination and a Golden Globe Award.
JEFF DANIELS (Louis) has enjoyed a long and distinguished career in film, television and theater as an actor, writer, producer and director. Raised in Chelsea, Michigan, Daniels studied at Central Michigan University. He came to New York to pursue an acting career, and made his screen debut in Milos Forman's "Ragtime" in 1981. As a member of the Circle Repertory Company he appeared in numerous plays, receiving Drama Desk nominations for his Broadway performances in Lanford Wilson's "The Fifth of July" and "Lemon Sky," and he won an Obie for his one-man performance in Dalton Trumbo's "Johnny Got His Gun. " His additional stage work includes the Broadway productions of A. R. Gurney's "The Golden Age" and Lanford Wilson's "Redwood Curtain. "
In 1983, Daniels played Debra Winger's philandering husband in the critically acclaimed "Terms of Endearment" directed by James L. Brooks. His other films include Woody Allen's "The Purple Rose of Cairo," Mike Nichols' "Heartburn," Jonathan Demme's "Something Wild," Peter Yates' "The House on Carroll Street," Jan De Bont's "Speed," Carroll Ballard's "Fly Away Home," Ron Maxwell's "Gettysburg" and the Farrelly Brothers' "Dumb and Dumber. " Daniels' additional films include "Pleasantville," "101 Dalmatians," "Marie," "Arachnophobia," "2 Days in the Valley," "It's the Rage" and "The Butcher's Wife. "
On the small screen, Daniels has appeared in "The Crossing," "Red Curtain," Alan Arkin's "The Visit," Robert Altman's "The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial," Lee Grant's "No Place Like Home" and "Cheaters. "
As the founder of the Purple Rose Theater Company in Chelsea, Michigan, Daniels has written eight plays: "Shoe Man," "The Tropical Pickle," "The Vast Difference," "Thy Kingdom's Coming," "Escanaba in da Moonlight," "Apartment 3A," "Boom Town" and the critically acclaimed "Across the Way. " His independent film company Purple Rose Films, has produced two films he has written and directed: "Escanaba in da Moonlight" and "Super Sucker," the latter of which won the Audience Award for Best Feature at the 2002 U. S. Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen, Colorado.
Most recently, Daniels appeared in Clint Eastwood's "Blood Work" and in "Gods and Generals" with Chris Connor and Robert Duvall.
STEPHEN DILLANE (Leonard Woolf) trained at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre and worked in Coventry, Manchester and Chester, and then at the National Theatre, where he appeared in "The Beaux Stratagem," "Dancing at Lughnasa," "Long Day's Journey Into Night" and "Angels in America. " At the Royal Court, Dillane appeared in "Hush" and at the Gielgud Theatre in the title role of "Hamlet. " In addition, he appeared in "Endgame" at the Donmar Warehouse, in "Hurlyburly" at the Old Vic, in the title role of "Uncle Vanya" for the Royal Shakespeare Company at the Young Vic and in Tom Stoppard's "The Real Thing" at the Donmar Warehouse in the West End and on Broadway, where he won the Tony Award as Best Actor. Most recently, he earned great acclaim for his performance in the new Tom Stoppard trilogy "Coasts of Utopia" at the Royal National Theatre.
On British television he has been seen in numerous productions, including Dennis Potter's "Christabel," the series "The Rector's Wife," David Hare's production "Heading Home," D. H. Lawrence's "The Widowing of Mrs. Holroyd" and "Kings in Grass Castles," for which he was awarded Best Actor in a Leading Role by the Australian Film Institute. Most recently, he appeared in the miniseries, "The Cazalets. "
Dillane's film credits include "Welcome to Sarajevo," "Firelight," "Spy Game," "The Darkest Light," Franco Zeffirelli's "Hamlet" and the title role in Jonathan Demme's "The Truth About Charlie. "
ALLISON JANNEY (Sally) is known to audiences around the world for playing the role of White House Press Secretary C. J. Cregg in the hit television series, "The West Wing," for which she won the Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series in 2002 and for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series in 2000 and 2001. Her film credits include "Nurse Betty," "American Beauty," "Big Night," "Private Parts," "Primary Colors," "The Object of My Affection," "Six Days, Seven Nights," "The Ice Storm," "Celebrity," "10 Things I Hate About You" and "Drop Dead Gorgeous. "
In 1997, Janney appeared on Broadway opposite Frank Langella in Noel Coward's "Present Laughter. " The following year, she was nominated for a Tony Award and won the Outer Critics Circle award and the Drama Desk Award for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in a revival of Arthur Miller's "A View From The Bridge" on Broadway. Summer of 1999 found her starring in the New York Public Theater production of "The Taming of the Shrew" with the New York Shakespeare Festival in Central Park.
