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Context Creator / ImeldaStaunton

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1[[quoteright:350:]] ²->''"You could say I'm a character actress. Or maybe a character actress who does peculiar, interesting lead roles."''²²Imelda Mary Philomena Bernadette Staunton, CBE, (born 9 January 1956 in London, England) is a British actor of stage and screen, a eleven-time Laurence Olivier Award nominee.²²Born to Irish immigrants in North London, Staunton studied Drama at her school and, at the encouragement of her drama teacher, auditioned and enrolled in the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts at 18. Upon graduating in 1976, Staunton spent several years in repertory theatre, earning many awards and nominations, including an Olivier Award win for playing the original [[Theatre/IntoTheWoods Bakers Wife]].²²Staunton is perhaps best known to international audiences for her performance as Dolores Jane Umbridge in the ''Film/HarryPotter'' film series, who many (including Creator/StephenKing) consider one of the best (and most universally despised) fictional villains of all time. ²²Her husband, Jim Carter, is an actor in his own right, best known for playing Carson on '' Series/DowntonAbbey''.²----²!Selected Roles²!!Film & Television²* ''Film/PetersFriends'' (1992) as Mary²* ''Film/{{Much Ado About Nothing|1993}}'' (1993) as Margaret²* ''Film/DeadlyAdvice'' (1994) as Beth Greenwood²* ''Film/SenseAndSensibility'' (1995) as Charlotte Jennings Palmer²* ''Theatre/TwelfthNight'' (1996) as Maria²* ''Film/ShakespeareInLove'' (1998) as Nurse²* ''WesternAnimation/ChickenRun'' (2000) as Bunty²* ''Film/VeraDrake'' (2004) as Vera Drake (UsefulNotes/AcademyAward nomination for Best Actress)²* ''Film/NannyMcPhee'' (2005) as Mrs. Blatherwick.²* ''[[Series/ShakespeareReTold Shakespeare Re-Told: A Midsummer Night's Dream]]'' (2005) as Polly²* ''Film/MyFamilyAndOtherAnimals'' (2005) as Louisa Durrell²* ''Series/{{Cranford}}'' as Octavia Pole (2007)²** ''Return to Cranford'' (2009)²* ''Franchise/HarryPotter'' as Dolores Jane Umbridge²** ''Film/HarryPotterAndTheOrderOfThePhoenix'' (2007)²** ''Film/HarryPotterAndTheDeathlyHallowsPart1'' (2010)²* ''Film/AliceInWonderland2010'' as the Tall Flowers²* ''WesternAnimation/ArthurChristmas'' (2011) as Margaret Clause²* ''WesternAnimation/ThePiratesBandOfMisfits'' (2012) as Queen Victoria²* ''Film/{{Paddington}}'' (2014) as Aunt Lucy²* ''Film/{{Maleficent}}'' (2014) as Knotgrass²** ''Film/MaleficentMistressOfEvil'' (2019)²* ''Film/DowntonAbbey'' (2019) as Lady Maud ²* ''Series/{{The Crown|2016}}'' (Season 5 & 6) as [[UsefulNotes/HMTheQueen Queen Elizabeth II]] (upcoming)²²!!Musicals²* ''{{Theatre/Gypsy}}'' as Rose²* ''Theatre/IntoTheWoods'' (London, 1990-1991) as the Baker's Wife ²* ''Theatre/SweeneyToddTheDemonBarberOfFleetStreet'' (London, 2012-2013) as Mrs. Lovett ²²!!Tropes associated with her work:²²* AbilityOverAppearance:[[invoked]] She's noted to be far more attractive than how Umbridge is described in the books - like resembling a toad - but few will dispute that she absolutely nails the character. In fact, her being more attractive makes Umbridge seem even more evil - creating a contrast between her horrible deeds and her sweet, grandmotherly appearance.²* CastingGag:[[invoked]]²** In ''Film/ShakespeareInLove'' her husband plays the actor who is going to be the Nurse in ''Theatre/RomeoAndJuliet'', while she plays the actual nurse.²** In ''Film/DowntonAbbey'' TheMovie, she and Maggie Smith are once again at odds as they were in ''Film/HarryPotterAndTheOrderOfThePhoenix''. However this time Imelda's character is the sympathetic one.²** She and Creator/BillNighy were government officials in ''Film/HarryPotter''. In the film ''Pride'', they play characters on the outside.²* CreatorBacklash: A mild example, but she apparently found the character Dolores Umbridge so horrible she felt queasy at times when saying her lines.²* EnforcedMethodActing:[[invoked]] To get her and the other actors playing fairies in ''{{Film/Maleficent}}'' used to the feeling of being featherweight and agile - they were guided in motion capture by artists from the Creator/CirqueDuSoleil.²* FakeAmerican:[[invoked]] In ''Film/FreedomWriters.'' Played straight in ''{{Theatre/Gypsy}}.''²* IAmNotSpock:[[invoked]] Despite her impressive stage resume, she is best known among a lot of people as Umbridge in the ''Film/HarryPotter'' films - though this might change thanks to prominent roles as Aunt Lucy in ''{{Film/Paddington}}'' and Knotgrass in ''{{Film/Maleficent}}''.²* {{Improvisation}}: In rehearsals for ''Film/VeraDrake'', this is how the characters were created. There was no screenplay.²* PlayingAgainstType:[[invoked]]²** Umbridge is actually this. She rarely played villains or sadists before.²** In ''{{Film/Maleficent}}'' she plays a bumbling, incompetent fairy who's solely there as comic relief. The fairy's counterpart in the original ''WesternAnimation/SleepingBeauty'' was closer to her usual type.²* RealLifeRelative:[[invoked]] She and Jim Carter have starred together in ''Film/ShakespeareInLove'' and ''Film/DowntonAbbey''.²* StarMakingRole:[[invoked]] Her Oscar nominated performance in ''Film/VeraDrake'' did it for film, and helped launch her into the ''Film/HarryPotter'' franchise.²* TypeCasting:[[invoked]] Her role in ''Film/FreedomWriters'' - an obstructive teacher - is basically Umbridge in a non-fantasy setting.²----


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