Julie Christie Poster


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Overview (4)

Born in Chabua, Assam Province, British India [now Assam, India]
Birth NameJulie Frances Christie
Nickname Jules
Height 5' 3" (1.6 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Julie Christie, the British movie legend whom Al Pacino called "the most poetic of all actresses," was born in Chabua, Assam, India, on April 14, 1940, the daughter of a tea planter and his Welsh wife Rosemary, who was a painter. The young Christie grew up on her father's plantation before being sent to England for her education. Finishing her studies in Paris, where she had moved to improve her French with an eye to possibly becoming a linguist (she is fluent in French and Italian), the teenager became enamored of the freedom of the Continent. She also was smitten by the bohemian life of artists and planned on becoming an artist before she enrolled in London's Central School of Speech Training. She made her debut as a professional in 1957 as a member of the Frinton Repertory of Essex.

Christie was not fond of the stage, even though it allowed her to travel, including a professional gig in the United States. Her true métier as an actress was film, and she made her debut in the science-fiction television series A for Andromeda (1961) in 1961. Her first film was a girlfriend part in the Ealing-like comedy Crooks Anonymous (1962), which was followed up by a larger ingénue role in another comedy, The Fast Lady (1962). The producers of the James Bond series were sufficiently intrigued by the young actress to consider her for the role that subsequently went to Ursula Andress in Dr. No (1962), but dropped the idea because she was not busty enough.

Christie first worked with the man who would kick her career into high gear, director John Schlesinger, when he choose her as a replacement for the actress originally cast in Billy Liar (1963). Christie's turn in the film as the free-wheeling Liz was a stunner, and she had her first taste of becoming a symbol if not icon of the new British cinema. Her screen presence was such that the great John Ford cast her as the young prostitute in Young Cassidy (1965). Charlton Heston wanted her for his film The War Lord (1965), but the studio refused her salary demands.

Although Amercan magazines portrayed Christie as a "newcomer" when she made her breakthrough to super-stardom in Schlesinger's seminal Swinging Sixties film Darling (1965), she actually had considerable work under her professional belt and was in the process of a artistic quickening. Schlesinger called on Christie, whom he adored, to play the role of mode Diana Scott when the casting of Shirley MacLaine fell through. (MacLaine was the sister of the man who would become Christie's long-time paramour in the late 1960s and early '70s, Warren Beatty, whom some, like actor Rod Steiger, believe she gave up her career for. Her "Dr. Zhivago" co-star, Steiger -- a keen student of acting -- regretted that Christie did not give more of herself to her craft.)

As played by Christie, Diana is an amoral social butterfly who undergoes a metamorphosis from immature sex kitten to jaded socialite. For her complex performance, Christie won raves, including the Best Actress Awards from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and the British Film Academy. She had arrived, especially as she had followed up "Darling" with the role of Lara in two-time Academy Award-winning director David Lean's adaptation of Boris Pasternak's Doctor Zhivago (1965), one of the all-time box-office champs.

Christie was now a superstar who commanded a price of $400,000 per picture, a fact ruefully noted in Charlton Heston's diary (his studio had balked at paying her then-fee of $35,000). More interested in film as an art form than in consolidating her movie stardom, Christie followed up "Zhivago" with a dual role in Fahrenheit 451 (1966) for director François Truffaut, a director she admired. The film was hurt by the director's lack of English and by friction between Truffaut and Christie's male co-star Oskar Werner, who had replaced the the more-appropriate-for-the-role Terence Stamp. Stamp and Christie had been lovers before she had become famous, and he was unsure he could act with her, due to his own ego problems. On his part, Werner resented the attention the smitten Truffaut gave Christie. The film is an interesting failure.

Stamp overcame those ego problems to sign on as her co-star in John Schlesinger's adaptation of Thomas Hardy's Far from the Madding Crowd (1967), which also featured two great English actors, Peter Finch and Alan Bates. It is a film that is far better remembered now than when it was received in 1967. The film and her performance as the Hardy heroine Bathsheba Everdene was lambasted by film critics, many of whom faulted Christie for being too "mod" and thus untrue to one of Hardy's classic tales of fate. Some said that her contemporary Vanessa Redgrave would have been a better choice as Bathsheba, but while it is true that Redgrave is a very fine actress, she lacked the sex appeal and star quality of Christie, which makes the story of three men in love with one woman more plausible, as a film.

