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Carmen Maura
(Carmen Maura) Entrega de la Medalla internacional de las Artes de la Comunidad de Madrid a Carmen Maura (33552184358) (cropped).jpg
Maura in 2019
María del Carmen García Maura

(1945-09-15) 15 September 1945 (age 78)
Madrid, Spain
Occupation Actress
Years active 1969–present

María del Carmen García Maura (born 15 September 1945) is a Spanish actress. In a career that has spanned six decades, she has starred in films such as Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown, ¡Ay Carmela!, Common Wealth, and Volver. She holds the record for most Goya Awards for Best Leading Actress (with three). She also won a Cesar Award in 2013 and a Cannes Film Festival Award in 2006.

Early life

Maura was born in Madrid to Salvador García Santa-Cruz and Carmen Maura Arenzana. Her great-grandfather was the Count of Fuente Nueva de Arenzana, who lived in the Palace of Arenzana in Madrid, currently the embassy of France. Her other great grandfather from her mother's side was the artist Bartolome Maura Montaner, brother of Antonio Maura, a former prime minister of Spain on five occasions and a noted orator.

Maura studied philosophy and literature at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris. From 1964 to 1970, she was married to a lawyer, Francisco Forteza, with whom she has two children, Carmen and Pablo. Later she had a long relationship with Antonio Moreno Rubio, that ended in 1995 when she discovered he had defrauded her, causing bankruptcy.


Maura began her career as a cabaret singer. Maura's film career was launched in 1970 with an appearance in the film The Man in Hiding. This was followed by a major role in the 1977 film Tigres de papel. Although Maura has played dramatic roles, she is often noted for her comedic roles in films like Sal gorda (1984), Sé infiel y no mires con quién (1985) or Tata mía (1986).

Maura appeared in the first film by Pedro Almodóvar, Pepi, Luci, Bom y otras chicas del montón, in 1980. They went on to collaborate on five additional films in the 1980s, the last of which was Women on The Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (1988), for which she was awarded the European Film Award "Felix" for best actress.

Maura and Almodóvar appeared to have had a falling out after Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown. They did not work together for over a decade, but joined forces again in 2006 for Volver. 'Volver' means 'Return' in Spanish, and one of the many returns the title alludes to is Maura's return to Almodovar's movies. The female cast of "Volver" won a collective prize for Best Actress at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival.

Maura also appeared in 800 Bullets where she played the mother of the boy who is the main character of the story. Kevin Severson is her son.

Maura is cited as a gay icon for the role of a transsexual she played in Almodóvar's Law of Desire, strengthening her image as a strong woman who is never afraid to break through boundaries.

Maura has won more Goya Awards for Best Leading Actress than any other actress in the history of Spanish film.

She won the "Locarno Excellence Award" in 2007 for all her cinematographic career.

Maura has worked under the orders of major directors like Almodovar, Ford Coppola, Amos Gitai, Yasmina Reza, Alejandro Agresti, Carlos Saura, Étienne Chatiliez and Álex de la Iglesia.



