Her parents, John Chancellor and Mary Joliffe, divorced in 1967. She, her two older sisters, and one older brother Edward are direct descendants of former Prime Minister Herbert Asquith.
Among Anna's weaknesses are sugar and cakes. She is addicted to coffee and once smoked but quit in 1999.
She married cinematographer Nigel Willoughby in 1993. They got divorced in 1998. After her divorce, she met and dated Algerian cab driver Redha and has been with him since. She has a daughter Poppy with former partner poet Jock Scott, whom she met while attending drama school.
Anna is 5' 10" (178 cm) tall.
To keep herself in healthy and fit, Anna goes for runs and takes up swimming when she has the time. She also walks her dog every day and does some stretching exercises before and after going to bed. Another thing Anna loves to do to pamper herself is going to Turkish baths.
Since she played the role of Henrietta in Four Weddings and a Funeral, people, including her family and friends, have called her 'Duckface', the nickname of her character in the film.
One of the things Anna spends good money for is bird-feeding. She spends about £100 a month to feed wild birds during the winter.
Chancellor became pregnant with her daughter Poppy when she was just 21 years old. To support her child, Anna took on waitressing jobs, appeared in ads, and performed in far-flung theatres.
TV Movie and Film Credits:
• Marple: Murder Is Easy (2008) (TV) as Lydia Horton
• Christmas at the Riviera (2007) (TV) as Diane
• St. Trinian's (2007) as Miss Bagstock
• Baker Street Irregulars (2007) (TV) as Irene Adler
• The Secret Life of Mrs. Beeton (2006) (TV) as Elizabeth Dorling
• Breaking and Entering (2006) as Kate
• A Waste of Shame: The Mystery of Shakespeare and His Sonnets (2005) (TV) as Anne Hathaway
• The Best Man (2005) as Dana
• Feeder (2005) as Doctor
• Roman Road (2004) (TV) as Maddy Bancroft
• Confused (2003)
• Doc Martin and the Legend of the Cloutie (2003) (TV) as Nicky Bowden
• Tipping the Velvet (2002) (TV) as Diana Lethaby
• Longitude (2000) (TV) as Muriel Gould
• Heart (1999) as Nicola Farmer
• FairyTale: A True Story (1997) as Peter Pan
• Ellington (1994) (TV) as Ally Stone
• Staggered (1994) as Carmen Svennipeg
• Century (1993) as Woman in Police Station
• Killing Dad or How to Love Your Mother (1989) as Barmaid
• The Real Inspector Hound (London's Donmar Warehouse, 1998)
• Black Comedy (Comedy Theatre in London, 1998)
• Boston Marriage (London's Donmar Warehouse and West End, 2000)
• Creditors (London's Donmar Warehouse, 2008)
• The Observer as Fiona Russell (National Theatre in London, 2009)
In 1991, Anna appeared in the "Dear Santa" TV ad of Ferrero Rocher chocolates. She played Gladys Althorpe in the television commercial for Boddingtons Beer in 1993 and was also in the Sure Ultra Dry cream deodorant TV commercial in 1999.
Anna: I look at people who have regular jobs and think that stability must be amazing. And, when you're acting, every emotion is under a magnifying glass, which can be painful. But who doesn't suffer in life?
Anna: I like acting, and it seems to me that a lot of the gorgeous ones, often it's not exactly acting they're asked to do. Often they're just asked to be gorgeous.
Anna: I'm usually the girl the audience doesn't want the hero to end up with. In some form or other, I'm usually the ugly sister. I'm never the innocent Cinderella type.
Anna: (how she got started in acting) Miss Berger's after-school drama classes at my boarding school. I found I was good at telling stories, which is an important part of being an actor.
Anna: I'm not crazy about taking off my clothes for a film, but I love swimming in the nude - wherever and whenever possible.
Anna: (on the greatest threat to theatre) Boredom. There's a fine line between what works on stage and what doesn't. If you see a play and you're bored, you're not going to go back to the theatre for at least five years.
Anna: I was always putting on shows in people's houses; it came naturally. I never thought of acting as something to be learnt, but as something inside you.
Anna: Work has always seemed like a great gift really. I have never taken it for granted and thought I should be somewhere other than I am.
Anna: I feel that really talented, courageous, inspiring women -- or men maybe -- they're just overlooked. A lot [are] overlooked and they promote people who aren't very interesting. Because people are scared of talent, because that talent is free thinking, whatever field you're in.
Anna: I think we live in a neurotic world. The whole of Western society lives on its nerves. Am I neurotic? I can be. But I can also be quite easy-going.
Anna: Becoming a single mother at drama school was the driving force in my career.
Anna: (best advice anyone has given her) I once heard a story about an old man who was asked if there was anything he regretted, and he said: 'Worrying.' It's a complete waste of time in acting, and in life.
Anna: (advice to young actors) Do it any way you can, even if it means just putting on a play to entertain your family at Christmas.
Anna: I do try and curb my mouth, but I find it really hard. I wonder how many jobs I've talked myself out of! Actors are supposed to know their place, and be desperate for work, unless they are incredibly famous.