Sir Kenneth Branagh was born in 1960 in Belfast. After having moved to England with his family, he studied in London at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. His performances on stage immediately after leaving RADA were met with critical acclaim, and he had won his first award by 1982.
After appearing in a number of successful productions, he founded the Renaissance Theatre Company alongside David Parfitt in 1987. The company enjoyed success with a number of productions. The company later produced a number of Shakespeare plays with the likes of Derek Jacobi and Judi Dench amongst the directors.
In 2008, Branagh starred in Ivanov at the Donmar Warehouse, winning the Best Male Performance award from the Critics’ Circle Theatre. After working on anumber of performances as both actor and director, he formed the Kenneth Branagh Theatre Company in 2015 as actor-manager. The company hosted a number of shows including The Entertainer, Romeo and Juliet and Red Velvet.
Outside of theatre work, he is known for his roles in a number of television series and films, such as Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets as the charming professor Gilderoy Lockhart and The Boat That Rocked. He has also directed blockbuster movies Thor and Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit.
In 2023, Branagh will direct and star in King Lear at the Wyndham's Theatre.