Janney graduated from Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio, and went on to study at New York's Neighborhood Playhouse and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in London.
JOHN C. REILLY (Dan Brown) was most recently seen in "The Perfect Storm," "The Anniversary Party" and "The Good Girl. " This fall, in addition to "The Hours," he will be onscreen in Martin Scorsese's long-awaited "The Gangs of New York. " In addition, he plays the role of Amos Hart in the upcoming film version of the hit Kander and Ebb musical "Chicago. "
Reilly charmed audiences in Paul Thomas Anderson's Oscar®-nominated "Boogie Nights," having previously worked with Anderson on his acclaimed debut "Hard Eight" opposite Gwyneth Paltrow. Among Reilly's other feature film credits are Anderson's "Magnolia," "For Love of the Game," "The Thin Red Line," "Never Been Kissed," "Georgia," "What's Eating Gilbert Grape?," "Dolores Claiborne," "The River Wild," "We're No Angels," "State of Grace," "Hoffa" and "Casualties of War. "
Reilly is also known for his extensive stage work. On Broadway, he appeared in Steppenwolf's "The Grapes of Wrath. " He also starred as Mitch in Steppenwolf's "A Streetcar Named Desire" in Chicago and produced and played the title role in Ionesco's "Exit the King" at the Actors Gang Theater in Los Angeles. In 2000, he co-starred with Philip Seymour Hoffman, alternating roles in the critically-acclaimed Broadway production of Sam Shepard's "True West," for which he won the Outer Critics' Circle Special Achievement Award and received a Tony Award nomination for Best Performance by a Leading Actor.
Born and raised in Chicago, Reilly is a graduate of DePaul University's Goodman School of Drama. He is married to actress Alison Dickey.
MIRANDA RICHARDSON (Vanessa Bell) began her career in English regional theater and television before making a stunning film debut in Mike Newell's "Dance With a Stranger. " Richardson's performance caught the eye of director Steven Spielberg who cast her in "Empire of the Sun. "
The British-born actress proved her versatility with impressive back-to-back performances in Mike Newell's "Enchanted April," Neil Jordan's "The Crying Game," which earned her a Golden Globe Award, and Louis Malle's "Damage," for which she received an Oscar® nomination.
In "Tom and Viv," Richardson portrayed the gifted but troubled Vivienne Haigh-Wood, the first wife of poet T. S. Eliot. For her performance, she received a Golden Globe nomination and her second Academy Awardâ nomination, as well as the National Board of Review Best Actress Award. Richardson's other film credits include "The Apostle," "Evening Star," "Kansas City," "Century," "The Innocent," "The Mad Monkey," "The Bachelor," "Sleepy Hollow," "Get Carter" and "The Designated Mourner. " Richardson will next be seen in David Cronenberg's "Spider" and Conor McPherson's "The Actors. "
On television, Richardson starred in the HBO film "Fatherland," for which she won a Golden Globe Award. Her extensive work for the BBC includes the series "Blackadder" and the political thriller "Die Kinder. " Richardson also starred in the BBC productions of "Christopher Columbus," "Redemption," "Old Times," "Secret Friends" and "Sweet As You Are. " She co-starred in Hallmark Hall of Fame's "Merlin," for which she received a Golden Globe nomination, and "Alice," the Hallmark Hall of Fame version of Alice in Wonderland. Other credits include "Snow White," Showtime's "The Big Brass Ring" and the BBC's "A Dance to the Music of Time. "
Among Richardson's stage credits are Wallace Shawn's "The Designated Mourner" at the Royal National Theatre, Harold Pinter's "Mountain Language," Sam Shepard's "A Lie of the Mind," David Mamet's "Edmond" and "The Changeling," Edward Albee's "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf," Terry Johnson's "Insignificance," and "Orlando," a one-woman piece working with Robert Wilson.
