Ralph Fiennes Biography
Ralph Fiennes (Ralph Nathaniel Twisleton-Wykeham-Fiennes) was born on 22nd December 1962 in Ipswich, United Kingdom to Mark Fiennes (1933–2004), a farmer and photographer, and Jennifer Lash (1938–1993), a writer. He is an English actor. He is popularly known for his character of Nazi war criminal, Amon Goeth in the movie Schindler’s List.
Fiennes was educated at St Kieran’s College for one year, followed by Newtown School, a Quaker independent school in County Waterford. They moved to Salisbury in England, where Fiennes finished his schooling at Bishop Wordsworth’s School. He went on to pursue painting at Chelsea College of Art before deciding that acting was his true passion.
Fiennes trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art between 1983 and 1985. He began his career at the Open Air Theatre, Regent’s Park and also at the National Theatre before achieving prominence at the Royal Shakespeare Company. Fiennes first worked on screen in 1990 and made his film debut in 1992 as Heathcliff in Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights opposite Juliette Binoche.
Ralph Fiennes Age
Ralph Fiennes was born on 22nd December 1962 in Ipswich, United Kingdom.
Ralph Fiennes Family
Ralph Fiennes’ parents are Mark Fiennes (1933–2004), a farmer and photographer, and Jennifer Lash (1938–1993), a writer. His grandfathers were industrialist Sir Maurice Fiennes (1907–1994) and Brigadier Henry Alleyne Lash (1901–1975). His great-great-uncle was Edward Pomeroy Colley, a civil engineer and first class passenger who died in the sinking of RMS Titanic. Fiennes is an eighth cousin of Charles, Prince of Wales, and a third cousin of adventurer Ranulph Fiennes and author William Fiennes. His nephew Hero Fiennes-Tiffin played Tom Riddle, young Lord Voldemort, in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.
Ralph Fiennes Siblings – Ralph Fiennes Brother
Ralph Fiennes is the eldest of six children. His siblings are actor Joseph Fiennes, Martha Fiennes (director), Magnus Fiennes (composer) Sophie Fiennes (a filmmaker ) and Jacob Fiennes (a conservationist). His foster brother, Michael Emery, is an archaeologist.
Ralph Fiennes Wife
Ralph Fiennes began dating English actress Alex Kingston in 1983 after they met at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art where they were students. In 1993 they got married and later divorced in 1997 following his affair with Francesca Annis.
He dated Francesca Annis from 1995 until they separated on 7th February 2006 in a parting described as “acrimonious”, following rumours that he had an affair with a Romanian singer.
Ralph Fiennes Children
Ralph Fiennes doesn’t have any children.
Ralph Fiennes Awards
- 1994: BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role, Schindler’s List.
- 1995: Tony Award for Best Lead Actor in a Play, Hamlet
- 1999: European Film Award for Best Actor, Sunshine
- 2005: British Independent Film Award for Best Actor, The Constant Gardener.
- 2011: British Independent Film Award – The Richard Harris Award.
- 2009: Gotham Independent Film Award for Best Ensemble Performance, The Hurt Locker
- 1994: National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Supporting Actor, Schindler’s List.
- 2009: Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association Award for Best Ensemble, The Hurt Locker
- 1995: Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Actor in a Play, Hamlet
- 2015: Empire Legend Award
- 2012: Teen Choice Award for Choice Movie: Rumble, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2
Ralph Fiennes Movies List
- 1993: Schindler’s List
- 1996: The English Patient
- 2014: The Grand Budapest Hotel
- 2012: Skyfall
- 2002: Red Dragon
- 2005: The Constant Gardener
- 2015: Spectre
- 2015: A Bigger Splash
- 2011: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2
- 2008: The Reader
- 2002: Maid in Manhattan
- 2008: In Bruges
- 2010: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1
- 2005: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
- 2013: The Invisible Woman
- 2010: Clash of the Titans
- 2011: Coriolanus
- 2016: Hail, Caesar!
- 2007: Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
- 2017: The Lego Batman Movie
- 2008: The Hurt Locker
- 1994: Quiz Show
- 1999: The End of the Affair
- 1995: Strange Days
- 2008: The Duchess
- 2012: Wrath of the Titans
- 1999: Onegin
- 1998: The Prince of Egypt
- 2016: Kubo and the Two Strings
- 2005: The White Countess
- 2005: Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit
- 2012: Great Expectations
- 2010: Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang
- 1998: The Avengers
- 1997: Oscar and Lucinda
- 1992: Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights
- 2006: Land of the Blind
- 2006: Bernard and Doris
- 1993: The Baby of Mâcon
- 2005: The Chumscrubber
- 2011: Page Eight
- 2002: The Good Thief
- 2005: Chromophobia
- 2010: Cemetery Junction
- 1999: Sunshine
- 2014: Two Women
- 2010: The Wildest Dream
- 2018: Holmes and Watson
- 1992: A Dangerous Man: Lawrence After Arabia
- 1999: The Miracle Maker
- 2014: Salting the Battlefield
Ralph Fiennes Interview
Wes Anderson is good at creating specific little worlds. When you are acting, do you feel like you’re inhabiting it?
