Christopher Hampton is a Portuguese-born British playwright, screenwriter, and film director. As a child, his family moved around the world with his father’s job until they were forced to flee Egypt during the Suez Crisis of 1956. He attended boarding school in England, along with fellow future playwright David Hare. Hampton then studied French and German at Oxford University, where he became involved in the dramatic society. His first play, When Did You Last See My Mother?, was performed by the dramatic society and subsequently performed in London’s West End.
Hampton became the Resident Dramatists at London’s Royal Court Theatre from 1968 to 1970, where he achieved a huge success with The Philanthropist (1970). The play ran in the West End for four years, and played on Broadway in 1971. Subsequent early plays included Savages (1973) and Treats (1975). Hampton also wrote several successful adaptations/translations of classic plays and novels, including Tartuffe (1983), Les Liaisons Dangereuses (1985; Hampton also adapted his play for the screen and won the 1988 Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay), Dracula the Musical (2001), The Father (2014), and The Height of the Storm (2018). Drawing on Billy Wilder’s film of the same name, he also wrote the book for Andrew Lloyd Webber’s hit musical Sunset Boulevard (1993). He won the Tony Awards for Best Original Score and Best Book of a Musical for his work on this show.
Hampton is also known for his film adaptations, with credits including The Quiet American (2002), Atonement (2007), A Dangerous Method (2011), and The Father (2020).
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