Identified in the late 1980s with the ‘Brit Pack’ of new young British actors headed by Gary Oldman, Firth’s rise to stardom progressed at a slower pace than many of his contemporaries. It was not until his portrayal of Mr. Darcy in the 1995 television adaptation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice that Firth became a household name. The show was a hit in the UK and USA and established him as a light comic leading man. This led to roles in films such as The English Patient, Bridget Jones’s Diary (for which he was nominated for a BAFTA), Shakespeare in Love, and Love Actually. In 2009 he received widespread critical acclaim for his leading role in A Single Man, for which Firth gained his first Academy Award nomination, and won a BAFTA Award.
In 2011, he received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and was also selected as one of The Time 100. He was awarded an honorary degree from the University of Winchester in 2007, and was made a Freeman of the City of London in 2012. Firth has campaigned for the rights of indigenous tribal peoples and is a member of Survival International. He has also campaigned on issues of asylum seekers and refugees’ rights and the environment. Firth commissioned and is credited as a co-author on a scientific paper on a study into the differences in brain structure between people of differing political orientations.
Edited by khal_naqis on 25 Apr 2013, 02:26
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