Saturday, 27 October 2012

1976, Television: “I, Claudius”

"I, Claudius" premièred on 20 September 1976 on BBC2. It is a television adaptation of Robert Graves's "I, Claudius" and "Claudius the God". It was adapted by Jack Pulman and proved to be one of the most successful drama serials produced by the BBC. A total of 13 episodes were broadcast between 20 September 1976 and 6 December 1976. The series was a breakthrough for various novice actors like Derek Jacobi (as the stuttering Claudius), John Hurt (as Caligula) and Patrick Stewart (as Sejanus).
 
Synopsis
"I, Claudius" follows the history of Rome, narrated by the elderly Claudius, from the death of Marcellus, nephew and son-in-law of Augustus, to Claudius' own death. The series opens with Augustus, the emperor of Rome, attempting to find an heir, and his wife, Livia, plotting to elevate her own son Tiberius to this position. The plotting and double-crossing continue through the conspiracy of Sejanus and the rule of the lunatic emperor Caligula, culminating in the seemingly accidental rise to power by Claudius.
Derek Jacobi as Claudius
Brian Blessed as Augustus and Siân Phillips as Livia
 
Main Cast
  • Derek Jacobi as Claudius
  • Siân Phillips as Livia
  • Brian Blessed as Augustus
  • George Baker as Tiberius
  • John Hurt as Caligula
  • Margaret Tyzack as Antonia
  • Ian Ogilvy as Drusus
  • Frances White as Julia
  • John Paul as Marcus Agrippa
  • Christopher Guard as Marcellus
  • Kevin McNally as Castor
  • Patricia Quinn as Livilla
  • David Robb as Germanicus
  • Fiona Walker as Agrippina
  • John Castle as Postumus
  • James Faulkner as Herod Agrippa
  • Patrick Stewart as Sejanus
  • Stratford Johns as Piso
George Baker as Tiberius, John Hurt as Caligula and Derek Jacobi as Claudius
Patrick Stewart as Sejanus
 
Awards
  • BAFTA TV Award for Best Actor: Derek Jacobi (1977)
  • BAFTA TV Award for Best Actress: Siân Phillips (1977)
  • BAFTA TV Award for Best Design: Tim Harvey (1977)
  • Royal Television Society Award for Best Performance: Siân Phillips (1977)
  • Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Art Direction for a Drama Series: Tim Harvey (1978)

"I, Claudius" intro

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