Stephen Fry is a Actor, Director, Scriptwriter and Executive Producer British born on 24 august 1957 at Hampstead (United-kingdom)
Stephen John Fry (born 24 August 1957) is an English comedian, actor, writer, presenter, and activist.
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After a troubled childhood and adolescence, during which he was expelled from two schools and spent three months in prison for credit card fraud, he secured a place at Queens' College, Cambridge, where he studied English literature. While at university, Fry became involved with the Cambridge Footlights, where he met his long-time collaborator Hugh Laurie. As half of the comic double act Fry and Laurie, he co-wrote and co-starred in A Bit of Fry & Laurie, and took the role of Jeeves (with Laurie playing Wooster) in Jeeves and Wooster.
Fry's acting roles include a Golden Globe Award–nominated lead performance in the film Wilde, Melchett in the BBC television series Blackadder, the title character in the television series Kingdom, a recurring guest role as Dr. Gordon Wyatt on the crime series Bones, and as Gordon Deitrich in the dystopian thriller V for Vendetta. He has also written and presented several documentary series, including the Emmy Award–winning Stephen Fry: The Secret Life of the Manic Depressive, which saw him explore his mental illness. He is also the long-time host of the BBC television quiz show QI.
Besides working in television, Fry has contributed columns and articles for newspapers and magazines and written four novels and three volumes of autobiography, Moab Is My Washpot, The Fry Chronicles and More Fool Me. He also appears frequently on BBC Radio 4, starring in the comedy series Absolute Power, being a frequent guest on panel games such as Just a Minute, and acting as chairman for I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue, where he was one of a trio of hosts who succeeded the late Humphrey Lyttelton. Fry is also known for his voice-overs, reading all seven of the Harry Potter novels for the UK audiobook recordings, narrating the LittleBigPlanet and Birds of Steel series of video games, as well as an animated series of explanations of the laws of cricket, and a series of animations about Humanism for the British Humanist Association.
He is on cordial terms with Prince Charles, through his work with the Prince's Trust. He attended the Prince's wedding to Camilla Parker Bowles in 2005. Fry is a friend of comedian and actor (and Blackadder co-star) Rowan Atkinson and was best man at Atkinson's wedding to Sunetra Sastry at the Russian Tea Room in New York City. Fry was a friend of British actor John Mills. His best friend is Hugh Laurie, whom he met while both were at Cambridge and with whom he has collaborated many times over the years. He was best man at Laurie's wedding and is godfather to all three of his children.
A fan of cricket, Fry has stated that he is related to former England cricketer C.B. Fry, and was interviewed for the Ashes Fever DVD, reporting on England's victory over Australia in the 2005 Ashes series. Regarding football, he is a supporter of Norwich City, and is a regular visitor to Carrow Road. He has been described as "deeply dippy for all things digital", claims to have bought the third Macintosh computer sold in the UK (his friend Douglas Adams bought the first two) and jokes that he has never encountered a smartphone that he has not bought. He counts Wikipedia among his favourite websites "because I like to find out that I died, and that I'm currently in a ballet in China, and all the other very accurate and important things that Wikipedia brings us all."
Fry has a long-standing interest in Internet production, including having his own website since 1997. His current site, The New Adventures of Mr Stephen Fry, has existed since 2002 and has attracted many visitors following his first blog in September 2007, which comprised a 6,500-word "blessay" on smartphones. In February 2008, Fry launched his private podcast series, Stephen Fry's Podgrams (now discontinued), and a forum, including discussions on depression and activities in which Fry is involved. The website content is created by Fry and produced by Andrew Sampson. Fry's weekly gadget column Dork Talk appeared in The Guardian from November 2007 to October 2008. Fry is also a supporter of GNU and the Free Software Foundation. For the 25th anniversary of the GNU operating system, Fry appeared in a video explaining some of the philosophy behind GNU by likening it to the sharing found in science.
When in London, he drives a dark green TX4 London cab. This vehicle has been featured in Fry's production Stephen Fry in America.