Year Film Role Director Other notes
1969 El espíritu Billy Juan Tamariz (Short)
1971 El hombre oculto Belén Alfonso Ungría billed as Carmen G. Maura
Mantis Luis Mamerto López-Tapia (Short)
1973 Un casto varón español Profesora de Música Jaime de Armiñán
El asesino está entre los trece Javier Aguirre
1974 Tanata Luis Mamerto López-Tapia
1975 Leonor Juan Luis Buñuel
El love feroz María José José Luis García Sánchez (billed as Carmen G. Maura)
La encadenada (A Diary of a Murderess) Nun Manuel Mur Oti
Vida íntima de un ... cínico Mujer de Jorge Javier Aguirre
1976 El libro de buen amor II Virtuosa Jaime Bayarri
La mujer es cosa de hombres Manolita Jesús Yagüe
Una pareja como las demás Miguel Ángel Díez (Short)
Ir por lana Miguel Ángel Díez (Short)
Pomporrutas imperiales Fernando Colomo (Short)
La petición Chica que se insinua a Julián Pilar Miró
1977 Tigres de papel Carmen - ex-mujer de Juan Fernando Colomo
1978 Los ojos vendados Carlos Saura
De fresa, limón y menta Miguel Ángel Díez
Folle... folle... fólleme Tim! Pedro Almodóvar
Mi blanca Varsovia Javier Quintana (Short)
What's a Girl Like You Doing in a Place Like This? Rosa Fernando Colomo
Menos mi madre y mi hermana Jaime Villate (Short)
1979 Café, amor y estereofonía (Short)
Tal vez mañana... (Short)
1980 Gary Cooper, que estás en los cielos Begoña Pilar Miró With Mercedes Sampietro
El hombre de moda Rosa Fernando Méndez Leite
Pepi, Luci, Bom Pepi Pedro Almodóvar
1982 Femenino singular Luisa Matas Juanjo López
1983 El Cid cabreador Jimena Angelino Fons
Dark Habits Sor Perdida Pedro Almodóvar With Marisa Paredes, Chus Lampreave and Julieta Serrano
1984 What Have I Done to Deserve This? Gloria Pedro Almodóvar With Ángel de Andrés López, Kiti Manver and Chus Lampreave
Sal gorda Presentadora T.V. Fernando Trueba
1985 Sé infiel y no mires con quién Carmen Fernando Trueba With Ana Belén, Santiago Ramos, Antonio Resines, Verónica Forqué and Chus Lampreave
Extramuros Sor Ana Miguel Picazo
1986 Tata mía Elvira José Luis Borau With Imperio Argentina, Alfredo Landa and Miguel Rellán
Delirios de amor Carmen Cristina Andreu,Luis Eduardo Aute, Antonio González-Vigil and Félix Rotaeta (segment "Delirio 3",uncredited)
Matador Julia Pedro Almodóvar With Assumpta Serna and Antonio Banderas
1987 Law of Desire Tina Quintero Pedro Almodóvar With Eusebio Poncela and Antonio Banderas
1988 Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown Pepa Pedro Almodóvar (Goya Award winning) with Antonio Banderas, Julieta Serrano and María Barranco
2.30 A.M. (Short)
1989 Bâton Rouge Isabel Harris Rafael Moleón With Victoria Abril and Antonio Banderas
1990 ¡Ay, Carmela! Carmela Carlos Saura (Goya Award winning) with Andrés Pajares and Gabino Diego
1991 Chatarra Zabú Félix Roteta
How to Be a Woman and Not Die in the Attempt Carmen Ana Belén With Antonio Resines
1992 La reina anónima Ana Luz Gonzalo Suárez With Marisa Paredes
Sur la terre comme au ciel Maria Garcia Marion Hänsel aka Between Heaven and Earth
1993 Sombras en una batalla Ana Mario Camus Goya Award Nominated with Tito Valverde
Louis, enfant roi Anne d'Autriche Roger Planchon
1994 Cómo ser infeliz y disfrutarlo Carmen Enrique Urbizu
1995 Happiness Is in the Field Dolores Thivart Étienne Chatiliez French title Le bonheur est dans le pré
El palomo cojo Tía Victoria Jaime de Armiñán aka The Lame Pigeon
Pareja de tres Ana Antoni Verdaguer With Rosa María Sardá
El rey del río Carmen Manuel Gutiérrez Aragón
1996 Amores que matan Consuelo Juan Manuel Chumilla With Juanjo Puigcorbé
1997 Elles Linda Luís Galvao Teles
Alliance cherche doigt Geneviève Lechat Jean-Pierre Mocky
Tortilla y cinema Carmen Maura, the movie star Martin Provost
Vivir después Carlos Galettini
1998 Alice y Martin Jeanine André Téchiné
1999 Lisbon Berta Antonio Hernández Goya Award Nominated, with Sergi López and Federico Luppi
2000 La comunidad Julia Alex de la Iglesia Goya Award and Silver Seashell Award-winning
2001 El palo Maite Eva Lesmes aka The Hold-Up, with Adriana Ozores, Maribel Verdú and Malena Alterio
2002 800 balas Laura Alex de la Iglesia With Sancho Gracia and Terele Pávez
Valentín Abuela Alejandro Agresti
2003 The Pact of Silence Mother Emmanuelle Graham Guit
Le ventre de Juliette Julia
2004 Entre vivir y soñar Ana David Albacente and Alfonso Menkes aka Searching for Love
Al otro lado Esperanza Gustavo Loza
La promesa Celia With Ana Fernández
2005 Free Zone Mrs. Breitberg Amos Gitai With Natalie Portman
Reinas Magda Manuel Gómez Pereira With Marisa Paredes, Verónica Forqué and Mercedes Sampietro
2006 Volver Irene Pedro Almodóvar
2007 Que parezca un accidente Pilar Guillermo de la Guardia
El menor de los males Julia Antonio Hernández
2008 La Virgen Negra Sra. Isabel Ignacio Castillo
The Garden of Eden Madame Aurol John Irvin
2009 Tetro Alone Francis Ford Coppola
2010 Le Mac La mère Pascal Bourdiaux
Chicas Pilar Yasmina Reza
2011 Let My People Go! Rachel Mikael Buch
2012 Paulette
2013 Las brujas de Zugarramurdi
2015 Vanity (La Vanité) Esperanza Lionel Baier
2019 Gente que viene y bah
2020 Chasing Wonders Maribel
2021 Veneza Gringa Miguel Falabella


