Richardson, Michael Gambon, Gina McKee and Tom Hollander head the
cast of Stephen Poliakoff's The Lost Prince
ONE, Sunday 19 January, 8.30pm. Concludes Sunday 26 January.
Miranda Richardson, Michael Gambon, Gina McKee and Tom Hollander
head the cast of award-winning writer/director Stephen Poliakoff's
The Lost Prince, a two-part drama from TalkBack
Productions, starting on Sunday 19 January 2003.
the triumphant success of his BBC TWO dramas, Perfect Strangers
and Shooting The Past, Poliakoff tells the little-known story of
Edwardian royal, Prince John, the youngest child of George V and
John's short life spanned one of the most momentous periods in history
– the political build-up to the First World War and the machinations
of European royalty in the early part of the 20th century.
against a backdrop of unprecedented upheaval in Britain, The Lost
Prince tells the very human story of a unique family and an extraordinary
as an epileptic, and suffering from autistic-like learning difficulties,
Prince John was unable to participate in public life and became
increasingly isolated from his family.
Richardson plays Queen Mary, who tries to understand the needs of
her youngest child; Gina McKee is Prince John's devoted nanny, Lalla;
Tom Hollander plays George V, whose blood ties to his cousins, the
Emperor of Germany and the Tsar of Russia, cannot prevent his country
entering a calamitous world conflict.
Gambon is Prince John's grandfather, Edward VII, with veteran Bergman
film actress, Bibi Andersson, as his wife, Queen Alexandra.
Sessions plays the young royal's exasperated tutor, Mr Hansell.
Bill Nighy plays Stamfordham, King George's socially and politically
adept Private Secretary. Frank Finlay and Ron Cook also star.
than 600 boys were auditioned for the part of Prince John before
Matthew Thomas, who had a small role in BBC Films' Billy Elliot,
was chosen for the role.
Williams plays John at an earlier age. Rollo Weeks and Brock Everitt-Elwick
play his ever-loving brother, Prince George.
John Chapman, says: "Stephen Poliakoff has written for the
first time about events inspired by a true story and, like everything
with him, his research was meticulous and included time spent at
the Royal Archives at Windsor.
this he has created an extraordinarily poetic screenplay in his
unique style which offers a fascinating insight about this traumatic
period in history, much of which is virtually unknown."
John had epilepsy and possibly autism, and became a forgotten boy,"
saw past events through the eyes of a child in Perfect Strangers
and, in this drama, that happens on an epic scale. It is history
seen through a half-open door."
Tranter, Controller for Drama Commissioning for BBC Television,
says: "Following the success of Shooting The Past and Perfect
Strangers, both of which were shown on BBC TWO, it's brilliant to
have Stephen working on BBC ONE, and for his new piece of work to
be tackling such a little-known piece of history with all his usual
perspicacity, originality and skill as a dramatist.
is a big and ambitious drama for early next year on BBC ONE, which
continues the themes of the previous two in that it examines how
much children are influenced by their parents."
Lost Prince is a TalkBack production for BBC ONE.
executive producers are Peter Fincham and Joanna Beresford (TalkBack),
and David M Thompson (BBC).
Lost Prince marks producer John Chapman's third collaboration with
credits are the Royal Television Society and Prix Italia-winning
Shooting The Past and Perfect Strangers, which won this year's RTS
awards for Best Serial and Single Drama and Best Writer for Stephen
the recent Bafta 2002 ceremony, Stephen Poliakoff received the prestigious
Dennis Potter Award and Michael Gambon received Best Actor for his
role as Raymond in Perfect Strangers.
Lost Prince is the first of a number of original historical dramas
for the BBC next year.
include a four-part serial about the life of King Charles II by
the award-winning screenwriter Adrian Hodges; a two-part drama about
Byron, with Jonny Lee Miller in the title role, which portrays him
as the ultimate rebel whose overnight success brought him instant
celebrity status; Cambridge Spies, a fresh take on the Cambridge
spy ring by Peter Moffatt; and The Other Boleyn Girl, the story
of Mary Boleyn, who was mistress to Henry VIII before he married
her sister Anne.
addition, a two-part drama about James I and the Gunpowder Plot,
written by Jimmy McGovern, is currently in development.
Stephen Poliakoff's The Lost Prince, and using rehearsal scenes
from the drama, The King,The Kaiser And The Tsar, is a 60-minute
documentary for BBC ONE which examines why the monarchy in Britain
survived when nearly all the others failed.
George V and Queen Mary appeared on the balcony of Buckingham Palace
at the end of the First World War, the crowds cheered them wildly.
The monarchy had never been more popular.
the lives of many of their European cousins were changing forever,
as some of the oldest monarchies in the world found themselves swept
away by the war and subsequent social unrest and revolution.
screenplay of The Lost Prince, with an introduction by Stephen Poliakoff,
is to be published by Methuen, price £9.99. ISBN number 0
and DVD of The Lost Prince will also be released by BBC Worldwide,
price VHS £12.99, DVD £15.99. Catalogue numbers: BBCV7373
extras on the DVD include a photo gallery of the spectacular stills
taken on set and an informative commentary by Stephen Poliakoff,
composer Adrian Johnston and Jean-Paul Kelly, the production designer.
is also an exclusive interview with Poliakoff.
coincide with The Lost Prince on BBC ONE, BBC FOUR presents a season
of Stephen Poliakoff's dramas including Caught On A Train (1980),
She's Been Away (1989) and Shooting The Past (1999).
will also be a profile documentary, Shooting The Present, in which
Poliakoff discusses his life and career, with contributions from
leading British actors such as Michael Gambon, Lindsay Duncan, Matthew
Macfadyen, Clive Owen and Timothy Spall.
Lost Prince press pack is available below, in PDF
format. You may require Adobe Acrobat Software to read PDF files
which can be obtained here.
is available, for media use only, from the BBC Press Office.
notes (94 KB)
cast and production credits (141 KB)
interviews (673 KB)
tree (47 KB)
Richardson, Michael Gambon and Gina McKee head the cast of Stephen
Poliakoff's The Lost Prince for BBC ONE (06.06.02)