Known for movies

Short Info

Date Of BirthMay 13, 1957
FactShe was nominated for a 1997 Laurence Olivier Theatre Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role of 1996 for her performance in "Uncle Vanya".

Frances Barber (born 8 May 1957) is an English actress. She trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and first came to prominence appearing in television series such as The Professionals (1981–83), Oxbridge Blues (1984) and Minder (1984–85).

She has since had a successful career in film, theatre and television, appearing in films such as Sammy and Rosie Get Laid (1987), Scandal (1989), The Madness of King George (1994), Mrs Brown (1997) and Quills (2000). On stage, she has appeared in productions of The Seagull (1985), The Cherry Orchard (1985), The Tempest (1987) and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (2005).

In recent years, Barber has appeared in the television series Silent Witness (2012–13), Lewis (2013–14) and Dickensian (2015–16). She also had a recurring role in the Netflix series The Crown (2016–17).

Barber was born in Wolverhampton, England, the daughter of an engineer. She was educated at a local girls’ grammar school before training at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.

Barber’s first television appearance was in the 1981 series The Professionals. She went on to appear in a number of other television series, including Oxbridge Blues (1984) and Minder (1984–85).

Barber’s first film appearance was in the 1987 film Sammy and Rosie Get Laid. She has since appeared in a number of films, including Scandal (1989), The Madness of King George (1994), Mrs Brown (1997) and Quills (2000).

On stage, Barber has appeared in productions of The Seagull (1985), The Cherry Orchard (1985), The Tempest (1987) and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (2005).

In recent years, Barber has appeared in the television series Silent Witness (2012–13), Lewis (2013–14) and Dickensian (2015–16). She also had a recurring role in the Netflix series The Crown (2016–17).

Barber is divorced from actor Neil Pearson, with whom she has two sons. She is a patron of the charity Actors for Autism.

Barber has been described as “one of our finest character actresses”. She was awarded an OBE in the 2018 New Year Honours for services to drama.

General Info

Full NameFrances Barber
Date Of BirthMay 13, 1957
Place Of BirthWolverhampton, United Kingdom
Height1.64 m
ProfessionVoice Actor
EducationBangor University


ParentsS. W. Brookes, Gladys Simpson


NominationsLaurence Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role, Laurence Olivier Award for Most Promising Newcomer of the Year in Theatre
MoviesA Zed & Two Noughts, Prick Up Your Ears, Goal II: Living the Dream, Sammy and Rosie Get Laid, Goal!, Evilenko, Photographing Fairies, Still Crazy, We Think the World of You, Young Soul Rebels, Esther Kahn, Shiner, Mr. Holmes, 3 Steps to Heaven, Giorgino, A Murder Is Announced, Castaway, The Red Sire...
TV ShowsAgatha Christie's Poirot, Funland, Behaving Badly, Silk, Monkey Dust, Bremner, Bird and Fortune, The Nightmare Years, Manchild, A Passionate Woman, Rhodes, The Spa, Having It Off, Celeb, Ice House

Social profile links


1Playing Goneril in Shakespeare's "King Lear", and Arkadina in Chekhov's "The Seagull", with the Royal Shakespeare Company, alongside Sir Ian McKellen. [October 2007]
2She was nominated for a 1997 Laurence Olivier Theatre Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role of 1996 for her performance in "Uncle Vanya".




Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool2017post-productionJoy
Blue Iguana2017post-productionPrincess
The Bookshop2017post-productionJessie
The Escape2017/IIfilmingAlison
Medici: Masters of Florence2016TV SeriesPiccarda
El elegido2016Natalia Sedova
Vicious2016TV SeriesCarlotta
Benidorm2016TV SeriesDaisy
Bucky2016ShortMiss Eversham
Flack2015TV MovieCaroline
Murder in Successville2015TV SeriesMary Berry
Mr. Holmes2015Matinee 'Madame Schirmer'
Mapp & Lucia2014TV Mini-SeriesAmelia, Contessa Di Faraglione
Psychobitches2013-2014TV SeriesBarbara Cartland / Josephine and Joseph / Thora Hird / ...
Happy Toys2014ShortConnie
Shakespeare in the Raw2014Short
Silk2012-2014TV SeriesCaroline Warwick QC
The Life of Rock with Brian Pern2014TV Mini-SeriesWendy
The Spa2013TV SeriesGinny
Bad Education2013TV SeriesAlfie's Mum
Advance to Contact2013ShortDr. Catherine Sheldon
The Academy: Special2012TV MovieActor
Vexed2012TV SeriesPat Poynter
May I Kill U?2012Bernice
We'll Take Manhattan2012TV MovieDiana Vreeland
Mercutio's Dreaming: The Killing of a Chinese Actor2011ShortRegine Carey
Great Expectations2011TV Mini-SeriesMrs. Brandley
Pete Versus Life2011TV SeriesRebecca
Death in Paradise2011TV SeriesDiana Watson
Doctor Who2011TV SeriesEye Patch Lady Madame Kovarian
Friday Night Dinner2011TV SeriesSheila Bloom
The Nativity2010TV Mini-SeriesElizabeth
Midsomer Murders2010TV SeriesConstance Fielding
A Passionate Woman2010TV SeriesMargaret
Agatha Christie's Poirot1990-2009TV SeriesMerlina Rival / Lady Millicent
The Academy Part 2: First Impressions2009VideoFrankie
The Fattest Man in Britain2009TV MovieJanice
The Street2009TV SeriesLizzie Gargan
Hotel Babylon2009TV SeriesArianna Adams
Law & Order: UK2009TV SeriesMichaela Herman
King Lear2008TV MovieGoneril
Casualty2008TV SeriesNancy
Beautiful People2008TV SeriesMiss Prentice
Great Performances2008TV SeriesGoneril
Hustle2007TV SeriesClarissa
Bremner, Bird and Fortune2007TV Series
Goal II: Living the Dream2007Carol Harmison
Brief Encounters2006TV SeriesJackie Knight
New Tricks2006TV SeriesAnita Walsh
The IT Crowd2006TV SeriesDoctor Mendall
Funland2005TV Mini-SeriesConnie Woolf
Dead Fish2005S & M Prostitute
Goal! The Dream Begins2005Carol Harmison
Where the Heart Is2005TV SeriesMichelle
Bremner, Bird and Fortune: A Bunch of Counts2005TV MovieVarious
Enfant Terrible2005Short
According to Bex2005TV SeriesBrenda
Agatha Christie's Marple2005TV SeriesLizzie Hinchcliffe
His Passionate Bride2004ShortNarrator (voice)
Trial & Retribution2004TV SeriesCassandra
The Legend of the Tamworth Two2004TV MovieMiss Piggy (voice)
Suzie Gold2004Joyce Spencer
Monkey Dust2003TV Series
Warrior Queen2003Agrippina
My Family2003TV SeriesVanessa
Holby City2002TV SeriesEva Thomas
Celeb2002TV SeriesSuzi
24 heures de la vie d'une femme2002Betty
Having It Off2002TV SeriesApril Summers
La sirène rouge2002Eva
Manchild2002TV SeriesElizabeth
Gimme Gimme Gimme2001TV SeriesJanine
Superstition2001Isabella Flores
The Gentleman Thief2001TV MovieJulia Sinclair
Love in a Cold Climate2001TV Mini-SeriesThe Bolter
Esther Kahn2000Rivka Kahn
Toy Boys1999ShortMrs. Chambers
Mauvaise passe1999Jessica
Real Women II1999TV SeriesAnna Nicholls
Plastic Man1999TV MovieLouise Ferman
Murder Most Horrid1999TV SeriesGloria Twigge
Still Crazy1998Lady in Black
Dalziel and Pascoe1998TV SeriesAmanda 'Cap' Marvell
Real Women1998TV SeriesAnna
Rules of Engagement1997TV MovieHarriet Saunders
A Royal Scandal1997TV MovieLady Jersey
Photographing Fairies1997Beatrice Templeton
Hand on the Shoulder1997TV MovieTranslator's voice
The Ice House1997TV Mini-SeriesDiana Goode
Circles of Deceit: Sleeping Dogs1996TV MovieAnnie Shepherd
Rhodes1996TV Mini-SeriesPrincess Catherine Radziwill
Rules of Engagement1995
Scarborough Ahoy!1995ShortMaria
It Could Be You1995TV MovieWendy
Aristophanes: The Gods Are Laughing1995TV MovieAdonia
3 Steps to Heaven1995TV MovieAndrea Wallis
Space Precinct1995TV SeriesErika Brandt
Dirty Old Town1995TV MovieSally Denton
Chef!1994TV SeriesAnita Lawrence
Du fond du coeur1994Anna Lindsay
Alleyn Mysteries1994TV SeriesKitty Cartarette
Screen Two1991-1994TV SeriesMother / Karen / Jenny Coldfield
Thatcherworld1993TV ShortPenny Jenkins
Rory Bremner, Who Else?1993TV Series
A Statement of Affairs1993TV Mini-SeriesPip
Soft Top Hard Shoulder1993Miss Trumble
The Leaving of Liverpool1992TV MovieEllen, Lily's mother
Inspector Morse1992TV SeriesNicole Burgess
Screen One1991TV SeriesFreddie Hancock
Secret Friends1991Angela
Young Soul Rebels1991Ann
The Storyteller: Greek Myths1991TV Mini-SeriesMedusa
The Orchid House1991TV Mini-SeriesJoan
El C.I.D.1991TV SeriesMolly
The Grasscutter1990TV MovieClaire Deeds
Red Dwarf1989TV SeriesGenny
Chambre à part1989Gert
Behaving Badly1989TV Mini-SeriesRebecca
The Nightmare Years1989TV Mini-SeriesHelga Bauer
Twelfth Night, or What You Will1988TV MovieViola Cesario
Victim of the Brain1988
This Is David Lander1988TV SeriesYvonne Watts / Irina Tereschkov
We Think the World of You1988Megan
Apb1988TV Series
Ten Great Writers of the Modern World1988TV Mini-Series documentaryWinnie Verloc
Clem1987TV MovieLisa
Sammy and Rosie Get Laid1987Rosie Hobbs
Prick Up Your Ears1987Leonie Orton
Castaway1986Sister Saint Winifred
White City1985Alice
A Zed & Two Noughts1985Venus de Milo
Acceptable Levels1985Jill
Play for Today1982-1984TV SeriesViv / Melody
A Flame to the Phoenix1983Wanda Grabinska
Those Glory Glory Days1983TV MovieWoman
Reilly: Ace of Spies1983TV Mini-SeriesDagmara
The Missionary1982Mission Girl
Wings of Ash: A Dramatization of the Life of Antonin Artaud1978Short