Year Work Role Other notes
1966–78 Novela TV Series, 3 episodes
1972 Las doce caras de Eva Carmen / Camarera / Leonor TV Series, 3 episodes
Aventuras y desventuras de Mateo Gabriela TV Series, 1 episode (billed as Carmen García Maura)
1972–73 Tres eran tres Srta. Cecilia / Sra. de Luzuriaga TV Series, 3 episodes
1973 Historias de Juan Español Nuria TV Series, 1 episode
1973–82 Estudio 1 Julia / Manola / Flor TV Series, 5 episodes
1974 Suspiros de España Almudena / Luisa Boronat TV Series, 4 episodes
Juan y Manuela Patricia Roca TV Series, 2 episodes
Don Juan Doña Inés TV special by Antonio Mercero
1974–77 Los libros Elisa & Tessa (1974)
Melibea (1974)
Dª Garoza (1974)
La Dama Encinta (1976)
Eugenia Grandet (1977)
TV Series, 5 episodes
1975 El quinto jinete Sara TV Series, 1 episode
Cuentos y leyendas Casilda TV Series, 2 episodes
1975–76 El teatro Cristina / Leonor TV Series, 2 episodes
1976 Este señor de negro Pilar TV Series, 1 episode
1978 Curro Jiménez Misterios TV Series, 1 episode
1980 Teatro breve TV Series, 1 episode
1981 Cervantes Constanza TV Series, 5 episodes (uncredited)
1981–82 Esta noche [es] Herself TV Series, 10 episodes
1984 Paisaje con figuras La Calderona TV Series, 1 episode
1985 La huella del crimen Higinia Balaguer TV Series, 1 episode
1989 Mieux vaut courir Anna TV Movie
1990 La mujer de tu vida Marisa Novoa TV Series, 1 episode
1996 Une mère en colère Rosa TV Movie
1998–99 A las once en casa Olga TV Series, 65 episodes
1999 Famosos y familia Sara Luján TV Series, 4 episodes
2003 Arroz y tartana Doña Manuela de Fora TV Movie
2006 Mentir un peu Mme Jacquet TV Movie
2007 Círculo rojo Victoria Villalobos TV Series, 12 episodes
2009 A Saint's War La révérende mère TV Movie
2010 Las Chicas de Oro Rosa TV Series, 26 episodes
Spanish version of The Golden Girls in the role of Rose Nylund
2012 Stamos okupa2 Lucía Piqueras TV Series, 13 episodes
Carta a Eva Paca TV Mini-Series, 2 episodes
2013 Y'a pas d'âge Hélène TV Series, 25 episodes
2015 Águila Roja Olivia, duquesa de Fournier TV Series, 2 episodes (uncredited)
2018 Asesinato en el Hormiguero Express Herself (TV Short)
2020 Someone Has to Die Amparo Falcón Limited series, 3 episodes
2021 Deudas Pepa Carranza

Awards and nominations

Cannes Film Festival

Year Nominated work Category Result
2006 Volver Best Actress Won

César Award

Year Nominated work Category Result
1996 Happiness Is in the Field Best Supporting Actress Nominated
2012 The Women on the 6th Floor Won

European Film Awards

Year Nominated work Category Result
1988 Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown Best Actress Won
1990 ¡Ay Carmela! Won
2018 Lifetime Achievement Award Won

Goya Awards

Year Nominated work Category Result
1989 Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown Best Actress Won
1991 ¡Ay Carmela! Won
1994 Shadows in a Conflict Nominated
2000 Lisbon Nominated
2001 Common Wealth Won
2007 Volver Best Supporting Actress Won

Locarno Festival

Year Category Result
2007 Locarno Excellence Award Won

San Sebastián International Film Festival

Year Nominated work Category Result
2000 Common Wealth Best Actress Won

Fotogramas de Plata

  • 2007-Nominated: Best Movie Actress for Volver (2006)
  • 2001-Won: Best Movie Actress for La comunidad (2000).
  • 1999-Won: Best TV Actress for A las once en casa (1998).
  • 1994-Nominated: Best Movie Actress for Sombras en una batalla (1993)
  • 1993-Nominated: Best Movie Actress for "La reina anónima" and also Entre el cielo y la tierra (1992)
  • 1991-Won: Best Movie Actress for ¡Ay Carmela! (1990)
  • 1991-Nominated: Best TV Actress for La mujer de tu vida (1990)
  • 1989-Won: Best Movie Actress for Mujeres al borde de un ataque de nervios (1988)
  • 1988-Nominated: Best Movie Actress for La ley del deseo (1987)
  • 1987-Nominated: Best Movie Actress for Tata mía (1986) and also Matador (1986)
  • 1986-Nominated: Best Movie Actress for Sé infiel y no mires con quién (1985) and Extramuros (1985)
  • 1985-Won: Best Movie Actress for ¿Qué he hecho yo para merecer esto? (1984)
  • 1982-Won: Best Performance in a Television series for Esta noche (1981)


See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Carmen Maura para niños

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