Rowan Atkinson (born 06.01.1955) Rowan Atkinson is an English actor and comedian famous for starring in the sitcoms 'Mr. Bean' and 'Blackadder'.
Childhood: Rowan Atkinson was born in Consett, County Durham, England. His parents were Ella May and Eric Atkinson who was a company director and a farmer. He was brought up in an Anglican household. He attended Durham Choristers School, St. Bees School and Newcastle University. He landed an MSc in Electrical Engineering at The Queen's College in Oxford. He got involved with the Oxford Revue at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 1976.
Comedy and TV career: Rowan Atkinson began his career with BBC Radio 3 comedy show 'The Atkinson People' which he co-wrote with Richard Curtis. He also went on a comedy tour with Angus Deayton which soon led him to his first TV show, 'Not the Nine O'Clock News' featuring Pamela Stephenson, Mel Smith and Griff Rhys Jones and which premiered for the BBC in 1979.
In 1983, he began co-writing and starring in medieval sitcom 'The Black Adder' alongside Tony Robinson, Tim McInnerny and Brian Blessed. Three more sequel series followed; 'Blackadder II' set during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, 'Blackadder the Third' set in the Regency era and 'Blackadder Goes Forth' set during World War II. His character the bumbling, clumsy Mr. Bean made his debut in 1990 in a Thames Television special and a series ran until 1995.
A film entitled 'Bean' followed in 1997 also starring Peter MacNicol. In 2007, 'Mr. Bean's Holiday' was released. Between 1995 and 1996 he starred in police comedy series 'The Thin Blue Line' as a serious-minded and socially inept inspector. The series also starred James Dreyfus and Serena Evans. In 1999, he played the Doctor in a parody of 'Doctor Who' for Red Nose Day. In 2012 at the London Olympics, he appeared as Mr. Bean in a comedy sketch. However, later that year he revealed that he would not reprise his role as the character again.
Film career: Rowan Atkinson made his movie debut in the comedy short 'Dead on Time' in 1983 and also appeared in the unofficial James Bond movie 'Never Say Never Again'. In 1989, he appeared in Mel Smith's rom com 'The Tall Guy' alongside Jeff Goldblum and Emma Thompson. The following year, he appeared in the film adaptation of Roald Dahl's 'The Witches' with Anjelica Huston and Mai Zetterling.
1993 saw him in the 'Rambo III' parody 'Hot Shots! Part Deux' (1993). He played a stuttering vicar in 'Four Weddings and a Funeral' in 1994 opposite Hugh Grant. He also played a vicar in the dark comedy 'Keeping Mum' in 2005 which also starred Maggie Smith and Patrick Swayze. Also in 1994 he voiced Zazu the Red-billed Hornbill in Disney's Academy Award winning movie 'The Lion King'. He had roles in the comedies 'Rat Race' in 2001, 'Scooby-Doo' in 2002 and 'Love Actually' in 2003. Also in 2003, he starred as the title character in the James Bond style comedy 'Johnny English' and reprised the role in 2011 in the sequel 'Johnny English Reborn'.
Personal life: Rowan Atkinson married make-up artist Sunetra Sastry in 1990 and have two children. He and his family have homes in Apethorpe, Northamptonshire and Ipsden, Oxfordshire. He used to be in a relationship with actress Leslie Ash. Atkinson suffers from a stutter.
One of his comedic styles is that he pronounces the letter 'B' with much emphasis; as much as it adds to the humour, it is mainly a method of overcoming difficult consonant sounds. He has got involved in several political debates regarding free speech and censorship, criticising the Racial and Religious Hatred Bill and the homophobic speech legislation which prevents what he sees as freedom of speech. He has a passion for cars and has written for various British car magazines.
He owns a McLaren F1 which has been involved in two serious accidents, a Honda NSX, an Audi A8 and a Honda Civic Hybrid. He has stated, however, that he will never own a Porsche. He appeared in an episode of 'Top Gear' and topped the board as 'Star in a reasonably priced car', though he was later beaten by Matt LeBlanc.
Atkinson starred in the prestigious role in the first of a new two-part revamp of the detective series for ITV.
Rowan Atkinson helped ITV to a ratings winner over the bank holiday weekend, making his debut as the French detective Maigret in the new series of the same name, and netting nearly 6 million viewers in the process.
