Bill Nighy was born on December 1949 in Caterham. His father managed a garage and the family lived in a flat over the garage. Bill's mother worked as a psychiatric nurse.
At school Bill gained two ‘o' levels in English Language and English Literature and enjoyed reading, particularly Earnest Hemingway. The writings of Hemingway inspired Bill to run away to Paris to write a novel. However, he admits that he got no further than drawing a margin on a page, as he used to do at school when beginning an essay.
On leaving school Bill tried to work at the Croydon Advertiser, but didn't have the required 5 ‘o' levels to become a journalist. He went on to work as a messenger boy for the Field magazine.
A girlfriend, already at drama College suggested that Bill should become an actor. She wrote an introductory letter for him, he auditioned and began to train at Guildford school of Dance and Drama.
Since leaving college Bill has found continuous work as an actor. He has worked on stage, screen and radio. Bill thinks that radio is a very glamorous medium.
His stage work includes National Theatre Roles in Tom Stoppard's Arcadia in 1993 and David Hare's King Lear and Skylight. Most recently he was nominated for an Olivier Award for his performance in Blue/Orange.
Film credits include Still Crazy for which he received the Peter Sellers Evening Standard Award for Best Comedy Performance and Lawless Heart for which he won Best Actor at the British Independent film awards.
Bill's partner is actress Diana Quick. They have a daughter Mary who is studying at university and contemplating an acting career. She has already began to appear on TV dramas and radio programmes.
Bill's hobbies include football, books and the music of the Rolling Stones. He was pleased to hear a rumour that the band plays a video of his film Still Crazy on their tour bus. He also enjoys playing air guitar and has said that The Who's 'Won't Get Fooled Again' is the best of all songs for this purpose.… Expand