Although no one then knew it, the period 1967-68 represented the high-water mark of Christie's career. Fatefully, like the Hardy heroine she had portrayed, she had met the man who transformed her life, undermining her pretensions to a career as a movie star in their seven-year-long love affair, the American actor Warren Beatty. Living his life was always far more important than being a star for Beatty, who viewed the movie star profession as a "treadmill leading to more treadmills" and who was wealthy enough after Bonnie and Clyde (1967) to not have to ever work again. Christie and Beatty had visited a working farm during the production of "Madding Crowd" and had been appalled by the industrial exploitation of the animals. Thereafter, animal rights became a very important subject to Christie. They were kindred souls who remain friends four decades after their affair ended in 1974.

Christie's last box-office hit in which she was the top-liner was Petulia (1968) for Richard Lester, a film that featured one of co-star George C. Scott's greatest performances, perfectly counter-balanced by Christie's portrayal of an "arch-kook" who was emblematic of the '60s. It is one of the major films of the decade, an underrated masterpiece. Despite the presence of the great George C. Scott and the excellent Shirley Knight, the film would not work without Julie Christie. There is frankly no other actress who could have filled the role, bringing that unique presence and the threat of danger that crackled around Christie's electric aura. At this point of her career, she was poised for greatness as a star, greatness as an actress.

And she walked away.

After meeting Beatty, Julie Christie essentially surrendered any aspirations to screen stardom, or at maintaining herself as a top-drawer working actress (success at the box office being a guarantee of the best parts, even in art films.) She turned down the lead in They Shoot Horses, Don't They? (1969) and Anne of the Thousand Days (1969), two parts that garnered Oscar nominations for the second choices, Jane Fonda and Geneviève Bujold. After shooting In Search of Gregory (1969), a critical and box office flop, to fulfill her contractual obligations, she spent her time with Beatty in Calfiornia, renting a beach house at Malibu. She did return to form in Joseph Losey's The Go-Between (1971), a fine picture with a script by the great Harold Pinter, and she won another Oscar nomination as the whore-house proprietor in Robert Altman's minor classic McCabe & Mrs. Miller (1971) that she made with her lover Beatty. However, like Beatty himself, she did not seek steady work, which can be professional suicide for an actor who wants to maintain a standing in the first rank of movie stars.

At the same time, Julie Christie turned down the role of the Russian Empress in Nicholas and Alexandra (1971), another film that won the second-choice (Janet Suzman) a Best Actress Oscar nomination. Two years later, she appeared in the landmark mystery-horror film Don't Look Now (1973), but that likely was as a favor to the director, Nicolas Roeg, who had been her cinematographer on "Fahrenheit 451," "Far From the Madding Crowd" and "Petulia." In the mid '70s, her affair with Beatty came to an end, but the two remained close friends and worked together in Shampoo (1975) (which she regretted due to its depiction of women) and Heaven Can Wait (1978).

Christie was still enough of a star, due to sheer magnetism rather than her own pull at the box-office, to be offered $1 million to play the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis character in The Greek Tycoon (1978) (a part eventually played by Jacqueline Bisset to no great acclaim). She signed for but was forced to drop out of the lead in Agatha (1979) (which was filled by Vanessa Redgrave) after she broke a wrist roller-skating (a particularly southern Californian fate!). She then signed for the female lead in American Gigolo (1980) when Richard Gere was originally attached to the picture, but dropped out when John Travolta muscled his way into the lead after making twin box-office killings as disco king Tony Manera in Saturday Night Fever (1977) and greaser Danny Zuko in Grease (1978). Christie could never have co-starred with such a camp figure of dubious talent. When Travolta himself dropped out and Gere was subbed back in, it was too late for Christe to reconsider, as the part already had been filled by model-actress Lauren Hutton. It would take 15 years for Christie and Gere to work together.

Finally, the end of the American phase of her movie career was realized when Christie turned down the part of Louise Bryant in Reds (1981), a part written by Warren Beatty with her in mind, as she felt an American should play the role. (Beatty's latest lover, Diane Keaton, played the part and won a Best Actress Oscar nomination.) Still, she remained a part of the film, Beatty's long-gestated labor of love, as it is dedicated to "Jules."

Julie Christie moved back to the UK and become the UK's answer to Jane Fonda, campaigning for various social and political causes, including animal rights and nuclear disarmament. The parts she did take were primarily driven by her social consciousness, such as appearing in Sally Potter's first feature-length film, The Gold Diggers (1983) which was not a remake of the old Avery Hopwood's old warhorse but a feminist parable made entirely by women who all shared the same pay scale. Roles in The Return of the Soldier (1982) with Alan Bates and Glenda Jackson and Merchant-Ivory's Heat and Dust (1983) seemed to herald a return to form, but Christie -- as befits such a symbol of the freedom and lack of conformity of the '60s -- decided to do it her way. She did not go "careering," even though her unique talent and beauty was still very much in demand by filmmakers.

