Home   >   Movie Stars   >   S   >   Maggie Smith

Maggie Smith

Maggie Smith reprises the role of Hogwarts professor Minerva McGonagall, the role she has played in all of the Harry Potter films.

Smith next stars in Julian Fellowes' supernatural adventure From Time to Time, planned for release later this year.

One of the entertainment industry's most esteemed actresses, Smith has been honored numerous times for her work on the stage, screen and television. A two-time Academy Award winner, Smith won her first Oscar for her unforgettable performance in the title role of 1969's The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, for which she also won a BAFTA Award and earned a Golden Globe Award nomination. A decade later, she won her second Oscar, as well as Golden Globe and Evening Standard Awards and a BAFTA Award nomination, for her role in California Suite. More recently, Smith garnered Oscar, Golden Globe and BAFTA Award nominations for her performance in Robert Altman's Gosford Park, also winning Critics' Choice and Screen Actors Guild Awards as part of the ensemble cast.

Smith's myriad film acting honors also include Oscar nominations for Othello, Travels with My Aunt and A Room with a View, for which she also won BAFTA and Golden Globe Awards; and BAFTA Awards for A Private Function and The Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne, also winning an Evening Standard Film Award for the latter. She more recently won an Emmy Award for her performance in the HBO movie My House in Umbria.

Smith started acting on the stage in 1952 with the Oxford University Drama Society, and made her professional debut in New York in The New Faces of 1956 Revue. Three years later, she joined the Old Vic Company, where she won the 1962 Evening Standard's Best Actress Award for her roles in The Private Ear and The Public Eye. Joining the National Theatre in 1963, Smith played Desdemona to Laurence Olivier's Othello. Her other notable National Theatre productions include Black Comedy, Miss Julie, The Country Wife, The Beaux Stratagem, Much Ado About Nothing and Hedda Gabler.

But it was in 1969 that Smith came to screen stardom with her Oscar-winning performance in The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie. Today's film audiences know Smith best for her work in the Harry Potter movies, as well as her roles in such films as Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood, The First Wives Club, Sister Act, The Secret Garden and Steven Spielberg's Hook. Her additional film credits include Becoming Jane, Ladies in Lavender, The Last September, Washington Square, Richard III, The Missionary, Death on the Nile, Murder by Death and The Honey Pot.

Throughout her career Smith has continued to appear on the stages of London and New York. She won a Tony Award for her performance in Lettice and Lovage, and had earlier received Tony Award nominations for Night and Day and Private Lives. She has also won Evening Standard Drama Awards for her performances in Virginia and Three Tall Women.

On television, Smith has earned Emmy nominations for her roles in the telefilms Suddenly, Last Summer and David Copperfield, for which she also received a BAFTA TV Award nomination. Additionally, she earned BAFTA TV Award nominations for the television movies Memento Mori and Mrs. Silly, as well as the miniseries Talking Heads, winning a Royal Television Society Award for the last.

She became a Dame in 1990 when she received the DBE. Smith is also a Fellow of the British Film Institute and was awarded a Silver BAFTA Lifetime Achievement Award in 1993.


Note: This profile was written in or before 2009.
Read earlier biographies on this page.

Maggie Smith Facts

Birth NameDame Margaret Natalie Smith
OccupationActress
BirthdayDecember 28, 1934 (82)
SignCapricorn
BirthplaceIlford, Essex, England, United Kingdom
Height5' 5" (1m65)  How tall is Maggie Smith compared to you?
Awards2003 Emmy Awards: Outstanding Lead Actress In A Miniseries Or A Movie (for My House In Umbria)
2000 BAFTA Awards: Actress in a Supporting Role (for Tea with Mussolini)
1987 Golden Globe Awards: Best Actress in a Supporting Role - Motion Picture (for A Room with a View)
1979 Academy Awards: Best Supporting Actress (for California Suite)
1979 Golden Globe Awards: Best Actress in a Motion Picture - Comedy or Musical (for California Suite)
1970 Academy Awards: Best Actress (for The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie)

Selected Filmography

Hook
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince
Omega
Live Free or Die Hard
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2
Continue » Find more details on the Maggie Smith Movies page