Both actors have a strong connection to The Go-Between. Vanessa Redgrave’s father, Michael Redgrave, played the Older Leo in the first adaptation in 1971. Jim Broadbent appeared as an extra in the same adaptation in his first ever, uncredited, film role.
Jim Broadbent says: “Having been an extra in the first adaptation of The Go-Between in 1971 I was thrilled to be asked to be in this new version. It is a tremendous novel and Adrian Hodges’ script captures it perfectly.”
They join Joanna Vanderham (The Paradise, Dancing On The Edge, Banished), Stephen Campbell Moore (The History Boys, Hunted, Titanic), Ben Batt (Shameless, From There To Here, Scott And Bailey) and Lesley Manville (Maleficent, Another Year, Mayday) in the 90-minute adaptation of the 20th century work by LP Hartley. The production also stars Jack Hollington as the young protagonist, Leo; Jack Cutmore-Scott and Samuel Joslin. The Go-Between has been adapted by Adrian Hodges and is directed by Pete Travis (Endgame, Legacy, Omagh).
Adrian Hodges says: “First and foremost it’s exciting that we’ve attracted two such brilliant actors to the parts of the older Leo and Marian, but in Vanessa Redgrave and Jim Broadbent it’s also thrilling there is such a strong connection with Joseph Losey’s well-loved film version from the 1970s. Our version of The Go-Between is a very different film for a new generation of viewers, but Vanessa’s appearance will bring back happy memories of the gravity of her father Michael’s performance and it is both lovely and moving to find Jim made his very first appearance in the movie. I couldn’t be more flattered that these great actors are taking on roles that clearly mean a great deal to them.”
The Go-Between will air on BBC One next year as part of its season of classic 20th century literature. The season of films aims to explore and contextualise the enormous changes in the way men and women lived and behaved in the 20th century. They all tell uniquely intense and personal stories about people living in Britain 100 years ago.
The Go-Between follows Leo Colston, who as an elderly man pieces together his childhood memories after finding his diary from 1900, which he wrote when he was 13 years old. A nostalgic tale about lost innocence, The Go-Between paints beautiful pictures of British life, humanity and social hierarchy at the beginning of the 20th century.
BBC One’s season of classic 20th century literature will also include Jed Mercurio’s adaptation of DH Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover, Ben Vanstone’s adaptation of Laurie Lee’s novel Cider With Rosie and JB Priestley’s classic play, An Inspector Calls.
The Go-Between has already commenced filming and will air in 2015. Made by BBC Drama Production, executive produced by Sue Hogg and Adrian Hodges and produced by Claire Bennett.
The season of classic 20th century literature was commissioned by Charlotte Moore, Controller of BBC One and Ben Stephenson, Controller of BBC Drama.