At this point, Christie's movie career went into eclipse. Once again, she was particularly choosy about her work, so much so that many came to see her, essentially, as retired. A career renaissance came in the mid-1990s with her turn as Gertrude in Kenneth Branagh's ambitious if not wholly successful Hamlet (1996). As Christie said at the time, she didn't feel she could turn Branagh down as he was a national treasure. But the best was yet to come: her turn as the faded movie star married to handyman Nick Nolte and romanced by a younger man in Afterglow (1997), which brought her rave notices. She received her third Best Actress Oscar nomination for her performance, and showed up at the awards as radiant and uniquely beautiful as ever. Ever the iconoclast, she was visibly relieved, upon the announcement of the award, to learn that she had lost!

Christie lived with left-wing investigative journalist Duncan Campbell (a Manchester Guardian columnist) since 1979, first in Wales, then in Ojai, California, and now in London's East End, before marrying in January 2008. In addition to her film work, she has narrated many books-on-tape. In 1995, she made a triumphant return to the stage in a London revival of Harold Pinter's "Old Times", which garnered her superb reviews.

In the decade since "Afterglow," she has worked steadily on film in supporting roles. Christie -- an actress who eschewed vulgar stardom -- proved to be an inspiration to her co-star Sarah Polley, the remarkably talented Canadian actress with a leftist political bent who also abhors Hollywood. Of her co-star in No Such Thing (2001) and The Secret Life of Words (2005), Polley says that Christie is uniquely aware of her commodification by the movie industry and the mass media during the 1960s. Not wanting to be reduced to a product, she had rebelled and had assumed control of her life and career. Her attitude makes her one of Polley's heroes, who calls her one of her surrogate mothers. (Polley lost her own mother when she was 11 years old.)

Both Christie and Polley are rebels. Sarah Polley had walked off the set of the big-budget movie that was forecast as her ticket to Hollywood stardom, Almost Famous (2000), to have a different sort of life and career. She returned to her native Canada to appear in the low-budget indie The Law of Enclosures (2000), a prescient art film in that director John Greyson offset the drama with a background of a perpetual Gulf War three years before George W. Bush invaded Iraq, touching off the second-longest war in U.S. history. Taking a hiatus from acting, Polley went to Norman Jewison's Canadian Film Centre to learn to direct, and direct she has, making well-regarded shorts before launching her feature film debut, Away from Her (2006), which was shot and completed in 2006 but held for release until 2007 by its distributor.

Polley, who had longed to be a writer since she was a child actress on the set of the quaint family show Avonlea (1990) wrote the screenplay for her adaptation of Alice Munro's short story "The Bear Went Over the Mountain" with only one actress in mind: Julie Christie. Polley had first read the short story on a flight back from Iceland, where she had made "No Such Thing" with Christie, and as she read, it was Julie whom she pictured as Fiona, the wife of a one-time philandering husband, who has become afflicted with Alzheimer's disease and seeks to save her hubby the pain of looking after her by checking herself into a home.

After finishing the screenplay, it took months to get Christie to commit to making the film. Julie turned her down after reading the script and pondering it for a couple of months, saying "No" even though she liked the script. Polley then had to "twist her arm" for another couple of months. But alas, Julie has a weakness for national treasures: Just like with Branagh a decade ago, the legendary Julie Christie could not deny the Great White North's Sarah Polley, and commit she did. Polley then found out why Christie is so reticent about making movies:

"She gives all of herself to what she does. Once she said yes, she was more committed than anybody."

According to David Germain, a cinema journalist who interviewed Christie for the Associated Press, "Polley and Christie share a desire to do interesting, unusual work, which generally means staying away from Hollywood.

"'It's been a kind of greed and a kind of egotism, but it's not necessarily wanting to avoid the Hollywood thing, but in fact, it incorporates wanting to avoid the Hollywood thing, because the Hollywood thing is so inevitably not original,' Christie said. 'It's avoiding non-originality, so that means you're really down to a very small choice.'"

The collaboration between the two rebels yielded a small gem of a film. Lions Gate Films was so impressed, it purchased the American distribution rights to the film in 2006, then withheld it until the following year to build up momentum for the awards season.

Julie Christie's performance in "Away From Her" is superb, and already has garnered her the National Board of Review's Best Actress Award. She will likely receive her fourth Academy Award nomination, and quite possibly her second Oscar, for her unforgettable performance, a labor of love she did for a friend.

