Maggie Smith

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Dame Margaret Natalie Smith Cross, DBE (born 28 December 1934), better known as Maggie Smith, is an English film, stage, and television actress who made her stage debut in 1952 and is still performing after 58 years. She has won numerous awards for acting, including five BAFTA Awards, two Academy Awards, two Golden Globes, two Emmy Awards and a Tony Award. Her critically-acclaimed films include Othello (1965), The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie (1967), California Suite (1978), A Room with a View (1985), and Gosford Park (2001). She has also appeared in a number of widely-popular films, including Sister Act (1992) and as Professor Minerva McGonagall in the Harry Potter series.


Early life

Margaret Natalie Smith Cross was born in Ilford, then Essex, now London, the daughter of Margaret Smith (née Hutton), a Glasgow-born secretary, and Nathaniel Smith, a Newcastle upon Tyne-born public health pathologist who worked at Oxford University.[1][2][3][4][5] She has older twin brothers, Alistair and Ian. Smith studied at Oxford High School.


Smith has had an extensive career both on screen and in live theatre, and is known as one of Britain's pre-eminent actresses. She began her career at the Oxford Playhouse with Frank Shelley and made her first film in 1956. She became a fixture at the Royal National Theatre in the 1960s, most notably for playing Desdemona in Othello opposite Laurence Olivier and winning her first Oscar nomination for her performance in the 1965 film version.

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