Miss Austen Regrets, BBC One
Olivia Williams plays Jane Austen
A huge fan of Jane Austen, Olivia Williams earned a degree in English at Cambridge University, before studying drama at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School for two years.
She also worked with the Royal Shakespeare Company in both Stratford-upon-Avon and London.
A four-month tour of Richard III, featuring Sir Ian McKellen, took her to the United States and brought her to the attention of Kevin Costner, who handpicked her for his film The Postman.
Since making her film debut opposite Costner in 1997, Olivia has starred in numerous Hollywood films including The Sixth Sense (1999), opposite Bruce Willis, and Rushmore (1999), with Bill Murray and Jason Schwartzman.
In 2002, Olivia won the Best Actress Award at the British Independent Film Awards for her role in The Heart Of Me, starring alongside Paul Bettany and Helena Bonham-Carter.
In 2006, audiences saw Olivia in the BBC docu-drama Krakatoa – The Last Days, which told the true story of one of the most destructive natural disasters in history.
Also in 2006, she returned to the stage for a starring role in The Changeling, at the Barbican Theatre, before going on tour with the play.
In April, Olivia can be seen in Flashbacks Of A Fool and, later in the year, in Broken Lines. She is currently filming An Education.
Olivia resides in London with her husband and their two daughters.