Tom Conti

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Tom Conti
Tom Conti Romantic Comedy Dec 2007.jpg
Conti (Glasgow, December 2007), still in costume after a performance from his starring role in the play Romantic Comedy
Born Thomas Antonio Conti
(1941-11-22) 22 November 1941 (age 76)
Paisley, Scotland
Occupation Actor, theatre director, novelist
Years active 1963–present
Spouse(s) Kara Wilson (m. 1967)
Children Nina Conti

Thomas Antonio Conti (born 22 November 1941) is a Scottish actor, theatre director and novelist of Italian Scots descent. He won a Tony Award for Best Actor in a Play in 1979 for his performance in Whose Life Is It Anyway? He was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actor for the 1983 film, Reuben, Reuben.

Early life[edit]

Conti was born in Paisley, Renfrewshire, the son of hairdressers Mary (née McGoldrick) and Alfonso Conti,[1] he was brought up Roman Catholic, but he considers himself anti-religious.[2] Conti's father was Italian and his mother was Scottish, of Irish ancestry.[3][4]

Conti was educated at Hamilton Park, an independent Catholic boys' school [5] and at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, both in Glasgow.


Conti is a theatre, film and television actor, he began working with the Dundee Repertory in 1959. He appeared on Broadway in Whose Life Is It Anyway? in 1979, and in London he played the lead in Jeffrey Bernard is Unwell at the Garrick Theatre.

Besides taking the leading role in the TV versions of Frederic Raphael's The Glittering Prizes and Alan Ayckbourn's The Norman Conquests, Conti appeared in the "Princess and the Pea" episode of the family television series Faerie Tale Theatre, guested on Friends and Cosby, and played opposite Nigel Hawthorne in a long-running series of Vauxhall Astra car advertisements in the UK during the mid-1990s.

Conti has appeared in such films as Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence; Reuben, Reuben; American Dreamer; Shirley Valentine; Miracles; Saving Grace; Dangerous Parking and Voices Within: The Lives of Truddi Chase.

Conti's novel The Doctor, about a former Secret Operations pilot with Intelligence Services, was published in 2004.[6]

He appeared in the hit BBC sitcom Miranda alongside Miranda Hart and Patricia Hodge, as Miranda's father, in the 2010 seasonal episode "The Perfect Christmas".

Personal life[edit]

Conti has been married to Scottish actress Kara Wilson since 1967 and their daughter Nina is an actress and ventriloquist; according to her, her parents have an open marriage.[7]

Conti is a prominent resident of Hampstead in north west London, having lived in the area for several decades. Conti was part of a campaign against the opening of a Tesco supermarket in nearby Belsize Park.[8] Conti put his Hampstead house up for sale in 2015 for £17.5 million after his long-running opposition to the building plans of his neighbour, the footballer Thierry Henry.[9] Conti had also opposed development plans for Hampstead's Grove Lodge, the 18th-century Grade II listed former home of novelist John Galsworthy.[10]


Conti considered running as the Conservative candidate in the 2008 London mayoral election, however he did not, and in the following election in 2012, supported unsuccessful independent candidate Siobhan Benita.[11] In the run up to the 2015 general election, he said in an interview published in several newspapers that he had come to view socialism as a religion with a "vicious, hostile spirit".[12] and that "conservatism was about enabling people to improve their lives."[13]



  • National Board of Review for Best Actor (Reuben, Reuben and Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence)
  • Academy Award nomination as Best Actor (Reuben, Reuben)
  • Golden Globe nominations for Reuben, Reuben and Nazi Hunter: The Beate Klarsfeld Story
  • Tony Award for Best Actor (Whose Life Is It Anyway?)
  • Laurence Olivier Award for Actor of the Year in a New Play ('Whose Life is it Anyway?)
  • Variety Club Award for Best Actor (Whose Life is it Anyway?)


  1. ^ "Tom Conti Biography". Retrieved 11 June 2017. 
  2. ^ Middlehurst, Lester (9 June 2006). "Tom Conti on why he doesn't think a sexual affair is necessarily a betrayal". Daily Mail. Retrieved 13 May 2010. When it comes to opinions, Tom is certainly not afraid to voice his own. A lapsed Catholic, he is fiercely anti-religious. 
  3. ^ "Tom Conti: My dad, sent to a prison camp for being Italian". BBC News. 27 April 2013. 
  4. ^
  5. ^ "Tom Conti: Fidelity is overrated". 6 March 2011. Retrieved 27 December 2014. 
  6. ^ Tom Conti (2006). The Doctor. Franz Steiner Verlag. ISBN 978-1-86105-841-6. 
  7. ^ Tom Conti: there are worse things than being unfaithful, a 12 December 2009, article from The Sunday Times
  8. ^ "Tom Conti fights Tesco bid for store in Belsize Park". The Daily Telegraph. 8 January 2015. Retrieved 8 June 2015. 
  9. ^ Gareth Vispers (30 May 2015). "Tom Conti fights Tesco bid for store in Belsize Park". The Evening Standard. Retrieved 8 June 2015. 
  10. ^ Emily Banks (20 April 2015). "Financier withdraws basement scheme for Forsyte Saga's Grove Lodge in Hampstead". Ham & High. Retrieved 8 June 2015. 
  11. ^ "Tom Conti backs Siobhan running for Mayor". Siobhan for MAYOR. Retrieved 18 April 2012. 
  12. ^ "Once a Labour luvvie Tom Conti says he now backs the Tories as the party of aspiration". The Herald. 
  13. ^ "Why I, a life-long Labour luvvie, am backing Cam, writes TOM CONTI". Daily Mail. 
  14. ^ RSC performances 1976
  15. ^ 1993 Globe Theatre London

External links[edit]