She has six DAFTA awards to her credit. She was nominated for an Oscar eight times and is even a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire and a Commander of the Order of the Knights of Honor. It’s about the amazing Judi Dench.
Surprisingly, once she heard in her address after the first screen test: “No one will ever shoot you …”. No wonder her husband called her “a horse rushing towards the light at all times”. Miss Dench has had a dizzying career and today, in her eighty-something years, continues to devote herself to acting and receive rave reviews from fans as one of the best actresses.
In the footsteps of a brother
The roots of Judith Olivia Dench from the UK (city of North Yorkshire): she was born on December 9, 1934, in a doctor’s family at the Royal Theater. The mother of the future actress was a housewife, but sometimes she worked as a costume designer in the same theater where her father worked. Therefore, the whole childhood of the beautiful Judy passed behind the scenes. The girl often ran to visit her father and mother, accompanied by her older brother, and always watched with admiration what was happening on stage and backstage.
Judy recalled her first appearance on stage: at the age of five, she got the role of a snail. Dressed in a brown suit in the shape of a shell, the girl had to crawl, bending over the stage. How much joy she had when she saw her parents in the auditorium. How can they not wave their hands?! Judy straightened up… and was immediately reprimanded. Everyone shouted: “Get down!, Get down!”. And it was a failure.
At that time, her older brother Jeffrey was already playing with might and main in the school theater and planned to continue his career as an actor. Yes, and Judy herself began to study at the College of Art. At that time, she dreamed of ballet. The girl already saw herself in a beautiful snow-white tutu and pointe shoes. And in order to clarify the daughter’s head, her father had to tell her about the “fate” of the ballerinas, that they retire at the age of forty.
Judy then decided not to rush into retirement and pursue a career in design. But studying at an art school and the instructions of his brother-actor did their job. And she goes to study in London at the School of Dramatic Art (Jeffrey has already studied there).
First steps in art and instant takeoff
Judy was the best student in her class, so it was not difficult for her to become an actress with the troupe of the Old Vic Company. All the young actors dreamed of getting there, and the girl immediately got the role – the role of Ophelia! Judith said that, unlike others, she was very lucky – she never played small back roles and did not run in extras. And it was the role of Shakespeare’s heroine that greatly strengthened her self-confidence.
This was followed by other successful roles in the Old Vic Company – “Henry V” and “Twelfth Night”. Four years later, Judy became the leading actress in the world-famous Royal Shakespeare Theatre. Only Judith herself decided to expand her boundaries of creativity. It was not enough for her to play Shakespeare’s heroines. And although the first screen test turned out to be a failure – the director considered Judith’s face “nightmarish”, the actress continued to achieve her goal. In 1965, the role played by her in the film Four in the Morning brought the actress her first success and an award from the British Academy of Film and Television.
Judy’s versatility and innate talent allowed her to play completely different roles. So she starred in the romantic comedy series As Time Goes By and became even more popular.
At the age of 60, Miss Dench received an invitation to star in the “Bond” as “M” – the boss of James Bond. And if it were not for the persuasion of her husband, the actress would have refused the role. Her husband dreamed of boasting to his friends that he lives with a great Bond girl. Dench herself laughs at herself – “they say, what kind of Bond boss is she, if she can’t give a fret to an answering machine, not to mention the device to save the world …”. It is worth noting that in life the actress does not hold humor.
On account of the actress, the role of Queen Elizabeth I herself (1998) and a well-deserved award – “Oscar”. She starred in many films, more than forty, including children’s productions. Moreover, one of the last roles in the recently filmed, in 2021, film of the biography Belfast.
Interesting fact. Green light in a big movie Judy received thanks to Harvey Weinstein. He called her to the shooting of “Her Majesty Mrs. Brown”, and for the role she played, the actress received the “Golden Globe”. After that, the film producer constantly kept in touch with the actress, and she, in turn, in honor of their creative tandem, even made a tattoo on her pope with his name. Of course, it turned out to be not real, but Harvey was struck when the actress boasted of his presence in her circle of friends.
Family life of thirty years
Judy always fondly remembers her husband Michael Williams. They met at work, backstage at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre. And although there were two contenders for her hand and heart, the actress, in turn, chose Michael. “Even because of this, I was late for my wedding, which, of course, took place,“ and she did not regret it, because she had lived a happy life with Michael for more than thirty years, and if her husband had not died of oncology, to this day they would be together.
It was her husband who always supported Judy in her work. Even when she wanted to leave the theater after the birth of her daughter or did not believe in her strength for filming a movie, he was there and allowed her to leave art.
Today, the actress continues her acting career. She is not afraid of old age and has never done various anti-aging procedures. Judy was very wise and made her age her ally. Once, she told reporters: “… my agent will be furious if I pump Botox – they will stop offering me the roles of absurd old women!”
Miss Danch is nearly ninety years old and doing great. The only thing that scares a woman is vision problems. She was diagnosed with macular degeneration of the retina. The actress admits that she can recognize relatives and friends only from a distance of no more than 15 meters.
And at the same time, the incomparable Judi Dench is full of enthusiasm to act. For example, during self-isolation, she filmed videos for TikTok. The grandson came up with the idea. If it were not for the daily rehearsals at that difficult time, then life would be boring and gray, according to the actress. She recently admitted to reporters that she wants to return to the theater. “… You can’t stop!” – the motto of the one who deserved the title of Dame Commander of the British Empire.