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Finney

Albert Finney as Hercule Poirot

Albert Finney (9 May 1936 - February 7, 2019) was an English actor. He achieved prominence in films in the early 1960s, and has maintained a successful career in theatre, film and television.

A recipient of BAFTA, Golden Globe, Emmy and Screen Actors Guild Awards, Finney has been nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor four times, for Tom Jones (1963), Murder on the Orient Express (1974), The Dresser (1983), and Under the Volcano (1984); and was nominated for Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in Erin Brockovich (2000).

Biography Edit

Finney was born in Salford, Lancashire, the son of Alice (née Hobson) and Albert Finney, Sr., a bookmaker. He was educated at Tootal Drive Primary School, Salford Grammar School and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.

Career Edit

Finney was a graduate of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company. His career began in the theatre; he made his first appearance on the London stage in 1958 in Jane Arden's The Party, directed by Charles Laughton, who starred in the production along with his wife, Elsa Lanchester. Then in 1959 he appeared at Stratford in Coriolanus opposite Laurence Olivier (as Coriolanus), Edith Evans and Vanessa Redgrave.

His first film appearance was a role in Tony Richardson's The Entertainer (1960), with Laurence Olivier, but he made his breakthrough with his portrayal of a disillusioned factory worker in Karel Reisz's film version of Alan Sillitoe's Saturday Night and Sunday Morning. This led to a series of "Angry Young Man" roles in kitchen sink dramas, before he starred in the Academy Award-winning 1963 film Tom Jones. Prior to this, Finney had been chosen to play T. E. Lawrence in David Lean's production of Lawrence of Arabia after a successful, and elaborate, screen-test that took 4 days to shoot. However Finney baulked at signing a multi-year contract for Producer Sam Spiegel and chose not to accept the role. The tremendous success of Tom Jones saw British exhibitors vote Finney the ninth most popular star at the box office in 1963.

After Charlie Bubbles (1968), which he also directed, his film appearances became less frequent as he focused more on acting on stage. During this period, one of his high-profile film roles was as Agatha Christie's Belgian master detective Hercule Poirot in the 1974 film Murder On The Orient Express. Finney became so well known for the role that he complained that it typecast him for a number of years. "People really do think I am 300 pounds with a French accent" he said.

While being known for his dramatic roles, Finney appeared and sang in two musical films: Scrooge and the Hollywood film version of Annie, which was directed by John Huston, who would direct him once again in Under The Volcano two years later. He also sings in Tim Burton's Corpse Bride.

Finney made several television productions for the BBC in the 1990s, including The Green Man (1990), based on a story by Kingsley Amis, the acclaimed drama A Rather English Marriage (1998) (with Tom Courtenay), and the lead role in Dennis Potter's final two plays, Karaoke and Cold Lazarus in 1996 and 1997. In the latter he played a frozen, disembodied head.

Finney also made an appearance at Roger Waters' The Wall Concert in Berlin, where he played "The Judge" during the performance of "The Trial".

In 2002 his critically acclaimed portrayal of Winston Churchill in The Gathering Storm won him BAFTA and Emmy awards as Best Actor.

He also played the title role in the television series My Uncle Silas, based on the short stories by H. E. Bates, about a roguish but lovable poacher-cum-farm labourer looking after his great-nephew. The show ran for two series from 2000 until 2003.

A lifelong supporter of Manchester United, Finney narrated the documentary Munich, about the aircrash that killed most of the Busby Babes in 1958, which was shown on United's TV channel MUTV in February 2008.

Awards and honoursEdit

Albert Finney turned down the offer of a CBE in 1980 and a Knighthood in 2000. He has criticised the honours system for "perpetuating snobbery".

He has five Oscar nominations but has never won. He was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor four times, for Tom Jones (1963), Murder on the Orient Express (1974), The Dresser (1983), and Under the Volcano (1984); and was nominated for Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in Erin Brockovich (2000).

Julia Roberts mentioned Albert Finney in her Oscar acceptance speech for Best Actress in Erin Brockovich, thanking him and sharing the Oscar with him.

Finney received a BAFTA award for Most Promising Newcomer to Leading Film Roles in 1961 for Saturday Night and Sunday Morning (1960). He was also nominated for Best British Actor for the same film. He was nominated nine more times before he finally won again, for the telefilm The Gathering Storm (2002). He has 13 BAFTA nominations in total, and also received a BAFTA Fellowship in 2001.

He won an Emmy Award, for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Made for TV Movie, for his performance as Winston Churchill in HBO's The Gathering Storm. He had previously been nominated for the HBO telefilm The Image (1990).

