Zawe Ashton is a British actress, playwright, and director who has been making waves in the entertainment industry for over two decades. She is best known for her roles in the comedy dramas Fresh Meat and Not Safe for Work, the Netflix horror thriller film Velvet Buzzsaw, and the Marvel Studios movie The Marvels. She is also the wife of Tom Hiddleston, the star of Loki and The Avengers. How did this talented and beautiful woman rise to fame and find love with one of the most popular actors in the world? Let’s take a look at her life and career.
Table of Contents
Early Life and Family
Zawe Ashton was born on July 25, 1984, in Hackney, London, to a Ugandan mother, Victoria, and an English father, Paul Ashton. Her maternal grandfather, Paulo Muwanga, was the President and later Prime Minister of Uganda. She has two younger siblings, a brother and a sister. She attended the Anna Scher Theatre School from age six, and was a member of the National Youth Theatre. She gained her degree in acting at Manchester Metropolitan University.
Ashton started her acting career as a child, appearing in two episodes of The Demon Headmaster. She then went on to perform in various theatre productions, such as Rhinoceros, The Arsonists, Gone Too Far!, Othello, Frontline, All The Little Things We Crushed, This Wide Night, Here, Splendour, The Maids, and Salome. She won the second prize at the Ian Charleson Awards for her classical performance in Salome. She also starred in the critically acclaimed revival of Harold Pinter’s Betrayal, opposite Tom Hiddleston and Charlie Cox, which transferred from London’s West End to New York’s Broadway.
Ashton’s film credits include St. Trinian’s 2: The Legend of Fritton’s Gold, Blitz, Dreams of a Life, Nocturnal Animals, Greta, and Velvet Buzzsaw. She received a nomination for the Most Promising Newcomer at the British Independent Film Awards for her portrayal of Joyce Carol Vincent in Dreams of a Life, a documentary about a woman who died in her flat and remained undiscovered for three years. She also played the character Dar-Benn in The Marvels, the sequel to Captain Marvel, alongside Brie Larson, Teyonah Parris, and Iman Vellani.
Ashton’s TV credits include Vod in the Channel 4 comedy Fresh Meat, for which she won the Creative Diversity Network Award for Best Breakthrough On-Screen Talent and was nominated for two British Comedy Awards. She also played Claire in the BBC One/Netflix series Wanderlust, Katherine in the Channel 4 comedy drama Not Safe for Work, and Journey Blue in Doctor Who.
Writing and Directing Career
Ashton is also an award-winning writer, producer, and director. She wrote her first play, Harm’s Way, when she was 17, and it was nominated for the Verity Bargate Award in 2007. Her second play, For All the Women Who Thought They Were Mad, was produced in London and New York in 2019. She also wrote a novel, Character Breakdown, which was published by Penguin/Random House in 2019. The book is a semi-autobiographical account of her experiences as an actress in the film and TV industry.
Ashton made her directorial debut with Happy Toys, a short film that was nominated for the Best British Short at the Raindance Film Festival in 2014. She also directed a segment of the anthology film The Uncertain Kingdom, which was released in 2020.
Personal Life and Relationship with Tom Hiddleston
Ashton is engaged to Tom Hiddleston, the actor who plays Loki in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The couple met while starring in Betrayal in 2019, and started dating shortly after. They kept their relationship low-key and private, until they made their red carpet debut at the BAFTA Awards in March 2022, where Ashton was spotted wearing a diamond ring. They confirmed their engagement later that month, and welcomed their first child together in October 2022. They currently live in London with their baby and their dog, Bobby.
Ashton and Hiddleston are both avid supporters of various charities and causes, such as UNICEF, Comic Relief, Amnesty International, and Women for Women International. They also share a love for literature, art, and music. Ashton is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, and Hiddleston is a patron of the Poetry Society. They often attend cultural events and festivals together, such as the Venice Film Festival, the Glastonbury Festival, and the Hay Festival.
|Zawedde Emma Ashton
|Tom Hiddleston (engaged)
|Bachelor’s degree in acting
|1 brother, 1 sister
|Favorite TV Show
|1 dog, Bobby