Who is Lesley Sharp? Meet the Before We Die actress

Who is Lesley Sharp? Meet the Before We Die actress here

Find out all about the TV star's impressive career

Eve Crosbie

Channel 4 thriller Before We Die continues on Wednesday night and will no doubt leave viewers on the edge of their seats once again.

MORE: Viewers left confused by this detail in Before We Die

Based on a Swedish series with the same title, the drama stars Lesley Sharp as Hannah Laing, a detective on the verge of retirement desperate to find out what's happened when her colleague - and lover - is found brutally murdered.

Viewers may recognise Lesley from her other notable roles throughout her career. Get to know the actress here…

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WATCH: Are you watching new Channel 4 drama Before We Die?

Lesley was born in Manchester in 1960 but was raised in Formby, Merseyside after she was adopted at six weeks old. She previously told The Guardian that her experience of being given up by her biological parents led her to pursue a career in acting because, as a child, she felt "invisible" and as if she did not "quite fit in".

MORE: Meet the cast of new Channel 4 crime drama Before We Die

After graduating from the highly prestigious Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 1982, she made her screen debut in the comedy film Rita, Sue and Bob Too. She went on to land a number of other film roles throughout the eighties and nineties and became a well-known name among cinema-goers.

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Lesley Sharp is a familiar face to TV viewers

Following her turn in the BAFTA-winning film The Full Monty (it beat frontrunner Titantic!), she turned her attention to television, starring in the likes of Playing the Field, Clocking Off and Russell T. Davies' Bob & Rose.

She took on more serious roles in ITV mystery drama Afterlife, BBC One's adaptation of The Diary of Anne Frank and Channel 4's acclaimed thriller series Red Riding. Between 2011 and 2016, she starred opposite Suranne Jones in the primetime female-led crime drama series Scott & Bailey.

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Lesley starred in ITV crime drama Scott & Bailey opposite Suranne Jones

More recently, she has appeared in BBC One true story drama Three Girls, sitcom Living the Dream and Netflix teen drama Fate: The Winx Saga, where she played Rosalind.

MORE: 9 hottest new shows and films coming to Netflix in June

She recently opened up about the surprising way she was approached to take part in the new Channel 4 series. "Usually you’re sent scripts and you make up your mind from reading a character on the page, but I was sent a cut down version of the original Swedish series and asked to watch it," she said.

"The proposition was 'this is a TV show and what do you think of it? Would you like to be in our version?' It was a no brainer, I couldn't stop watching the Swedish version, it was fantastic. Hannah is a superb role and the show built a brooding sense of suspense."

Away from her television roles, Lesley is married to actor and playwright Nicholas Gleaves with whom she shares two sons - Zachary, 26, and Gabriel, 23. 

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