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John Hurt

TV: Deadline + Whistle and I’ll Come to You

An ageing Fleet Street journalist gets himself into hot water, plus an MR James ghost story that will make you shiver.

Image from TV: Deadline + Whistle and I’ll Come to You

Deadline

Sunday Premiere. BBC 1988
Dir Richard Stroud
With John Hurt, Imogen Stubbs, Robert McBain, Greg Hicks
85min

Tom Stacey, who adapts his own novel, writes with an acute insider’s knowledge of the changes in Fleet Street. In Granville Jones, an ageing and cynical Foreign Correspondent who’s seen it all, Stacey creates the perfect character for Hurt to inhabit. Although written in the 80s, the plot drips with contemporary resonance; on discovering a dangerous coup against the Emir by an Islamic militant-inspired group, Jones risks all to smuggle the story out of the country.

Whistle and I’ll Come to You

BBC 2010
Dir Andy De Emmony
With John Hurt, Gemma Jones, Lesley Sharp, Sophie Thompson
54min

In this adaptation of the ghost story written by MR James, Hurt was the perfect choice to play the eccentric professor haunted by a presence in his seaside solitude. The drama is stylishly directed by De Emmony, and Hurt excels in communicating sheer terror.


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