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This week's Private Sessions guest is an acclaimed Academy Award winning actor who has graced the stage, small screen and films for over thirty five years in both the UK and Hollywood alike. He has portrayed some of the most influential leaders of our time including Richard Nixon and John Quincy Adams as well as leaving a mark on pop culture history with his terrifying portrayal of Hannibal Lector in "The Silence of the Lambs". His substantial and diverse acting career is like that of no other in Hollywood today. This Sunday, in an in-depth conversation with host Lynn Hoffman, Sir Anthony Hopkins graces the Private Sessions studio.
As the only son of a baker, Welsh actor Anthony Hopkins was drawn to the theater while in his teens and later learned the basics of his craft at London's Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. In the 1960's at the National Theatre, Hopkins was mentored by Lawrence Olivier, ultimately going on as his understudy in the play, "The Dance of Death". Soon after, Hopkins was handpicked by Peter O'Toole to make his film debut as Richard the Lionhearted in "The Lion in Winter" in 1968.
Hopkins burst full-flower onto the American scene in 1974, making his Broadway debut in "Equus", eventually directing the 1977 Los Angeles production. The actor followed with film roles such as Lt. Col. John Frost in an all star version of "A Bridge Too Far", an off-the-wall ventriloquist in "Magic" (1978) and the much-maligned Captain Bligh (opposite Mel Gibson's Fletcher Christian) in "Bounty" (1982), but by the late 80's Hopkins found himself back in London doing theatre. Then in 1991 everything changed when Hopkins was approached with a role of a lifetime and his bloodcurdling portrayal of murderer Hannibal "The Cannibal" Lecter in "The Silence of the Lambs" earned him an Academy Award for Best Actor.
Anthony Hopkins followed-up his chilling Lecter with the role of the conscience-stricken butler in "The Remains of the Day" (1992), for which he was nominated for a second Best Actor Oscar. In 1995, Hopkins earned another Oscar nomination for his impressionistic take on President Richard M. Nixon in Oliver Stone's "Nixon" and garnered his most recent Oscar nomination- this time for Best Supporting Actor - the following year for his work in Steven Spielberg's slavery epic "Amistad".
In 2001, Hopkins returned to the screen to reprise his role as the knowledgeable cannibal in Ridley Scott's "Hannibal", the long-anticipated sequel to Jonathan Demme's "The Silence of the Lambs" (1991) and the following year, surrounding himself with a game cast including Edward Norton, Ralph Finnes, Harvey Keitel and Emily Watson, Hopkins played Lecter for the last time in the Brett Ratner film "Red Dragon", the prequel to Demme's 1991 award-winner.
Most recently, 2007 has been a big year for Hopkins with the release of "Slipstream", which he directed, wrote, composed the music for as well as starred in. He also took part in Robert Zemeckis's "Beowulf ", which was created using the new motion capture animation process.
This morning, in an in-depth exclusive interview, Anthony Hopkins visits with host Lynn Hoffman to give his insight on his multi-faceted career from working with film history’s biggest luminaries to winning the Academy Award to what the future of film holds. Also, making special appearances are actors Alec Baldwin, S. Epatha Merkeson ("Law & Order") and Michael Clark Duncan ("The Green Mile").
Read Anthony Hopkins's extended biography on BIO.com