Emma Thompson is a British actress, comedienne, screenwriter and author. Cited as one of the greatest British actresses of her generation, she is known for her portrayals of reticent women in period dramas and literary adaptations, often playing haughty or matronly characters with a sense of irony.\nBorn in Paddington, London to English actor Eric Thompson and Scottish actress Phyllida Law, she was educated at Newnham College, University of Cambridge, where she became a member of the Footlights troupe. After appearing in several comedy programmes, she first came to prominence in 1987 in two BBC TV series, Tutti Frutti and Fortunes of War, winning the BAFTA TV Award for Best Actress for her work in both. Her first film role came in the 1989 romantic comedy The Tall Guy, and in the early 1990s she frequently collaborated with her then husband, actor and director Kenneth Branagh. The pair became popular in the British media, and co-starred in several films including Dead Again and Much Ado About Nothing.\nIn 1992, Thompson won multiple acting awards, including an Academy Award and a BAFTA Award for Best Actress, for her work in the British drama Howards End.