(m. 1973;div. 2001)
Alison Steadman,(born 26 August 1946) is an English actress. She was nominated for the 1991 National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Actress for the Mike Leigh film Life Is Sweet , and the 1993 Olivier Award for Best Actress for her role as Mari in the original production of The Rise and Fall of Little Voice . In a 2007 Channel 4 poll, the "50 Greatest Actors" voted for by other actors, she was ranked No. 42.
Steadman made her professional stage debut in 1968 and went on to establish her career in Mike Leigh's 1970s TV plays Nuts in May (1976) and Abigail's Party (1977).She received BAFTA TV Award nominations for the 1986 BBC serial The Singing Detective , and in 2001 for the ITV drama series Fat Friends (2000–2005). Other television roles include Pride and Prejudice (1995), Gavin & Stacey (2007–2010, 2019) and Orphan Black (2015–2016). Her other film appearances include A Private Function (1984), Topsy-Turvy (1999), The Life and Death of Peter Sellers (2004) and Dad's Army (2016).
Steadman was born in Liverpool, the youngest of three sisters born to Marjorie (née Evans) and George Percival Steadman,who worked as a production controller for Plessey, an electronics firm.
Steadman was educated at Childwall Valley High School for Girls, a state grammar school in the Liverpool suburb of Childwall, followed by East 15 Acting School, to which she secured a place in the autumn of 1966 and where she met Mike Leigh during her second year.
Having left the East 15 Acting School in Loughton, Essex, Steadman worked in various regional repertory theatres, starting at Lincoln in 1968, where her first role was that of the seductive schoolgirl Sandy in The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie . She created the role of the monstrous Beverly in Mike Leigh's Abigail's Party , which she reprised with the original cast on television. She won an Olivier Award for The Rise and Fall of Little Voice , and also appeared in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof , Entertaining Mr Sloane , Hotel Paradiso, and others in locations as diverse as the Royal Court, the Theatre Royal, the Old Vic, the Hampstead Theatre, the Nottingham Playhouse, the Everyman Liverpool and the National Theatre. She starred as Elmire in the 1983 RSC production of Molière's Tartuffe , which was adapted for BBC television. [ citation needed ] In 2010, Steadman was cast as Madame Arcati in a revival of Noël Coward's Blithe Spirit .[ citation needed ] In 2014, Steadman appeared as Madame Raquin in Helen Edmundson's adaptation of Emile Zola's Therese Raquin .
Steadman has appeared in many films, including P'tang, Yang, Kipperbang (1982), Champions (1983), A Private Function (1984), Number One (1985), Clockwise (1986), Stormy Monday (1988), The Adventures of Baron Munchausen (1988), Shirley Valentine (1989), Wilt (1989), Life Is Sweet (1990), Blame It on the Bellboy (1992), Secrets & Lies (1996), Topsy-Turvy (1999), The Life and Death of Peter Sellers (2004), Confetti (2006) Burn Burn Burn (2015) and 23 Walks (2020).
Steadman's television work includes Fat Friends as Betty, Grumpy Old Women , Stressed Eric , Let Them Eat Cake , The Singing Detective , No Bananas , The Caucasian Chalk Circle , Adrian Mole: The Cappuccino Years as Pauline Mole, opposite James Bolam in the television film The Missing Postman , and Pride and Prejudice as Mrs. Bennet. In 1991, she also appeared as Edda Göring in Selling Hitler and as Lauren Patterson in Gone to the Dogs , which was then followed up by Gone to Seed.
Television productions directed by Leigh in which she has appeared include Nuts in May , Hard Labour and Abigail's Party . She also appeared in the BBC comedy The Worst Week of My Life . In 2007 she featured in the BBC Wales programme Coming Home about her Welsh family history, with roots in Trefarclawdd and Ruabon.
In October 2007, Steadman appeared in Fanny Hill on BBC Four.
From May 2007 to January 2010, Steadman starred in the BBC comedy Gavin & Stacey as Pam Shipman. She returned in the role in the 2019 Christmas special. She appeared in Lewis as the Reverend Martha Steadman in “Intelligent Design” in 2013.
Steadman starred with Myra Frances in Girl, a 1974 BBC play in the Second City Firsts series, performing the first lesbian kiss on British television.