We, the Julie Christie fans who have waited decades for the handful of films made by the numinous star: Would we have wanted it any other way? We are the Red Sox fans of the movies, once again rewarded with a world-class masterpiece by our heroine. Perhaps, like all human beings, we want more, but we have learned over the last thirty-five years to be content with the diamonds that are Julie's leading performances that she gives just once a decade, content to feel that these are a surfeit of riches, our surfeit of riches, so great is their luminescence.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Jon C. Hopwood

Family (2)

Spouse Duncan Campbell (26 January 2008 - present)
Parents Rosemary Christie
Frank St. John Christie

Trade Mark (3)

Often plays women who inspire great passion in all the male characters rotating around her
Deep husky yet smooth voice
Incredible seductive beauty

Trivia (77)

Chosen by Empire magazine as one of the 100 Sexiest Stars in film history (#26). [1995]
Born at 10:00am-LMT.
Julie's father ran a tea plantation in India, where she grew up.
Her romance with Terence Stamp has been said to have inspired The Kinks "Waterloo Sunset", hence the line "Terry met Julie" in the song. However in a 2004 interview, lead singer Ray Davies, who penned the song, denied this, saying: "No, Terry and Julie were real people. I couldn't write for stars." Stamp later turned down the role of Guy Montag in Fahrenheit 451 (1966) because of his complicated emotions over co-starring with Christie, backing out of the role on the pretext of Julie receiving top billing. Oskar Werner subsequently played Montag. A year later, Stamp had overcome his insecurities and agreed to co-star with Christie in Far from the Madding Crowd (1967).
Former co-owner of Katira Productions, along with boyfriend Warren Beatty (named after Beatty's parents Kathlyn and Ira.).
Joined 160 people to sign an advertisement which ran in The Times (London) urging the legalization of marijuana. [1992]
Is currently active in nuclear disarmament and animal rights. [2004]
Brother Clive Christie is a professor of SouthEast Asian studies at Hull University.
Close friends with actresses Shirley MacLaine, Goldie Hawn and Faye Dunaway.
Director David Lean nicknamed her 'sunflower' for her beautiful personality and director John Schlesinger nicknamed her 'Trilby' after the 19th century novel about a lovable bohemian.
Directors she works with often enjoy working with her so much that they use her several times: Robert Altman in McCabe & Mrs. Miller (1971) and Nashville (1975); John Schlesinger in Billy Liar (1963), Darling (1965), Far from the Madding Crowd (1967) and Separate Tables (1983); Nicolas Roeg directed her in Don't Look Now (1973) and was cinematographer on Far from the Madding Crowd (1967), Fahrenheit 451 (1966) and Petulia (1968) and lover Warren Beatty used her in Shampoo (1975) and Heaven Can Wait (1978).
Fluent in English, French, and Italian.
She lived with investigative journalist Duncan Campbell from 1979 before their wedding in 2008.
Her idol is Marlon Brando.
Lived with Don Bessant, a lithographer and art teacher, from December 1962 to May 1967. After that they continued to date off-and-on until about 1972.
In 1967 Time magazine said of her, "What Julie Christie wears has more real impact on fashion than all the clothes of the ten Best-Dressed women combined.".
Julie discovered she wanted to become an actress when, at age nine, she snuck out of her Paris boarding school and spent the day with a complete stranger who was an aspiring actor.
Julie gave friend Sharon Tate a copy of Thomas Hardy's novel "Tess of the d'Urbervilles" with the inscription "For my Hardy heroine" (Julie had recently become a Thomas Hardy heroine in Far from the Madding Crowd (1967)). Sharon gave the novel to her husband Roman Polanski shortly before her death. When Polanski later made the film Tess (1979) he dedicated it "For Sharon".
Robert Altman said of her, "She's my incandescent, melancholy, strong, gold-hearted, sphinx-like, stainless steel little soldier.".
The infamous dinner-party scene in Shampoo (1975) was completely improvised by Julie and Warren Beatty, much to the surprise of the rest of the cast and director Hal Ashby.
Turned down roles in Rosemary's Baby (1968), Two for the Road (1967), American Gigolo (1980), Chinatown (1974), The Godfather (1972) and a re-make of the Greta Garbo classic Camille (1936).