Fry struggled to keep his homosexuality secret during his teenage years at public school, and by his own account did not engage in sexual activity for 16 years from 1979 until 1995. When asked when he first acknowledged his sexuality, Fry quipped: "I suppose it all began when I came out of the womb. I looked back up at my mother and thought to myself, 'That's the last time I'm going up one of those'." Fry was in a 15-year relationship with Daniel Cohen, which ended in 2010. In 2014, Fry was listed number 4 on the World Pride Power list.
On 6 January 2015, The Sun reported that Fry would marry his partner, stand-up comedian Elliott Spencer. Fry wrote on Twitter: "It looks as though a certain cat is out of a certain bag. I'm very very happy of course but had hoped for a private wedding. Fat chance!" Fry married Spencer on 17 January 2015 in the Norfolk town of Dereham.
Fry was an active supporter of the Labour Party for many years and appeared in a party political broadcast on its behalf with Hugh Laurie and Michelle Collins in November 1993. He did not vote in the 2005 General Election because of the stance of both the Labour and Conservative parties with regard to the Iraq War. Despite his praise of the Blair/Brown government's work on social reform, Fry has been critical of the Labour Party's "Third Way" concept. Fry appeared in literature to support changing the British electoral system from first-past-the-post to alternative vote for electing members of parliament to the House of Commons in the Alternative Vote referendum in 2011.
On 30 April 2008, Fry signed an open letter, published in The Guardian newspaper by some well-known Jewish personalities, stating their opposition to celebrating the 60th anniversary of the founding of the State of Israel. Furthermore, he is a signatory member of the British Jews for Justice for Palestinians organisation, which campaigns for Palestinian rights. Fry was among over 100 signatories to a statement published by Sense About Science on 4 June 2009, condemning British libel laws and their use to "severely curtail the right to free speech on a matter of public interest".
In August 2013, Fry published an "Open Letter to David Cameron and the IOC" calling for a boycott of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, due to concerns over the state-sanctioned persecution of LGBT persons in Russia. Cameron however stated on Twitter he believed "we can better challenge prejudice as we attend, rather than boycotting the Winter Olympics". Adrian Hilton, writing in the Daily Mail, criticised Fry for not calling for a boycott of all Russian performing arts. Fry responded by accusing the Daily Mail of being "against progress, the liberalising of attitudes, modern art and strangers (whether by race, gender or sexuality)".
In March 2014, Fry publicly backed "Hacked Off" and its campaign towards press self-regulation by "safeguarding the press from political interference while also giving vital protection to the vulnerable."
On 6 October 2009, Fry was interviewed by Jon Snow on Channel 4 News as a signatory of a letter to British Conservative Party leader David Cameron expressing concern about the party's relationship with the Polish national conservative Law and Justice party in the European Parliament. During the interview, he stated:
There has been a history, let's face it, in Poland of a right-wing Catholicism which has been deeply disturbing for those of us who know a little history, and remember which side of the border Auschwitz was on and know the stories, and know much of the anti-semitic, and homophobic and nationalistic elements in countries like Poland.
The remark prompted a complaint from the Polish Embassy in London, an editorial in The Economist and criticism from British Jewish historian David Cesarani. Fry has since posted an apology in a six-page post on his personal blog, in which he stated:I offer no excuse. I seemed to imply that the Polish people had been responsible for the most infamous of all the death factories of the Third Reich. I didn't even really at the time notice the import of what I had said, so gave myself no opportunity instantly to retract the statement. It was a rubbishy, cheap and offensive remark that I have been regretting ever since. I take this opportunity to apologise now. I said a stupid, thoughtless and fatuous thing. It detracted from and devalued my argument, such as it was, and it outraged and offended a large group of people for no very good reason. I am sorry in all directions, and all the more sorry because it is no one's fault but my own, which always makes it so much worse.
Fry has bipolar disorder. His first diagnosis was cyclothymia, which he refers to as "bipolar lite". However, his diagnosis has since been changed to bipolar I disorder. Fry has spoken publicly about his experience with bipolar disorder, which was depicted in the documentary Stephen Fry: The Secret Life of the Manic Depressive. In the programme, he interviewed other sufferers of the illness including Carrie Fisher, Richard Dreyfuss and Tony Slattery. He is involved with the mental health charity Stand to Reason and is president of Mind. In 2013 he revealed that, in the previous year, he had started taking medication for the first time, in an attempt to control his condition. Psychologist Oliver James has expressed scepticism, saying that narcissistic personality disorder "may be Fry's true diagnosis".
