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Glenda Jackson

Glenda Jackson

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Also Known As: Glenda May Jackson Died:
Born: May 9, 1936 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Cheshire, England, GB Profession: actor, waitress, pharmacy assistant, switchboard operator, politician, receptionist

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

RADA-trained Glenda Jackson was shaped by her work with the Royal Shakespeare Company which she joined in 1964 and specifically by director Peter Brook's experimental Theatre of Cruelty season that year and its Antoine Artaud-influenced improvisational games. She won acclaim for her chilling performance as an asylum inmate portraying Danton's murderer Charlotte Corday in the 1965 London and New York productions of "Marat/Sade", staged by Brook. And although she made a brief screen appearance as an extra in "This Sporting Life" (1963), her first significant film work was reprising the role of Corday in Brook's 1967 screen version of "Marat/Sade", perhaps auguring the many neurotics she has so brilliantly portrayed on stage and film.Plain-featured but striking looking, with a gift for conveying blistering disgust or contempt with her curled lip, her clipped, almost spitting delivery and her cold stare, Jackson has nonetheless played a wide range of roles from queens, romantics, seductresses and sensualists to independent women and intellectuals; she has excelled at portraying high-strung, strong-willed and sexually rapacious women in notable films by such directors as Ken Russell ("The Music Lovers"...

RADA-trained Glenda Jackson was shaped by her work with the Royal Shakespeare Company which she joined in 1964 and specifically by director Peter Brook's experimental Theatre of Cruelty season that year and its Antoine Artaud-influenced improvisational games. She won acclaim for her chilling performance as an asylum inmate portraying Danton's murderer Charlotte Corday in the 1965 London and New York productions of "Marat/Sade", staged by Brook. And although she made a brief screen appearance as an extra in "This Sporting Life" (1963), her first significant film work was reprising the role of Corday in Brook's 1967 screen version of "Marat/Sade", perhaps auguring the many neurotics she has so brilliantly portrayed on stage and film.

Plain-featured but striking looking, with a gift for conveying blistering disgust or contempt with her curled lip, her clipped, almost spitting delivery and her cold stare, Jackson has nonetheless played a wide range of roles from queens, romantics, seductresses and sensualists to independent women and intellectuals; she has excelled at portraying high-strung, strong-willed and sexually rapacious women in notable films by such directors as Ken Russell ("The Music Lovers" 1971), John Schlesinger ("Sunday, Bloody Sunday" 1973) and Joseph Losey ("The Romantic Englishwoman" 1975).

Jackson won two Best Actress Oscars, for her roles in Russell's D.H. Lawrence adaptation, "Women in Love" (1970) and for her change of pace performance in Melvin Frank's light romantic comedy "A Touch of Class" (1973). She also won two Emmys for her portrait of Queen Elizabeth I from youth to old age on the series "Elizabeth R" (shown in the USA on PBS in 1972).

Jackson made an assured switch to middle-aged roles in the mid-1970s, beginning with the Hepburn-Tracy style comedy, "House Calls" (1978), opposite Walter Matthau. In 1992, Jackson won a seat in the British Parliament as a member of the Labour Party and retired from acting.

