TV UK TV

Poet In New York, A (BBC-2 2014, Tom Hollander, Essie Davis)

A Poet In New York

Period drama made to mark the centenary of the birth of Dylan Thomas, A Poet In New York follows the author’s troubled final visit to New York in November 1953 which saw him dead at 39.

Thomas, superbly played by Tom Hollander, was making his fourth trip to America. Under Milk Wood had cemented his reputation as the world’s greatest living poet and he was embarking on a new phase in his life and about to write an opera in Hollywood with Stravinsky. First though it was to New York to raise funds and take part in a high profile production of Under Milk Wood. Thomas though, a voracious liver of life and consumer of drink, hit New York with his life spiralling out of control and never recovered. A night of drinking epic amounts of whisky was the end.

Script writer Andrew Davies cleverly suggests that for Thomas his end was tied up irreversibly in his beginnings and there are quite a few flashbacks to Thomas’s childhood in Wales which more than help support this theory.

Made in part for both BBC-2 and BBC Wales the production actually received it’s first broadcast in Wales only on 30th April 2014 before getting a national premiere on 18 May 2014.

production details
UK / BBC-2 – Modern Television / 1×75 minute episodes / Broadcast Sunday 18 May 2014 @ 9.00pm

Writer: Andrew Davies / Producer: Ruth Caleb / Executive Producers: Griff Rhys Jones, Bethan Jones, Faith Penhale / Director: Aisling Walsh

cast
Tom Hollander as Dylan Thomas
Essie Davis as Caitlin Thomas
Phoebe Fox as Liz Reitell
Ewen Bremner as John Malcolm Brinnin
Celt Llewelyn Jones as Young Dylan
Jamie Ballard as Jerry Hart
Demetri Goritsas as Dr. Milton Feltenstein
Samantha Coughlan as Sylvie
Naomi Everson as Rollie McKenna
Jason May as Longshoreman
Robert Blythe as Dylan’s Dad
Sharon Morgan as Dylan’s Mum
Nansi Rhys Adams as Aeronwy Thomas
Robbie Lester as Roy Poole
Morfydd Clark as Nancy Wickwire