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Zawe Ashton


Zawe Ashton is an award-winning writer, playwright, director, producer and actor, with a career spanning film, stage and television.

Zawe is currently working on her first book, Character Breakdown, which Chatto will be publishing in 2017.


Zawe has starred in award-winning TV shows, including E4’s ‘Misfits’, Channel 4’s comedy drama, ‘Not Safe for Work’; Channel 4’s series ‘Coming Up: Raising Baby Rio’, primetime BBC1 series ‘Case Histories’. Notably, she plays the iconic role of ‘Vod’ in Channel 4’s cult classic drama, ‘Fresh Meat’. She was the lead in the critically acclaimed documentary drama ‘Dreams of a Life’, based on the life of Joyce Vincent and directed by BAFTA winning Carol Morley. She came to the attention of the film industry in 2009 with her role in St Trinian’s II: The Legend of Fritton’s Gold, and as the female lead in Blitz. Zawe made her own directorial debut in 2014, with short film Happy Toys co-produced with BBC Films.


She played the role of ‘Claire’ in Jamie Lloyd’s adaptation of Jean Genet’s play The Maids, its first contemporary performance in the UK, in which she stars opposite Uzo Aduba and Laura Carmichael. Her previous stage appearance was at the Donmar in Abi Morgan’s devastating play, Splendour. Straight after graduation, she appeared in three Royal Court Theatre plays: Gone Too Far!, Rhinoceros and The Arnosists. She has appeared twice in Shakespeare’s Globe, in their production of Othello and first-ever contemporary play The Frontline. Her other theatre credits include This Wide Night, Salome and Narrative.