Charles Crichton

By Quentin Falk

Charles Crichton


  • eBook

Book Information

  • Format: Hardcover
  • ISBN: 978-1-5261-4995-4
  • Pages: 288
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £85.00
  • Published Date: June 2021
  • BIC Category: Individual film directors, film-makers, Film Studies, PERFORMING ARTS / Film & Video / Direction & Production, PERFORMING ARTS / Film & Video / History & Criticism, The arts / Film: styles & genres, The arts / Film theory & criticism, The arts / Individual film directors, film-makers
  • Series: British Film-Makers


Charles Crichton is perhaps best remembered as the director of the unlikely blockbuster hit A Fish Called Wanda, made when he was seventy-seven years old. But the most significant part of his career was spent at Ealing Studios in the 1940s and 1950s, working on such beloved comedies as Hue and Cry, The Lavender Hill Mob and The Titfield Thunderbolt. Nonetheless, as this pioneering study of Crichton's work reveals, his filmmaking skills extended way beyond comedy to wartime dramas and film noir, and his adaptability served him well when he made the transition into primetime television, working on popular shows such as The Avengers, Space: 1999 and The Adventures of Black Beauty. Featuring first-hand testimony from colleagues ranging from Dame Judi Dench and Petula Clark to John Cleese and Sir Michael Palin, this riveting account of Crichton's fascinating life in film will appeal to film scholars and general readers alike.


'Veteran critic Quentin Falk runs vigorously through the Ealing icon's career half-decade by half-decade.'
Total Film

'Falk bases his study on academic accounts, memoirs, autobiographies, private correspondence with the Crichton family, copious use of reviews and the range of interviews with industry personnel one might expect from a former editor of Screen International, including Falk's own 1987 interview with Crichton for the Guardian... An authoritative and perceptive account.'
The Journal of British Cinema and Television


1 Cutting for Korda: 1932-35
2 Cutting for Korda: 1936-40
3 The forties: Enter Ealing, 1940-45
4 The forties: 1946-49
5 The fifties: 1950-54
6 The fifties: Exit Ealing, 1954-59
7 The sixties: 1960-64
8 The sixties: 1965-69
9 The seventies: Downsizing
10 The eighties: Ealing Regained


Quentin Falk is an author, critic and former editor of Screen International and Academy, the BAFTA journal. He has published numerous books, among them studies of Anthony Hopkins, Albert Finney and Alfred Hitchcock.

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