Who is Alex Kingston?

British actress Alexandra Elizabeth ‘Alex’ Kingston was born under the zodiac sign Pisces in Epsom, Surrey, England, on 11 March 1963. She has 70 acting credits, and is probably known best for starring as Elizabeth Corday in 160 episodes (1997-2009) of the popular romantic drama “ER”, which also starred Julianna Margulies and George Clooney, and aired its 331 episodes from 1994 through 2009. The series is about the nurses and doctors working at County General Hospital in Chicago, Illinois – it won 156 of the 530 awards for which it was nominated.

Alex is currently shooting for the upcoming film “Genuine Fakes”.

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Education and early life

Alex was raised in Epsom alongside her sisters Nicola and Susie, by their German mother Margarethe (nee Renneisen) who was a housewife, and British father Anthony Kingston who was a butcher; Nicole’s a former actress and Susie’s physically and mentally disabled as she was deprived of oxygen at birth. Alex’s uncle, Walter Renneisen is a famous actor with 49 credits.

She studied at Rosebery School for Girls and it was during her time there that her drama teacher inspired her to pursue acting; she was convinced by the teacher and her family to attend an audition for Mrs Fitzpatrick in a production of “Tom Jones” at the Surrey County Youth Theatre, winning the role and thus making her debut theatre appearance.

She matriculated in 1981 and continued her education at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, from which she graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in 1985; she then joined the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Roles in TV series

Alex’s debut TV series role was playing Jill Harcourt in three episodes of the 1980 family comedy “Grange Hill”, and the decade saw her appear in only a couple of series, including the comedy mini-series “Henry’s Leg”, the thriller mini-series “A Killing on the Exchange”, and the adventure crime mystery “Hannay”.

In 1994, she starred as Caroline Carrison in five episodes of the drama mini-series “Crocodile Shoes”, which also starred Jimmy Nail and who created the mini-series; it follows a man who’s employed at a Georgie factory and writes country songs in his spare time; it was nominated for a BAFTA TV Award for Best Original Television Music.

What also marked the ‘90s for Alex was playing Katherine Roberts in 13 episodes (1996) of the crime action “The Knock”, which starred Caroline Lee-Johnson and Steve Toussant, and was created by Anita Bronson; it follows the work of Her Majesty’s Custom and Excise officers, as they’re hunting down dangerous criminals. Alex had only one TV series role in the remainder of the ‘90s, starring as Moll Flanders in all four episodes of the 1996 romantic comedy mini-series “The Fortunes and Misfortunes of Moll Flanders”.

She spent the 2000s focused on shooting for “ER” and thus appeared in only a couple of other TV series, including in an episode of the crime mystery “Without a Trace”, the comedy “Freezing”, and the crime mystery “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation”.

From 2008 through 2015, she played River Song in 17 episodes of the critically acclaimed science fiction adventure “Doctor Who”, which stars Peter Capaldi and Jodie Whittaker, and was created by Sydney Newman. It follows the life of an alien who can travel through time and space, the series has been airing since 2005, and has won 119 of its 338 award nominations.

Some of Alex’s most recent roles in TV series have been in 20 episodes of the romantic fantasy “A Discovery of Witches” (2018-2022), all five episodes of the 2022 action thriller mini-series “Treason”, and two episodes of the 2022 family comedy “Dodger”.

Roles in movies

Alex’s debut film role was playing Schoolgirl in the 1980 comedy “The Wildcats of St. Trinian”, and her only role in the ‘80s was playing Adele in the 1989 popular crime drama “The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover”, which starred Michael Gambon and Richard Bohringer, and was written and directed by Peter Greenaway. It follows a group of entirely different people as they’re having dinner at the gourmet restaurant Le Hollandais – the film won seven of its 18 award nominations.

The year 1995 saw Alex play Frances Partridge in the biographical romantic drama “Carrington”, which starred Jonathan Pryce and Emma Thompson, and was written and directed by Christopher Hampton. Set in the early 20th century, the movie follows the platonic relationship between author Jonathan Pryce and artist Emma Thompson, and won seven of its 16 award nominations. The remainder of the decade saw her appear in the 1995 thriller “The Infiltrator”, the 1996 biographical fantasy “Saint-Ex”, and the 1999 romantic comedy “This Space Between Us”.

In 2005, she played Brownie in the popular romantic drama “Sweet Land”, which starred Lois Smith and Elizabeth Reaser, and was written and directed by Ali Selim. Set in 1920, the film follows a German woman who’s travelled to Norway for her arranged marriage to Norwegian farmer Olaf, and it won nine of its 11 award nominations. Alex was then cast to appear in the 2006 biographical crime drama “Alpha Dog”, the 2007 drama “Crashing” and the 2009 thriller “Sordid Things”.

She’s since had only a couple of film roles, with her three most recent having been in the 2018 short comedy “Deadpan”, the 2019 adventure “UNIT: Incursions: The Power of River Song”, and the 2019 action crime horror “Transference”.

Other credits

Alex sang the song “Piano Man” in the 2000 episode “Be Still My Heart” of the series “ER”.

Some of her recent talk-show appearances have been in “This Morning”, “Loose Women” and “The One Show”.

Awards and nominations

Alex has won four of her eight award nominations: she won two joint Screen Actors Guild Awards for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series in 1998 and 1999, and a 2009 TV Land Icon Award, all for her and her colleagues’ performance in “ER”.

She also won a 2012 SFX Award for Best Actress, for “Doctor Who”.

Back in 1997, Alex was nominated for a prestigious BAFTA TV Award for Best Actress, for “The Fortunes and Misfortunes of Moll Flanders”.

Love life and marriages

Alex prefers to keep the details of her love life to herself, but it’s widely known that she’s married thrice.

Her first husband was famous British actor, producer and director Ralph Nathaniel Twisleton-Wykeham-Fiennes, whom she met in 1983 while they were both attending the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. They married in a private ceremony on 5 September 1993, but two years later, Ralph began an affair with British actress Francesca Annis – Alex and Ralph split in 1996 and divorced on 28 October 1997.

Alex has revealed that she nearly attempted suicide when she and Ralph split.

Her second husband was German author and freelance journalist Florian Haertel, whom she met on a blind date in 1997; they married on 29 December 1998 and Alex gave birth to their daughter Salome Violetta Haertel on 28 March 2001. Alex and Florian separated in 2009, but their divorce was only finalized in 2013.

Since 18 July 2015, she’s been married to her third husband Jonathan Stamp, a British film producer and director.

Interesting facts and hobbies

The producers of the series “ER” decided to remove Alex’s character because they believed it had ‘run its course’; in an interview which Alex gave to “Radio Ties Magazine”, she revealed that she was unhappy in the show and was satisfied to have left it behind her.

Close to 200,000 people are following Alex on Instagram today – she’s posted only 51 pictures and videos onto the network, with most showing her during her everyday life.

She’s a huge lover of animals, and has volunteered with a number of organizations, most recently at Cleland Wildlife Park; her favorite animals are koalas.

Alex loves fashion and goes shopping for clothes multiple times every week; she occasionally shows these off on Instagram.

Her favorite drink is red wine.

Benedict Cumberbatch is one of her favorite actors, and some of Alex’s favorite movies include “Doctor Strange”, “The Imitation Game” and “The Power of the Dog”.

Appearance and net worth

Alex’s age is 60. She has blue eyes and curly brown hair, weighs around 135lbs (61kgs) and is 5ft 7ins (1.7m) tall.

Alex’s net worth’s been estimated at over $6 million, as of August 2023.

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