I’ve had this theory for some time now that the reason I never set the world alight as a child was the competition from the freakishly talented generation which I grew up in. That’s my theory, and I’m sticking to it anyway. Having just had a fiftieth birthday, I’ve become aware of just how many talented people are celebrating the same milestone, and it’s really reminded me of how extraordinary the rest of my school year were, especially the younger half. So a happy birthday to all these people born between March and August 1963, and from whom the best may be yet to come…

alex
Alex Kingston (born 11 March 1963)
“Hello Sweetie.”

davidt
David Thewlis (born 20 March 1963)
“Now repeat after me – without wands please – repeat after me… Riddikulus!”

quentin
Quentin Tarantino (born 27 March 1963)
“I steal from every movie ever made.”

graham
Graham Norton (born 4 April 1963)
“Do I have more depth than I’m given credit for? No!”

gary kasparov
Garry Kasparov (born 13 April 1963)
“When your house is on fire, you can’t be bothered with the neighbours. Or, as we say in chess, if your King is under attack, don’t worry about losing a pawn on the queenside.”

moysie
David Moyes (born 25 April 1963)
“Everton are the people’s club, the people on the street support Everton.”

brant
David Schneider (born 22 May 1963)
“This week, Bill Clinton has shown that, like Icarus, he can’t stand the political heat”

mike
Mike Myers (born 25 May 1963)
“Schwing…”

simon armitage
Simon Armitage (born 26 May 1963)
“I’m not playing ball boy any longer”

helen sharman
Helen Sharman (born 30 May 1963)
“Space is grand and being part of it makes people feel grand”

mike-joyce
Mike Joyce (born 1 June 1963)
“There is no ‘plea’ from me urging Morrissey to consider reuniting the band in a bid to please fans. Nor will there ever be.”

jason
Jason Isaacs (born 6 June 1963)
“Hello to Jason Isaacs”

johnny
Johnny Depp (born 9 June 1963)
“Captain Jack Sparrow is like a cross between Keith Richards and Pepe Le Pew.”

Jan Pinkava
Jan Pinkava (born 21 June 1963)
“I was a geek, I still am I suppose”
(Author’s note: Jan is the only person on this list who actually was in my school class!)

monty
Colin Montgomerie (born 23 June 1963)
“I played great on the back nine and got nothing out of it”

George Michael
George Michael (born 25 June 1963)
“I’ve been very well remunerated for my talents over the years so I really don’t need the public’s money”

Mark Kermode
Mark Kermode (born 2 July 1963)
“I just sat there thinking: you know, of all the things I didn’t want in the world, this is pretty much top of the heap.”

Tracey Emin
Tracey Emin (born 3 July 1963)
“The other day I hated my art so much I wanted to smash it, like you abuse a faithful lover”

Nigel-Blackwell-of-Half-Man-Half-Biscuit
Nigel Blackwell (born 18 July 1963)
“I tend to compose melodies on Sunday evenings and then words of a Tuesday afternoon which I then sometimes forward to sendusyourlyrics.co.uk for further opinion”

yann
Yann Martel (born 25 June 1963)
“I know zoos are no longer in people’s good graces. Religion faces the same problem. Certain illusions about freedom plague them both.”

lisa
Lisa Kudrow (born 30 July 1963)
“I don’t know, it’s just, you know…monkeys, Darwin, you know, it’s a, it’s a nice story, I just think it’s a little too easy”

norman
Norman Cook (born 31 July 1963)
“How tremendous is Fatboy Slim? The band of the nineties, if you wanna call it a band, because it’s a one man name…”

james
James Hetfield (born 3 August 1963)
“It’s all fun and games ’till someone loses an eye, then it’s just fun you can’t see.”

whitney houston
Whitney Houston (born 9 August 1963)
“I will always love youuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu”

tori
Tori Amos (born 22 August 1963)
“An angel’s face is tricky to wear constantly”

simon-milton
Simon Milton (born 22 August 1963)
“Mick, I am still available if needed”

mark
Mark Strong (born 30 August 1963)
“Individually, we are vulnerable. Together, we are unstoppable!”

oakenfold
Paul Oakenfold (born 30 August 1963)
“It’s not over, not over, not over, not over yet”