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About William Nighy
William Francis "Bill" Nighy
(pronounced NYE pron.: /ˈnaɪ/; born 12 December 1949) Bill Nighy is an English actor and comedian. He worked in theatre and television before his first cinema role in 1981, and made his name in television with The Men's Room in 1991, in which he played the womaniser Prof. Mark Carleton, whose extra-marital affairs kept him "vital".
He became known around the world in 2003 for his critically acclaimed performance in Love Actually. Other notable roles in cinema include his portrayal of Davy Jones in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest and Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, as well as Viktor in the Underworld film series.
He is also known for his roles in the films Lawless Heart, I Capture the Castle, Shaun of the Dead, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Hot Fuzz, Valkyrie, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1, Rango and The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. His performances were also acclaimed in the State of Play series and in the TV films The Girl in the Café, Gideon's Daughter and Page Eight, for which he earned Golden Globe nominations, winning one for Gideon's Daughter.
'''Early life and education'''
Nighy was born in Caterham, Surrey. His mother, Catherine Josephine Nighy (née Whittaker), was a psychiatric nurse who was born in Glasgow, and his father, Alfred Martin Nighy, managed a car garage after working in the family chimney sweeping business. Of part Irish descent, Nighy was brought up as a Roman Catholic, serving as an altar boy. He has two elder siblings, Martin and Anna. Nighy attended the John Fisher School, a Roman Catholic grammar school in Purley, where he was a member of the school theatre group. He left the school with two O-levels and then took a job with the Croydon Advertiser as a messenger boy. He went on to train at the Guildford School of Dance and Drama.
After two seasons at the Everyman Theatre, Liverpool, Nighy made his London stage debut at the National Theatre in an epic staging of Ken Campbell and Chris Langham's Illuminatus!, which opened the new Cottesloe Theatre on 4 March 1977, and went on to appear in two David Hare premieres, also at the National. During the 1980s, he appeared in several television productions, among them Hitler's SS: Portrait in Evil, alongside John Shea and Tony Randall.
He has starred in many radio and television dramas, notably the BBC serial The Men's Room (1991). He claimed that the serial, an Ann Oakley novel adapted by Laura Lamson, was the job which launched his career. More recently he has featured in the thriller State of Play (2003) and costume drama He Knew He Was Right (2004). He played Samwise Gamgee in the 1981 BBC Radio dramatisation of The Lord of the Rings (where he was credited as William Nighy), and appeared in the 1980s BBC Radio versions of Yes Minister episodes. He starred alongside Stephen Moore and Lesley Sharp in the acclaimed short radio drama Kerton's Story first aired in 1996. He had a starring role in the 2002 return of Auf Wiedersehen, Pet, portraying crooked politician Jeffrey Grainger. He has also made a guest appearance in the BBC Radio 4 series Baldi.
Two of Nighy's most acclaimed stage performances were in National Theatre productions. Taking the role of Bernard Nightingale, an unscrupulous university don, in Tom Stoppard's Arcadia (1993), he engaged in witty exchanges with Felicity Kendal, playing the role of Hannah Jarvis, an author; and he played a consultant psychiatrist in Joe Penhall's Blue/Orange (2000), for which he won an Olivier Award nomination for Best Actor, and which transferred to the West End at the Duchess Theatre the following year.
Nighy received some recognition by American audiences for his acclaimed portrayal of overaged rock star Ray Simms in the 1998 film Still Crazy. In 1999 he gained further prominence in the UK with the starring role in "The Photographer", an episode of the award-winning BBC-TV mockumentary comedy series People Like Us, playing Will Rushmore, a middle aged man who has abandoned his career and family in the deluded belief that he can achieve success as a commercial photographer.
In 2003, Nighy played the role of the Vampire Elder Viktor in the American production Underworld and returned in the same role for the sequel Underworld: Evolution in 2006 and again in the prequel Underworld: Rise of the Lycans in 2009. In February 2004, he was awarded the BAFTA Film Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role as shameless, washed-up rocker Billy Mack in Love Actually (a role foreshadowed by his Still Crazy character) and followed this up at the BAFTA Television Awards in April with the Best Actor award for State of Play. He also appeared in the comedy Shaun of the Dead.