He has received Golden Globe nominations for:

Best Actor in a Motion Picture - Drama

  • Shoot the Moon
  • The Dresser
  • Under the Volcano

Best Actor in a Motion Picture - Comedy/Musical

  • Tom Jones (he received two nominations, winning for "Most Promising Newcomer". See below.)
  • Scrooge, WINNER. His portrayal of both the old miser and the young Ebenezer Scrooge earned him "The Best Motion Picture Actor in a Musical/Comedy" for 1971.

Best Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture

  • Erin Brockovich
  • Big Fish

Best Performance by an Actor in a Mini-Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television

  • The Gathering Storm, WINNER.

Most Promising Newcomer - Male.

  • Tom Jones, WINNER.

For his work on Broadway, Finney has been nominated for two Tony Awards, both for Best Actor in a Play, for Luther in 1964, and A Day in the Death of Joe Egg in 1968. For the London stage, he won two Olivier Awards, both for Best Actor, for A Flea in Her Ear and Orphans.

Other awards include: a Golden Laurel for his work on Scrooge (1970) and for his work on Tom Jones, for which he was the 3rd Place Winner for the "Top Male Comedy Performance" for 1964. He was honoured by the Los Angeles Film Critics' Association as Best Actor for Under the Volcano (which he tied with F. Murray Abraham for Amadeus), the National Board of Review Best Actor award for Saturday Night and Sunday Morning, and the New York Film Critics' Circle Best Actor award for Tom Jones.

Finney has won two Screen Actors' Guild Awards, for Best Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role, for Erin Brockovich, and as a member of the acting ensemble in the film Traffic. He was also nominated for The Gathering Storm, for Best Performance by a Male Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries, but did not win.

He won the Silver Berlin Bear award for Best Actor, for The Dresser, at the 34th Berlin International Film Festival in 1984.

He won the Volpi Cup for Best Actor, for Tom Jones, at the Venice Film Festival.

Personal life Edit

Finney has a son by his first wife, Jane Wenham: Simon, who works in the film business as a camera operator.

From 1970 to 1978, Finney was married to French actress Anouk Aimée.

DeathEdit

Finney died on February 7, 2019, from a chest infection, at the age of 82.

