Rowan Atkinson - Rotten Tomatoes

Rowan Atkinson



Best known to American audiences as the Black Adder and Mr. Bean, black-haired, bug-eyed, and weak-chinned comedian Rowan Atkinson is one of the most popular funnymen in England whose keen, often black humor and knack for physical comedy has earned him a huge international following. Born in Newcastle, Atkinson was educated at Newcastle University and Oxford. While at the latter, he teamed up with budding screenwriter Richard Curtis to write comedy reviews for the Oxford Playhouse. Shortly thereafter, the two created material for the Edinburgh Fringe. By 1978, Atkinson's humor had earned him a devoted fan base and he was offered leading roles in two British television comedies. Instead, Atkinson chose to get involved in the internationally acclaimed comedy series Not the Nine O'Clock News as a writer and a performer. His performances in the oft-distinguished show earned Atkinson a British Academy Award and got him designated "BBC Personality of the Year" in 1980. His stage performances also continued to significantly increase his popularity.

In 1983, he and Curtis created the Black Adder, a cowardly and conniving Tudor Prince named Edmund who tries vainly to become King of England after inadvertently killing his father during a battle. Billed as a "situation tragedy" on the BBC, it ran three seasons and later spawned a couple of specials. Atkinson made his feature-film debut in the 1983 James Bond thriller Never Say Never Again. In the late '80s, he starred in a few films penned by Curtis. It was while they were filming The Tall Guy that Atkinson and Curtis created Mr. Bean, an average British Joe with a clumsy nature and a nasty streak and launched a series. Different from other shows in that it was largely silent, Atkinson's Bean demonstrated a rare gift for slapstick that has led to his being compared to Buster Keaton and Charlie Chaplin. During its six year run, Mr. Bean became the most popular show in the U.K. and has since been shown in 89 countries where it has gained a cult following comparable to Monty Python and Fawlty Towers. Atkinson himself attributes his character's popularity to the fact that the socially awkward, middle-aged Bean's mundane adventures, largely due to his clumsy inability to cope with even the smallest of life's foibles, mirror the feelings and experiences of people the world over. In 1997, Atkinson brought the character to the big screen in Bean. Other notable Atkinson film performances include his voice characterization of Zazu in The Lion King and that of the hilariously inarticulate priest in Four Weddings and a Funeral.



Atkinson oversaw an animated television series based on his beloved Mr. Bean character, and then took a cameo part in his longtime collaborator Richard Curtis' directorial debut Love Actually.

In 2003 he starred in another international comedy hit, the spy spoof Johnny English, a movie so successful it spawned a sequel in 2011. In addition, Atkinson returned to the well yet again in 2007 with the feature length Mr. Bean's Holiday, which co-starred Willem Dafoe.

Filmography

MOVIES

RATING TITLE CREDIT YEAR
39% Johnny English Reborn
  • Johnny English
2011
51% Mr. Bean's Holiday
  • Mr. Bean
2007
56% Keeping Mum
  • Reverend Walter Goodfellow
2006
No Score Yet Spider-Plant Man
  • Actor
2005
63% Love Actually
  • Rufus
2003
33% Johnny English
  • Johnny English
2003
30% Scooby-Doo
  • Mondavarious
2002
44% Rat Race
  • Enrico Pollini
2001
46% Maybe Baby
  • Mr. James
2000
No Score Yet Blackadder Back & Forth
  • Actor
1999
No Score Yet Comic Relief: Doctor Who and the Curse of Fatal Death
  • Actor
1999
No Score Yet Secret Policeman's Ball
  • Actor
1998
42% Bean
  • Screenwriter
  • Executive Producer
  • Mr. Bean
1997
No Score Yet Thin Blue Line, The - The Complete Line-Up
  • Actor
1995
No Score Yet Full Throttle
  • Actor
1995
92% The Lion King
  • Zazu
1994
95% Four Weddings and a Funeral
  • Father Gerald
1994
59% Hot Shots! Part Deux
  • Hayman
1993
No Score Yet Rowan Atkinson Live!
  • Actor
  • Screenwriter
1992
No Score Yet Bernard and the Genie
  • Charles Pinkworth
1992
No Score Yet Rowan Atkinson Presents: The Driven Man
  • Actor
  • Screenwriter
1991
89% The Tall Guy
  • Ron Anderson
1990
100% The Witches
  • Mr. Stringer
1990
No Score Yet Blackadder's Christmas Carol
  • Actor
1988
63% Never Say Never Again
  • Nigel Small-Fawcett
1983
No Score Yet The Secret Policeman's Other Ball
  • Actor
1982
No Score Yet The Secret Policeman's Ball
  • Himself
1981
No Score Yet Canned Laughter
  • Actor
1979

TV

RATING TITLE CREDIT
No Score Yet The Tonight Show With Jay Leno
2014
  • Guest

Quotes from Rowan Atkinson's Characters