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Sir Antony Sher stars in "The Shadow Line" on DirecTV's Audience Network as Peter Glickman.

Actor and novelist Sir Antony Sher has a South African background, having been born into a Lithuanian-Jewish family in Cape Town, but he has worked mainly in the United Kingdom.

In 1968, after completing his compulsory military service, Sher left for London to audition at The Central School of Speech and Drama but was unsuccessful. Instead, he studied at the Webber-Douglas School of Dramatic Art from 1969 to 1971. After training and performing with the theater group Gay Sweatshop, he joined the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1982. His big breakthrough came in 1985 when he played the title role in Shakespeare's "Richard III." This won him the prestigious Laurence Olivier Award. Since then he has played the lead in many big productions, including "Tamburlaine," "Cyrano de Bergerac," "Stanley" and "Macbeth."

Despite his success, a shy and insecure Sher turned to cocaine as an antidote and by 1996 spent three weeks in rehabilitation. In 1997 his portrayal of Disraeli in the film "Mrs. Brown" was well received, and he won his second Laurence Olivier Award for his role as Stanley Spencer. In 1998 he received an honorary Doctorate of Letters from Liverpool University. That year, he also was seen in the Academy Award-winning film "Shakespeare in Love." More recently he appeared in "The Wolfman," starring Benicio Del Toro, Anthony Hopkins and Emily Blunt.

On television, he starred in the miniseries "The History Man" (1981) and "The Jury" (2002).

He was knighted for services to the theater in 2000.

2012 BAFTA TV nominees: 'Downton Abbey's' Maggie Smith, 'Modern Family' and more


How old is Antony Sher? Find out here.

Age: 67 years old
Birthday: June 14, 1949
Birthplace: Cape Town, South Africa

"The Slap" (TV show) cast DirecTV Acquires 'The Slap' and 'The Shadow Line' — Australian import "The Slap" premieres Wednesday, February 15, while the U.K.'s "The Shadow Line" bows Sunday, February 19, on the Audience Network. Read more...

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