Best known as one of Mike Leigh’s ’90s repertory of actors, Katrin Cartlidge also made her intense, versatile talent felt in several key European films of the 1990s and early 2000s. Her sterling career was cut short, however, when she passed away in 2002 at the age of 41.
Born to an orphaned British father and German-Jewish refugee mother, Cartlidge was raised in a bohemian London household. With her ability to read hampered by undiagnosed dyslexia, she was relegated to remedial classes at school, souring her on academics. More inspired by her trips to see avant-garde theater, Cartlidge began to audition for plays in her teens. Although without formal training, she joined the Royal Court Youth Theatre, and served as an apprentice in London and Edinburgh’s fringe theater. Despite making her official London stage debut at 18, Cartlidge supported herself during her late teens by working as an art school model and as a dresser at London’s Royal Court Theater. She was finally able… read more