Janet Suzman

Actor, Director
A stunning, South African-born actress, Janet Suzman became and established star of the London stage from the late 1960s through her association with the Royal Shakespeare Company. The strong-featured actress with ... Read more »
Born: 02/09/1939 in South Africa

Filmography

Actor (26)

Labyrinth 2013 - 2014 (TV Show)

Actor

Sinbad 2013 (Tv Show)

Actor

Max 2002 (Movie)

Max's Mother (Actor)

Front Seat 2000 - 2001 (TV Show)

Actor

Deadly Slumber 1996 - 1997 (TV Show)

Actor

The Windsors: A Royal Family 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)

Narrator

Leon the Pig Farmer 1993 (Movie)

Judith Geller (Actor)

The Secret Agent 1992 - 1993 (TV Show)

Actor

Nuns on the Run 1990 (Movie)

Sister Superior (Actor)

A Dry White Season 1989 (Movie)

Susan (Actor)

David Goldblatt: In Black and White 1988 - 1989 (TV Show)

Narrator

Only One Earth 1987 - 1988 (TV Show)

Narrator

The Miser 1987 - 1988 (TV Show)

Actor

The Singing Detective 1987 - 1988 (TV Show)

Actor

Masterpiece Theatre: Fifteen Years 1985 - 1986 (TV Show)

Actor

E la nave Va 1984 (Movie)

Edmea Tetua (Actor)

Priest of Love 1981 (Movie)

Frieda Lawrence (Actor)

The Draughtsman's Contract 1981 (Movie)

Mrs Herbert (Actor)

Nijinsky 1980 (Movie)

Emilia Marcus (Actor)

The Black Windmill 1974 (Movie)

Mrs Tarrant (Actor)

A Day in the Death of Joe Egg 1972 (Movie)

Sheila (Actor)

Nicholas and Alexandra 1971 (Movie)

Alexandra (Actor)

Antony and Cleopatra (TV Show)

Actor

Biography

A stunning, South African-born actress, Janet Suzman became and established star of the London stage from the late 1960s through her association with the Royal Shakespeare Company. The strong-featured actress with piercing blue eyes has made occasional film appearances since her debut as the mother of an autistic child in "A Day in the Death of Joe Egg" (1970; released in the USA in 1972). Perhaps Suzman's most notable role was her Oscar-nominated portrayal of the Russian Czarina in "Nicholas and Alexandra" (1971).

Relationships

Betty Suzman

Mother

Trevor Nunn Director

Husband
Married October 17, 1969 divorced in 1986

Joshua Nunn

Son
born on November 11, 1980 father, Trevor Nunn

Max Sonnenberg

Grandfather
member of the South African parliament

Saul Suzman

Father
born in Russia

Jonathan Suzman

Brother
teaches at the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa older

Paul Suzman

Brother
lives in the Pacific Northwest was formerly a farmer in South Africa younger

Margaret Suzman

Sister
lives in the Boston, MA, area married with children younger

Helen Suzman

Aunt
member of South African parliament outspoken critic of apartheid portrayed by actress Peggy Marsh in Richard Attenborough's film "Cry Freedom" (1987)

EDUCATION

London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art

1962
studied with Iris Watson

University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg

1959

Kingsmead College

private girls school

Milestones

1997

Made guest appearance in an episode of "Inspector Morse" (PBS)

1992

Last feature role to date in "Leon, the Pig Farmer"

1992

Appeared in the British TV adapation of Joseph Conrad's "The Secret Agent" (BBC and PBS)

1990

Played the Mother Superior in the comedy "Nuns on the Run"

1989

Won plaudits for her turn in "A Dry White Season"

1988

Co-starred in the acclaimed British TV series "The Singing Detective", starring Michael Gambon and written by Dennis Potter

1987

Stage directorial debut, "Othello" for the Market Theatre in South Africa (also broadcast on TV)

1986

Cast as Lady Edwina Mountbatten in the six-part biography "Lord Mountbatten: The Last Viceroy" (PBS)

1984

Played Eleanorof Aquitaine in the CBS TV-movie "The ZAny Adventures of Robin Hood"

1983

Returned to stage acting after taking time off after the birth of her son; co-starred with Ian McKellen in Sean Mathias' play "Cowardice"

1983

Had featured role in Federico Fellini's "And the Ship Sails On"

1982

Starred in Peter Greenaway's "The Draughtsman's Contract"

1981

Played Frieda Lawrence in the biopic "Priest of Love", opposite Ian McKellen

1980

Hade featured role in Herbert Ross' "Nijinsky"

1976

Co-starred in "Voyage of the Damned"

1973

Played the Egyptian queen in "Anthony and Cleopatra" (ABC)

1970

Co-starred in "Nicholas and Alexandra", playing the Czarina; earned Oscar nomination as Best Actress

1969

Screen debut "A Day in the Death of Joe Egg" (US release, 1972)

1968

Starred in a British TV adaptation of George Bernard Shaw's "Saint Joan"

1968

Traveled to the USA to appear at the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles; later toured USA in "Much Ado About Nothing"

1967

Rejoined the RSC

1966

Appeared with the Oxford Playhouse

1966

Made British TV debut in the BBC series "Lord Raingo" opposite Kenneth More

1966

Left the RSC to concentrate on her TV career

1965

Won praise for her Portia in "The Merchant of Venice" and Ophelia in "Hamlet"

1963

London stage debut with the RSC, "The Comedy of Errors"

1962

Stage debut, "Billy Liar" in Ipswich, England

1962

Joined Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) in December

Decided to pursue an acting career; moved to London in 1959

Starred in BBC productions of "Three Sisters" (1969), "Macbeth" and "Hedda Gabler" (both 1970); productions aired in the USA on PBS in 1975

Born and raised in South Africa

Worked for five months in repertory in Ipswich, Sheffield, Manchester (where she first played Shakespeare) and Worthington

Toured the USA with the RSC

Bonus Trivia

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She was awarded a honorary degree from the Open University (1984)

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