Although this stylish British auteur has directed many Oscar-nominated performances — Glenn Close and Michelle Pfeiffer in Dangerous Liaisons, Judy Dench in Mrs. Henderson Presents, and Anjelica Huston and Annette Bening in The Grifters — Frears has only earned two nods himself. While well regarded (and well awarded) on his side of the pond, the Hollywood machine didn't truly give Frears his due until 2006's The Queen. After launching his career in theater, he became an assistant filmmaker, eventually making his feature directorial debut with 1971's Gumshoe. It would be over a decade before he helmed another feature (1984's The Hit). In between, he made his name in British TV, directing and often producing small-screen adaptations of lauded stage productions. He began to make an impression as a film director with the 1985 art-house hit My Beautiful Launderette, which featured all the hallmarks of a Frears film: strong performances (especially from a then-unknown Daniel Day-Lewis as a gay punk) and pointed political commentary. A string of fine films followed: The unsettling Joe Orton biopic Prick Up Your Ears, the social satire Sammy and Rosie Get Laid, and Frears' Hollywood debut, the deliciously devious Dangerous Liaisons. 1990's The Grifters, a decidedly American film based on a pulp novel, earned him an Oscar nomination, but he discovered the fickleness of the American film industry with two successive bombs: Hero, an underrated, Preston Sturges-like romp, and the hilariously bad Jekyll and Hyde tale Mary Reilly, which earned him a Razzie nomination. Wisely, Frears opted to helm more artistic, independent films, scoring modest successes with High Fidelity, as well as the European-made films The Van and Liam. The international hit Dirty Pretty Things, which examined the underbelly of London through immigrants' eyes, earned Frears his best notices in years. But it was 2006's The Queen, starring a riveting Helen Mirren as Elizabeth II, that finally got U.S. audiences to prick up their ears and open their wallets. Frears deservedly earned his first Golden Globe nod for his work as well as his second Oscar nomination.