In 2014 Steadman starred in the first series of the BBC comedy Boomers as Joyce. The show returned with a Christmas Special in 2015 and a second series in 2016. In 2016, she presented the three part series Little British Islands with Alison Steadman on Channel 4. The series visited Gigha, Jura, Colonsay and Oronsay in episode 1, Jersey, Alderney and Sark in episode 2, and the Isles of Scilly in episode 3. In 2016 she appeared as Abigail in Midsomer Murders “The incident at Cooper Hill”.
In 2018, Steadman made a return to BBC1 with John Cleese in Hold the Sunset. On 9 December 2018 Steadman appeared in the BBC1 Drama "Care" and played the role of Mary.
On radio, Steadman's talent for mimicry and character voices was given full rein in shows such as Week Ending , Castle's on the Air and The Worst Show on the Wireless, in both the latter of which she played the over-protective mother to Eli Woods' long-suffering Bunty/Precious. From 1982 to 1984, she joined Eli Woods and Eddie Braben ( Morecambe and Wise's scriptwriter) in the UK radio show The Show with No Name for thirteen episodes, in what can be described as an updated version of Round the Horne comedy sketch show. Later, from 2002, she starred as Mrs Naughtie in the series Hamish and Dougal . Steadman had a spell in Roy Hudd's long running comedy show The News Huddlines in the early to mid 1980s. In December 2009, she starred in the late Mike Stott's My Mad Grandad on BBC Radio 4.From 2012 she played "Ginny Fox", a parody of Virginia Woolf, in the sitcom Gloomsbury . In 2018 she made a guest appearance in Radio 4's the Archers, as a lady called Olwen, a friend of Jill Archer.
In Manchester in 1972, shooting his television film Hard Labour , director Mike Leigh drove over to Liverpool to see Ted Whitehead's play The Foursome, (Steadman was in the Liverpool Everyman cast). He asked Steadman to be in his film. "During the preparation of the film, Mike and Alison, as they both say, 'got together.'"They married in 1973 and had two sons; Toby (b. 1978) and Leo (b. 1981). The couple separated in 1995 and divorced in 2001.
Steadman's partner is actor Michael Elwyn;the couple live in Highgate, London.
She is a birdwatcher,and in November 2016 became an ambassador for London Wildlife Trust.
|1980||Moving Pictures||Mrs. Arnolfini||TV film|
|1982||P'tang, Yang, Kipperbang||Miss Land||TV film|
|1983||Tartuffe, or the Impostor||Elmire||TV film|
|A Private Function||Mrs. Allardyce|
|Number One||Doreen||TV film|
|1985||The Caucasian Chalk Circle||Kato/Natella/Aniko||TV film|
|1987||The Finding||Mum||TV film|
|1988||Coming Through||Kate||TV film|
|The Adventures of Baron Munchausen||Daisy|
|1990||Life Is Sweet||Wendy|
|1992||Blame It on the Bellboy||Rosemary Horton|
|1996||Secrets & Lies||Dog Owner|
|The Snow Queen's Revenge||Pearl||Voice role|
|1997||The Missing Postman||Christine Peacock||TV film|
|The Ugly Duckling||The Hen||Voice role|
|Happy Now?||Bronwyn Race|
|2003||Philip Larkin: Love and Death in Hull||Narrator||Voice role|
|Hans Christian Andersen: My Life as a Fairytale||Mrs. Meisling|
|2004||Bosom Pals||Joan||TV film, voice role|
|The Life and Death of Peter Sellers||Casting Agent||TV film|
|Loony in the Woods||Crazy Butcher|
|2007||The Dinner Party||Juliet||TV film|
|Who Gets the Dog?||Jenny Evans||TV film|
|2010||Come Rain Come Shine||Dora Mitchell||TV film|
|2015||Burn Burn Burn||Diana|
|2016||Dad's Army||Mrs. Fox|
|2017||We Can Be Heroes||Granny Evans|
|Roald & Beatrix: The Tail of the Curious Mouse||Dora||TV film|
|2021||The King's Man||TBA||Post-production|
|1971||Bel Ami||Fencer||Episode: "Madeleine"|
|1973||Z-Cars||WPC Bayliss||2 episodes|
|1973–1974||Frost's Weekly||Various roles||Series regular|
|1973–1981||Play for Today||Various roles||Series regular|
|1974||Crown Court||Mary Chatham||Episode: "Good and Faithful Friends: Part 1"|