Was once fashion designer Christian Lacroix's muse, he designed the pink chiffon gown with matching slippers that she wore to the 1971 Academy Awards, and continued to outfit her throughout her career.
Ranked #29 in Mr.Skin's Top 100 Celebrity Nude Scenes.
Ranked #34 in Celebrity Skin's 50 Sexiest Starlets of All Time.
Ranked #5 in Hello Magazine's 25 British Beauties.
Ranked #9 in FHM magazine's '100 sexiest women of all time'.
Chosen by Empire magazine as one of the 100 Greatest Movie Stars (#91).
In an April 29, 1966 Life Magazine cover story, Christie named Sidney Lumet as the only American among a list of directors she'd like to work with. Twenty years later, she got her wish, appearing in the Lumet-directed Power (1986).
Turned down the role of Louise Bryant in her former lover Warren Beatty's Reds (1981) as she thought the role should be played by an American. Beatty's then-lover Diane Keaton won a Best Actress Academy Award nomination playing the role.
Originally signed for the role of the Senator's wife in American Gigolo (1980) when Richard Gere was signed to the project, but quit when Gere was ditched in favor of John Travolta. Travolta later dropped out and Gere was hired for the film, but Christie was not offered the role that was eventually played by Lauren Hutton. Ironically, a rumor in the 1970s held that Christie and Hutton were lovers. Christie and Gere would eventually appear together in Sidney Lumet's Power (1986).
Was Charlton Heston's first choice as co-star The War Lord (1965), according to Heston's published diaries "Charlton Heston: The Actor's Life; Journals 1956-1976". She was vetoed by the studio because her fee was too high, much to Heston's consternation, who believed she was about to become a major star. He was proved right at the end of 1965, the year that "The War Lord" was released.
Was considered as the first "Bond Girl" for Dr. No (1962). She was not chosen because she was considered to be too flat-chested by the producers.
Was the producers first choice to play Presidential widow Liz Cassidy, a role modeled on Jacqueline Kennedy, in The Greek Tycoon (1978). Despite being offered a $1 million fee, she turned it down, and the role was played by Jacqueline Bisset.
Lived with Warren Beatty from 1967 to 1974.
Turned down the leads in They Shoot Horses, Don't They? (1969), Anne of the Thousand Days (1969), Nicholas and Alexandra (1971), and Reds (1981), all roles that won the actresses who eventually played them Best Actress Academy Award nominations.
Accompanied her long-time lover Warren Beatty on a trip to Russia which inspired him to write his Oscar-winning epic Reds (1981) which ultimately took him 13 years to write. Beatty had always planned to have Christie play the role of Louise Bryant, but when Reds (1981) began filming several years after the couple's breakup, Christie turned down the role and Beatty gave it to Diane Keaton. However, Beatty dedicated the film to Christie by hinting to her in his best director Oscar acceptance speech. "For Jules" can also be seen in the final credits of the film.
Favorite filmmaker is Rainer Werner Fassbinder.
Turned down the role of Lara in Doctor Zhivago (1965) at the time the most coveted role in Hollywood, several times before finally accepting.
Member of the jury at the Berlin International Film Festival in 1979.
Her mentor, director John Schlesinger, envisioned a cast of Al Pacino, Julie Christie and Laurence Olivier for Marathon Man (1976). Pacino has said that the only actress he had ever wanted to work with was Christie, who he claimed was "the most poetic of actresses." Producer Robert Evans, who disparaged the vertically challenged Pacino as "The Midget" when Francis Ford Coppola wanted him for The Godfather (1972) and had thought of firing him during the early shooting of the now-classic film, vetoed Pacino for the lead, insisted on the casting of the even-shorter Dustin Hoffman instead! On her part, Christie -- who was notoriously finicky about accepting parts, even in prestigious, sure-fire material -- turned down the female lead, which was then taken by Marthe Keller (who, ironically, became Pacino's lover after co-starring with him in Bobby Deerfield (1977). Of his dream cast, Schlesinger only got Olivier, who was nominated for a "Best Supporting Actor'-Oscar. Pacino has yet to co-star with Christie.