In early 2004, The Sunday Times reported that Nighy was on the shortlist for role of the Ninth Doctor in the 2005 revival of the BBC television series Doctor Who. Christopher Eccleston ultimately filled the role.
In 2005, he appeared as Slartibartfast in the film adaptation of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. He also appeared in the one-off BBC One comedy-drama The Girl in the Café. In February 2006, he appeared in scriptwriter Stephen Poliakoff's one-off drama, Gideon's Daughter. Nighy played the lead character, Gideon, a successful events organiser who begins to lose touch with the world around him. This performance won him a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor in a Mini-series or TV Film in January 2007. Also in 2006, Nighy made his Broadway debut at the Music Box Theatre alongside Julianne Moore in The Vertical Hour, directed by Sam Mendes.
In 2006, Nighy featured in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, where he played the principal villain, Davy Jones, although his face was entirely obscured by computer-generated makeup and he voiced the character with a Scots accent. He reprised the role in the 2007 sequel, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, in which his real face was briefly revealed in one scene. He also provided the narration for the Animal Planet series Meerkat Manor. In 2006 he played the role of Richard Hart in Notes on a Scandal, for which he was nominated for a London Film Critics Circle award. Nighy also appeared as General Friedrich Olbricht, one of the principal conspirators, in the 2008 film Valkyrie. He had played an SS officer in the 1985 Hitler's SS: Portrait in Evil. Nighy has starred in the film Wild Target.
In July 2009, he announced that he would play Rufus Scrimgeour in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1. Nighy had already worked with director David Yates twice, and with the majority of the Harry Potter cast in previous films. He has said of his role as Rufus Scrimgeour that it meant he was no longer the only English actor not to be in Harry Potter.
Nighy voiced Grandsanta in the 2011 CGI animated film Arthur Christmas. In 2012, he starred in The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Wrath of the Titans, and the remake of Total Recall,
Nighy had a 27-year-relationship with English actress Diana Quick, with whom he has a daughter, actress Mary Nighy. The couple "amicably separated" in 2008.
He is a supporter of Crystal Palace and is the Patron of the CPFRIS (Crystal Palace F.C. Fast Results & Information Service) Disabled Children's Club, and of the Ann Craft Trust. He is also one of the Honorary Patrons of the London children's charity Scene & Heard. He suffers from Dupuytren's contracture, a condition which causes the ring and little finger of each hand to be permanently bent inwards towards the palm.
Nighy is also a patron for the Milton Rooms, a new arts centre in Malton, North Yorkshire, along with Imelda Staunton, Jools Holland and Kathy Burke.
Year Film Role Notes 1981 Eye of the Needle Squadron Leader Blenkinsop 1983 Curse of the Pink Panther ENT Doctor 1984 The Little Drummer Girl Al 1985 Hitler's SS: Portrait in Evil Helmut Hoffmann Thirteen at Dinner Ronald Marsh 1989 The Phantom of the Opera: The Motion Picture Martin Barton 1994 Being Human Julian 1997 FairyTale: A True Story Edward Gardner 1998 Still Crazy Ray Simms First lead role Peter Sellers Award for Comedy Nominated—Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture – Comedy or Musical 1999 Guest House Paradiso Mr. Johnson 2001 Blow Dry Raymond "Ray" Robertson Lawless Heart Dan LAFCA Award for Best Supporting Actor Nominated—BIFA Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a British Independent Film Lucky Break Roger "Rog" Chamberlain 2002 AKA Uncle Louis Gryffoyn LAFCA Award for Best Supporting Actor 2003 Ready When You Are, Mr McGill Phil Parish Love Actually Billy Mack