Mobil Masterpiece Theatre: King Lear
A Chestermead Production for the BBC, London, England, WGBH-TV, Boston, Massachusetts
In one of the best and most imaginative approaches to television in years, Mobil Masterpiece Theatre brought Shakespeare’s King Lear to a wider audience. King Lear is the story of an old man’s attempt to manipulate his daughters’ love. In this masterful, eye-catching effort, director Richard Eyre’s award-winning 1997 London stage production was creatively restaged for television by executive producers Simon Curtis and Rebecca Eaton and producers Sue Birtwistle and Joy Spink. The austere stage set, innovative lighting and production design, and unusual costuming perfectly complimented the accomplished ensemble cast, headed by Ian Holm as Lear. Other fine actors in the stellar cast were Barbara Flynn, Amanda Redman, and Victoria Hamilton as Goneril, Regan, and Cordelia, respectively, David Burke as Kent, Timothy West as Gloucester, and Finbar Lynch and Paul Rhys as Edmund and Edgar. Over the years, the BBC and Mobil Masterpiece Theatre have become synonymous with great television, and the presentation of King Lear reinforced that assessment. For its ongoing commitment to the presentation of classical works of literature, and for doing so with freshness and imagination, a Peabody to the BBC and Mobil Masterpiece Theatre for King Lear.