May 11, 1948
Hannover, Lower Saxony, West Germany
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Welsh actress Pam Ferris has had a productive career in a range of roles, from several television leads to matriarchal types in film, most visibly as Aunt Marge in "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban." After spending her childhood in Wales, Ferris moved with her family to New Zealand at 13 before returning home as an adult, making her first screen appearance in a "BBC Play of the Month" in her early 20s; she didn't return to the screen for more than a decade. When she did, however, Ferris had the good fortune to work with now-revered English directors Mike Figgis and Mike Leigh, appearing in each of their TV movies in 1984. By 1991, she had her first lead role on television, as Ma Larkin in the comedy "The Darling Buds of May," which also featured fellow Welsh actress Catherine Zeta-Jones. In 1996 Ferris made her big screen debut as the mean principal Agatha Trunchbull in Danny DeVito's adaptation of Roald Dahl's "Matilda." She of course received international recognition for her portrayal of the equally cruel Aunt Marge in "Prisoner of Azkaban," the relatively critically-acclaimed, Alfonso Cuarón-directed "Harry Potter" film of 2004; Ferris reunited with Cuarón just two years later in his dystopian drama, "Children of Men." All that said, her most beloved role, at least to English audiences, has arguably been that of Laura Thyme, in the gardeners-turned-sleuths TV crime mystery, "Rosemary & Thyme," from the mid-2000s.