Minnie Driver

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Minnie Driver
Minnie Driver, January 2011
Driver at the premiere of Barney's Version in January 2011
Born Amelia Fiona J. Driver
(1970-01-31) 31 January 1970 (age 48)
St. Marylebone, London, England, United Kingdom[1][better source needed]
Residence Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Nationality British
Education Bedales
Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art
Occupation Actress
Years active 1990–present
Known for Good Will Hunting
Children 1
Website www.minniedriver.com

Amelia Fiona "Minnie" J. Driver (born 31 January 1970) is an English[2] actress and singer-songwriter.

She was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for the 1997 film Good Will Hunting, and an Emmy Award and a Golden Globe for her work in the 2007–2008 television series The Riches.

Early life

Driver was born in St. Marylebone, London. Her mother, Gaynor Churchward (née Millington), is a fabric designer and former couture model. Her father, Charles Ronald Driver (1921–2009), was born in Swansea, Wales, to English and Scottish parents;[3] he received the Distinguished Flying Medal for his role in the Battle of Heligoland Bight[4] and was a director of London United Investments.[5][3][6]

Her parents never married,[4] as her father was married to someone else throughout the relationship with her mother. They separated when Minnie was six years old.[7] She was sent to Bedales School, Hampshire as a boarder.[7] Ronnie Driver moved to Barbados, where Minnie Driver spent her school holidays. She later attended the Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art in London.[8] Minnie has an older sister, Kate, who is a film producer and manager, and 2 younger half-brothers – Charlie Driver from her father's subsequent marriage, and Ed Churchward from her mother's subsequent marriage to polo playing vet Patrick Churchward.[7]



Driver's television debut was in a 1991 TV advertisement for Right Guard deodorant.[9] Driver also made her stage debut in 1991, supplementing her income by performing as a jazz vocalist and guitarist.[10] She appeared on British television with comedians Steve Coogan and Armando Iannucci, and had small parts in Casualty, The House of Eliott, Lovejoy and Peak Practice. Driver gained broader public attention when she played the lead role in Circle of Friends in 1995. She followed this with supporting roles in GoldenEye (1995), Sleepers (1996) and Grosse Pointe Blank (1997). She played opposite Matt Damon as Skylar in the drama Good Will Hunting (1997), for which she was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress and a Screen Actors Guild Award.

In 1998, Driver starred in Sandra Goldbacher's film The Governess.[11] In 2003 and 2004, she had a recurring role on Will & Grace as Lorraine Finster, the nemesis of Karen Walker (Megan Mullally) and daughter of Karen's lover, Lyle Finster (John Cleese).That same year, she co-starred opposite Christian Slater and Morgan Freeman in the action thriller, Hard Rain. Driver has also worked on several animated features, voicing Jane in Disney's 1999 version of Tarzan and Lady Eboshi in the 1999 English dubbed release of the Japanese film Princess Mononoke.

In March 2007, Driver made her return to television in the FX Network show The Riches. She was nominated for an Emmy Award[12] and a Golden Globe Award as Best Lead Actress in a Drama Series in 2007 and 2008, respectively.[13] She was scheduled to appear in The Simpsons Movie, although her appearance was cut from the final version. Driver appeared in the January 2010 episode of Modern Family entitled "Moon Landing".[14] She also starred in the television series The Deep[15] and appeared in Conviction, in the comedy-drama Barney's Version, winning a Genie Award for Best Supporting Actress.[citation needed]

In October 2013, Driver started filming for A Conspiracy on Jekyll Island, starring alongside Frank Grillo, AnnaSophia Robb, Dianna Agron, John Leguizamo, Ed Westwick, Mary McCormack, Christopher McDonald and Maggie Q.[16] The film is directed by Aram Rappaport and produced by Hilary Shor, Atit Shah and Aaron Becker. Jekyll Island is set to release in 2016.[17]


Driver began making music during boarding school.[18] She was part of the Milo Roth Band, which got a recording contract when she was 19.[18] In 2001 she signed with EMI and Rounder Records and performed at the SXSW music festival.[19] Her first album included the song, Everything I've Got in My Pocket, which reached No. 34[20] in the UK, and the song, "Invisible Girl" which peaked at No. 68. Driver wrote 10 of the 11 songs on the album. In 2004, Driver was the supporting act for the Finn Brothers on the UK portion of their world tour.[21]

In 2004, Driver played Carlotta Giudicelli in Joel Schumacher's film The Phantom of the Opera based on the hit musical of the same name by Andrew Lloyd Webber. Driver sang an original song "Learn to be Lonely," written for the film by Lloyd Webber. However, due to her lack of experience in opera, all her songs as Carlotta were dubbed by opera singer Margaret Preece. Driver released her second album, Seastories, in July 2007, featuring guest appearances by Ryan Adams, the Cardinals and Liz Phair.[22] Driver released a third album in October 2014 called, Ask Me to Dance that includes songs by Elliott Smith, Neil Young and The Killers.[23]