Reviews and reactions were mixed to the 61 year old’s portrayal of the detective Jules Maigret, created by Georges Simenon in a series of 75 novels that began in the 1930s. However, his performance was enough to attract 5.7 million viewers and earn ITV a 28.1% share of the audience in its 9pm slot.
Rowan Atkinson plays the French detective 'Maigret' in a new two-part ITV series
Continue reading: Rowan Atkinson Receives Mixed Reviews For His Portrayal Of 'Maigret'
The 'Mr. Bean' star's ex-wife of 24 years Sunetra Sastry split from him last year after he embarked on a relationship with a 32 year old comedy actress.
Rowan Atkinson has divorced his wife of more than 24 years Sunetra Sastry in a court hearing that lasted less than a minute, after he left her for a comedy actress nearly half his age.
Atkinson, 60, has been estranged from Sunetra, a BBC make-up artist, since they split in 2014. The decree nisi was granted on the grounds of unreasonable behaviour at London’s Central Family Court by District Judge Stephen Alderson, and neither he nor his ex-wife – who lodged the petition - were present for the hearing.
Atkinson and his ex-wife Sunetra Sastry
The classic BBC comedy ended its run in 1989.
Sir Tony Robinson has said he thinks a new series of classic BBC comedy ‘Blackadder’ is on the cards, but only if they can meant the price of Hugh Laurie. Laurie was one of the stars of the British sitcom in the 1980's but he has since gone on to find success across the pond in Fox drama ‘House', raising his price tag.
Hugh Laurie and Rowan Atkinson in ‘Blackadder’ series three.
Speaking to The Sun, 69 year old Robinson said, “I do think a new series of 'Blackadder' is on the cards. I have spoken to virtually all the cast about this now. The only problem is Hugh’s fee. He’s a huge star now – or so he’d like to think.”
Continue reading: Tony Robinson Says He Thinks A New 'Blackadder' Series Is On The Cards
Atkinson has sold his beloved McLaren F1.
Blackadder star Rowan Atkinson has sold his beloved McLaren F1 supercar for more than £8 million. The vehicle was listed for sale in January through London-based luxury car dealer Taylor & Crawley.
Rowan Atkinson has sold his McLaren F1 for a staggering £8 million
The McLaren was the subject of two high profile crashes during Atkinson's ownership though it didn't stop the car reaching its asking price. Atkinson had done 41,000 miles since he bought it in 1997.
Continue reading: Rowan Atkinson Sells McLaren F1 Supercar For £8 Million
Turns out Captain Blackadder and his cohorts really did serve in World War I.
Captain Blackadder, Lieutenant George and Private Baldrick, some of the most enduring comedy characters of all time, had real-life namesakes, it has emerged.
The Blackadder characters were...actually...real people.
The BBC comedy Blackadder, which covered four periods of history enduring with a series, set in the trenches, was invented by Richard Curtis, Rowan Atkinson and Ben Elton. However, it seems the trio's defining creations really did 'go forth' in World War I after a specialist military genealogy website traced real life counterparts of Captain Blackadder and his cohorts.
Continue reading: The 'Blackadder' Characters Were Real People. Oh, You Didn't Know?
Patsy Byrne, the actress best known for playing Nursie in 'Blackadder II' has died "peacefully" at the age of 80.
Patsy Byrne, the British actress best known for her role as Nursie in Blackadder II, has died at the age of 80.
Rowan Atkinson starred alongside Byrne in Blackadder II.
Other honorees include Rowan Atkinson, Clare Balding, Tony Robinson and Rob Brydon
Adele has yet another award to stick on the mantlepiece; this time the singer has been awarded an MBE by Queen Elizabeth II as part of the royal's annual Birthday Honours List. Fellow female singer PJ Harvey has also been recognised with an MBE, with sports broadcaster Clare Balding being handed an OBE, capping off a successful honours list for women, in which 47% of the list were female.
After winning yet another arm-full of Grammys and her first ever Oscar (not to mention giving birth to her first child), Adele has had yet another remarkable year in her career, with 2012 becoming the second year in a row that the singer became the highest-selling artist for the year. Harvey meanwhile has been a darling in alternative circles for most of her career and her last album, Let England Shake, even won the singer the coveted Mercury Music Prize. Thanks to her appearance throughout the Olympics, Balding endured herself to the British public even more and after a triumphant year of British sport she has emerged as one of the main stars of the year, with her royal honour no doubt being the icing on the cake of what has been a glorious twelve months.