|Second City Firsts||Jackie||Episode: "Girl"|
|1975||Helen||Episode: "Early to Bed"|
|Tarbuck and All That!||Series regular|
|Oil Strike North||Paula Webber||Episode: "First Lion"|
|The Wackers||Bernadette Clarkson||Series regular|
|1976||Crown Court||Cheryl Baker||Episode: "Scard: Part 1"|
|Red Letter Day||Margaret Hudson||Episode: "Bag of Yeast"|
|1977||Esther Waters||Sarah||3 episodes|
|1978||ITV Playhouse||Norma Hardy||Episode: "Ten Days That Shook the Branch"|
|1979||Two's Company||Pamela||Episode: "The Silence"|
|1986||The Singing Detective||Mrs. Lili Marlow||Mini-series|
|In Sickness and in Health||Mother||Episode: "Christmas Special"|
|1989||Screen Two||Brenda Ogdon||Episode: "Virtuoso"|
|The Jim Henson Hour||Perriwinkle||Episode: "Monster Maker"|
|Screenplay||Marjorie||Episode: "A Small Mourning"|
|1990||Screen One||Jackie Johns||Episode: "News Hounds"|
|1991||Selling Hitler||Edda Goering||Mini-series|
|Gone to the Dogs||Lauren Patterson||Mini-series|
|1992||Gone to Seed||Hilda||Series regular, 6 episodes|
|1994||The Wimbledon Poisoner||Elinor Farr||Mini-series, 2 episodes|
|1995||Kavanagh QC||Evelyn Marie Kendall||Episode: "Nothing But the Truth"|
|Pride and Prejudice||Mrs. Bennet||Mini-series, 6 episodes|
|Coogan's Run||Annette||Episode: "The Curator"|
|1995–1998||Crapston Villas||Marge Stenson||Series regular|
|1996||Karaoke||Mrs. Haynes||2 episodes|
|Cold Lazarus||Mrs. Haynes||1 episode|
|No Bananas||Evelyn Hamilton||Series regular|
|1998–2000||Stressed Eric||Mrs. Perfect||Series regular, voice role|
|1999||Let Them Eat Cake||Madame de Plonge||4 episodes|
|2000–2005||Fat Friends||Betty Simpson||Series regular|
|2001||Adrian Mole: The Cappuccino Years||Pauline Mole||Series regular|
|2002||Celeb||Grandma||Episode: "The Love Child"|
|2003||Lenny Henry in Pieces||4 episodes|
|2004||Dalziel and Pascoe||Marion Mattis||Episode: "Soft Touch"|
|2004–2005||The Lenny Henry Show||Mrs. Twelvetrees||2 episodes|
|2004–2006||The Worst Week of My Life||Angela Cook||Series regular, 17 episodes|
|2005||Twisted Tales||Margery Faversham||Episode: "Fruitcake of the Living Dead"|
|Bob the Builder||The Mayoress||Episode: "Bob's Big Plan"|
|2007||The Last Detective||Karen Horner||Episode: "The Man from Montevideo"|
|Agatha Christie's Marple||Kirsten Lindstrom||Episode: "Ordeal by Innocence"|
|Fanny Hill||Mrs. Brown||2 episodes|
|The Omid Djalili Show||Mrs. Dashett||1 episode|
|2007–2019||Gavin & Stacey||Pamela Shipman||Series regular|
|2012||Playhouse Presents||Tina||Episode: "King of the Teds"|
|Inspector George Gently||Esther Dunwoody||Episode: "The Lost Child"|
|Little Crackers||2 episodes|
|2013||Lewis||Rev. Martha Seager||Episode: "Intelligent Design"|
|The Syndicate||Rose Wilson||Series regular|
|Love and Marriage||Pauline Paradise||Series regular|
|2014||The Great War: The People's Story||Hallie Miles||3 episodes, documentary|
|The Secrets||Angela||Episode: "The Dilemma"|
|2015||Inside No. 9||Madam Talbot||Episode: "Seance Time"|
|2015–2016||Orphan Black||Kendall Malone||5 episodes|
|2016||Midsomer Murders||Abigail Tonev||Episode: "The Incident at Cooper Hill"|
|Yonderland||Barbara Maddox||Episode: "It's The Thought That Counts"|
|Comedy Playhouse||Brenda||Episode: "Broken Biscuits"|
|We Have Been Watching||Narrator||Series regular|
|The Reluctant Landlord||Debbie||Episode: "Mama's Boy"|
|2018–2019||Hold the Sunset||Edith||Series regular|
|2019||Moominvalley||Emma the Stage Rat||Voice; 2 episodes|
|2020||Life||Gail Reynolds||Series regular|
|2020||Roald & Beatrix: The Tail of the Curious Mouse||Dora|
|1987||The Singing Detective||BAFTA TV Award||Best Actress||Nominated|
|1991||Life Is Sweet||Taormina International Film Festival||Golden Mask||Won|
|1992||Life Is Sweet||National Society of Film Critics Awards||Best Actress||Won|
