Oscar nominee Charlotte Rampling (45 Years) began her acting career in the 1960s, with a breakout role in the 1966 film Georgy Girl. She hasn’t slowed down since, with stellar roles spanning over half a century. Lucky for us, this amazing on-screen force is returning to BBC AMERICA. Rampling, who starred in the second season of Broadchurch, is set to star in the BBCA original London Spy, opposite Ben Whishaw, premiering on January 21.
Let’s get to know some of Rampling’s earlier work:
1. Georgy Girl
The 1966 film Georgy Girl co-stars Lynn Redgrave and Rampling as roommates in London. Redgrave takes on the role of Georgy, who is considered a “Plain Jane” compared to her vivacious roommate Meredith (Rampling). Meredith does her own thing, not thinking about others’ feelings or consequences, and Georgy steps in to save the day when everything falls to pieces. The film also starred Alan Bates and James Mason.
2. Stardust Memories
Woody Allen‘s 1980 film Stardust Memories revolves around a young filmmaker (Allen) who incessantly worries. Note: This is not a biopic. He questions the meaning of life, like what’s the point of making films if he’s just going to be worm food in the end. He seeks comfort, or at least distraction, through romance. He finds himself torn between two different women (Julie Harper, Marie-Christine Barrault). The successful filmmaker is even more confused when his mind drifts back to his ex-girlfriend Dorrie (Rampling).
3. The Verdict
Rampling stars opposite Paul Newman in 1982’s The Verdict. Newman portrays a trial lawyer, working to get his career back on track. He takes on a malpractice case and rather than settling, accepting a financial payout, he fights the good fight. He meets Rampling’s character at a bar, and the two get romantic. She joins his support team. The film was directed by Sidney Lumet, adapted by David Mamet, and won five Academy Award nominations.
4. The Wings of the Dove
The 1997 film The Wings of the Dove is an adaptation of Henry James‘ 1902 novel by the same name. The story follows a young woman (Helena Bonham Carter) living in early 20th century London. Her aunt (Rampling) wants her to do the sensible thing and marry up. But, of course, she wants to marry for love. The crafty Londoner figures out a way to do both.
5. Swimming Pool
Rampling portrays a successful crime novelist in 2003’s Swimming Pool. She has a bit of writer’s block and escapes to the south of France for some R&R, staying at her publisher’s summer house. Her alone time is cut short when the publisher’s young daughter shows up, cramping her style. The two butt heads, but it may help the struggling novelist generate new material. Or, on the other hand, turn their paradise into an actual crime scene.
The 2011 film Melancholia follows a young woman (Kirsten Dunst) on the verge of getting married. Her sister Claire (Charlotte Gainsburg), who is already married, suggests she hide her melancholy state from her new husband (Alexander Skarsgård). Claire’s plea may be moot, with a planet heading toward Earth, about to collide. Rampling portrays the mother of the two sisters.
In 2012 Rampling, Hayley Atwell, Rufus Sewell, Michelle Dockery and Michael Gambon star in this two-part spy drama. A young woman (Dockery) visits her middle-aged mother (Rampling), who believes someone is out to get her. Her daughter thinks her mother might be delusional, but it turns out her mom’s fears are valid. The mother was once once a spy in another life, telling her daughter the extraordinary story. And now the past has caught up with her. The story begins in the 1970s and flashes back to the 1930s, with Atwell playing the younger version of Rampling’s character.
The 2012 spy drama stars Sean Bean as a British Secret Service Agent and Rampling as his superior. Bean’s character is faced with tracking down a terrorist cell. The cast is rounded out with Abhin Galeya, Tom Burke, Tuppence Middleton, Shivani Ghai, Michelle Ryan and James Fox.
9. Night Train to Lisbon
Jeremy Irons and Rampling co-star in the 2013 film Night Train to Lisbon. Irons pulls a woman off the ledge of a bridge, possibly saving her life. She runs off into the night, leaving her coat behind. The coat reveals a book containing a train ticket to Lisbon. Irons follows the clues to Portugal, where he meets Rampling.
Rampling already is a BBCA alum, having starred in the second season of Broadchurch in 2015. The townspeople of Broadchurch, a typically quiet English coastal town, reunite for the trial of the accused murderer of a young boy, which played out in season one. Rampling took on the role of Queen’s Counsel Barrister Jocelyn Knight. Knight hasn’t tried a trial case in three years, but has been pulled out of semi-retirement to represent the parents of the slain child in the trial. She originally declined the request, but for some reason changed her mind. David Tennant and Olivia Colman returned to reprise their roles as Detective Inspector Alex Hardy and Detective Sergeant Ellie Miller. Here’s more on Rampling and Broadchurch season two’s new cast members.
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