ALFS Award for Best Supporting Actor BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role LAFCA Award for Best Supporting Actor Peter Sellers Award for Comedy Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association Award for Best Ensemble Nominated—Phoenix Film Critics Society Award for Best Cast Nominated—Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture – Comedy or Musical I Capture the Castle James Mortmain LAFCA Award for Best Supporting Actor Underworld Viktor 2004 Shaun of the Dead Phillip Enduring Love Robin 2005 The Magic Roundabout Dylan Voice only (United Kingdom version) The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy Slartibartfast The Constant Gardener Sir Bernard Pellegrin Nominated—BIFA Award for Best Supporting Actor/Actress 2006 Underworld: Evolution Viktor Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest Davy Jones Teen Choice Award – Choice Sleazebag Nominated—MTV Movie Award for Best Villain Nominated—Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor Stormbreaker Alan Blunt Flushed Away Whitey Notes on a Scandal Richard Hart Nominated—ALFS Award for Best Supporting Actor 2007 Hot Fuzz Ch. Insp. Kenneth Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End Davy Jones Teen Choice Award for Best Villain 2008 Valkyrie Friedrich Olbricht Nominated—Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor 2009 Underworld: Rise of the Lycans Viktor The Boat That Rocked Quentin G-Force Leonard Saber Astro Boy Professor Simon Elefun/Robotsky Voice only Statuesque Mr. Jellaby Short film Glorious 39 Sir Alexander 2010 Wild Target Victor Maynard Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1 Rufus Scrimgeour 2011 Rango Rattlesnake Jake Voice only Chalet Girl Richard Arthur Christmas Grandsanta Voice only Annie Award for Voice Acting in a Feature Production The Man With The Stolen Heart Narrator Voice only 2012 The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel Douglas Wrath of the Titans Hephaestus Total Recall Matthias Lair 2013 Jack the Giant Slayer Fallon (Big Head) post-production
Year Title Role Notes 1981 Agony Vincent Flash Season 2 1982 Minder "Looking for Micky" Oates 1985 The Last Place on Earth Cecil Meares 1991 Bergerac "All for Love" 1994 Wycliffe "The Four Jacks" David Cleeve 1995 Llety Piod 1998 Kiss Me Kate Cameron 2000 Longitude Lord Sandwich 2002 Auf Wiedersehen, Pet Jeffrey Grainger Season 3 The Inspector Lynley Mysteries "Well Schooled in Murder" 2003 State of Play Cameron Foster British Academy Television Award for Best Actor Broadcasting Press Guild Award for Best Actor Nominated—RTS Television Award for Best Actor – Male The Lost Prince Arthur Bigge, 1st Baron Stamfordham Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor – Series, Miniseries or Television Film 2004 He Knew He Was Right Colonel Osborne 2005 The Girl in the Café Lawrence Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Mini-Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television Gideon's Daughter Gideon Warner Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Mini-Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television Satellite Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film 2010 Doctor Who Dr. Black Uncredited episode "Vincent and the Doctor" 2011 Page Eight Johnny Worricker Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film Nominated—Satellite Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film
Year Serie Role 2009 G-Force Leonard Saber
