Eileen Atkins appeared at a previous festival. View this year's speakers here.

Eileen Atkins

Actress & Screenwriter
Eileen Atkins headshot

Dame Eileen June Atkins, DBE is an English actress and screenwriter. She has worked in the theatre, film, and television consistently since 1953. In 2008, she won the BAFTA TV Award for Best Actress and the Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries or Movie for Cranford. She is also a three-time Olivier Award winner, winning Best Supporting Performance and two awards for Best Actress. She was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in 1990 and Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in 2001.

Atkins joined the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1957 and made her Broadway debut in the 1966 production of The Killing of Sister George, for which she received the first of four Tony Award nominations for Best Actress in a Play. She received subsequent nominations for, Vivat! Vivat Regina!Indiscretions and The Retreat from Moscow. Other stage credits include The Tempest, Exit the King, The Promise, The Night of the Tribades, A Delicate Balance and Doubt.

Atkins co-created the iconic television dramas Upstairs, Downstairs and The House of Elliot with Jean Marsh. She also wrote the screenplay for the 1997 film Mrs Dalloway. Her film appearances include Equus, The Dresser, Let Him Have It, Wolf, Jack and Sarah, Gosford Park, Evening, Last Chance Harvey, Robin Hood and Magic in the Moonlight.

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