Kind Hearts And Coronets gets stage adaptation by Stephen Fry

Friday 21st June 2019, 1:47pm

Kind Hearts And Coronets. Louis Mazzini (Dennis Price). Copyright: Ealing Studios.

Classic Ealing Studios comedy Kind Hearts And Coronets is to debut on the stage.

Celebrating its 70th anniversary this year, the acclaimed black comedy follows a young man killing off his aristocratic relatives in order to regain his birth right, after their disinheriting of his mother, and himself, due to his non-British father.

In the 1949 film Dennis Price played the vengeful Louis Mazzini, with Alec Guinness famously taking on no fewer than eight roles as various members of his aristocratic family, the D'Ascoynes.

Stephen Fry has now adapted the highly celebrated film as a stage play, with producers hoping to open it in the West End in 2020.

According to the Daily Mail's Baz Bamigboye, producer Sonia Friedman is now on the look out for a suitable theatre to host the play, and has begun casting - including a search for another single actor to play all eight roles originated by Sim in the film.

Alec Guinness as the D'Ascoynes. Copyright: Ealing Studios.

She says Fry's script is "a sparkling new adaptation of the classic and timeless Ealing comedy that brings his customary wit and dazzling wordplay to this deliciously dark tale of class, revenge and madcap murder".

The play is being directed by Sean Foley, who is currently working on another Ealing adaptation, The Man In The White Suit. Both directed and adapted by Foley, the production will feature Stephen Mangan and Kara Tointon, opening in Bath early in September before a West End run until January 2020. Tickets are available now

Foley also directed a 2011 play of a further Ealing Studios comedy, The Ladykillers, adapted by Father Ted co-creator Graham Linehan.

Of the three titles, only The Ladykillers was an original screenplay. The Man In The White Suit is itself based on a play, The Flower Within The Bud, by Roger MacDougall; whilst Kind Hearts And Coronets is adapted from a 1907 novel.

The original novel, Israel Rank: The Autobiography Of A Criminal by Roy Horniman, satirised not just class and family, but also antisemitism: rather than Italian as in the film, its main character was half Jewish.

Meanwhile, a new restoration of Kind Hearts And Coronets is currently on a screening tour of the UK, and will be released on DVD, Blu-ray, and special collector's edition DVD and Blu-ray box set from this Monday, 24th June.


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Kind Hearts & Coronets - 70th Anniversary Collector's Edition

Kind Hearts & Coronets - 70th Anniversary Collector's Edition

Hailing from the Golden-Age of Ealing comedies, Kind Hearts And Coronets stars Dennis Price as the debonair yet impoverished Louis Mazzini, the would-be Duke of Chalfont whose mother was disinherited by her noble family, the D'Ascoynes, for marrying beneath her.

When her dying wish to be buried in the family crypt is refused, Louis vows to avenge his mother and work his way up the family tree, by engaging in the gentle art of murder. One by one he attempts to kill off the eight successors that stand in the way of his becoming Duke - all played by Alec Guinness in an unforgettable tour-de-force performance.

Directed by Robert Hamer (who co-wrote the screenplay with John Dighton), Kind Hearts And Coronets also stars Joan Greenwood as the husky-voiced siren Sibella and Valerie Hobson as the refined and virtuous Edith D'Ascoyne, both of whom threaten to distract Louis from his murderous quest.

This special edition includes a brand new 4K restoration of the film on both Blu-ray (2K) and DVD (1K) formats.

First released: Monday 24th June 2019

  • Distributor: StudioCanal
  • Region: B/2
  • Discs: 2
  • Minutes: 102
  • Subtitles: English

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Kind Hearts & Coronets

Kind Hearts & Coronets

From a brand new 4K remaster and restoration to mark the film's 70th anniversary, comes the Ealing Studios classic comedy, Kind Hearts And Coronets.

Dennis Price stars as the debonair yet impoverished Louis Mazzini, the would-be Duke of Chalfont whose mother was disinherited by her noble family, the D'Ascoynes, for marrying beneath her.

When her dying wish to be buried in the family crypt is refused, Louis vows to avenge his mother and work his way up the family tree, by engaging in the gentle art of murder. One by one he attempts to kill off the eight successors that stand in the way of his becoming Duke - all played by Alec Guinness in an unforgettable tour-de-force performance.

Directed by Robert Hamer (who co-wrote the screenplay with John Dighton), Kind Hearts And Coronets also stars Joan Greenwood as the husky-voiced siren Sibella and Valerie Hobson as the refined and virtuous Edith D'Ascoyne, both of whom threaten to distract Louis from his murderous quest.

First released: Monday 24th June 2019

  • Distributor: StudioCanal
  • Region: 2
  • Discs: 1
  • Minutes: 100
  • Subtitles: English
  • Catalogue: OPTD4284

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  • Distributor: StudioCanal
  • Region: B
  • Discs: 1
  • Minutes: 106
  • Subtitles: English
  • Catalogue: OPTBD4284

musicMagpie Buy and sell old and new items
Search for this product on eBay

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