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First Kangaroos, The (Channel 4 1988, Dennis Waterman, Chris Haywood)

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First Kangaroos 1988 Channel 4 Dennis Waterman

Period comedy drama The First Kangaroos was an account of the first Australian rugby tour of England in 1908. Based on a true story Dennis Waterman plays legendary rugby league player Albert Goldthorpe. The first half of the movie is set in Australia as the Australian set about breaking away from the Rugby Union code to set up their own professional Rugby League code, travelling to England to play some big matches in a bid to promote their fledgling code. Aside from Waterman most of the players were real life Rugby players.

Waterman had, a few years earlier, taken part in A Captain’s Tale, a similarly themed sporting tale about the staging of the first soccer World Cup.

production details
UK / Channel 4 – Roadshow – Coote & Carroll /1×100 minute episode / Broadcast Thursday 21 April 1988

Series: Film on Four Season 8 Episode 7

Writer: Nigel Williams / Music: William Motzing / Producer: Moya Iceton / Production Designer: Herbert Pinter / Costume Designer: Anna Senior / Executive Producers: Matt Carroll, Gregory Coote / Director: Frank Cvitanovich

cast
Dennis Waterman as Albert Goldthorpe
Chris Haywood as James Giltinan
Dominic Sweeney as Dally Messenger
Philip Quast as Bluey Burdon
Tony Martin as Dan Frawley
Clarissa Kaye Mason as Mrs. Messenger
Jim Carter as Arthur Hughes) Wayne Pearce as Sandy Pearce
Alexander Broun as Morton
Wayne Pygram as Albie Rosenfeldt
John Dicks as Reverend Green
Robert Davis as Major Thompson
Nell Schofield as Betty
Andrew Ettingshausen as Conlon
Kelly Dingwall as Devereaux
Robert Giltinan as Reporter
Harold Kissin as Trainer
Alan Surtees as George
Vic Rooney as John Jackson
Ian Gilmour as Steamship Official
Kym Lynch as Butler
Edward Peel as Nugent
Patrick Monckton as Perivale
Kevin Dukes as Engineer
Charles Pemberton as Large Man