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Eddie Redmayne was taught to act by Mark Rylance

Published 04/11/2016

Eddie Redmayne
Eddie Redmayne

Eddie Redmayne credits Mark Rylance and Robert De Niro with mentoring him as an actor.

British actor Eddie Redmayne learned his trade from fellow Oscar winner Mark Rylance.

In 2002 The Theory of Everything star was cast in an all-male production of William Shakespeare's play Twelfth Night to mark the 400th anniversary of its first recorded performance.

The adaptation was staged at London's Globe Theatre, a replica of the original venue where the legendary playwright performed himself, where Mark acted as artistic director between 1995 and 2005.

Eddie was still studying at England's Cambridge University when he won the role of Viola, a young woman who disguises herself as a man to enter the service of a wealthy Duke, and had received no formal acting training.

"I was cast in Twelfth Night with Mark Rylance (who starred as Olivia)," he told Parade magazine. "That was my training, playing opposite a virtuoso in Mark Rylance and really trying to listen and learn. I always feel incredibly grateful for that.

"I didn’t go to drama school, but what I did get was the opportunity to work, even in tiny parts, with some really brilliant actors onstage and in film, observing not only how they acted but how they behaved."

Eddie's subsequent acting skills earned him the Best Actor Academy Award in 2015 for his portrayal of British physicist Stephen Hawking in The Theory of Everything.

The following year Mark emulated his former co-star and won the Best Supporting Actor Oscar. He was honoured for his role as Soviet spy Rudolf Abel in Steven Spielberg's Bridge of Spies.

Eddie also credits another Academy Award winner, two-time honouree Robert De Niro, with helping him early in his career, when he directed him in 2006’s The Good Shepherd.

"I’ll never forget Mark Rylance, or working with Robert De Niro on The Good Shepherd. De Niro’s a wonderful man," Eddie gushed. "He would direct by keeping the camera rolling, allowing you to take the emotion from the end of a scene and re-channel it back into the beginning of a scene."

The British star will next be seen in Harry Potter spin-off, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, due in cinemas later this month (Nov16).

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