Dame Judi Dench: Headline Speaker

ASFF is thrilled to announce that British actress Dame Judi Dench will be joining the festival’s renowned masterclass strand to discuss her esteemed career on stage and screen.

In a year that will see some stellar talents from both behind and in front of the camera speak about their craft, Dame Judi’s must-see masterclass (8 November, 16:00) is a fitting way to bring this truly special 10th anniversary edition of the ASFF to a close.

With a body-of-work that stretches back to 1957, when she left drama college to play Ophelia in a production of Hamlet at the Old Vic, Dame Judi’s wealth of experience has seen her work with some of the world’s most acclaimed directors. Among her many collaborators stand Clint Eastwood (J. Edgar), Tim Burton (Mrs. Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children) and Joe Wright (Pride & Prejudice).

On stage, Dame Judi has won a Tony on Broadway in 1999 for her role in Amy’s View and a record eight Olivier awards, most recently for A Winter’s Tale. In the cinema, she has been equally feted, receiving seven Oscar nominations, beginning with her role as Queen Victoria in Mrs. Brown. In 1999, her turn as an imperious Queen Elizabeth I in Shakespeare In Love saw her win the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.

After coming to the British public’s attention in the 1980s in the television sitcom A Fine Romance, co-starring with her late husband Michael Williams, Dame Judi gradually moved into film, notably in the Merchant-Ivory production of A Room With A View (1985). Four years later, she featured in Kenneth Branagh’s film version of Henry V, cementing an indelible relationship with the actor-director that has seen them collaborate on everything from Hamlet to this year’s Artemis Fowl

Internationally, Dame Judi became known to millions for playing James Bond’s superior M. First playing the role opposite Pierce Brosnan in 1995’s GoldenEye, it was a part she would go on to play seven times, concluding with the character’s dramatic demise in 2012’s Skyfall. Away from Bond, she has worked multiple times with Stephen Frears, Richard Eyre and John Madden, each yielding her two Oscar nominations apiece.

Still regularly performing in front of the camera, Dame Judi will next be seen in World War II thriller Six Minutes To Midnight, co-written by and co-starring Eddie Izzard, and Blithe Spirit, a new adaptation of the Noël Coward play with Dan Stevens and Isla Fisher. She also recently wrapped on pan-European comedy Off the Rails, with Kelly Preston, and is currently filming Belfast, a highly personal tale written and directed by Kenneth Branagh.

Unlimited Screening Passes, Week Passes, 24-Hour Passes and Film Only Passes are available. Prices start from £25 and cover an entire household. To book your ticket, visit asff.co.uk/tickets.

1. Dame Judi Dench © PA .
2. Still from Skyfall, dir. Sam Mendes.
3. Still from Philomena, dir. Stephen Frears.