On This Day … 06 January [2023]


People (Births)

  • 1954 – Anthony Minghella, English director and screenwriter (d. 2008).
  • 1955 – Rowan Atkinson, English actor, producer, and screenwriter.

Anthony Minghella

Anthony Minghella, CBE (06 January 1954 to 18 March 2008) was a British film director, playwright and screenwriter. He was chairman of the board of Governors at the British Film Institute between 2003 and 2007.

He won the Academy Award for Best Director for The English Patient (1996). In addition, he received three more Academy Award nominations; he was nominated for Best Adapted Screenplay for both The English Patient and The Talented Mr. Ripley (1999), and was posthumously nominated for Best Picture for The Reader (2008), as a producer.

He made an appearance in the 2007 film Atonement as a television host interviewing the novelist central to the story.

Rowan Atkinson

Rowan Sebastian Atkinson CBE (born 06 January 1955) is an English actor, comedian and writer. He played the title roles on the sitcoms Blackadder (1983-1989) and Mr. Bean (1990-1995), and the film series Johnny English (2003-2018). Atkinson first came to prominence in the BBC sketch comedy show Not the Nine O’Clock News (1979-1982), receiving the 1981 British Academy Television Award for Best Entertainment Performance, and The Secret Policeman’s Ball (1979) where he performed a skit. Subsequent skits on stage have featured solo performances as well as collaborations.

His other film work includes the James Bond film Never Say Never Again (1983), playing a bumbling vicar in Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994), voicing the red-billed hornbill Zazu in The Lion King (1994), and playing jewellery salesman Rufus in Love Actually (2003). He portrayed Mr. Bean in the film adaptations Bean (1997) and Mr. Bean’s Holiday (2007). Atkinson also featured in the BBC sitcom The Thin Blue Line (1995-1996), and he played the titular character in ITV’s Maigret (2016-2017). His work in theatre includes the role of Fagin in the 2009 West End revival of the musical Oliver!.

Atkinson was listed in The Observer as one of the 50 funniest actors in British comedy in 2003, and among the top 50 comedians ever, in a 2005 poll of fellow comedians. Throughout his career, he has collaborated with screenwriter Richard Curtis and composer Howard Goodall, both of whom he met at the Oxford University Dramatic Society during the 1970s. In addition to his 1981 BAFTA, Atkinson received an Olivier Award for his 1981 West End theatre performance in Rowan Atkinson in Revue. Atkinson was appointed a CBE in the 2013 Birthday Honours for services to drama and charity.

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