In 1995, Fry suffered a nervous breakdown while appearing in the West End Cell Mates and walked out of the production, causing its early closure and incurring the displeasure of co-star Rik Mayall and playwright Simon Gray. Fry went missing for several days and contemplated suicide. He abandoned the idea and left the United Kingdom by ferry, eventually resurfacing in Belgium. Fry has attempted suicide on a number of occasions, most recently in 2012. In an interview with Richard Herring in 2013, Fry revealed that he had attempted suicide the previous year while filming abroad. He said that he took a "huge number of pills and a huge [amount] of vodka" and had to be brought back to the UK to be "looked after".
In January 2008, Fry broke his arm while filming Last Chance to See in Brazil. While climbing aboard a boat, he slipped between it and the dock, and, stopping himself from falling into the water, his body weight snapped his right humerus. The resulting vulnerability to his radial nerve – he was at risk of losing the use of his arm – was not diagnosed until he saw a consultant in the UK.
Appearing on Top Gear in 2009, Fry had lost a significant amount of weight, prompting host Jeremy Clarkson to ask jokingly, "Where's the rest of you?" Fry explained that he had shed a total of 6 stone (84 lb; 38 kg), attributing the weight loss to doing a lot of walking while listening to downloaded audiobooks. Fry is between 6 feet 4 inches (1.93 m) and 6 feet 5 inches (1.96 m) in height.
Fry has stated that he is allergic to champagne and bumble bee stings.
Views on religion
Fry has repeatedly expressed opposition to organised religion, and has identified himself as an atheist and humanist, while declaring some sympathy for the ancient Greek belief in capricious gods. In his first autobiography he described how he once considered ordination to the Anglican priesthood, but came to the conclusion that he "couldn't believe in God, because [he] was fundamentally Hellenic in [his] outlook." He has stated that religion can have positive effects: "Sometimes belief means credulity, sometimes an expression of faith and hope which even the most sceptical atheist such as myself cannot but find inspiring."
In 2009, The Guardian published a letter from Fry addressing his younger self, explaining how his future is soon to unfold, reflecting on the positive progression towards gay acceptance and openness around him, and yet not everywhere, while warning on how "the cruel, hypocritical and loveless hand of religion and absolutism has fallen on the world once more." Later that year, he and Christopher Hitchens participated in an "Intelligence Squared" debate in which they argued against Ann Widdecombe and Archbishop John Onaiyekan, who supported the view that the Catholic Church was a force for good. Fry and Hitchens argued that the church did more harm than good. Fry attacked the Catholic Church's teachings on sexuality and denounced its wealth.
In 2010 Fry was made a Distinguished Supporter of the British Humanist Association, stating: "it is essential to nail one’s colours to the mast as a humanist." Later that year, Fry, joined 54 other public figures in signing an open letter published in The Guardian stating their opposition to Pope Benedict XVI's visit to the United Kingdom being a state visit. On 22 February 2011, Fry was presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award in Cultural Humanism by the Humanist Chaplaincy at Harvard University.
Interviewed in 2015 by veteran Irish broadcaster Gay Byrne, Fry was asked what he would say if he came face-to-face with God. Fry said: "Bone cancer in children, what’s that about? How dare you? How dare you create a world where there is such misery that’s not our fault? It’s utterly, utterly evil." Within days, the video was viewed over five million times. Fry later stated he did not refer to any specific religion, and said: “I said quite a few things that were angry at this supposed God. I was merely saying things that Bertrand Russell and many finer heads of the mind have said for many thousands of years, going all the way back to the Greeks.
In 2008, Fry formed SamFry Ltd, with long-term collaborator Andrew Sampson to produce and fund new material and manage his official website.
Fry is the co-owner, with Gina Carter and Sandi Toksvig, of Sprout Pictures, an independent film and television company.
Computing and software freedom
Fry uses Ubuntu as his desktop operating system. In 2008 he appeared in a film made by the Free Software Foundation to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the GNU Project to create a completely free operating system. In the film Fry explains the principles of software freedom central to the development of the Linux and GNU software projects.