Mother Meredith Hooper is a prolific author specializing in the history of science; father Richard Hooper, a media executive, was made a Commander of the British Empire in 2005.
Made his first film, a short about a runaway dog, at age 13; a short he made the next year (about a boy who learns that his grandfather had died in WWII) was the runner-up in a BBC young-filmmakers competition.
Directed Kate Beckinsale in a stage production of Arthur Miller's A View From the Bridge while an Oxford student.
Directed commercials in London before breaking into TV with the short-lived soap opera Quayside in 1997; graduated to EastEnders the next year.
TV dramas Love in a Cold Climate (2002), Daniel Deronda (2003) and Prime Suspect 6 (2004) aired on Masterpiece Theatre in the U.S.
Collaborations with Helen Mirren netted him an Emmy nomination (Prime Suspect 6) and an Emmy win (HBO's Elizabeth I, 2005).