TV UK TV

Adventure Story (BBC 1950, Andrew Osborn, Patrick Troughton)

Period drama Adventure Story which told the life story of Alexander The Great had been a reasonable hit on the stage for Terence Rattigan in 1949. The story picks up just after the conquest of Persia with Alexander dreaming of a world empire in his name but above it all lonely and insecure.

The Alexander portrayed here is one who will stop at nothing, even murdering some of those closest to him, not least the man he considered something of a father figure Cleitus.

Broadcast live as was the custom during the earliest days of TV production, it was restaged four days later (something which was also done on a regular basis with significant productions at the time). The BBC was the only channel broadcasting at the time and then on just one channel.

The drama was restaged in 1961 with Sean Connery, then a rising star who would go on a year later to play James Bond, in the lead role of Alexander.

The Adventure Story drama that was broadcast in 1946 was not anything related to this one being based on a play by Charles Terrot.

classic quote
“Who is to succeed me to the throne of Asia? Who shall I condemn to death?”

production details
UK / BBC / 1×105 minute episode / Broadcast 30 July 1950 in black and white

Writer:Terence Rattigan / Production Design: Barry Learoyd / Music: Benjamin Frankel / Producer: Michael Barry

Series: Sunday Night Theatre

cast
ANDREW OSBORN as Alexander
GLADYS COOPER as Queen Mother of Persia
PATRICK TROUGHTON as Ptolemy
ALAN TILVERN as Perdiccas
VERONICA TURLEIGH as The Pythia, Priestess of Delphi
TERENCE LONGDON as Hephaestion
SEYMOUR GREEN as Mazares (servant to Darius)
JOHN GABRIEL as Darius, King of Persia
SHELLEY LYNN as Queen Statira of Persia
JUNE RODNEY as Princess Statira of Persia
ALAN LAWRENCE as Prince Bessus, Satrap of Bactria
MICHAEL HORDERN as General Parmenion
BASIL APPLEBY as Philotas
JOHN SLATER as Cleitus
ANNE VALERY as Roxana
PADDY RUSSELL as Attendant
RICHARD TAYLOR as Persian Palace Official
JOHN GARDINER, DAVID ASKEY, PETER RENDELL as Greek Soldiers
PHILIP BRAY as Persian Soldier