Has played the mother of two Defense Against the Dark Arts professors from the "Harry Potter" series. In Hamlet (1996), she plays the mother of Kenneth Branagh, who went on to play "Gilderoy Lockhart". In DragonHeart (1996), she plays mother to David Thewlis, who plays "Remus Lupin". Christie herself also appears in the third film, with Thewlis.
Has worked with director-screenwriter and actress Sarah Polley three times: co-starring with Polley in No Such Thing (2001) and the Goya Award-winning The Secret Life of Words (2005), and taking the lead in Polley's first feature film as a director, Away from Her (2006). Polley is one of the many co-workers impressed by not only Christie's talent, but her intelligence and independence. After appearing with her in No Such Thing (2001), Polley -- who lost her mom when she was 11 years old -- said that Julie had become one of her surrogate mothers.
Future long-term lover Warren Beatty first espied Christie at the 1966 Royal Command Performance of the film Born Free (1966) in London, which he attended with his then-girlfriend, Leslie Caron. Caron and Beatty were situated near Chrstie in the reception line for Queen Elizabeth II, and Beatty first saw Christie in person when he turned to watch the Queen shake hands with her. Beatty inveigled his friend Richard Sylbert, who was production designer on Christie's film Petulia (1968), to tell her to call him. She did, he flew up to the San Francisco location of the Petulia (1968) shoot and, after a rocky start, they became lovers. She made her first public appearance with Beatty at a sneak preview of Bonnie and Clyde (1967) for the Hollywood elite. It took them several months to rid themselves of their then-current lovers before they came together in a committed relationship, although they usually maintained separate households for the length of their long romance. Most of those who knew them said they shared a passion for the truth. Beatty told his friends he had asked Christie to marry him, but she refused as she did not want children. Christie believed in monogamy, but Beatty felt that as long as they weren't married, he could engage in multiple affairs as long as he remained loyal to her. Eventually, Christie tired of his womanizing and their relationship ended after seven years. His longest and most lasting relationship until he married Annette Bening, the mother of his four children, Beatty considered Christie his wife and told the press in 1971 that he would pay her alimony if they split up, if she wanted it. They did, but she didn't. When Beatty was awarded the Irving Thalberg Award by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences in the year 2000, Christie was one of the friends and co-workers who appeared in a film tribute to her former lover.
Her performance as Diana Scott in Darling (1965) is ranked #75 on Premiere Magazine's 100 Greatest Performances of All Time.
Inspired the song "Julie Christie" on the Better Than Chocolate (1999) soundtrack.
Turned down the role of Laura Fischer, Paul Newman's girlfriend, in The Verdict (1982). Subsequently, Charlotte Rampling was cast in the role.
She reluctantly agreed to star in writer-director Sarah Polley's debut feature-film Away from Her (2006) after many months of persuasion. Christie, who had acted previously with Polley, liked her script, but -- like Polley -- is ambivalent about her acting career. She finally capitulated and her brilliant performance in the film, which debuted at the 2006 Toronto International Film Festival and is due to be released in the United States in the Spring of 2007, has generated buzz predicting that the film likely will bring Christie her fourth Best Actress Oscar nomination.
Al Pacino's favorite actress.
Friends with actresses Kate Winslet and Emma Thompson.
Great admirer of Princess Diana of Wales and was extremely affected by her 1997 death.
Close friends with actress Goldie Hawn. The two women were introduced by Warren Beatty in the late 1960s. Beatty and Christie came to consider Goldie as family, and she co-starred with them in Shampoo (1975). Hawn also introduced Christie to yoga, which she still practices today.
Became very close with director Robert Altman while filming McCabe & Mrs. Miller (1971). (Ironically, her lover and co-star Warren Beatty did not get along with Altman, primarily due to his use of overlapping dialog.) She later appeared as herself in Altman's 1975 classic Nashville (1975) and received an Oscar nomination starring in the Altman-produced Afterglow (1997), directed by Altman protégé Alan Rudolph. The two remained very close until Altman's death in 2006.