There were of course decorations being handed out for the men too, with Welsh comic Rob Brydon being handed a MBE for his services to entertainment. In a rather unusual turn-up for the book, Blackadder star Tony Robinson has been knighted, whilst his co-star Rowan Atkinson - who has achieved worldwide fame for his roles in various movies and for his portrayal as Mr Bean - was only given a CBE. Robinson told the press upon the news that he is to be made a sir that he is "thrilled, flattered and a little gob-smacked" to get the honour, pledging, "that from this day on I'll slaughter all unruly dragons, and rescue any damsels in distress who request my help."
It's officially the most expensive; Mr. Bean's $1.4m (£910k) car repair tops an unwanted chart after Rowan Atkinson's insurance company shelled out big bucks to fix his McLaren F1.
Atkinson crashed McLaren F1 - which can reach speeds of 240mph - in 2011 for the second time, culminating in a hefty, hefty repair bill, which is astronomically high because it's made mostly of carbon fibre. Luckily, for Mr. Bean anyway, it was the insurance company that were creasing at signing that mega-cheque. Atkinson actually picked up the supercar back in 1997 - around 16 years ago - but due to inflation and the rarity of the model, its value has skyrocketed. In fact, Atkinson's is one of only 64 F1s McLaren built. We hate to think what the monthly payments on that car are now. Reports say that it took over a year before expert technicians from McLaren were able to restore Mr. Bean's automobile. "I'm not a collector," he says, "I don't like the toy cupboard syndrome that causes so many good cars to evaporate. It depresses me that they are hidden away like investment art, or gold ingots in a Swiss vault. The McLaren is just so usable, it is a crime not to use it. No gritted teeth, you just get in and drive." (via The Sun).
This probably won't be too much of a problem for Mr Atkinson, though, his infamous turn as Mr. Bean, followed by a string of hilarious movie roles and some impressive writing credits have lead him to a reported net worth of $112 million.
Continue reading: Mr. Bean's $1.4M Car Repair The Biggest Repair Bill Ever In Britain
We've all had that moment; looking at photos of our favourite celebs and then jumping out of our seats screaming, 'He's HOW old?!' Well, we've been doing a lot of that here at ContactMusic. Some stars seem to have crept up the age ladder pretty sneakily, the odd wrinkle and grey hair barely registering on our radar, while others don't seem to have aged at all! English football player David Beckham was in his twenties when he rose to global popularity and, looking at his recent H&M underwear advert, it seems that his iconic hairstyles and tattoos are our only way of working out the old from the newer pictures of him. However, he is only 37 and has plenty of time to catch up yet. It's the over-50s that have really had our mouths agape in recent times as we've been scouring the net for the most youthful looking middle to old aged stars.
Continue reading: Good Genes Or Good Ops: Which Male Celebrities Don't Show Their Age?
Popular British comic character Blackadder looks like he could have one more role up his sleeve, after a 'lost Christmas special' was re-discovered by scriptwriter Richard Curtis. Played by the actor Rowan Atkinson, Blackadder had entertained British television audiences between 1983 and 1989 in a series of historical roles that saw him appear by series as the weedy son of King Richard IV, an Elizabethan-era Lord, butler to the Prince of Wales in the late 18th century and finally as a captain in the trenches of World War I.
This newly found script though, originally unfinished in 1988 by Curtis and Ben Elton, sees Blackadder play the Bethlehem inn keeper in the story of the nativity, with his trusty assistant Baldrick once again by his side. The script has become public knowledge thanks to a book written by Jem Roberts called The True History Of Blackadder. Roberts was given the script by Curtis whilst constructing the piece, and she told the Radio Times "My jaw dropped when I saw I was holding a lost Blackadder script. He [Curtis] wrote on the script that one of the reasons it didn't get used was because it was a strange cross between Fawlty Towers and Life of Brian."
She added "He didn't think he was going to make it compare to either of them. That's his reason for it never getting any further than it did." With Blackadder still retaining a large cult popularity, in spite of the last televised special being aired in 1999, we wonder whether there might be room for one final, festive hurrah.
Gillian Anderson, Rosamund Pike and Rowan Atkinson - (l-r) Gillian Anderson, Rowan Atkinson, Rosamund Pike Sydney, Australia - The world premiere of 'Johnny English Reborn' held at Hoyts Cinema Sunday 4th September 2011
Date of birth
6th January, 1955
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