EILEEN ATKINS (Barbara) was born in London and attended the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Her initial London stage appearance was in Robert Atkins' staging of "Love's Labour's Lost" at the Open Air Theatre in Regents Park. Seasons in repertory followed, including two years with the Royal Shakespeare Company at Stratford-upon-Avon. She went on to star at the Old Vic in many Shakespearean roles, among them Miranda and Viola.
Venturing into contemporary plays, Atkins starred opposite Laurence Olivier and Alec Guinness, among others. She won the 1965 London Evening Standard award for Best Actress for her performance as Childie in "The Killing of Sister George," and then made her New York stage debut in the play. Her wealth of U. K. stage credits also includes the title roles of "Saint Joan" and "Medea. " She played in T. S. Eliot's "The Cocktail Party" with Alec Guinness for which she won the London Critics Award. She won a Variety Club Award for her role as Elizabeth in Robert Bolt's "Vivat! Vivat! Regina!,"and won the London Critics Circle Award and received an Olivier Award for her performance in Peter Hall's staging of "A Winter's Tale. "
In 1989, Atkins garnered unanimous acclaim for her one-woman show "A Room of One's Own," in which she portrayed Virginia Woolf. The off-Broadway production brought her a Drama Desk award for Best Solo Performance and a special citation from the New York Drama Critics Circle. She then toured the United States in the show, later taping the project for U. K. television on location at Girton College, Cambridge (the venue of Ms. Woolf's original lecture, which inspired the play). She would return to the role in 1992 with "Vita & Virginia," which she wrote and starred in (opposite Penelope Wilton as Vita Sackville-West) for the United Kingdom stage as well as in the United States (opposite Vanessa Redgrave). The latter production earned her the New York Critics Circle Award and the Drama Desk Award.
Among her recent stage credits are, in the United Kingdom, Anthony Page's staging of Edward Albee's "A Delicate Balance" (which brought her another Evening Standard award) and, also in New York, Matthew Warchus' staging of Yasmina Reza's "The Unexpected Man. " Her performance earned her an Olivier Award for Best Actress.
Atkins' many television appearances include Simon Langton's miniseries "Smiley's People" with Alec Guinness, Norman Stone's telefilm "The Vision" with Dirk Bogarde and Lee Remick and Nigel Finch's telefilm "The Lost Language of Cranes. " Recently, she played opposite Emma Thompson in Mike Nichols' HBO telefilm "Wit. "
In addition, Atkins co-created, with Jean Marsh, the classic television series, "Upstairs Downstairs. " For her screenplay adaptation of Virginia Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway, starring Vanessa Redgrave and directed by Marleen Gorris, she won the Evening Standard award for Best Screenplay.
Atkins' other film appearances include Sidney Lumet's "Equus," Peter Yates' "The Dresser," Peter Medak's "Let Him Have It," Mike Nichols' "Wolf" and Robert Altman's "Gosford Park. " She has just completed filming on "Cold Mountain" for Anthony Minghella.
LINDA BASSETT (Nelly) starred in Damien O'Donnell's "East is East," for which she was nominated for Best Actress by BAFTA and the London Evening Standard British Film Awards and won Best Actress at the Valladolid Film Festival in Spain.
Bassett's other film credits include "Oscar and Lucinda," "Beautiful People," "Leave to Remain," "Let Him Have It" and "Mary Reilly. " Her extensive television appearances include "Spoonface Steinberg," "Our Mutual Friend," "Far From the Madding Crowd," "Luvved Up" and "No Bananas. " She has appeared on stage for the Royal Shakespeare Company in "Henry IV" and "Artists and Admirers," and for the National Theatre in "Juno and the Paycock," "A Place With the Pigs" and "Schism in England. " At the Royal Court, she appeared in "Far Away" under Stephen Daldry's direction.
JACK ROVELLO (Richie Brown) was born in New York in 1994, and already the eight-year-old, blond-haired, blue-eyed actor is developing quite an impressive list of credits. While "The Hours" is his first major motion picture, Rovello did appear as Andrew in "The Placenta," directed by NYU student director Sean Skinner. On television, he appeared as Hank in the HBO series, "Sex & The City. " On stage, he portrayed the Cowardly Lion in New York's Alcott School's production of "The Wizard of Oz" and played Snake in New York's Dows Lane School's production of "The Kapok Tree. "