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Screening of "Things We Lost In The Fire" at London Film Festival
British director/producer Sam Mendes attends a screening of "Things We Lost In The Fire" at London Film Festival at Odeon West End in London on October 24, 2007. (UPI Photo/Rune Hellestad)
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Samuel Alexander "Sam" Mendes, CBE (born 1 August 1965) is an English stage and film director. He is best known for his Academy Award-winning work on his debut film American Beauty (1999) and his dark re-inventions of the stage musicals Cabaret (1994), Oliver! (1994), Company (1996) and Gypsy (2003).

Mendes was born in Reading, Berkshire to Valerie Helene (née Barnett), an author of children's books, and Jameson Peter Mendes, a university professor. His father is from Trinidad's ethnic Portuguese community, and his mother an English Jew. His grandfather is the Trinidadian writer Alfred Mendes. He attended Magdalen College School, Oxford and later he graduated from Cambridge with a BA in English.

Mendes first attracted attention for his production of Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard in the West End which starred Judi Dench before he was twenty-five years old. Soon he joined the Royal Shakespeare Company where his productions, many of them featuring Simon Russell Beale, included Troilus and Cressida, Richard III and The Tempest.

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