Pet Shop Boys: A Life in Pop2006TV Movie documentary performer: "My night", "Friendly fire"
A Zed & Two Noughts1985performer: "The Teddy Bear's Picnic"


Doctor Who: The Doctors Revisited2013TV Mini-Series documentaryHerself
Celebrity Antiques Road Trip2013TV SeriesHerself
Charlie Rose2013TV SeriesHerself - Guest
Muse of Fire2013DocumentaryHerself
Celebrity Eggheads2012TV SeriesHerself - Participant
Loose Women2004-2012TV SeriesHerself
12 Again2012TV SeriesHerself
Doctor Who Confidential2011TV Series documentaryHerself
The Variety Club Showbiz Awards 20092009TV SpecialHerself
The Academy2009ShortHerself
A Taste of My Life2008TV Series documentaryHerself
Cooking It2006TV SeriesNarrator
Pet Shop Boys: A Life in Pop2006TV Movie documentaryHerself
GMTV2004TV SeriesHerself
Today with Des and Mel2004TV SeriesHerself
The Queen Mother: Her Reign in Colour 1937-19532001TV Movie documentary voice
Breakfast2001TV SeriesHerself - Guest
Omnibus2001TV Series documentaryHerself
An Audience with Diana Ross1999TV SpecialHerself - Audience Member
Ruby1997-1999TV SeriesHerself
The Laurence Olivier Awards 19971997TV SpecialHerself
Timewatch1988TV Series documentary
Treasure Hunt1985TV SeriesHerself

Archive Footage

My Family2009TV SeriesVanessa


Nominated Awards

2012DaggerCrime Thriller Awards, UKBest Supporting ActressSilk (2011)

Source: IMDb, Wikipedia

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