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Charles Dance joined the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1975, appearing in Terry Hands' acclaimed productions of the Henry IV, Henry V, and Henry VI history plays as well as Trevor Nunn's staging of As You Like It. In 1976, he took over the title role in Henry V at New York's Brooklyn Academy of Music. He left the RSC in 1979, returning in 1990 to play the title role in Terry Hands' production of Coriolanus.
His other U.K. stage credits include productions of John Gay's The Beggar's Opera, Alexandre Breffort's Irma La Douce, Anton Chekhov's Three Sisters, Ruth and Augustus Goetz' The Heiress, C.P. Taylor's Good, and Eugene O'Neill's Long Day's Journey Into Night (opposite Jessica Lange in the production directed by Robin Phillips).
Mr. Dance attained worldwide recognition, including a BAFTA Award nomination, for his performance as Guy Perron in the miniseries The Jewel in the Crown, directed by Christopher Morahan and Jim O'Brien. Among his other television credits are the miniseries Edward the King (directed by John Gorrie), Out on a Limb (opposite Shirley MacLaine, directed by Robert Butler), The Phantom of the Opera (directed by Tony Richardson), and Rebecca (again directed by Jim O'Brien).
His screen credits include Fred Schepisi's film of David Hare's Plenty (opposite Meryl Streep), Michael Ritchie's The Golden Child, the Taviani brothers' Good Morning Babylon (in which he portrayed D.W. Griffith), Hidden City and Century (both directed by Stephen Poliakoff), Michael Radford's White Mischief, James Dearden's Pascali's Island, David Fincher's Alien3, Claude Massot's Kabloonak (for which he won the Best Actor award at the Paris Film Festival), John McTiernan's Last Action Hero, Neil Jordan's Michael Collins, Philip and Belinda Haas' The Blood Oranges, Anand Tucker's Hilary and Jackie, Jan Sverak's Dark Blue World, and Robert Altman's multi-award-winning Gosford Park.