Ralph Twisleton Wykeham Fiennes was born on December 22, 1962 in Suffolk, England, to Jennifer Anne Mary Alleyne (Lash), a novelist, and Mark Fiennes, a photographer. He is the eldest of six children. Four of his siblings are also in the arts: Martha Fiennes, a director; Magnus Fiennes, a musician; Sophie, a producer; and Joseph Fiennes, an actor. He is of English, Irish, and Scottish origin.
Fiennes has been honored with two Academy Award nominations, the first in 1994 for his performance in Steven Spielberg‘s Oscar-winning Best Picture, Schindler’s List (1993). Fiennes’ chilling portrayal of Nazi Commandant Amon Goeth also brought him a Golden Globe nomination and a BAFTA Award, as well as Best Supporting Actor honors from numerous critics groups, including the National Society of Film Critics, and the New York, Chicago, Boston and London Film Critics associations. Four years later, Fiennes earned his second Oscar nomination, for Best Actor, in another Best Picture winner, Anthony Minghella‘s The English Patient (1996). He also garnered Golden Globe and BAFTA Award nominations, as well as two Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Award nominations, one for Best Actor and another shared with the film’s ensemble cast.
His long list of film credits also includes the award-winning drama The Reader (2008), co-starring Kate Winslet; Kathryn Bigelow‘s Oscar®-winning The Hurt Locker (2008); theNeil Jordan-directed films The End of the Affair (1999) and The Good Thief (2002); István Szabó‘s Sunshine (1999); Maid in Manhattan (2002); the animated The Prince of Egypt(1998); Oscar and Lucinda (1997); Robert Redford‘s Quiz Show (1994); and Wuthering Heights (1992), which marked his film debut. Fiennes notably portrayed of the evil Lord Voldemort in the Harry Potter blockbuster film franchise. His nephew, Hero Fiennes-Tiffinplayed Tom Riddle, the young Lord Voldemort, in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince(2009). ennes made his feature film directorial debut with a contemporary version of Shakespeare’s political thriller Coriolanus (2011), in which he also starred with Gerard Butler and Vanessa Redgrave.