Personal life

Driver dated Matt Damon in 1998[6] and was engaged to Josh Brolin in 2001.[24] In September 2008, Driver gave birth to a son, whom she named Henry,[25][26] from a brief relationship with TV producer Timothy J. Lea.[27]

In 2013, Driver appeared on an episode of the reality show Who Do You Think You Are?, in which she searched for information about her deceased father.[28]



Year Title Role Notes
1992 The Zebra Man Emily Ashdown Short
1995 Circle of Friends Bernadette "Benny" Hogan Chicago Film Critics Association Award for Most Promising Actress
1995 GoldenEye Irina
1996 Big Night Phyllis London Film Critics' Circle Award for British Supporting Actress of the Year
1996 Sleepers Carol Martinez London Film Critics' Circle Award for British Supporting Actress of the Year
1997 Grosse Pointe Blank Debi Newberry London Film Critics' Circle Award for British Supporting Actress of the Year
1997 Good Will Hunting Skylar Satenstein London Film Critics' Circle Award for British Supporting Actress of the Year
Nominated – Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress
Nominated – Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture
Nominated – Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role
Nominated – Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
Nominated – MTV Movie Award for Best Kiss
1998 Hard Rain Karen
1998 The Governess Rosina da Silva
1998 At Sachem Farm Kendal
1998 An All Dogs Christmas Carol Belladonna UK Version (voice)
1999 An Ideal Husband Miss Mabel Chiltern
1999 Princess Mononoke Lady Eboshi Voice: English version
1999 Tarzan Jane Porter Voice
Nominated – Annie Award for Voice Acting in a Feature Production
1999 South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut Brooke Shields Voice
1999 An American Tail: The Mystery of The Night Monster Madame Mousey UK Version (Voice)
2000 Return to Me Grace Briggs
2000 Beautiful Mona Hiburd
2000 Slow Burn Trina McTeague
2000 The Upgrade Constance Levine Short
2001 High Heels and Low Lifes Shannon
2001 D.C. Smalls Waitress Short
2003 Owning Mahowny Belinda
2003 Hope Springs Vera Edwards
2004 Ella Enchanted Mandy
2004 Portrait Donna Short
2004 The Phantom of the Opera Carlotta Nominated – London Film Critics Circle Award for British Supporting Actress of the Year
Nominated – Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture
2006 The Virgin of Juarez Karina Danes
2007 Take Ana Nichols California Independent Film Festival Award for Best Actress
Phoenix Film Festival Copper Wing Award for Best Acting Ensemble
Tiburon International Film Festival Award for Best Actress
2007 Ripple Effect Kitty
2009 Motherhood Sheila
2010 Conviction Abra
2010 Barney's Version Mrs. P Genie Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role
Nominated – London Film Critics Circle Awards for British Supporting Actress of the Year
Nominated – Vancouver Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Canadian Film
2011 Hunky Dory Vivienne Mae
2012 Goats Shaman Uncredited
2013 I Give It a Year Naomi
2014 Return to Zero Maggie Royal Nominated–Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie
Nominated–Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Actress in a Movie/Miniseries
2014 Stage Fright Kylie Swanson
2014 Beyond the Lights Macy Jean
2015 A Conspiracy on Jekyll Island Shannon Clifton Post-Production


Year Title Role Notes
1990 God on the Rocks Lydia Movie
1991 The House of Eliott Mary Episode #1.4
1991 Casualty Zena Mitchell Episode: The Last Word
1992 Lovejoy Sarah Episode: Kids
1992 Kinsey Louise Kinsey 3 episodes
1993 Maigret Arlette Episode: Maigret and the Night Club Dancer
1993 Mr. Wroe's Virgins Leah 4 episodes
1993 Screen One Sally Episode: Royal Celebration
1994 The Day Today Mila Milandrovicz / Lally Sampson 2 episodes
1994 Peak Practice Sue Keel Episode: Enemy Within
1994 Knowing Me Knowing You with Alan Partridge Daniella Forrest Episode #1.2
1994 That Sunday Rachel Short
1995 My Good Friend Ellie 7 episodes
1995 The Politician's Wife Jennifer Caird 3 episodes
1995 Cruel Train Flora Mussell Movie
1996 Murder Most Horrid Sgt. Cole Episode: Confess
2000 The X-Files Cinema Audience Uncredited
Episode: "Hollywood A.D."
2003 Absolutely Fabulous Herself 1 Episode
2003; 2004 Will & Grace Lorraine Finster 6 episodes
2007 Re\Visioned: Tomb Raider Animated Series Lara Croft 9 episodes
2007–08 The Riches Dahlia Malloy 20 episodes
Nominated – Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama
Nominated – Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress – Drama Series
Nominated – Satellite Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama
2010 Modern Family Valerie Episode: Moon Landing
2010 The Deep Frances Kelly 5 episodes
2011 Hail Mary Mary Beth Baker Movie
2012 Lady Friends Jennifer Rensen Movie
2012 QuickBites Ellen Episode: Food for Thought
2012 Web Therapy Allegra Favreau 3 episodes
2013 Hollywood Game Night Herself Episode: The Office Party
2014 Peter Pan Live! Narrator / Adult Wendy Darling TV special
2014 The Red Tent Leah 2 episodes
2014–2015 About a Boy Fiona Bowa Main role
2015 Undateable Ally's Friend Guest Star on Live Episode


