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JOHNNY ENGLISH

Born in Newcastle upon Tyne, ROWAN ATKINSON (Johnny English) has become one of the best known British comic talents of his generation. In 1977, Atkinson attracted wide critical notice while performing at the Edinburgh Festival; the following year, he mounted his own review at London's Hampstead Theatre and became a founding member of the BBC's Not the Nine O'clock News team. The series fast became a major success, running a total of four seasons, spawning platinum and gold albums and many best-selling books, and garnering a Silver Rose at Montreux, an International Emmy and a British Academy Award. In the process, Atkinson was also named BBC Personality of the Year.

In 1981, Atkinson became the youngest performer to have a one-man show in London's West End; the sell-out season at the Globe Theatre won him the Society of West End Theatre's Award for Comedy Performance of the Year. In 1983, he embarked with writer Richard Curtis on their situation tragedy Blackadder for the BBC. Over the ensuing five years, the four Blackadder series won three British Academy Awards, an International Emmy, three ACE awards and personal awards for his performance, including Best Entertainment Performance. Once again, Atkinson was voted BBC Personality of the Year.

On stage, Atkinson took the lead in Larry Shue's The Nerd at the Aldwych Theatre in 1985. In the following year, he mounted a new one-man show in the West End and, following a sellout season, it was transferred to Broadway. The show went on to tour successfully in Australia, New Zealand, the Far East and the U.K. In 1988, he undertook a six-month run in the West End, starring in The Sneeze, a collection of humorous one-act plays by Anton Chekhov.

Atkinson's next major television undertaking was the creation of the silent comedy series Mr. Bean for ITV and HBO. The pilot program won the Golden Rose of Montreux and was nominated for an International Emmy. Subsequent episodes continued to win plaudits, including an International Emmy, two BANFF Awards and an ACE Award for Best Comedy in 1995. Since its debut, the series has been sold to more than 200 territories and has attained classic status—Mr. Bean was the highest-rated comedy show of the decade on commercial television. (The show was produced by the production company Tiger Aspect, of which Atkinson is a partner and for whom he also appeared in a number of highly successful documentary programs on subjects ranging from comedy to his passion, automobiles.)

In 1995, Atkinson starred in the lead role of Inspector Raymond Fowler in the first series of Tiger Aspect's number one rated situation comedy, The Thin Blue Line (written by Ben Elton); a second series was produced in the summer of 1996. For HBO and the BBC, Tiger also produced the ACW award-winning Rowan Atkinson on Location in Boston, a one-hour special featuring highlights from his stage shows.

Atkinson has appeared in a number of films, the most recent being the international hit, Scooby-Doo. His other film credits include Never Say Never Again with Sean Connery; The Tall Guy with Jeff Goldblum; Nicolas Roeg's The Witches; and Steven Wright's The Appointments of Dennis Jennings, which won the 1989 Oscar® for Best Short. Other film appearances include Hot Shots - Part Deux, Four Weddings and a Funeral , the voice of Zazu in The Lion King and Jerry Zucker's Rat Race. He also co-produced and appeared in Bean – The Ultimate Disaster Movie, a film produced by Working Title in association with Tiger Aspect.

Throughout 2000, Blackadder Back & Forth, a three-minute film shot on 70mm, was shown at London's Millennium Dome. With Rowan portraying Edmund Blackadder for the first time in a decade, the comedy features all the other stars of the original television series and proved to be the most popular attraction at the Dome.

In 2002 Atkinson was involved with the creation and pr

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