|1993||The Rise and Fall of Little Voice||Olivier Award||Best Actress||Won|
|1996||Pride and Prejudice||CableACE Award||Supporting Actress in a Movie or Miniseries||Nominated|
|1998||The Memory of Water||Olivier Award||Best Actress||Nominated|
|2001||Fat Friends||BAFTA TV Award||Best Actress||Nominated|
|2016||N/A||British Independent Film Award||Richard Harris Award||Won|
Jim Broadbent is an English actor. He won an Academy Award and a Golden Globe Award for his supporting role as John Bayley in the feature film Iris (2001), as well as winning a BAFTA TV Award and a Golden Globe for his leading role as Lord Longford in the television film Longford (2006). Broadbent received four BAFTA Film Award nominations and won for his performance in Moulin Rouge! (2001). He was also nominated for two Primetime Emmy Awards and four Screen Actors Guild Awards.
Abigail's Party is a play for stage and television, devised and directed in 1977 by Mike Leigh. It is a suburban situation comedy of manners, and a satire on the aspirations and tastes of the new middle class that emerged in Britain in the 1970s. The play developed in lengthy improvisations during which Mike Leigh explored the characters with the actors, but did not always reveal the incidents that would occur during the play. The production opened in April 1977 at the Hampstead Theatre, and returned after its initial run in the summer of 1977, for 104 performances in all. A recording was arranged at the BBC as a Play for Today, produced by Margaret Matheson for BBC Scotland and transmitted in November 1977.
Mike Leigh is an English film and theatre director, screenwriter and playwright. He studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA), East 15 Acting School and further at the Camberwell School of Art, the Central School of Art and Design and the London School of Film Technique. He began his career as a theatre director and playwright in the mid-1960s, before transitioning to making televised plays and films for BBC Television in the 1970s and '80s. Leigh is known for his lengthy rehearsal and improvisation techniques with actors to build characters and narrative for his films. His purpose is to capture reality and present "emotional, subjective, intuitive, instinctive, vulnerable films." His films and stage plays, according to critic Michael Coveney, "comprise a distinctive, homogenous body of work which stands comparison with anyone's in the British theatre and cinema over the same period."
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Life Is Sweet is a 1990 British comedy-drama film directed by Mike Leigh, starring Alison Steadman, Jim Broadbent, Claire Skinner, Jane Horrocks and Timothy Spall. Leigh's third cinematic film, it was his most commercially successful title at the time of release. The, by turns, tragi-comic story follows the fortunes of a working-class North London family over a few weeks one summer.
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Lesley Sharp is an English stage, film and television actress whose roles on British television include Clocking Off (2000–2001), Bob & Rose (2001) and Afterlife (2005–2006). She was nominated for the BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for the 1997 film The Full Monty. Her other film appearances include Rita, Sue and Bob Too (1986), Naked (1993), Priest (1994), From Hell (2001) and Vera Drake (2004). Between 2011 and 2016, she starred as DC Janet Scott in the ITV drama Scott & Bailey.
Janine Duvitski is a British actress, known for her roles in the BBC television sitcom series Waiting for God, One Foot in the Grave and Benidorm. Duvitski first came to national attention in the play Abigail's Party, written and directed in 1977 by Mike Leigh.
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