My Grandparents’ War
TCA Panelist Bios
Helena Bonham Carter
Actress and Episode Presenter
Helena Bonham Carter has had a long and distinguished acting career, receiving many nominations and awards for her work. Her film work includes her Oscar-nominated roles in “Wings of the Dove” and “The King’s Speech” as well as “A Room with a View,” “Howard’s End,” “Fight Club,” “Planet of the Apes,” “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” “Corpse Bride,” “Conversations with other Women,” “Sweeney Todd,” the Harry Potter film series, “Alice in Wonderland,” “Les Misérables,” “Ocean’s Eight” and most recently “Enola Holmes.” Her recent television appearances include her role as Princess Margaret in Netflix’s The Crown, receiving a Critics Choice Award nomination in 2019.
Actor and Episode Presenter
Mark Rylance was born in England in 1960 and emigrated with his family to America in 1962. He lived in Connecticut until 1969 and then moved to Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where he lived until returning to London in 1978. Rylance trained at The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (1978-1980) under Hugh Cruttwell. The Glasgow Citizens Theatre gave him his first job in 1980.
Having focused mainly on theater work, Rylance only recently shot to fame with his foray into major films and television, most notably with his Oscar- and BAFTA Award-winning performance as Rudolf Abel in “Bridge of Spies,” and as Thomas Cromwell in the critically acclaimed Masterpiece: Wolf Hall, directed by Peter Kosminsky, earning a BAFTA TV Award for Best Actor, Limited Series or Movie and an Emmy nomination for his performance.
Rylance was the artistic director of Shakespeare’s Globe in London for 10 years (1996-2006) and played a major part in creating its ongoing success. In 2015, he returned to Shakespeare’s Globe and the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse as King Philippe V in “Farinelli and the King,” written by Claire van Kampen. This was followed by a run in London’s West End, garnering six Olivier Award nominations, before the play moved to Broadway in November 2017. He starred in “Nice Fish,” which he co-wrote with Louis Jenkins, earning an Olivier nomination. Directed by van Kampen, the play had successful runs in Boston, New York and the West End.
In 2007, Rylance wrote his first play, “I Am Shakespeare,” which premiered at the Chichester Festival Theatre under the direction of Matthew Warchus and was published in 2012 by Nick Hern Books. Throughout his career, he has acted in more than 50 productions by Shakespeare and his contemporaries.
Rylance is an honorary bencher of the Middle Temple Hall in London; trustee of The Shakespearean Authorship Trust; an ambassador of Survival, the global movement for tribal peoples’ rights; and a patron of Peace Direct, working for non-violent resolution of conflict. In 2017, he was knighted by Prince William for services to theater.
Prior to playing William Kunstler in “The Trial of the Chicago 7,” released by Netflix in October 2020, he appeared in Terence Malik’s “The Way of the Wind” (originally titled “The Last Planet”) and most recently played the lead role in Craig Roberts’ “The Fantastic Flitcrofts.” Both films have yet to be released. Rylance was in Steven Spielberg’s sci-fi thriller “Ready Player One” in 2018, Christopher Nolan’s box office and Oscar-winning success “Dunkirk” in 2017 and played The Big Friendly Giant in Spielberg’s “The BFG” in 2016.
Tom Anstiss is an award-winning executive producer with Wonderhood Studios in London. He created the format for My Grandparents’ War for the British network Channel 4, overseeing season one and season two, which is now currently in production. Anstiss originated returnable new factual formats, long-running documentary series and award-winning single films for all the major broadcasters in the U.K. As an executive producer, films under Anstiss have won the Amnesty International UK / Media Award for Documentaries (Television and Film) and have been nominated for BAFTA, RTS, Grierson and Broadcast Awards.
Lesley Norman is an experienced production executive who has worked for over 30 years in production, editorial, outreach, engagement, and grant and fundraising management. She is Executive Producer, National Programming, WNET. Her most recent executive producer credits for WNET include Boss: The Black Experience in Business, GI Jews: Jewish Americans in World War II and God Knows Where I Am.
Prior to her work at WNET, she served as the Senior Producer for the Peabody Award-winning PBS series 180 Days: A Year Inside an American High School. She was Executive Director of Filmmakers Collaborative, and Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of JumpStart Productions. While at JumpStart, she was the Executive in Charge of the award-winning PBS series NOW.
Norman also served as Vice President and Production Executive of David Grubin Productions and worked on award-winning productions such as The Secret Life of the Brain, Napoleon and Abraham and Mary Lincoln: A House Divided. She has worked at WGBH, Blackside Productions and as an independent producer.
Norman has received numerous honors for creative achievement, including three Emmy Awards for her work on NOW and the Edward R. Murrow Award from the Overseas Press Club for her senior producing role on the film Child Brides, Stolen Lives.