John Madden Biography

John Madden photo

Born: April 08, 1949


Date of Birth: April 8, 1949

This native of Portsmouth, Hampshire, England began his career in the English theater, moving later to the BBC to work in television and radio drama. Madden's resumé as a stage director includes prestigious work in both Britain and the United States.

He directed Caritas Christi at the National Theater and helmed Broadway productions of Beyond Therapy, Wings and Grownups; he also staged the latter at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles.

In 1975 he crossed the pond and moved to the States to develop radio drama with Earplay, a National Public Radio drama project.

During his time directing in radio and on stage, he taught in the acting and playwriting programs at the Yale School of Drama.

In 1984 he began to work extensively in TV as well as directing for the BBC and for commercial television in the UK. He worked on popular series like The Return of Sherlock Holmes, Inspector Morse, as well as telefilms like A Wreath of Roses and The Widowmaker.

Madden's first feature, Ethan Frome (1993), was not a box office hit. However, there was praise for Bobby Bukowski's striking cinematography, which added to the bleakness of the tale, and Madden was established as a competent storyteller.

He first garnered wide-scale notice with his feature Mrs. Brown (1997) starring Judi Dench.

Dench was denied an Academy Award for her starring role, but was given a "runner-up" Oscar for Best Supporting Actress in her portrayal of Queen Elizabeth in Madden's next and most successful film, Shakespeare in Love. The film not only received applause from critics and viewers alike, but it gave Madden nominations from the Oscars, BAFTA and Golden Globes for Best Director.

He went on to helm five more films all with A-list stars: Captain Corelli's Mandolin (2001) with Nicholas Cage and Penélope Cruz; Proof (2005) with Anthony Hopkins and Gwyneth Paltrow; Killshot (2009) with Diane Lane, Mickey Rourke and Joseph Gordon-Levitt; The Debt (2011) with Helen Mirren and Sam Worthington; and his most recent project, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (2012) with his former star Judi Dench, Bill Nighy and Tom Wilkinson.


The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel(2012)
The Debt (2011) Killshot(2009)
Captain Corelli's Mandolin(2001)
Shakespeare in Love(1998)
Mrs. Brown(1997)
Golden Gate (1994)
Ethan Frome (1993)

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