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Doombeach (1990) Miss
2.
 King of the Wind (1990) Queen Caroline
3.
 Rainbow, The (1989) Anna Brangwen
4.
 Salome's Last Dance (1988) Herodias; Lady Alice
5.
 Business As Usual (1987) Babs Flynn
6.
 Beyond Therapy (1987) Charlotte
7.
 Turtle Diary (1986) Neaera Duncan
8.
 Sakharov (1984) Elena Bonner
9.
 Return of the Soldier, The (1982) Margaret Grey
10.
 Giro City (1982) Sophie
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
Family moved to her father's birthplace in Hoylake, England when she was a year old
:
Worked as a saleswoman at Boots' pharmacy in Nottingham before entering RADA
1957:
Made stage debut in "Separate Tables" at Worthing, England
1957:
London stage debut in "All Kinds of Men"
:
Went two years with almost no acting work at all; worked as shop assistant, waitress, switchboard operator and as saleswoman at Woolworths
1963:
Joined Royal Shakespeare Company
1963:
Film debut as an extra in a party scene (as one of a group singing "For he's a jolly good fellow") in "This Sporting Life"
1964:
Played one of title character's girlfriends in London stage production of "Alfie"
1964:
Appeared in Peter Brook's and Charles Marowitz's experimental Theatre of Cruelty season, sponsored by the RSC at LAMDA
1965:
Made film acting debut in "Benefit of the Doubt," about the staging of the RSC production of the play "US" (directed by Peter Whitehead)
1965:
Starred as Charlotte Corday in London premiere of "Marat/Sade"
1965:
Broadway debut, "Marat/Sade"
1967:
Reprised role of Charlotte Corday in the Peter Brook film of "Marat/Sade"
1974:
Formed Bowden Productions with American producer Robert Enders after they made "The Maids" (1974); subsequently made "Hedda" (1975), "Nasty Habits" (1976), and "Stevie" (1978) together
1983:
The Glenda Jackson Theatre opened in Hoylake
1992:
Ran against Tory Conservative Oliver Letwin for a seat in the House of Commons as the Labour Candidate from the Hampstead and Highgate sections of London; won election
1997:
Named minister of rail transport by Labour Prime Minister Tony Blair
1999:
Resigned from her junior minister position and announced candidacy for the post of mayor of London; lost Labor primary to Frank Dobson
2000:
Appointed as advisor on homelessness by London mayor Ken Livingstone
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

West Kirby County Grammar School for Girls: -
Royal Academy of Dramatic Art: London , England - 1955 - 1957

Notes

Glenda Jackson was named after the 1930s American film actress Glenda Farrell and after her grandmother May.

Jackson's former husband Roy Hodges is reputed to have said about her: "If she'd gone into politics she'd be prime minister; if she'd gone into crime she'd be Jack the Ripper."

"She was a monster, frankly." --director Peter Eyre quote in "Glenda Jackson: The Biography" by Chris Bryant

"I hate the idea of acting being some kind of mystical process. It isn't. I mean you do as much as an individual can do; you clear the undergrowth, you get rid of the stuff that isn't useful, you discard the ideas that aren't right. You do everything you can, both physically and mentally, to be ready for something else to happen. That's what the performance is: is something else going to happen? I suppose there's a kind of mystery element in that, but I don't like the idea of it being entirely a process that is without any kind of guiding sense." --Glenda Jackson (quoted in David Nathan's 1984 biography, "Glenda Jackson")

Jackson's longtime agent Peter Crouch said of her: "I never thought she was going to be the easiest actress to promote. She has an individual quality which I reckoned was not going to appeal to everybody. But there is an enormous sex appeal. Something exudes from her like it does from a very healthy animal. She hasn't a high opinion of her own physical attractions. She once told me, 'I don't know why I keep getting all these scripts with nude scenes. I've got varicose veins, piano legs and no tits.' But the camera falls in love with her. A lighting cameraman once told me it was because she had 'wonderful lighting about the eyes' by which it turned out that he meant she had high cheek bones. So forget the ski-run nose and the snaggle tooth; the eyes are the things that matter in films." --From David Nathan's 1984 biography, "Glenda Jackson")

She received a honorary DLitt from Liverpool University (1978)

She was given the Women's Project's Exceptional Achievement Award (1988)

Jackson underwent an emergency appendectomy on October 23, 1999

Companions close complete companion listing

husband:
Roy Hodges. Former theater director, art gallery owner. Married in 1958; divorced in 1976; met while Jackson was performing with the Crewe repertory theater and he was stage manager c. 1957.
companion:
Andy Phillips. Lighting designer. Together from 1975 until c. 1991.

Family close complete family listing

father:
Harry Jackson. Bricklayer, brickmaker.
mother:
Joan Jackson. Barmaid, maid, shop assistant.
son:
Daniel Hodges. Born in 1969; father, Roy Hodges; on February 21, 1992 lost his left eye when a broken beer glass was shoved in his face after he stood up for two black men who were being taunted by whites in a south London pub.

Bibliography close complete biography

"Glenda Jackson"
"Glenda Jackson: The Biography" HarperCollins

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