Sophie Lara Winkleman (born 5 August 1980) is an English actress. As the wife of Lord Frederick Windsor, son of Queen Elizabeth II‘s first cousin Prince Michael of Kent, she is formally referred to as Lady Frederick Windsor, but continues to use her maiden name in her professional career.
Winkleman was born in Primrose Hill, London. Her father, Barry Winkleman, published the Times Atlas of World History, her mother is the children’s author Cindy Black, and her half-sister by her father’s first marriage is the television presenter Claudia Winkleman. Winkleman was educated at the City of London School for Girls and at Trinity Hall, Cambridge, where she studied English literature. She joined the Cambridge Footlights and wrote and performed in the comic revue Far Too Happy, which toured Britain for three months and garnered the troupe’s first Perrier Award nomination in 20 years. She was a member of the National Youth Theatre. She is also a soprano, reprising her singing in the First Love series for Sky Arts.
Winkleman’s numerous credits include recurring lead roles in series including Big Suze in ‘Peep Show, numerous roles in Harry & Paul, Joely in White Teeth, Fiona in The Trial of Tony Blair, ‘Abby in ‘Plus One, Katerina in Red Dwarf: Back to Earth, Donna in Lead Balloon, Prudence in Keen Eddie, Elle Kensington in Chasing Alice, Angela Warren in Poirot (in the episode “Five Little Pigs”), Princess Eleanor in The Palace, Ghislaine inRobin Hood, Alice Shadwell in ‘Dalziel and Pascoe’, Ann Hamilton in Death in Paradise, Jill in NBC’s ‘Hot in Cleveland’, Sharon Kirby in ‘CSI Miami’ and Dorothy Gibson in Titanic.
Winkleman was nominated for Best Newcomer by the BBC for her performance as Clara Gold in Waking the Dead. Winkleman made her debut on American television as the star of the NBC sitcom 100 Questions as main character Charlotte Payne and as a recurring guest on the hit series Two and a Half Men as Zoey, the girlfriend of Walden Schmidt (Ashton Kutcher). Winkleman was the first British regular cast member in the long-running hit American series.
Winkleman joined the National Youth Theatre of Great Britain in 1997. Winkleman’s numerous roles while at Cambridge University included the Bride in Lorca‘s Blood Wedding, which toured the amphitheatres of Greece, Elizabeth in Six Degrees of Separation, which played at the Edinburgh Festival, Abigail in Arthur Miller‘s The Crucible, Dockdaisy in Bertolt Brecht‘s The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui, Kate in Alan Ayckbourn‘s Confusions, Madame de Merteuil in Christopher Hampton’s ‘Les Liaisons Dangereuses’ and Fraulein Kost in Kander and Ebb’s ‘Cabaret’ all at the ADC. Winkleman’s stage career after Cambridge includes a season at the Royal Shakespeare Company, where she played Veronique in Laurence Boswell‘s adaptation of Beauty and the Beast and a summer in Bath with the Peter Hall Company playing a variety of roles including Archangela in Gallileo’s Daughter directed by Peter Hall, a new play by Timberlake Wertenbaker, Violet in George Bernard Shaw‘s Man and Superman directed by Peter Hall, and Charlotte in Molière’s Don Juan, directed by Thea Sharrock. In 2012 she played Helena in Eric Idle’s musical What About Dick at the Orpheum Theatre in downtown Los Angeles, alongside Eddie Izzard, Russell Brand and Billy Connolly.
Winkleman’s film credits include the lead roles in the films Shattered and Love Live Long, written and directed by Mike Figgis. Winkleman also played the comic role of Debbie Levine in Pathe’s romantic comedy Suzie Gold and the older Susan Pevensie in the Disney film The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Other film roles include the leads in the shorts Seared, Love Letters, and The Lost Domain, a cinematic take on Alain-Fournier‘s Le Grand Meaulnes, and Post, directed by Debs Gardner-Paterson.
Winkleman is a regular in BBC Radio 4 comedy and drama. She is among the cast of comedy programmes such as Marcus Brigstocke‘s Giles Wemmbley-Hogg Goes Off, and such afternoon plays as Tea for Two. She played Polly Pot in P.G. Wodehouse‘s Uncle Fred in the Springtime with Alfred Molina and Rufus Sewell, Gloria in Bernard Shaw’s You Never Can Tell, and Zoe in Alan Ayckbourn‘s Henceforward, alongside Jared Harris, all for Radio 4. She also played the role of Sasha in Von Ribbentrop’s Watch, a historical drama, Anna Freud in the play Dr. Freud Will See You Now, Mrs. Hitler, by Laurence Marks and Maurice Gran, and the Amazon warrior princess Penthiselea alongside Alistair McGowan and Stephen Mangan in the Radio 4 comic fantasy series ElvenQuest, by Anil Gupta and Richard Pinto. She has also starred in several Dr Who plays for Radio 4.
On 14 February 2009, Winkleman became engaged to Lord Frederick Windsor, the son of Prince and Princess Michael of Kent. They married in Hampton Court Palace on 12 September 2009. By virtue of her marriage, she became entitled to be styled as Lady Frederick Windsor, but continues to use her maiden name in her professional career. On 15 August 2013, the couple had a daughter, Maud Elizabeth Daphne Marina, who was born at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles, California, and is the first grandchild of Prince and Princess Michael of Kent. Their second child, daughter Isabella Alexandra May, was born on 16 January 2016 at London’s Chelsea and Westminster Hospital.