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Napoleon And Love (ITV 1974, Ian Holm, Billie Whitelaw)



Ian Holm headlines as the “little emperor” in the 1970′s costume drama Napoleon and Love. We all know that Napoleon Bonaparte was one of the most famous rulers of all time, seemingly hellbent on global domination before it all went horribly wrong as it so often does but many of probably don’t know how much of an inveterate womaniser he was.

This 9 part costume drama series begins with a 25 year old Bonaparte already a General in the French Army but already with one eye out for the ladies he embarks on a quest to woo the beautiful Desiree Clary (Karen Dotrice) who also happens to be the daughter of a very rich merchant, but it is when he meets Josephine Beauharnais (played by the very fab Billie Whitelaw) that he truly meets his match.

Full of stand out performances from a cast that includes Stephanie Beacham, Diana Quick, Nicola Pagett and Peter Bowles, Napoleon and Love is top quality television. Made for the ITV Network at a time when they were really giving the BBC a run for their money in the costume drama stakes.

Napoleon and Love ITV 1974

production details
UK / ITV – Thames / 9×60 minute episodes / Broadcast 5 March – 30 April 1974

Writer: Philip Mackie / Theme Music: Robert Sharples / Executive Producer: Lloyd Shirley / Producer: Reginald Collin.

Ian Holm as Napoleon
Maxine Audley as Madame Permon
Billie Whitelaw as Joséphine
Karen Dotrice as Desiree
Cheryl Kennedy as Pauline Foures
Stephanie Beacham as Madame Duchatel
Diana Quick as Eleonore Dunuella
Catherine Schell as Marie Walewska
Christopher Neame as Juno
T. P. McKenna as Barras
Edward De Souza as Joséph Bonaparte
Peter Bowles as Mura
Wendy Allnutt as Madame Tallieu
Tim Curry as Eugene
Ronald Hines as Berthier
Peter Jeffrey as Tallyrand

1. ROSE (5 Mar 74)
2. JOSEPHINE (12 Mar 74)
3. PAULINE (19 Mar 74)
4. GEORGINA (26 Mar 74)
5. ELEANORE (2 Apr 74)
6. MARIE WALEWSKA (9 Apr 74)
7. MARIE-LUISA (16 Apr 74)
8. LOUISE (23 Apr 74)
9. THE END OF LOVE (30 Apr 74)