One of her first roles was playing young Anne Frank in a London theatrical production of "The Diary of Anne Frank".
Producer Joseph Janni, who produced four of Christie's earliest pictures (Billy Liar (1963), Darling (1965), Far from the Madding Crowd (1967), and In Search of Gregory (1969)) and generally is credited, along with director John Schlesinger, in launching her career, created a complex tax shelter for Christie to insulate her earnings from the prohibitively high British tax rate during the 1960s. When the UK Inland Revenue finally investigated the tax shelter many years later, Inland Revenue officials declared it was one of the most complicated tax-avoidance scheme it had come across. Christie herself was cleared of any wrongdoing.
Said to have been the inspiration for the character "Julie Baker" in François Truffaut's Day for Night (1973).
She is a fan of actress Meryl Streep.
Variety Club of Great Britain film Actress Award for 1965 for her performance in Darling (1965).
Variety Club of Great Britain Most Promising Newcomer Award 1963 joint winner with James Fox.
Married boyfriend of 28 years Duncan Campbell. [November 2007]
Release of the book, "Julie Christie: The Biography" by Tim Ewbank. [2009]
Release of the book, "Julie Christie" by Anthony Hayward. [2000]
Release of the book, "Julie Christie" by Michael Feeney Callan. [1984]
She now lives in Ojai, California with her long-time companion, the journalist Duncan Campbell of the Manchester (UK) Guardian. [August 2006]
Lives in East London with her husband, the journalist Duncan Campbell. [March 2008]
Favorite cigarette brand is Craven A.
On March 31, 1979, a 22-month-old boy drowned in a 2-ft. duck pond on her farm in New Town, North Wales. The infant's parents, Jonathan and Leslie Heale, were live-in caretakers of the property. Christie attempted to resuscitate him but arrived too late. A coroner marked it an accidental death.
Had a secret half-sister named June Christie (1934-2005), from her father's affair with a teenage Indian peasant girl who worked on the tea estate he managed in Chabua, Assam. Julie has never spoken publicly of her half-sister's existence and reportedly did not want to know June.
Dated musician Brian Eno, director Jim McBride, record producer Lou Adler and actor Ryan O'Neal.
As of 2016 she is the 9th earliest living recipient of a Best Actress Oscar nomination, tied with Samantha Eggar and behind only Olivia de Havilland, Leslie Caron, Carroll Baker, Joanne Woodward, Shirley MacLaine, Doris Day, a tied Piper Laurie and Sophia Loren, and Julie Andrews. She was nominated (and won) for Darling (1965).
Christie and Liza Minnelli are the only actresses to have won the Best Actress Oscar for portraying a character who undergoes an abortion.
Attended Brighton Technical College for a year.
Is one of 12 actresses to have won a Best Actress Oscar for playing a character who is pregnant at some point during the film, hers being for Darling (1965). The others are Helen Hayes for The Sin of Madelon Claudet (1931), Luise Rainer for The Good Earth (1937), Vivien Leigh for Gone with the Wind (1939), Ginger Rogers for Kitty Foyle (1940), Olivia de Havilland for To Each His Own (1946), Jane Wyman for Johnny Belinda (1948), Anna Magnani for The Rose Tattoo (1955), Liza Minnelli for Cabaret (1972), Sissy Spacek for Coal Miner's Daughter (1980), and Frances McDormand for Fargo (1996).
Appears in five Oscar Best Picture nominees: Darling (1965), Doctor Zhivago (1965), Nashville (1975), Heaven Can Wait (1978) and Finding Neverland (2004). The first two of these were released in the same year.
Has appeared with Alan Bates in 4 films: Far from the Madding Crowd (1967), The Go-Between (1971), The Return of the Soldier (1982) and Separate Tables (1983).
She turned down the roles that went to Glenn Close in Cookie's Fortune (1999), Diane Keaton in Town & Country (2001) and Maggie Smith in The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (2011).
Her father was Francis St. John Christie (10 March 1904 - 25 February 1963) and her mother was Rosemary Ramsden (6 June 1912 - February 1982), married in Calcutta, 28 September 1937.
Had an appendicitis operation. [August 1964]