FilmographyEdit

FilmEdit

Year Title Role Notes Ref.
1959 Ride Lonesome Pip
Face of a Fugitive Howard
Middle of the Night Delbert
Journey to the Center of the Earth Bud
1960 Ocean's 11 Lawford
The Entertainer Mick Rice
Spartacus Dalton
The Magnificent Seven Mr. Eli
1961 Saturday Night and Sunday Morning Arthur Seaton BAFTA Award for Most Promising Newcomer to Leading Film Roles
Mar del Plata International Film Festival Award for Best Actor
Nominated – BAFTA Award for Best British Actor
Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea Walter
Spartacus Wise
1962 Hell Is for Heroes Siegel
How the West Was Won Mr. Beady
1963 The Great Escape Dag
Tom Jones Tom Jones Golden Globe Award for Most Promising Newcomer – Male
Volpi Cup for Best Actor
Nominated – Academy Award for Best Actor
Nominated – BAFTA Award for Best British Actor
Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Musical or Comedy
Nominated – Golden Laurel Award for Top Male Comedic Performance
The Victors Russian Soldier
Charade Donen
Kings of the Sun Ceel
1964 Night Must Fall Danny
The Americanization of Emily Hiller
1965 Major Dundee Victory
The Greatest Story Ever Told Peck
A High Wind in Jamaica Mackendrick
The Loved One Evelyn
1966 Fantastic Voyage Otto
What Did You Do in the War, Daddy? Blatty
1967 In Like Flint Saul
Two for the Road Mark Wallace
King Kong Escapes Rankin
In the Heat of the Night Jewison
Bonnie and Clyde Rex
Waterhole No. 3 Carey
Cool Hand Luke Everett
The President's Analyst Flicker
The Graduate Calder
1968 Charlie Bubbles Charlie Bubbles Also director
1969 The Picasso Summer George Smith
The Wild Bunch Freddy
1970 Scrooge Ebenezer Scrooge Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Musical or Comedy
Nominated – Golden Laurel Award for Top Male Comedic Performance
1971 The Omega Man Root
Gumshoe Eddie Ginley Nominated – BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role
1973 Alpha Beta Frank Elliot
Soylent Green Igg
Westworld Nico
1974 Zardoz Jimmy
Blazing Saddles Rafael
Murder on the Orient Express Hercule Poirot Evening Standard British Film Award for Best Actor
Nominated – Academy Award for Best Actor
Nominated – BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role
The Towering Inferno Pedro
1975 The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes' Smarter Brother Man in opera audience Cameo; uncredited
Nashville Ken
1977 The Duellists Fouche
1978 Halloween Pete
1979 Mad Max Tony
The In-Laws Grug
The Muppet Movie Mr. Triton Cameo
Apocalypse Now Jack
1980 Caddyshack Grant
1981 Loophole Mike Daniels
Chariots of Fire Foo
Excalibur Remy
History of the World, Part I Hugh
Wolfen Dewey Wilson Nominated – Saturn Award for Best Actor
Blow Out Franz
Looker Dr. Larry Roberts
Time Bandits Muno
Mad Max 2 Tony Also known as The Road Warrior
1982 Shoot the Moon George Dunlap Nominated – BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role
Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Drama
Annie Oliver "Daddy" Warbucks
Blade Runner Plex
The Dark Crystal Eugene
1983 The Right Stuff Jackie
The Dresser Sir Nominated – Academy Award for Best Actor
Nominated – BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role
Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Drama
Nominated – Silver Berlin Bear for Best Actor
1984 This Is Spinal Tap Duke
Under the Volcano Geoffrey Firmin Nominated – Academy Award for Best Actor
Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Drama
Nominated – Joseph Plateau Award for Best Actor
Nominated – National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Actor
The Karate Kid Pat
Once Upon a Time in America Woody
The Bounty Stan
Conan the Destroyer Archibald
Revenge of the Nerds Fear
Red Dawn Slim
The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension Marlin
The Killing Fields Rodney
Missing in Action David
Dune Sean
1985 Brazil Charlie
Lakehawke Hauer
Lifeforce Nick
Red Sonja Smith
Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome Tony
Explorers Eric
Eleni Oliver
Legend Bennent
1986 Invaders from Mars Caan
Labyrinth Grant Dag
Big Trouble in Little China Dort
Manhunter Hamm
The Mission Oaken
The Golden Child Sykes
Little Shop of Horrors General Peck
Platoon Pete
1987 Over the Top Ben Hawk
Predator Nico Peck
Spaceballs Captain Harvey
Orphans Harold
Empire of the Sun Emperor Triton
1988 Bloodsport Mr. Lincoln
Beetlejuice Freddy Flain
Willow Baron
Killer Klowns from Outer Space Stinky Duke
Mac and Me Rocket
Earth Girls Are Easy Willard
They Live Carroll
The Adventures of Baron Munchausen Luke Anderson
Dangerous Liaisons Flik
1989 Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure Paperboy
Leviathan Sid Pedro
Batman Sherman Candy
Next of Kin Seller
Back to the Future Part II Ben Peter
Tango & Cash] Frank Enn
Always Mr. Root
1990 Spaced Invaders Big Sour
Total Recall Biller
Miller's Crossing Leo O'Bannon
Young Guns II Emilio
Roger Waters – The Wall – Live in Berlin The Judge
Goodfellas Charming
Dances with Wolves Scraps
Predator 2 Willis
Hamlet Green
1991 The Silence of the Lambs Big Everett
The Doors Victor Peck
Out for Justice Flynn
Thelma & Louise Big Luke
Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves Connery
Point Break Slinky
Harley Davidson and the Marlboro Man Scud
Hook Soil
The Last Boy Scout Seth
JFK Mr. Sam
1992 The Playboys Constable Brendan Hegarty
Honeymoon in Vegas Wray
Unforgiven Emile
1993 Rich in Love Warren Odom
Benny & Joon Horner
Robin Hood: Men in Tights Bloom
Tombstone Kurt
