|Born||Michael Leonard Williams
9 July 1935
|Died||11 January 2001 (aged 65)
Hampstead, London, England
|Spouse(s)||Judi Dench (1971-2001)|
His first film appearance was in 1962, and he subsequently appeared frequently on television (notably in Elizabeth R), and in British films such as Educating Rita (1983) and (along with Dench) Henry V (1989). In the latter, in perhaps an irresistible casting decision, he played his namesake, the Shakespearean character named Michael Williams. In 1967 he played in Peter Whitehead's documentary Benefit of the Doubt on Peter Brook's anti-Vietnam play "US", along with Peter Brook and The Royal Shakespeare Company.
He married Dench in 1971, the same season that they co-starred in John Webster's The Duchess of Malfi. They had one daughter, Tara Cressida Williams (b. 24 September 1972), known as "Finty Williams", who is also an actress. Williams chaired the British Catholic Stage Guild for a number of years before he was incapacitated by illness. Finty has a son, Sam.
Although Williams was a Roman Catholic and Dench is a Quaker, theirs was one of the most successful showbiz marriages, and they worked together on several series of the situation comedy, A Fine Romance, from 1981 onwards.
Williams served as an enthusiastic supporter of the project to build the Blackfriars Playhouse in Staunton, Virginia. A plaque commemorating Williams' contributions hangs in the completed playhouse.
|1962||Z Cars||Norbert Nuttall (1 episode)|
|1971||Elizabeth R||François, Duke of Anjou and Alençon|
|1975||The Hanged Man||Alan Crowe (8 episodes)|
|1981 to 1984||A Fine Romance||Mike Selway|
|1988||Double First||Norman 'N.V.' Standish|
|1993 to 1994||Conjugal Rites||Barry Masefield|
|1997||A Dance to the Music of Time||Ted Jeavons (2 episodes)|
|1999||The Magical Legend of the Leprechauns||Father Daley|
|1999||Kavanagh QC||DCI Knowland (1 episode)|
|1968||Tell Me Lies||Guest|
|1972||Eagle in a Cage||Barry O'Meara|
|1974||Dead Cert||Sandy Mason|
|1983||Enigma||Hirsch, Limmer's Assistant|
|1999||Tea with Mussolini||British Consul|
Also appeared in the Royal Shakespeare Company's Theatre-Go-Round Festival, Round House Theatre, London, 1970.