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STAR TREK Judi Dench
Judi Dench: The Golden Eyed Dame

29th Apr 2012

1. Judith Olivia 'Judi' Dench was born in December 1934 in Heworth to Eleanora Olave and Reginald Arthur Dench. Her father was the doctor for the York Theatre and her mother was its wardrobe mistress. She attended the Central School of Speech and Drama, where she graduated with honours.

2. Dench made her professional debut in 1957 with the Old Vic Company's Hamlet. She then appeared in Royal Shakespeare Company's 1961 production of The Cherry Orchard and in Measure for Measure. Over the following years, she played several theatrical roles and though not generally known as a singer, she won praise for her role in the musical Cabaret (1968).

3. In 1964, Dench made her film debut in The Third Secret. Her next film, Four in the Morning Wife (1965) won her the BAFTA Award for Most Promising Newcomer. She then appeared in lead roles in several films, including A Study in Terror (1965), He Who Rides a Tiger (1965), Midsummer Night's Dream (1968), Luther (1973), Dead Cert (1974), Langrishe, Go Down (1978) and Henry V and Behaving Badly (1989).

4. This was followed by a slew of BAFTA Awards and nominations for On Giant's Shoulders (1979), Wetherby (1985), A Room with a View (1985, won), 84 Charing Cross Road (1987) and A Handful of Dust (1988, won). In TV, she achieved success in the series A Fine Romance (1981-84) and in 1992 appeared in As Time Goes By.

5. In 1995, Dench took over the role of M in the James Bond films, starting with Golden Eye and appeared in six other films, including Die Another Day (2002), Casino Royale (2006) and Quantum of Solace (2008). She is now filming for the next Bond film, Skyfall.

6. Dench's recent film career has garnered six Academy Award nominations in nine years for Mrs. Brown (1997), Shakespeare in Love (1998), Chocolat (2000), Iris (2001), Mrs Henderson Presents (2005) and Notes on a Scandal (2006).

7. Dench was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (1970) and Dame Commander of the order (1988).

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