WHO IS IT?
You may know her as the snarky, yet loveable Dowager Countess Violet Crawley on Downton Abbey, but eighty year-old Dame Maggie Smith has been acting and knocking our socks off for over sixty years. She has been in countless movies, TV shows and theatre productions, including book adaptations of The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, A Room With a View and the Harry Potter series.
WHAT’S SO FASCINATING?
Talented with hard to ignore gravitas, Maggie has mesmerized us throughout the years with her ability to portray a wide range of characters whether innocent or fierce, wise or maternal. She commands our respect just by showing up and has a habit of turning a brief appearance into the most memorable part of a movie.
I’m not entirely sure, but I probably first saw Maggie in Clash of the Titans when she played the sea goddess, Thetis, way back in the `80s.
CLASSIC BOOK FILMOGRAPHY
1965 – Othello ~ Desdemona
1969 – The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie ~ Jean Brodie
1972 – Travels with My Aunt ~ Aunt Augusta Bertram
1978 – Death on the Nile ~ Miss Bowers
1981 – Quartet ~ Lois Heidler
1982 – Evil Under the Sun ~ Daphne Castle
1985 – A Room with a View ~ Charlotte Bartlett
1987 – The Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne ~ Judith Hearne
1991 – Hook ~ Wendy Darling
1993 – The Secret Garden ~ Mrs. Medlock
1995 – Richard III ~ Duchess of York
1996 – The First Wives Club ~ Gunilla Garson Goldberg
1997 – Washington Square ~ Aunt Lavinia Penniman
1999 – The Last September ~ Lady Myra Naylor
2001 – Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s/Socerer’s Stone ~ Minerva McGonagall
2002 – Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets ~ Minerva McGonagall
2002 – Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood ~ Caro Eliza Bennett
2004 – Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban ~ Minerva McGonagall
2005 – Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire ~ Minerva McGonagall
2007 – Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix ~ Minerva McGonagall
2009 – Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince ~ Minerva McGonagall
2009 – From Time to Time ~ Linnet Oldknow
2010 – Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang/Nanny McPhee Returns ~ Mrs. Agatha Docherty
2011 – Gnomeo & Juliet ~ Lady Bluebury
2011 – Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows 2 ~ Minerva McGonagall
2012 – The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel ~ Muriel Donnelly
2012 – Quartet ~ Jean Horton
See all of Maggie’s filmography on Wikipedia.
“People say it gets better but it doesn’t. It just gets different, that’s all.”
Actors Chris Larkin (Master and Commander) and Toby Stephens (Jane Eyre) are Maggie’s sons.
Do you love Maggie Smith? What are your favourite characters she has played?