Best British Supporting Actress
Best Supporting Actress
Fine-boned and soft-spoken, Thandie Newton displays a deceptive fragility that is betrayed by the strong, resilient characters she often portrays. The actress was born in Zambia in 1972 to a Zimbabwean mother and British father who moved their family to London when Newton was four. It was while a student at a private school in North London that the actress met Australian director John Duigan, who was casting his coming-of-age tale Flirting (1991). Newton won a leading role as the smart, worldly girlfriend of the film's protagonist and starred alongside a then-relatively unknown Nicole Kidman. Her next film of any significance was 1994's Interview With the Vampire, in which she had a minor role alongside Kidman's then-husband, Tom Cruise.
The same year, Newton acted as part of an ensemble cast in Loaded, a fairly obscure film directed by Anna Campion, sister of The Piano's Jane Campion. She was then reunited with Flirting director Duigan in 1995 for The Journey of August King, a little-seen feature in which she starred with Jason Patric. Greater recognition came in the form of the same year's Jefferson in Paris, a critically maligned but impressively cast film, in which Newton played Sally Hemings, slave and lover of Nick Nolte's Thomas Jefferson. Acting alongside individuals such as Nolte, James Earl Jones, and Gwyneth Paltrow certainly did little to hurt Newton's reputation and the next year she had yet another starring role, this time opposite Jon Bon Jovi in her third film with director Duigan, The Leading Man.