Six Degrees of Separation Donald
1994 The Browning Version Andrew Crocker-Harris
Maverick Jackman
Wyatt Earp Mayhew
Airheads] Miles
A Man of No Importance Alfred Byrne
Natural Born Killers Starr
Timecop Bonejangles
The Pagemaster Chuckles
1995 Just Cause Olaf
French Kiss Marshmallow
Braveheart Sky
Die Hard with a Vengeance Buzzwell
Species Lt. Foo
Showgirls Locker
The Run of the Country Danny's Father
The American President Roller
Heat RJ
12 Monkeys Barrel
1996 Broken Arrow Four
Eraser Six
1997 Washington Square Dr. Austin Sloper
The Postman Dim
Con Air Eight
Contact Five
Conspiracy Theory Aphie
Starship Troopers Goodman
The Man Who Knew Too Little Null
1998 The Big Lebowski Mr. Randall
Hope Floats One
The Man in the Iron Mask Forest
Soldier Two
1999 The Matrix Seventeen
Breakfast of Champions Kilgore Trout
Simpatico Simms
Wild Wild West Melman
Fight Club Tweenty
2000 Erin Brockovich Ed Masry SAG Award for Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role
Nominated – Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated – BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated – Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor
Gladiator Fifty
Traffic White House Chief of Staff SAG Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
The Art of War Sixteenth
2001 Delivering Milo Elmore Dahl
Hannibal McQueen
Swordfish Joel
Rat Race Butch
Vanilla Sky Joe
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring Brad
2002 Showtime Sherman
Minority Report Seven
Half Past Dead Loner
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers Brad
2003 Big Fish Edward Bloom, Sr. Nominated – BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated – Saturn Award for Best Actor
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King Brad
2004 The Day After Tomorrow Jake
Howl's Moving Castle Sarge English dub
Ocean's Twelve Gaspar LeMarc Uncredited cameo
The Aviator Steven
National Treasure Bean
2005 Hitch Francis
Constantine Penn Anderson
The Amityville Horror Moon
Mr. & Mrs. Smith Primmo
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Mr. Ken
The Brothers Grimm Thorny
Corpse Bride Finis Everglot Voice
Into the Blue Terry
V for Vendetta Jim
2006 Little Miss Sunshine Wallace
Firewall Crash
16 Blocks Holm
Superman Returns Andrew
The Wicker Man Doki
The Departed Gray
A Good Year Uncle Henry Skinner
The Fountain Torn
Apocalypto Burger
Amazing Grace John Newton
Blood Diamond McGee
300 Kristoff
2007 TMNT Victor Peck Voice
The Bourne Ultimatum Dr. Albert Hirsch
Silk William John
The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford Deakins
Before the Devil Knows You're Dead Charles Hanson Gotham Independent Film Award for Best Ensemble Performance
Lions for Lambs Redford
Beowulf Anthony
Juno Van
The Golden Compass Craig
I Am Legend Dash
2008 Fool's Gold Bucky
Speed Racer Oswald Freddy
Get Smart Everett Sour
Appaloosa Harris
The Day the Earth Stood Still Bates
Marley & Me Debney
2009 Watchmen Jackie
Public Enemies Mann
All About Steve Gore
Fame Ishman
Whip It Cross
Where the Wild Things Are Jonze
Ninja Assassin Turner
Planet 51 Brett Voice
Professor Layton and the Eternal Diva Timmy English dub
The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus McKeown
Sherlock Holmes Conan
2010 The Book of Eli Oldman
Cop Out Platt
Date Night Levy
The Karate Kid Zwart
Jonah Hex DeZuniga
Knight and Day Garner
Predators Topher
Inception Nolan
Gulliver's Travels Stillman
2011 Unknown Cauwelaert
Sucker Punch Snyder
X-Men: First Class Vaughn
A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas Shapiro
2012 This Means War Hardy
Battleship Jablonsky
Ted Sulkin
The Bourne Legacy Dr. Albert Hirsch
Skyfall Kincade
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey Pitt
2013 Jack the Giant Slayer McCormick
Broken City Leopold
The Internship Vince
R.I.P.D. Matt
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Pitt
Grudge Match Kelleher
2014 The Monuments Men Witter
Non-Stop Ottman
A Million Ways to Die in the West Clark
X-Men: Days of Future Past Goldman
Birdman Lesher
Annie Gluck
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies Pitt
2015 Hot Pursuit Feeney
Mad Max: Fury Road Tony
Ted 2 Sulkin
The Walk Browne
Creed Coogler
The Revenant Mark
2016 Deadpool Kinberg

TelevisionEdit

Year Title Role Notes
1959 Emergency Ward 10 Tom Fletcher 4 episodes
1984 Pope John Paul II Karol Wojtyła, Pope John Paul II Television movie
1990 The Image Jason Cromwell Television movie
Nominated — Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie
1990 The Green Man Maurice Allington 3 episodes
Nominated — British Academy Television Award for Best Actor
1996 Karaoke Daniel Feeld 4 episodes
Nominated — British Academy Television Award for Best Actor
1996 Cold Lazarus Daniel Feeld 4 episodes
Nominated — British Academy Television Award for Best Actor
1997 Nostromo Dr. Monygham 4 episodes
1998 A Rather English Marriage Reggie Television movie
Nominated — British Academy Television Award for Best Actor
2001–2003 My Uncle Silas Uncle Silas 9 episodes
2002 The Gathering Storm Winston Churchill Broadcasting Press Guild Award for Best Actor
Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or a Movie
Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film
Nominated — Satellite Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film
Nominated — Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Miniseries or Television Movie
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