Rita Tushingham (born 14 March 1942) is an English actress.

Life and career [edit]Edit

Born in Liverpool and raised in the Hunt's Cross area, Tushingham began her career working backstage at the Liverpool Playhouse. Her screen debut was in A Taste of Honey (1961). Other performances included Girl with Green Eyes (1963), The Leather Boys (1964),The Knack …and How to Get It (1965), Doctor Zhivago (1965), The Trap (1966), Smashing Time (1967), The Bed Sitting Room (1969) and The 'Human' Factor (1975). She also co-starred as Margaret Sheen in the TV movie Green Eyes (1977), the touching story of a Vietnam vet who returns to Southeast Asia after the war to find his son.

In the sixties, Tushingham performed several plays for the English Stage Company at the Royal Court Theatre — The Changeling (1961), The Kitchen (1961), A Midsummer Night's Dream(1962), Twelfth Night (Production without décor, 1962), and The Knack (1962).

Tushingham has won a Golden Globe and a BAFTA Award, and was a member of the jury at the 22nd Berlin International Film Festival in 1972 and at the 40th Berlin International Film Festival in 1990.

Her last roles to date were in the film Being Julia (2004), starring Annette Bening, and on television in "The Sittaford Mystery" (2006), an episode of Marple.

Personal life [edit]Edit

Tushingham married photographer Terry Bicknell in 1962. They had two daughters, Dodonna and Aisha Bicknell. In 1981 she married Iraqi cinematographer Ousama Rawi, spending eight years in Canada with him. She now divides her time between Germany and London, with her partner since the mid-1990s, writer Hans-Heinrich Ziemann.

In April 2005, at the age of 33, her daughter Aisha Bicknell was diagnosed with breast cancer. Aisha recovered and later gave birth to a son. Tushingham became an activist for breast cancer health and support.

Tushingham and Bicknell are prominent supporters of Cancer Research UK's Relay for Life and have given a number of interviews to raise breast cancer awareness.

In July 2009, Tushingham received an Honorary Fellowship from Liverpool John Moores University for "outstanding and sustained contributions to the Performing Arts."

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