OLIVIA WILLIAMS is one of the UK's most respected actresses and has worked with some of the world's most celebrated directors including Wes Anderson and Roman Polanski. Her performances across film, theatre and television have won her critical acclaim and awards. In 2011 she won Best Supporting Actress by the National Society of Film Critics and the London Critics' Circle Film Awards for her performance as Ruth Lang in Roman Polanski's The Ghost Writer. The previous year her performance in Lone Scherfig's An Education earned her a London Critics' Circle Film Award nomination as well as a shared Screen Actors Guild Award nomination with her fellow actors from the ensemble.
After completing her university studies, she spent two years at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School before joining the Royal Shakespeare Company for three years. In 1997, Ms. Williams was chosen by director Kevin Costner to star opposite him in the drama The Postman. Subsequently, she played opposite Bill Murray and Jason Schwartzman in Wes Anderson's acclaimed Rushmore; and appeared as Bruce Willis' wife in M. Night Shyamalan's blockbuster The Sixth Sense. She has since appeared in a number of U.K. independent films, including Thaddeus O'Sullivan's The Heart of Me, for which she was honoured with the British Independent Film Award (BIFA) for Best Actress; Peter Cattaneo's Lucky Break, for which she was an Empire Award nominee; and Mat Whitecross' Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll, opposite Andy Serkis. Among her other movies are George Hickenlooper's The Man from Elysian Fields; P.J. Hogan's Peter Pan; Collaborator, starring opposite writer/director Martin Donovan; and Joe Wright's Hanna and Anna Karenina.
On television, Ms. Williams has portrayed celebrated authors Jane Austen and Agatha Christie, respectively, in the telefilms Miss Austen Regrets (directed by Jeremy Lovering) and Agatha Christie: A Life in Pictures(directed by Richard Curson Smith). She has also starred on the cult favourite series Dollhouse; and guest-starred on such shows as Friends, Terriers, and Beck.