Anne-Marie Duff is an English actress, born on 8 October 1970 in Southall, London. Her parents, Brendan and Mary (née Doherty), are from Donegal, Ireland. Her father worked as a painter and decorator and her mother worked in a shoe shop.
She first came to the attention of the British public for her role as Margaret in The Magdalene Sisters (2002) and as Fiona Gallagher in the successful TV series Shameless (2004), where she met her future husband, James McAvoy. She went on to play Queen Elizabeth I opposite Tom Hardy’s Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester in the four-part miniseries The Virgin Queen (2005).
In Nowhere Boy (2009), Duff played John Lennon’s mother, Julia, a role for which she won British Independent Film Award for Best Supporting Actress. She played Violet Miller in Suffragette (2015), a working-class woman who introduces Maud Watts (Carey Mulligan) to the fight for women’s rights in east London. “Violet is extraordinary, she’s a firebrand – a tornado that comes into Maud’s life and changes it forever. I found her thrilling,” says Duff. In 2017, she will appear as Hyzenthlay in a new BBC animated miniseries of Watership Down.
Duff has also taken on many theatre roles, including Joan of Arc in George Bernard Shaw’s “Saint Joan” in 2007 and Alma Rattenbury in Terence Rattigan’s “Cause Célèbre” at The Old Vic, London in 2011.
She has been married to McAvoy since 11 November 2006. They have one child, a son named Brendan after Duff’s father. On 13 May 2016, Duff and McAvoy announced their decision to divorce.
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