Joely Richardson

A member of one of the world's most acclaimed acting dynasties, Joely Richardson was a late bloomer in her family's chosen profession, but by the early 1990s and into the next century she established herself as a skilled performer, capable of tackling both period roles and modern day characters in features and on television. Her first major role was as a murderess in the art house favorite "Drowning By Numbers" (1988), and despite Hollywood's tendency to cast her in lighthearted roles like "101 Dalmatians" (1996), she did her best work in darker, more nuanced material like "Sister My Sister" (Channel 4, 1994) and "The Echo" (BBC, 1998). Her best known role - as the conflicted Julie McNamara on "Nip/Tuck" (FX, 2003-2010) - earned her both critical acclaim and widespread exposure, though Richardson appeared to favor substantive work over fame. As a result, she remained among the more widely respected actresses and earned more prestigious roles as a result. But as her career was moving along, Richardson suffered a tragic loss when her sister, actress Natasha Richardson, died from an epidural hematoma as the result of a skiing accident. With the eyes of the world on the famous family, Richardson returned to work, playing Queen Katherine Parr on "The Tudors" (Showtime, 2007-2010) and co-starring in "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" (2011), which helped underscore the enormity of her talent.