Chabua, Assam, India
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Darling and Doctor Zhivago.
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Julie Frances Christie (born 14 April 1940) is a British actress. A pop icon of the "swinging London" era of the 1960s, she has won the Academy, Golden Globe, BAFTA, and Screen Actors Guild Awards.
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Julie Frances Christie (born 14 April 1941) is a British actress. She was a pop icon of the "swinging London" era of the 1960s, and has won the Academy Award, Golden Globe, BAFTA, and Screen Actors Guild Awards.
Christie was born in Chabua, Assam, India, then part of the British Empire, the first of two children of Rosemary (née Ramsden) and Frank St. John Christie. Christie`s mother was a Welsh-born painter and childhood friend of actor Richard Burton, while Christie`s father ran the tea plantation around which Christie grew up.She had a brother and a half-sibling from her father`s affair with an Indian mistress.
Christie`s parents separated during her childhood. She was baptized in the Anglican church, and studied as a boarder at the independent Convent of Our Lady School in St. Leonards-on-Sea, East Sussex, (from which she was later expelled), and then at the independent Wycombe Court School in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, also living with a foster mother from the age of six. After her parents` divorce, Christie spent time with her mother in rural Wales. As a teenager at Wycombe Court School, she played the role of the Dauphin in a school production of George Bernard Shaw`s Saint Joan. She later studied at the Central School of Speech and Drama before getting her big break in 1961 in a science fiction series on BBC television, A for Andromeda.
Christie`s first major film role was in The Fast Lady, a 1962 romantic comedy. She first gained notice as Liz, the friend and would-be lover of the eponymous Billy Liar (1963) played by Tom Courtenay. The director, John Schlesinger, cast Christie only after another actress dropped out of the film.
It was 1965 when Christie became known internationally. Schlesinger, directed her in her breakthrough role, as the amoral model Diana Scott in Darling, a role which the producers originally offered to Shirley MacLaine. More significantly though, Christie appeared as Lara Antipova in David Lean`s adaptation of Boris Pasternak`s novel Doctor Zhivago (1965), one of the all-time box office hits, and as Daisy Battles in Young Cassidy, a biopic of Irish playwright Seán O`Casey, co-directed by Jack Cardiff and (uncredited) John Ford. In 1966, the 25-year-old Christie was nominated for a BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role when she played a double role in François Truffaut`s Fahrenheit 451 and won the Academy Award for Best Actress and BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role for Darling. Later, she played Thomas Hardy`s heroine Bathsheba Everdene in Schlesinger`s Far from the Madding Crowd (1967) and the lead character, Petulia Danner, (opposite George C. Scott) in Richard Lester`s Petulia (1968).
In the 1970s, Christie starred in such films as Robert Altman`s McCabe & Mrs. Miller (1971), with Warren Beatty, where her role as a brothel `madam` gained her a second Best Actress Oscar nomination, The Go-Between (again co-starring Alan Bates, 1971), Don`t Look Now (1973), Shampoo (1975), Altman`s classic Nashville (also 1975, in an amusing cameo as herself opposite Karen Black and Henry Gibson), Demon Seed (1977), and Heaven Can Wait (1978), again with Beatty. She moved to Hollywood during the decade, where she had a high-profile (1967-1974), but intermittent relationship with Warren Beatty who described her as "the most beautiful and at the same time the most nervous person I had ever known."
Following the end of the relationship with Beatty, she returned to the United Kingdom, where she lived on a farm in Wales. Never a prolific actress, even at the height of her fame and bankability in the 1960s, Christie made fewer and fewer films in the 1980s. She had a major supporting role in Sidney Lumet`s Power (1986), but other than that, she avoided appearances in large budget films and appeared in non-mainstream films. She narrated the 1981 documentary The Animals Film (directed by Myriam Alaux and Victor Schonfeld), which argues against vivisection.
Christie has turned down many leading roles in films such as They Shoot Horses, Don`t They?, Anne of the Thousand Days and The Greek Tycoon. Christie also signed on to play the female lead in American Gigolo opposite Richard Gere, however when Gere dropped out and John Travolta was cast in the role, Christie too dropped out from the project. Gere changed his mind and took back the role, however it was too late for Christie as her part was already taken by Lauren Hutton. Julie Christie also had to drop out of the leading role in Agatha due to breaking her wrist whilst roller-skating; the part was filled by Vanessa Redgrave.
Christie appeared as Gertrude in Kenneth Branagh`s Hamlet (1996). Despite her classical training as an actor, it was her first-ever venture into Shakespeare. Her next critically acclaimed role was the unhappy wife in Alan Rudolph`s domestic comedy-drama Afterglow (1997), and she was rewarded with a third Oscar nomination.
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Convent of Our Lady School in St. Leonards-on-Sea, East Sussex, Wycombe Court School in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire
BA Art, Brighton Polytechnic College
Full Name at Birth
Julie Frances Christie
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