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Jeffrey Archer: The Truth (BBC-1 2002, Damian Lewis, Greta Scacchi)

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One off comedy that was an irreverent take on the life of Jeffrey Archer (Damian Lewis). In 2009, Archer is dictating his “unauthorised” biography to the journalist who will write it since (as he says) no one would believe it if he wrote it himself.

He paints himself as a superheroic figure closely involved in key events:- he advised The Beatles on their song titles; personally led the SAS in the Iranian embassy siege; and persuaded Margaret Thatcher (Greta Scacchi) to send a task force to re-take the Falklands.

Along the way he has an affair with Mrs Thatcher; invents the mobile phone; and discovers he is the illegitimate son of the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh – all while having to contend with his arch nemesis.

Cast: Damian Lewis as Jeffrey Archer; Polly Walker as Mrs. Archer; Greta Scacchi as Margaret Thatcher; Ben Miller as Roland Moxley-Nemesis; Emily Mortimer as Lady Diana – Princess of Wales; Richard Wilson as Duke of Edinburgh; Richard Griffiths as Willie Whitelaw; Gary Lineker as England manager; Paul Ready as Paul McCartney; Georgina Chapman as Secretary; Rachel Pickup as Casino Girl

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Writer and Director: Guy Jenkin / Producer: Chrissy Skinns / Executive Producers: Mark Redhead, Sally Woodward Gentle

UK / BBC One / 1×90 minute episode / Broadcast 1 December 2002


Alastair James is the editor in chief for Memorable TV. He has been involved in media since his university days. Alastair is passionate about television, and some of his favourite shows include Line of Duty, Luther and Traitors. He is always on the lookout for hot new shows, and is always keen to share his knowledge with others.

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