19 October 10
Find out more about the widely respected British playwright, screenwriter and author, Sir Ronald Harwood.
Hugely admired and respected, Ronald Harwood has an award-winning body of work as a playwright, screenwriter and author that spans five decades.
Throughout the ’60s and ’70s Harwood wrote many dramas for television, including The Barber Of Stamford Hill (1962) and The Long Lease Of Summer (1972), as well as a three-year stint on ITV’s Tales Of The Unexpected.
Harwood’s breakthrough film screenplay The Dresser (1983) was adapted from his earlier stage play, based on his experiences as Sir Donald Wolfit’s personal dresser at Wolfit’s Shakespeare Company in the ’50s. It earned Harwood his first BAFTA, Golden Globe and Oscar nominations.
His adaptation of Terence Rattigan’s The Browning Version (1994), about an embittered teacher’s attempts to regain his self-respect, led to a second BAFTA nomination.
His first collaboration with Roman Polanski was his BAFTA-nominated script for The Pianist (2002). The WWII drama about a Polish-Jewish musician eluding capture in the ruins of Warsaw garnered great critical acclaim and Harwood’s first Oscar win. He later collaborated with Polanski on Oliver Twist (2005).
Harwood enjoyed international acclaim once again after adapting Jean-Dominique Bauby’s memoir The Diving Bell And The Butterfly (2007). The moving story of a paralyzed man who can only communicate through his left eye gave Harwood his first BAFTA win and third Oscar nomination.
Harwood’s latest project Quartet (2011) is an adaptation of his 1999 play about ageing opera singers, directed by Dustin Hoffman.