Christopher James Hampton CBE (born January 26, 1946) is an Academy Award-winning British playwright, screen writer and film director. He is best known for his play based on the novel Les Liaisons dangereuses and the film version Dangerous Liaisons (1988) and also more recently for writing the nominated screenplay for the film adaptation of Ian McEwan's Atonement.
Hampton was born in Faial, Azores, to British parents Dorothy Patience (née Herrington) and Bernard Patrick Hampton, a marine telecommunications engineer for Cable & Wireless. His father's job which led the family to subsequently settle in Aden and Alexandria in Egypt and later Hong Kong and Zanzibar. The Suez Crisis in 1956 necessitated that the family flee under cover of darkness, leaving their possessions behind.
After a prep school at Reigate, Hampton went to the independent boarding school Lancing College at the age of 13, where he won house colours for boxing and distinguished himself as a sergeant in the CCF. Fellow dramatist David Hare was a school contemporary.