Personal Quotes (31)

[In the mid-'90s, on why she never got married] Men don't want any responsibility, and neither do I.
[on making Shampoo (1975) with Warren Beatty and Robert Towne] We showcased an utterly immoral, grotesquely greedy, decadent society that we felt was imminent.
[on her relationship with Warren Beatty] I'm terribly dependent on him, like a baby to its mother, so we travel backwards and forward to be with each other.
[on the prospect of her directing a film] Always a foot soldier, never a general.
[on fame] All that concentrated adulation is terribly corroding.
In the '60s, you did not know you were going to get older. But you do and you are. People become much dearer. When I see someone like Warren [Warren Beatty], with his four kids, there is that wonderful recognition of the life we have led. And a terrific sense of mortality, which is like a blessing almost: you suddenly realize what life is about.
All women are aware of that moment when suddenly the boys don't look at you. It's a fairly common thing, when suddenly you no longer attract that instant male attention because of the way you look. I never really knew how to enjoy beauty, but it took the form of a subconscious arrogance, expecting things, all muddled up with celebrity. Then you begin to deal with it. In the 1970s, I was amazed to be talked about as a 60s sex symbol. I wasn't that person, as if I were a doll from the past. I had to learn to come to terms with that. It's funny, it's silly, the ridiculousness of having asked so much of celebrity. Then it becomes really interesting and very much part of the excitement of the life you're living now, knowing you're approaching the end of it.
If I don't make films, no one is going to write about me. And most people have forgotten who I am anyway. My life is not interrupted because I am more or less anonymous.
What's most gratifying to me is Sarah Polley getting a nomination for screenplay adaptation. I was afraid she wouldn't be recognized. I wondered if they were going to get this great piece of work. I'm very glad I did it because it's a terribly important issue. We've got to face the fact that we're living longer. This is the comeuppance of wishing for immortality. Back in the day we weren't so obsessed about them [Oscars] in England. I didn't know about the Academy Awards. I didn't know what it was. I got the smell of the thing that it was terribly important but I wasn't interested in it, but I figured maybe I could get something out of this. I told them I would go if my boyfriend and I could get a holiday in the desert. It almost feels the same today.
Hollywood doesn't give a damn about me, and it is not going to change the way people think. Let's be realistic: you want to see people like Johnny Depp on the red carpet, or Angelina Jolie, a young woman I admire. That is the place for beautiful young people.
It felt, to me, like a permanent cocktail party, without the drinks. Acting took me away from real life to a pretend life. I wanted that real life back. I am not a dedicated actress, I'm afraid. I never have been.
Time has been savage in its relentless eating up of the years. Have I made the most of it? I have had an endless struggle not to be a coward about things. I know what I feel, but hate being looked at, hate doing anything in public, hate making speeches.
I am innumerate. I had great earning years, but it went through my fingers. I no longer have a career to build. So I do a few things to pay the bills. I cannot complain. I am comfortable, my God.
I cannot even talk about waste without being indignant. My introduction to Hollywood was a society that used it, sniffed it and threw it away. We've become a bit like that ourselves in the past 30 years. There's an attitude among the successful people of spend and spend, flaunt and flaunt, and don't think of anyone else.
It is a complicated business, and we are very insecure, we actors. We all feel - and fear - we are going to be found out at any moment. Someone is going to point and say, "You are really not very good, are you?".
I met such interesting people with Warren Beatty, whom I would never have met otherwise. And the film Shampoo (1975) stands the test of time. I cherish all those days. But I could not hack L.A., Hollywood was basically a throwaway society, run by publicity machines.
I found films to be turbulent and stressful. They have caused me an enormous amount of anxiety, because I do not have a lot of confidence. You are working, intellectually and mentally, and you are having to be with people and socialise all the time. Actors like it, on the whole, but I was not born with that quality. I am very quiet and would much prefer to talk to a few people rather than a crowd.
The film company wants you to look fantastic, and borrows clothes and diamonds from designers and jewelers for you to wear. I will not do that again. It is a pernicious pastime. Models wear designer things, so you become like a salesperson. There are actual signs outside the ceremony that say, "Turn around". Why? Because they want you to advertise the dress. I don't want to be involved in an advertising jamboree.
I could never really see the point of being high-profile when I loathed it so much. Every now and then, you can go to something like an Oscars ceremony, but nobody is holding a gun to your head. The rules were the same 40 years ago as they are now. You can either choose your spotlight - or you can stay at home.
[observation, 1966] Being on top right now is a fluke.
I think I work, actually work, every 10 years. I don't care about pissing off Hollywood because it doesn't really exist anymore. But pissing off the media? It was difficult when I was a girl and they're not any kinder now. I just hate not being strong enough.
I know the sorts of things that appeal to me does not appeal the way that Forrest Gump (1994) does. I really like ambiguity and I really like all sorts of complexity.
Some of my opinions are quite radical.
[on her looks] I told a friend I wasn't going to a party because I was so shy. I couldn't socialize. And she said, "Oh, you must come. I've told everybody the prettiest girl in the world is going to come." And I thought, "But I'm an ugly girl," and I remember that clearly. So that was the turning point.
[how she was motivated to get a facelift at 55] People who are older than you appear to be younger. It is really undermining. You know they are older than you, yet you look like their mother.
I'd rather talk to my ducks than some of the freaks I met in Hollywood.
[regarding the plethora of reports that she and longtime boyfriend Duncan Campbell snuck off for a secret wedding in India] Nonsense. I have been married for a few years. Don't believe what you read in the papers.
I see stardom very clearly as a construct that's been created in order to sell things. The more I meet other actors, the less the idea of the mythical movie star--an imaginary desire object who conforms to a certain ideal--makes sense to me at all. I think if people realize this when they read interviews, they might be less avid about them. It's sad that they get fooled into buying magazines and seeing films when so much of it is ... a sort of fabrication
[about her passion for recording audio books] That's what I like doing best. Of course, it's hard work, but you have the opportunity to go on a search for the author's voice. Every author has a different voice, and when you've got it, the book becomes more alive than it ever does when you're reading it to yourself.
[on Malaysia's death penalty for smuggling drugs, as portrayed in her movie Dadah Is Death (1988)] Some of them behave cruelly, but some of them are sympathetic. And I wouldn't criticize the Malaysian Government any more than I'd criticize states in the United States that have capital punishment.
I've never been terribly ambitious. Of course that's easy to say when you've achieved other people's wildest ambitions. But I've never really been a driven, dedicated actress. I prefer an easier life.

Salary (6)

Darling (1965) $7,500
Doctor Zhivago (1965) $120,000
Fahrenheit 451 (1966) $200,000
Far from the Madding Crowd (1967) $400,000
Petulia (1968) $400,000
Power (1986) $1,000,000

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