Born in Enfield, London to a Scottish father and a Maltese mother, Mackintosh was raised in his mother's Roman Catholic faith and educated at Prior Park College in Bath. His younger brother, Robert Mackintosh, also is a producer.
After early productions such as Side By Side By Sondheim, The Card, and Tom Foolery, Mackintosh hit the big time in 1981 as the producer of Cats, which held the record for longest-running musical in London's West End for many years before being overtaken by his production of Les Misérables. It also had a similar, record-breaking run on Broadway.
In 1995, Mackintosh produced the 10th anniversary concert of Les Misérables in London. Additionally, throughout the 1990s, he was responsible for the National Theatre revivals of Oklahoma!, My Fair Lady, and Carousel.
Mackintosh's less successful productions include Moby Dick and the stage adaptation of John Updike's The Witches of Eastwick which, despite some positive reviews, closed after the events of 9/11 resulted in a downturn in tourism.
Mackintosh's involvement in the development of Mary Poppins led to his producing both the 2004 West End and 2006 Broadway stagings. He also co-produced the London transfer of Avenue Q, which opened at the Noël Coward Theatre on June 1, 2006.
In 1998, Mackintosh celebrated thirty years in the business with Hey, Mr. Producer!, a gala concert featuring songs from shows he had produced throughout his career. The concert was performed twice, on June 7th and 8th, with proceeds going to the Royal National Institute of the Blind and the Combined Theatrical Charities. Many celebrities took part, and the June 8 performance was attended by The Queen and Prince Philip.
Hey, Mr. Producer! The Musical World of Cameron Mackintosh by Sheridan Morley and Ruth Leon, published in the UK by Weidenfeld & Nicolson and in the US by Back Stage Books, 1998
The_Sundowe - A new Scottish based musical being produced by Cameron Mackintosh in association with Eden Court Theatre and the Scottish Executive