Theatre The Milk Train Doesn't Stop Here Anymore by Tennessee Williams – Watermill Theatre, Newbury Landscape and Silence, by Harold Pinter – Gateway Theatre, Chester Entertaining Mr Sloane by Joe Orton – Gateway Theatre, Chester Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead, by Tom Stoppard – Arts Theatre, Cambridge The Immoralist, from the novel by André Gide – Hampstead Theatre Speak Now, by Olwen Wymark – Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh (1971) Freedom of the City, by Brian Friel – Everyman Theatre, Liverpool Under New Management, by Chris Bond – Everyman Theatre, Liverpool Occupy! – Liverpool Everyman Theatre (1976) Illuminatus!, Ken Campbell/Chris Langham – NT Cottesloe (The theatre's first production, 1977) Comings and Goings, by Mike Stott – Hampstead Theatre Club (1978) The Warp, by Neil Oram/ Ken Campbell – ICA (1979) Illuminations, by Arthur Rimbaud – Lyric Hammersmith (1980) A Map of the World, by David Hare – NT Lyttelton (1983) Pravda, by David Hare/ Howard Brenton – NT Olivier (1985) King Lear, by William Shakespeare – NT Olivier (1986) Mean Tears, by Peter Gill – NT Cottesloe (1987) Betrayal, by Harold Pinter – Almeida Theatre, London (1991) Arcadia, by Tom Stoppard – NT Lyttelton (1993) The Seagull, by Anton Chekhov/ad. Pam Gems – NT Olivier (1994) Skylight, by David Hare – NT production at Vaudeville Theatre, London (1995)/ UK tour (1997) A Kind of Alaska, by Harold Pinter – Donmar Warehouse (1998) Blue/Orange, by Joe Penhall – NT Cottesloe (2000), Duchess Theatre (2001) The Vertical Hour, by David Hare, Broadway production at the Music Box Theater, NY (2006) Valkyrie, by Christopher McQuarrie (2008)  RadioDate Title Role Author Director Station 01981-03-088 March 1981 – 01981-08-3030 August 1981 The Lord of the Rings Sam Gamgee J.R.R. Tolkien dramatised by Brian Sibley and Michael Bakewell Jane Morgan and Penny Leicester BBC Radio 4 01983-10-1818 October 1983 – 01983-11-1515 November 1983 Yes, Minister Frank Weisel Antony Jay and Jonathan Lynn adapted for radio by Pete Atkin Pete Atkin BBC Radio 4 01994-04-3030 April 1994 Ancient Enemies Elizabeth North BBC Radio 4 01999-08-2121 August 1999 So Much Blood Charles Paris Simon Brett dramatised by Bert Coules Gaynor Macfarlane BBC Radio 4 Saturday Play 02002-01-066 January 2002 Blue/Orange Joe Penhall BBC Radio 4 02003-03-2121 March 2003 Baldi: The Book Case O'Connor Simon Brett Mark Lambert BBC Radio 4 Afternoon Play 02003-04-1919 April 2003 Turtle Diary William Russell Hoban Gaynor Macfarlane BBC Radio 4 Saturday Play 02004-09-2525 September 2004 A Series of Murders Charles Paris Simon Brett dramatised by Jeremy Front BBC Radio 4 Saturday Play 02004-12-2929 December 2004 All Fingers and Thumbs Tom Alan Stafford Dirk Maggs BBC Radio 4 Afternoon Play 02006-08-3030 August 2006 – 02006-09-2020 September 2006 A Charles Paris Mystery: Sicken and So Die Charles Paris Simon Brett dramatised by Jeremy Front Sally Avens BBC Radio 4 02007-10-1919 October 2007 – 02007-11-099 November 2007 A Charles Paris Mystery: Murder Unprompted Charles Paris Simon Brett dramatised by Jeremy Front Sally Avens BBC Radio 4 02008-07-1717 July 2008 I Wish to Apologise for My Part in the Apocalypse Keith Duncan Macmillan Sam Hoyle BBC Radio 4 Afternoon Play 02008-12-1010 December 2008 – 02008-12-3131 December 2008 A Charles Paris Mystery: Dead Side of the Mic Charles Paris Simon Brett dramatised by Jeremy Front Sally Avens BBC Radio 4 02009-12-2626 December 2009 Educating Rita Frank Willy Russell Kirsty Williams BBC Radio 4 Saturday Play 02010-01-022 January 2010 Private Lives Elyot Noël Coward Sally Avens BBC Radio 4 Saturday Play 02010-01-2929 January 2010 – 02010-02-1919 February 2010 A Charles Paris Mystery: Cast in Order of Disappearance Charles Paris Simon Brett dramatised by Jeremy Front Sally Avens BBC Radio 4 02010-11-2222 November 2010 – 02010-12-1313 December 2010 A Charles Paris Mystery: Murder in the Title Charles Paris Simon Brett dramatised by Jeremy Front Sally Avens BBC Radio 4 02011-04-2020 April 2011 The Bat Man Christopher Amelia Bullmore Mary Peate BBC Radio 4 Afternoon Play
