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Philip Seymour Hoffman, Jose Sulaiman, Anna Gordy Gaye, Ron Hall, Peter Austin

28 minutes
First broadcast:
Friday 07 February 2014

Matthew Bannister on

The stage and screen actor Philip Seymour Hoffman. His room-mate at drama school talks about his relentless focus on his craft and obsession with dissecting the movies of Robert De Niro.

Also: the journalist Ron Hall - a key member of the Sunday Times Insight investigative team. Former editor Sir Harold Evans pays tribute.

Anna Gordy Gaye - sister of Motown Records founder Berry Gordy - who played a key role in the label's foundation and married Marvin Gaye. Smokey Robinson shares his memories.

Jose Sulaiman, the colourful President of the World Boxing Council, who is credited with reforming the sport's rules.

And Peter Austin, a pioneer of the micro brewery industry, famous for his Old Thumper ale.

  • Philip Seymour Hoffman

    Matthew spoke to his fellow actor and former roommate, Steven Schub.

    Born 23 July 1967; died 2 February 2014 aged 46.

  • Jose Sulaiman

    Matthew spoke to the BBC’s Boxing Correspondent Mike Costello.

    Born 30 May 1931; died 16 January 2014 aged 82.

  • Anna Gordy Gaye

    Last Word spoke to Motown Legend Smokey Robinson, to her friend, the Motown A&R man William “Mickey” Stevenson, to music journalist Jacqueline Springer and to the author of Marvin Gaye’s biography, Steve Turner.

    Born 28 January 1922; died 31 January 2014 aged 92.
  • Ron Hall

    Matthew spoke to the former Editor of the Sunday Times, Sir Harry Evans.

    Born 28 July 1934; died 20 January 2014 aged 79.
  • Peter Austin

    Matthew spoke to the Chairman of the Society of Independent Brewers, Keith Bott and to Alan Pugsley, Master Brewer at Shipyard Brewing Company.

    Born 18 July 1921; died 1 January 2014 aged 92.


Matthew Bannister
Interviewed Guest
Steven Schub
Interviewed Guest
Mike Costello
Interviewed Guest
Smokey Robinson
Interviewed Guest
William Stevenson
Interviewed Guest
Jacqueline Springer
Interviewed Guest
Steve Turner
Interviewed Guest
Harry Evans
Interviewed Guest
Keith Bott
Interviewed Guest
Alan Pugsley
Simon Tillotson


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    Last Word

    Radio 4’s obituary programme, marking the lives of significant figures who have died recently,…

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