Ralph Fiennes: You definitely are aware you’re in an unusual world when you’re on the set, just by virtue of the designs and the way the camera is framing and the shooting and everything. You definitely feel the particular vision of Wes.
Does it make your job any easier?
Ralph Fiennes: I kind of like it. It’s got a very strong identity, this world, and the way he’s choreographing scenes at a very strong take. I like that kind of clarity from a director. I find it helpful.
Did it feel like a good movie? Can you even tell?
Ralph Fiennes: You don’t know what movie you’re going to be in. You’re there because you believe in the director and the script, and often you’re there because there are actors you admire and want to work with. But you don’t know how it’s going to end up. I guess you’re there because you’ve read it, you’ve made a choice, you think it’s got some potential that people will want to see it (laughs).
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We’re used to seeing you in serious movies. It’s nice to see you mix it up.
Ralph Fiennes: What Wes has written is a great comic role. It’s on the page. I mean, I just was thrilled beyond words that he was considering me for this role. I’ve never thought I’m the kind of actor where someone says, “Be funny.” I’ll never be funny. But if someone could give me a role in the context in which the comedic world is already thought out and considered, I could take a shot at it. That seemed to be the case with this.
Did you get a lot of direction?
Ralph Fiennes: There were different days where I remember Wes saying, “No, no, it’s funnier if you do it like this.” But at the same time, another day he might just say, “Keep it real, keep it real, simpler, simpler, simpler.” But you couldn’t not be aware that there was a sense of humor at play. I can’t explain it, but a lot of it has to do with the speed and rhythm of delivery, I suppose.
There is a kind of odd rhythm to the dialogue, an offbeat cadence.
Ralph Fiennes: It seemed to work best when it was delivered with a degree of panache and speed. Indeed, Wes was keen that we look at some 1930s movies by Ernst Lubitsch or Billy Wilder. There’s a wonderful sort of light, deft speed of delivery that you see in those movies. It felt good when we were getting close to that uncomplicated, light-on-his-feet delivery. Not everyone sort of churning around in a behaviorist mode. Clean.
So you liked working with Anderson?
Ralph Fiennes: Wes in a way is like a benign conductor. He’s very aware of the tiny, delicate shifts and rhythms and the weight of a line, if it’s too heavy or underlined, it won’t work. I think that’s why he likes to do lots of takes, because he knows he’s got enough ammunition there. … And often you’re talking about tiny little shifts of speed or delivery or hesitation. It’s very subtle. You need the director to give you the feedback.
You’ve directed. Do you now find that you direct yourself, even in other people’s movies?
Ralph Fiennes: I think a lot of actors are directing themselves. A lot of directors are shy of actors, and they just want to encourage the actor to do enough takes that they feel they’ve got it. There’s only a few directors who really have a handle on a constructive vocabulary, I think. But now that I’ve been on the other side of the camera, I like getting direction, for sure. I like someone to say, “Try it like this, try it like that.” I really thrive on having a good, creative dialogue about how one might approach something.
Ralph Fiennes: A director I really love is David Cronenberg, who directs with real economy. He’s not big on lots of discussion. He’s very quick to identify when it’s working, and it’s kind of an unspoken understanding. Then there’s working with someone like Anthony Minghella, who likes to have a very detailed discussion about the performance and where it’s going. I think as an actor you just have to be open. You agree to be there often because of the director.
Are you funnier in this because we’re used to seeing you in serious roles?
Ralph Fiennes: I have no idea (laughs). I can tell you I loved playing Gustave. It was lovely to be in this world that Wes was creating, away from the heavier stuff I’ve done. It was a delight. I wouldn’t mind being asked to have another go at doing something that is more comedic.
Do you have any favorite roles or films you’ve been in?
Ralph Fiennes: No. Funnily enough, the role I think I really broke into some different territory is this one, is Gustave. I think, thanks to Wes, it felt like I was being shown another little world to exist in. I think it’s dangerous to feel you ever nail it, because there’s so many ways a part can end up being played. I think you can identify in a role a sense of something complete about it, that it has its own coherence.
Ralph Fiennes: I think I felt something like that when I saw, I have to say, Steven Spielberg was such a great director for me on “Schindler’s List.” So many aspects of that role that people talked about or were complimentary about were all to do with him, his direction of it, and of me in it. I remember when I saw “Schindler’s List” for the first time I had a feeling of, “This has a completeness to it.”