“It was a grand period piece, large-scale by Leigh’s standards, with an enormous cast and a rich, textured recreation of Victorian London as its backdrop.
"Many quietly doubted Leigh could pull it off, and yet the film is a stroke of total genius – warm and hilarious, with so many wise things to say about the creation of art and the desire to entertain.
Redmayne began his professional acting career as a youth in West End theatre before making his screen debut in 1998 with guest appearances on television.
His first film roles came in 2006 with Like Minds and The Good Shepherd, and he went on to play supporting roles in several films, including Savage Grace (2007), Elizabeth: The Golden Age (2007), and The Other Boleyn Girl (2008).
Mike Leigh’s biopic of JMW Turner, starring Timothy Spall as the British painter, premieres at Cannes this week.
Leigh's keenly anticipated film covers the last 25 years of Turner’s life, before his death in 1851 at the age of 76.
“Turner the man was eccentric, anarchic, vulnerable, imperfect, erratic and sometimes uncouth,” says Leigh.
“He could be selfish and disingenuous, mean yet generous, and he was capable of great passion and poetry.” The trailer also shows encounters with painterly rival John Constable (James Fleet) and a young John Ruskin (Joshua Mc Guire).
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The following year, he played Lili Elbe, one of the first known recipients of sex reassignment surgery, in Hooper's The Danish Girl, which saw him nominated for Best Actor in the three aforementioned awards.
In 2016, he starred as Newt Scamander in the fantasy film Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.
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