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SEXY BEAST

BEN KINGSLEY's recent schedule has included performances in a broadly varied series of films: William Friedkin's Rules of Engagement as Ambassador Mourain; as the Emperor of the Planet from which Garry Shandling has been exiled in the Mike Nichols comedy What Planet are you from?; as the Great Zamboni in next year's Spooky House and now as mean Don Logan in Sexy Beast. He leaves this year's Toronto Festival Gala performance of Sexy Beast to go directly to Tuscany to film the Bernardo Bertolucci Production of Triumph of Love, starring opposite Mira Sorvino, and Executive produced by Sexy Beast Producer Jeremy Thomas, in an 18th Century comedy of manners directed by Claire Peploe.

In 1982 Kingsley's extraordinary performance in the title role of Gandhi won him the Academy Award® as Best Actor, as well as the British Film and Television Awards for Best Actor and Best Newcomer. In addition the film was rewarded with Oscars® for Best Picture, Best Director for Sir Richard Attenborough and Best Cinematography.

Gandhi was followed by a startling performance in the film adaptation of Harold Pinter's play Betrayal which secured him the London Evening Standard Award for Best Actor. Since that time Kingsley has worked non-stop on screen and stage with many of the world's greatest directors. Notable highlights among his varied screen roles include leads in Bugsy in 1992, with Warren Beatty and Annette Bening, for which he received an Oscar® nomination as Best Supporting Actor, Searching for Bobby Fischer for Stephen Zaillian, and Pascali's Island directed by James Dearden. He treasures his performances as composer Dmitri Shostakovitch in Tony Palmer's Testimony, and Phil Alden Robinson's Sneakers, with Robert Redford, Dave for Ivan Reitman with Sigourney Weaver and Kevin Kline, and his acclaimed portrayal of Ishtzak Stern in Steven Spielberg's epic holocaust drama Schlindler's List. For the latter he again won the London Evening Standard Award and a BAFTA nomination. The Spielberg film was winner as Best Picture and of six other Oscars®. In the role of Geraldo in Roman Polanski's screen adaptation of Ariel Dorfman's play Death and the Maiden, where again he starred opposite Sigourney Weaver, this time in the tale of a torturer and the victim who turns the tables on him.

On television, amongst other distinguished performances, Kingsley has received the SAG Award for Best Actor in John Schlesinger's Sweeney Todd, and has portrayed Nazi hunter Simon Wiesenthal in HBO's Emmy winning production Murderers Among US. More recently he was nominated for an Emmy as Best Supporting Actor for his role in TNT's biblical epic Joseph.

Originally a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company, Kingsley returned to the stage at Stratford in 1985 to take the lead in Othello, and again in 1997 to appear in Samuel Becket's Waiting for Godot at the Old Vic, directed by Sir Peter Hall.

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