'History Boys' to open to a Royal audience

LONDON, Aug. 24 (UPI) -- Fox Searchlight Pictures has set a date to screen "The History Boys" -- a film adaptation of the Tony-winning play -- for a royal audience in London.

Helena Bonham Carter to join 'Potter' cast

BURBANK, Calif., Aug. 3 (UPI) -- Actress Helena Bonham Carter will join the cast of "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix," Warner Bros. Pictures announced in Burbank, Calif.

'History Boys' wins big at Tony Awards

NEW YORK, June 11 (UPI) -- "The History Boys" won six Tonys, including one for best play, and "Jersey Boys" won for best musical at the 60th Tony Awards in New York Sunday.

Phone ring stops Broadway show

NEW YORK, June 2 (UPI) -- The Tony Award-nominated star of Broadway's "History Boys" stopped the show when a cell phone rang for the third time during a recent matinee.

'Billy Elliott' leads Brit award nods

LONDON, Jan. 18 (UPI) -- The stage musical "Billy Elliot" leads the field with nine Laurence Olivier Award nominations announced in London Wednesday.

'Producers' wins big at Oliver Awards

LONDON, Feb. 21 (UPI) -- Mel Brooks' "The Producers" was the big winner at Britain's Olivier Awards, taking home awards for Best New Musical and Best Actor.
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Richard Griffiths
Richard Griffiths arrives for the 60th Annual Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall in New York on June 11, 2006. (UPI Photo/Laura Cavanaugh)

Richard Griffiths, OBE (born 31 July 1947) is an English actor of stage, film and television. He has received the Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actor, the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Actor in a Play, the Outer Critics Circle Award for Best Featured Actor in a Play, and the Tony Award for Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Play, all for his role in the play The History Boys. He is also known for his portrayal of Vernon Dursley in the Harry Potter films, Uncle Monty in Withnail and I and Henry Crabbe in Pie in the Sky.

Griffiths was born in a house in Westbury Street in Thornaby-on-Tees, Stockton, England to a steelworker father and a bagger mother. He had a Catholic upbringing. The son of deaf parents, he learned sign language at an early age in order to communicate with them. He even developed an ear for dialects that subsequently landed him several ethnic roles. In his childhood he attempted to run away from home many times. He dropped out of Our Lady & St Bede school at age 15 and worked as a porter for a while, but his boss eventually convinced him to go back to school. Here he decided to attend a drama class at Stockton & Billingham College. He continued his education in drama at Manchester Polytechnic School of Drama (which is now known as the Manchester School of Theatre).

After graduating, Griffiths earned a spot on BBC Radio. He also worked in small theatres, sometimes acting and sometimes managing. He built up an early reputation as a Shakespearean clown with portrayals of the Constable in The Comedy of Errors and Falstaff in The Merry Wives of Windsor with the Royal Shakespeare Company, and went on to play the King in Henry VIII.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.
It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Richard Griffiths."
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