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Judi Dench

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Judi Dench as M in GoldenEye

Dame Judith Olivia "Judi" Dench, CH, DBE (born 9 December 1934) is a renowned British stage, film and television actress.

Dench was born in York. In 1971, she married British actor Michael Williams, who died of cancer in 2001. They starred together in a British sitcom, A Fine Romance. In 1988, she was made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE); in 2005, she was made a Companion of Honour. She has also occasionally directed plays.

Her many television appearances include the series As Time Goes By and the aforementioned A Fine Romance.

Theatrical Career

In her native United Kingdom, Dame Judi has developed her reputation as arguably the greatest British actress of the post-1945 period primarily through her work in theatre, which has been her main forté ´hroughout her career.

Dame Judi received her professional training at the Central School of Speech and Drama in London and made her professional debut as Ophelia in Liverpool in 1957. She subsequently spent seasons in repertory in Oxford and Nottingham. In 1961 she joined the Royal Shakespeare Company and made numerous appearances with the company in Stratford and London over the next two decades, winning several best actress awards.

Dame Judi has also made numerous appearances in the West End and with the National Theatre in London. She is a multiple winner of the main awards for performances on the London stage, including a record six Laurence Olivier Awards. She has also appeared with success on Broadway.

As she enters her seventies, Dame Judi remains probably the biggest draw on the London stage. She is often compared and contrasted with Dame Maggie Smith, another British actress of the same generation.

Selected Filmography

James Bond

In 1995 she took over the role of M in the James Bond series and has appeared in the films:

Judi Dench has also been confirmed by the producers of the Bond film series as returning to the role for the 2006 film, Casino Royale.

In 2004 she lent her voice for the role of M in two James Bond video games, Everything or Nothing and GoldenEye: Rogue Agent.

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