Year Title Role
1998 Jurassic Park: Trespasser Anne



Year Album US Heat Label
2004 Everything I've Got in My Pocket 43 Zoë
2007 Seastories 25
2014 Ask Me to Dance 11 Rounder


Year Single Album
2004 "Invisible Girl" Everything I've Got in My Pocket
2005 "Everything I've Got in My Pocket"


  1. "Person Details for Amelia Fiona J Driver, "England and Wales Birth Registration Index, 1837-2008" — FamilySearch.org". 
  2. "Cranky Critic StarTalk: Minnie Driver". Crankycritic.com. Retrieved 2 March 2010. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Minnie Driver: Series 10". Who Do You Think You Are?. BBC. 7 August 2013. Retrieved 2 September 2014. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 "Minnie Driver: A Hollywood actress with a fascinating history that could be straight from a film plot...". The Genealogist.co.uk. Archived from the original on 21 October 2013. Retrieved 1 September 2014. 
  5. Hutchinson, Clare (20 August 2010). "Hollywood star calls for Wales’ only lido to be opened". WalesOnline. Retrieved 7 November 2010. 
  6. 6.0 6.1 Winters, Laura (2 August 1998). "Film; When the Character Calls, Minnie Driver Listens". The New York Times. 
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Mears, Jo (24 September 2010). "Minnie Driver: My family values – The actress talks about her family". The Guardian. Retrieved 1 September 2014. 
  8. Lane, Harriet (3 August 1997). "Minnie the minx: She used to be an English public school mouse; now she's a Hollywood babe". The Guardian. Retrieved 1 September 2014. 
  9. "UK TV Adverts 1991 (part 3)". YouTube. Retrieved 10 May 2012. 
  10. "Minnie Driver Biography". Biography.com. Retrieved 2 March 2010. 
  11. Matthews, Tom Dewe (10 September 1997). "Minnie the mix: How has Hampshire-bred actress Minnie Driver come to be a big success in Hollywood? By going native". The Guardian. Retrieved 1 September 2014. 
  12. "Minnie Driver". Emmys. Retrieved 2 September 2014. 
  13. "Minnie Driver – Awards". IMDb. Retrieved 2 September 2014. 
  14. Abrams, Natalie (12 November 2009). "Minnie Driver to Guest-Star on Modern Family". TV Guide. Retrieved 2 September 2014. 
  15. "James Nesbitt, Minnie Driver and Goran Visnjic star in new BBC One drama serial, The Deep". BBC. 17 December 2009. Retrieved 2 September 2014. 
  16. Justin Kroll. "‘The Butler’ Producer Sets up Next Pic Starring Frank Grillo and Minnie Driver (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. 
  17. Kroll, Justin. "'The Butler' Producer Sets up Next Pic Starring Frank Grillo and Minnie Driver (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved 1 March 2015. 
  18. 18.0 18.1 Barnett, Laura (12 May 2008). "Portrait of the artist: Minnie Driver, actor and musician". The Guardian. Retrieved 1 September 2014. 
  19. Petridis, Alexis (2 September 2004). "'I've taken a pounding'". The Guardian. Retrieved 22 November 2012. 
  20. "(((Everything I've Got in My Pocket> Charts & Awards> Billboard Albums)))". AllMusic. 5 October 2004. Retrieved 2 March 2010. 
  21. "Minnie Drives At Musical Success With Finn Brothers Tour". Contact Music. 8 October 2004. Retrieved 22 November 2012. 
  22. "Phair, Ryan Adams Enhance Minnie Driver Sophomore Set". Billboard. 16 March 2007. Retrieved 2 March 2010. 
  23. Roy Trakin (28 July 2014). "Minnie Driver to Release 'Ask Me to Dance,' Cover Album". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  24. "Minnie Driver Breaks Off Engagement". ABC News. 4 October 2001. Retrieved 8 August 2013. 
  25. Jordan, Julie; Chi, Paul (8 September 2008). "Minnie Driver Welcomes a Son!". People Magazine. Retrieved 1 September 2014. 
  26. Conner, Megan (18 February 2012). "Minnie Driver: 'Oh, I'm being so naughty …'". The Guardian. Retrieved 1 September 2014. 
  27. Elliot, Claire. "Revealed: Father of Minnie Driver's son named as television producer Timothy J Lea". Daily Mail. Retrieved 15 October 2015. 
  28. Pearson, Jennifer (27 August 2014). "Minnie Driver unravels the truth about her father's double life and says she did it for son Henry in sneak peek for Who Do You Think You Are". Daily Mail. Retrieved 1 September 2014. 

External links