Mary Selway

Active - 1971 - 2006  |   Born - Mar 14, 1936   |   Died - Apr 21, 2004   |   Genres - Drama, Comedy, Romance, Adventure, Thriller

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Biography by Jason Buchanan

It's not often that casting directors receive the kind of high-profile recognition that actors and other above-the-line personalities do -- but then again, there aren't too many people in that line of work who can boast of the accomplishments made by top British casting professional Mary Selway. Often cited as one of Britain's top talents for matching the right actor with the right role, Selway used her sharp eye to fill roles in such acclaimed features as Raiders of the Lost Ark, A Dry White Season, Gosford Park, and Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World. A native of Norwich, England, who enrolled at the Italia Conti stage school at the young age of 13, the aspiring talent defied her father's wishes of pursuing a more academic career to carve her own distinctive path in the entertainment industry. Though Selway was too much of a wallflower to command the boards, frequent modeling eventually led to work as a production assistant on television variety shows. Work in television and theater followed, with Selway eventually landing a job with top casting agent Miriam Brickman. In the decades that followed, Selway worked with such legendary filmmakers as Roman Polanski, Sydney Pollack, Steven Spielberg, and Robert Altman, among countless others -- contributing in no small part to the creation of some of the silver screen's most memorable characters. Plagued by recurring illness in her later years, Selway nevertheless continued working on such features as The Chronicles of Riddick and Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire until she was physically able to work no more. In 2001, Selway was the recipient of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts' Michael Balcon Award for outstanding contribution to British film. On April 21, 2004, Mary Selway died of cancer in London. She was 68.

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