Ian McDiarmid (; born 11 August 1944) is a Scottish actor and director of stage and screen, best known for portraying Emperor Palpatine in the Star Wars film series. Making his stage debut in Hamlet in 1972, McDiarmid joined the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1974, and has since starred in a number of Shakespeare's plays. He has received an Olivier Award for Best Actor and a Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Play for his stage performances.
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