Monday, February 11, 2008

Male on Monday - Joseph Fiennes

Our Natasha gets to choose the Pink Heart Society's nomination for Male on Monday this week. Valentine's Day so it's important.

And it's .....
(I think I'm getting good at building up the tension, don't you??)

I was thinking British (because it's becoming my trade mark), tall enough for Trish (not as easy as you might think), shirtless (because it's Valentine's Day this week and you all so deserve it) and good at his job (because I have a real thing for actors who are). All of which led me to Joseph Alberic Fiennes born in Salisbury, Wiltshire, England, on 27th May 1970.

What's more he often plays characters who write. How perfect is that!

And he's a philanthropist. He's involved with several charities, focusing mainly on the elimination of poverty and fund raising for breast cancer research, the disease which claimed his mother.

Oh and he's 6ft tall. (That's for Trish!)

He's the youngest child in a large, high achieving family.

Ralph Nathaniel Fiennes (1962) - actor,
Martha Maria Fiennes (1964)- film maker,
Magnus Hubert Fiennes (1965) - composer,
Sophia Victoria Fiennes (1967) - film maker,
Jacob Mark Fiennes (1970) - gamekeeper and Joseph's twin,
Michael Emery (1952) who's been a part of their family since he was 11 - an archeologist.

Sir Ranulph Fiennes, the explorer, is his cousin and, if you're in the mood to delve into the ramifications of the British aristocracy you'll discover he's an eighth cousin of HRH, the Prince of Wales. He's also the 4th cousin of Lord Saye & Sele, owner of Broughton Castle, which starred as Viola's house in Shakespeare in Love.

After leaving the Guildhall School of Speech and Drama, in 1993, he made his West End debut in 'The Woman in Black', followed by 'Another Country'. Then came two seasons with the Royal Shakespeare Company. (That's for me!!!)

His television debut was as Willy in 'The Vacillations of Poppy Carew' which has proved to be something of a who's who of up-and-coming British talent.

1996 saw him make his movie debut in 'Stealing Beauty'. 1998 was an amazing year. He played Robert Dudley opposite Cate Blanchett in 'Elizabeth' and William Shakespeare opposite Gwyneth Paltrow 'Shakespeare in Love'. Both movies were nominated for Academy Awards and 'Shakespeare in Love' won 'Best Picture'.

At this point he was in high demand. He then turned down a lucrative five-picture deal with Miramax, preferring to travel to India and then return to the theatre. (What can I say??? I'm in love.)

"I withdrew after Shakespeare in Love and went back to the theater, to what I know. I went back to what my initial voice was, which was to find a range and freedom and a creative energy. If that meant not following up with a typical leading-man role, then that's what it is. I'm an actor, and whatever speaks to me I will do. "

Since then, movie wise, you might have seen him in 'Martha, Meet Frank, Daniel and Laurence' (1998), 'Forever Mine' (1999), 'Enemy at the Gates' (2001), 'Dust' (2001), 'Killing Me Softly' (2003), 'Luther' (2003), 'The Merchant of Venice' (2004), 'The Great Raid' (2005) for which he lost 21 pounds in order to play POW Major Gibson, 'Running with Scissors' (2006), 'The Darwin Awards' (2006), and 'Goodbye Bafana' (2007).

If you've children of a certain age you will undoubtedly have heard his voice in 'Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas' (2003).

He's a skilled horseman (Trish, this is looking good, isn't it??!?), swimmer, tennis player and rock climber. Spend part of his childhood in Cork, Ireland. (Trish!!)

Also a talented artist. He carries a sketchbook around with him.

Oh and he's not married. (Which means 'available' Trish. This is very good.)

His quotes of note:

"I've always believed that you shouldn't want to mend a broken heart, because that's someone you don't want to forget. Scars can be good."

"Who has gone through their lives without those ups and downs, whether they are a journalist or an actor or a painter or an accountant? There are always going to be times when it doesn't flow as much as you were hoping. So of course I'm going to fail. And when I do fail I hope I fail better and better, again and again. I am happy to fail."

What are we thinking??? Good choice?

With love

July saw the start of a brand-new series in the Presents line - The Royal House of Niroli - and it concludes this month.

"The Mediterranean island of Niroli has prospered for centuries under the Fierezza men. But now, as the King’s health declines, and his 2 sons have been tragically killed, the crown is in jeopardy. Who will rule? "

Book 1: The Future King's Pregnant Mistress - Penny Jordan
Book 2: Surgeon Prince ... Ordinary Wife - Melanie Milburne
Book 3: Bought By the Billionaire Prince - Carol Marinelli
Book 4: The Tycoon's Princess Bride - Natasha Oakley
Book 5: Expecting His Royal Baby - Susan Stephens
Book 6: the Prince's Forbidden Virgin - Robyn Donald
Book 7: Bride By Royal Apointment - Raye Morgan
Book 8: A Royal Bride At The Shiekh's Command - Penny Jordan

Natasha's book, 'The Tycoon's Princess Bride', is available NOW in the UK and North America - and is a Romantic Times Magazine Top Pick and nominated for the Romantic Times Best Presents Award of 2007.

Come visit Natasha at her blog!


  1. I just had to add, Ralph is pronounced Rafe, and Ranulph is pronounced Ralph. Go figure.

    Cousin Ran is an absolute dish too - well certainly was in his younger days, and was married to his childhood sweetheart until her death, and he considered his long marriage his greatest achievement in this day and age.

  2. Excellent choice! Loved him in Shakespeare in Love ~ it's one of my favorite movies!