^ Bill Nighy – Nighy Accepts Surname Mispronunciation. contactmusic.com. 30 June 2006. Retrieved 10 February 2010. ^ The Men's Room, The Internet Movie Database, accessed 23 November 2009. ^ Shaitly, Shahesta (4 July 2010). "Bill Nighy: five things I know about style". The Observer (UK). http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2010/jul/04/shahesta-shaitly-five-things-know-style-bill-nighy. Retrieved 7 October 2010. ^ Bill Nighy: the thinking woman's bagel The Independent, 19 February 2006; Family Detective The Daily Telegraph. ^ Wills, Dominic. "Bill Nighy – Biography". TalkTalk. http://www.talktalk.co.uk/entertainment/film/biography/artist/bill-nighy/biography/169. Retrieved 7 May 2010. ^ Blackhall, Sue (1 February 2010). Bill Nighy The Unauthorised Biography. John Blake Publishing. ISBN 1-84454-867-8. ^ a b Bill Nighy, Hello magazine, undated, accessed 23 November 2009. ^ Schiff, Amanda (2 December 2008). "Laura Lamson Obituary". The Guardian. UK. Archived from the original on 5 December 2008. http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2008/dec/02/obituary-laura-lamson. Retrieved 3 December 2008. ^ BBC – Doctor Who (David Tennant and Billie Piper)- News[dead link] ^ "Bill Nighy Is A Wild Target | Empire". Empire. http://www.empireonline.com/news/story.asp?NID=23257. Retrieved 11 March 2012. ^ a b "Bill Nighy to star in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows". BBC. 6 July 2009. http://news.bbc.co.uk/cbbcnews/hi/newsid_8130000/newsid_8137100/8137104.stm. Retrieved 6 July 2009. ^ "James McAvoy, Hugh Laurie, Jim Broadbent, Bill Nighy, Imelda Staunton and Ashley Jensen join the cast of "Arthur Christmas"". http://www.cartoonbrew.com/biz/james-mcavoy-hugh-laurie-jim-broadbent-bill-nighy-imelda-staunton-and-ashley-jensen-join-the-cast-of-%E2%80%9Carthur-christmas%E2%80%9D.html. Retrieved 23 November 2011. ^ "Bill Nighy". http://www.ramascreen.com/tag/bill-nighy. ^ Roberts, Laura. It's not Love Actually after all as star Nighy splits with partner of 27 years, Daily Mail, 25 August 2008. ^ Crystal Palace F.C. Disabled Childrens Club accessed 2 Jun 2007; Ann Craft Trust homepage ^ "Scene & Heard – Who We Are". sceneandheard.org. 2010. http://sceneandheard.org/about_whoweare.html. Retrieved 19 June 2010. ^ "The Milton Rooms homepage". Themiltonrooms.com. http://www.themiltonrooms.com/. Retrieved 11 March 2012. ^ "The Annie Awards". The Annie Awards. http://annieawards.org/consideration.html. Retrieved 11 March 2012. ^ "The Man With The Stolen Heart". Charlotte Film Festival. http://www.charlottefilmfestival.org/stolen-heart. Retrieved 9 August 2012. ^ "The 69th Annual Golden Globe Award Nominations". imdb.com. 15 December 2011. http://www.imdb.com/oscars/nominations/golden-globes. Retrieved 15 December 2011. ^ National Theatre archive cast and production listing. ^ "BBC – A Charles Paris Mystery – Sicken and So Die". BBC. 3 March 2008. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0076zw4. Retrieved 11 March 2012. ^ "BBC – A Charles Paris Mystery – Murder Unprompted". BBC. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0081lqq. Retrieved 11 March 2012. ^ "BBC – Afternoon Play – I Wish to Apologise for My Part in the Apocalypse". BBC. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00cj8db. Retrieved 11 March 2012. ^ "BBC – A Charles Paris Mystery – Dead Side of the Mic". BBC. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00ft5bd. Retrieved 11 March 2012. ^ "BBC – Saturday Play – Educating Rita". BBC. 26 December 2009. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00pdkqx. Retrieved 11 March 2012. ^ "BBC – Saturday Play – Private Lives". BBC. 2 January 2010. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00phzvx. Retrieved 11 March 2012. ^ "BBC – A Charles Paris Mystery – Cast in Order of Disappearance". BBC. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00q43nx. Retrieved 11 March 2012. ^ "BBC – A Charles Paris Mystery – Murder in the Title". BBC. 22 November 2010. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00w190h. Retrieved 11 March 2012. ^ "BBC – Afternoon Play – The Bat Man". BBC. 20 April 2011. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b010dq74. Retrieved 11 March 2012.