Stephen Arthur Frears

English: James McAvoy at 2008 BAFTA Awards' re...

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Stephen Arthur Frears (born 20 June 1941) is an Jewish film director.

Stephen Arthur Frears was born in Leicester, England to Ruth M., a social worker, and Dr Russell E. Frears, a general practitioner and accountant.

Stephen Arthur Frears did not find out that his mother was Jewish until he was in his late 20s.

Stephen Arthur Frears was educated at Gresham’s School, Norfolk from 1954 to 1959, and later went on to study law at Trinity College, Cambridge from 1960 to 1963.

After graduating from Cambridge, Frears worked as an assistant director on Morgan! (1966) and if…. (1968), but most of his early directing career was spent in television mainly for the BBC, but also for the commercial sector. He contributed to several high profile anthology series such as the BBC’s Play for Today, and produced a series of Alan Bennett’s plays for LWT, taking responsibility for working in the gallery onThe Old Crowd while Lindsay Anderson worked with the actors.

In the mid-1980s, Frears came to international attention as an important director of British and American films. His first film was Gumshoe (1971), but it was his production of the Hanif Kureishi screenplay My Beautiful Laundrette for Channel 4 in 1985 that unexpectedly led to his wider notice. The production, shot on 16 mm film, was released theatrically to great acclaim, and received a nomination for an Academy Award and two nominations for BAFTA Awards. In 1987, he worked with comedian Adrian Edmondson forMr Jolly Lives Next Door, also starring Peter Cook for a 45-minute programme from the cult series The Comic Strip Presents. In 1985 he had also directed a Comic Strip parody of Rebecca with the usual Comic Strip ensemble.

Frears next directed another successful British film, the Joe Orton biopic Prick Up Your Ears (1987), another collaboration with Alan Bennett, which was followed by a second film from a Hanif Kureishiscreenplay, Sammy and Rosie Get Laid (also 1987). The following year he made his Hollywood debut withDangerous Liaisons. The film was quite successful at the box office. It received numerous nominations for Academy Awards and BAFTA Awards, and Frears himself was nominated for the BAFTA Award for Best Direction. Frears had another critical success with The Grifters (1990), for which he was nominated for theAcademy Award for Best Director. His film Hero (1992), starring Dustin Hoffman, was a major box office disappointment. He was also nominated for a Razzie Award for his direction of Mary Reilly (1996).

Frears has since directed a number of successful films in both Britain and America, including The Hi-Lo Country (1998), High Fidelity (2000),Dirty Pretty Things (2003) and Mrs Henderson Presents starring Judi Dench and Bob Hoskins. In recent years he has also occasionally returned to directing for television, perhaps most notably The Deal, a dramatised account of the alleged deal between Tony Blair and Gordon Brown to decide which of them should become leader of the Labour Party in 1994, for Channel 4 in 2003. His film, The Queen (2006), was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture. It achieved immense critical acclaim, box office success and awards. He received his second Academy Award nomination for his direction of the film, and Helen Mirren won the Academy Award for Best Actress.

Frears has also directed two films based on stories by Roddy DoyleThe Snapper and The Van. He holds the „David Lean Chair in Fiction Direction“ from the National Film and Television School in Beaconsfield, England where he teaches frequently.

Stephen Arthur Frears currently lives in London with his wife, the painter Anne Rothenstein, and his two younger children Frankie and Lola. He also has two children, Sam and Will (a stage and film director), from his previous marriage to Mary-Kay Wilmers.

Early in his career he made a programme featuring the band The Scaffold and is name checked in their hit song, „Lily the Pink„.



Feature Films



  1. ^ Stephen Frears Biography
  2. ^ Hidden Heritage Inspires Director
  3. ^ „Berlinale: 1996 Programme“ Retrieved 2012-01-01.
  4. ^ „Berlinale: 1999 Prize Winners“ Retrieved 2012-01-29.
  5. ^ „Stephen Frears reçoit les insignes de commandeur des Arts et des Lettres“ (in French). Agence France-Presse. 18 March 2009. Retrieved 20 March 2009.

External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Stephen Frears


Stephen Frears (* 20. Juni 1941 in LeicesterGroßbritannien) ist ein jüdischer Regisseur und Filmproduzent.

Stephen Arthur Frears ist der Sohn einer jüdischen Sozialarbeiterin und eines Physikers.

Stephen Arthur Frears besuchte die Gresham’s School in Norfolk und ist ein Absolvent der Universität Cambridge, am Trinity College, der in den 1960er Jahren über das Theater zum Film kam. Zunächst war er Regieassistent von Karel Reisz.

In den 1970er Jahren arbeitete Stephen Arthur Frears für das Fernsehen.

Erst sein Film Mein wunderbarer Waschsalon (1985) brachte Stephen Arthur Frears den Durchbruch. Stephen Arthur Frears gilt seitdem als einer der führenden Regisseure des „New British Cinema„. Im Mai 2007 war Frears Vorsitzender der Jury bei den 60.Internationalen Filmfestspielen von Cannes.

Im selben Jahr wurde Stephen Arthur Frears für seine Regiearbeit an dem Film Die Queen über Elizabeth II. und den Tod von Prinzessin Diana für einen Oscar nominiert.

Bereits 1991 hatte er eine Oscar-Nominierung als bester Regisseur für das Drama Grifterserhalten, während er auf den Filmfestspielen von Berlin 1999 für Hi-Lo Country – Im Land der letzten Cowboys den Silbernen Bären 1999 für die beste Regie gewann. 2011 wurde Stephen Arthur Frears der Europäische Filmpreis für sein Lebenswerk zuerkannt.

Neben der Arbeit im Film und Fernsehen ist Stephen Arthur Frears  Gastdozent im Fach Regie an der britischen National Film and Television School.

Stephen Arthur Frears ist seit 1992 verheiratet und Vater von vier Kindern.



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