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28 October 2014

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Stella Street

Mick Jagger (Cornwell) & Keith Richards (Sessions)

Michael Caine, Robert De Niro, Jack Nicholson and Roger Moore all live on a quiet street in Surbiton and Mick Jagger and Keith Richards run their corner shop - who knew?

Starring John Sessions and Phil Cornwell and directed by "The Comic Strip Presents" main man Peter Richardson, Stella Street was an anarchic comedy that used the stars' considerable abilities as impressionists to stock a small English street with the cream of Hollywood talent... not to mention local cleaning lady Mrs Huggett and psychotic gardener and arsonist Len MacMonotony.

Joe Pesci

Pitched as a "suburban soap", Stella Street combined what we all think we know about the stars with soap opera conventions, to produce such memorable characters as ultra-violent gangster Joe Pesci, effete snob Dirk Bogarde and mind-numbing football bore Jimmy Hill.

If you've ever wondered what it would be like to see Al Pacino and Roger Moore playing Monopoly in Michael Caine's front room to celebrate Zulu's 33rd anniversary, or what would happen if a lobotomised Joe Pesci and drunk Jimmy Hill tried to cook a turkey "the way Delia Smith likes it", Stella Street was the place to find out.

Roger Moore and Jack Nicholson

Running for four series on BBC TWO between 1998 and 2001, with one forty-minute and one feature-length special, Stella Street proved that verve in execution could more than make up for inexpensive production values.

It was shot on handheld cameras, with each episode running at just 10 minutes (15 minutes in series two) and helped pave the way for cheap-to-produce, short-form comedies such as the first series of Marion and Geoff.

Michael Caine

Despite its brief episode length, as well as moments of comic genius the programme also managed to fit in more swearing per minute than any previous comedy.

As the Street's version of Al Pacino would say: "Hoo-har!"


Ronni Ancona
Jerry Hall, Madonna, Victoria Beckham, Penelope Cruz
John Sessions
Keith Richards, Joe Pesci, Roger Moore, Mrs Eileen Huggett, and others
Phil Cornwell
Michael Caine, Mick Jagger, Jack Nicholson, Jimmy Hill, and others
Sandra Cush


John Sessions
Phil Cornwell
Peter Richardson
Peter Richardson
Ben Swaffer
Charles Brand
executive producer
Andrew Zein
executive producer
John Goldstone
executive producer

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