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Last Updated: Friday, 13 June, 2003, 23:37 GMT 00:37 UK
Four Weddings star's Gallic touch
Scott Thomas moved to Paris in her teens
Oscar-nominated actress Kristin Scott Thomas has been made an OBE for services to acting and to UK-French cultural relations.

Her name may not be instantly recognisable, but fans of classy British romantic cinema are likely to be familiar with the talents of Kristin Scott Thomas.

Oscar-nominated for her role in The English Patient, she first came to national attention in Four Weddings and a Funeral - winning a Bafta and Evening Standard award.

Despite her very English upbringing, Scott Thomas OBE also adds a touch of Gallic flair to this year's birthday honours list.

Although born in Cornwall and educated in London, she has spent much of her adult life working and living in Paris.

Kristin Scott Thomas at the 2003 Bafta film awards in London
She appeared on stage in the West End this year
She enrolled in a French drama school while in her teens - after quitting a similar establishment in London when a teacher reputedly told her she should "stick to the amateur-dramatic society".

During the early part of her career she continued to work in mainly French and other European productions (A fluent French speaker, she dubbed herself in French for a translation of Four Weddings).

Her first major international role was in Prince's musical drama Under the Cherry Moon in 1986, taking the female lead of Mary Sharon.

In 1988 she was cast as Lady Brenda Last in Evelyn Waugh's A Handful of Dust among an entirely British cast - an experience she found less intimidating than she had expected.

Plaudits

At the time, she said of her performance: "I did most of my study in France, where they don't have the same British method of acting.

"I thought everybody would be doing voice warm-ups before each take."

She need not have worried.

International success followed with her two biggest roles, and she received plaudits for her accomplished character acting in films such as The Horse Whisperer and Gosford Park.

More recently Scott Thomas appeared in London's West End in Chekhov's Three Sisters, to mixed reviews from the critics.




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