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Mike Leigh and Francine Stock

The writer-director Mike Leigh is one of world cinema’s pre-eminent figures, a multi-award winning writer-director and one of Britain’s most internationally recognised and critically acclaimed filmmakers. He joins 5x15 to talk about his life and work in an unmissable online conversation with the long-time presenter of The Film Programme, Francine Stock.


The subject of a major retrospective this October at the British Film Institute, Mike Leigh is a seven-time Oscar nominee and the winner of five BAFTAs. The only British director to have won the top prize at both Cannes (for Secrets & Lies) and Venice (for Vera Drake), his tragi-comic cinematic worlds have reflected the times and become part of our nation’s cultural landscape.


In Mike Leigh on Mike Leigh, the director reflects on films including his much-loved Mr Turner and recent epic Peterloo; classic films including Nuts In May and Abigail’s Party; his approach to universal themes; his inimitable working method of developing characters through improvisation; and the influences that have shaped his vision.


Above all, Mike Leigh is one of our greatest storytellers – passionate, forthright, witty and the maker of a unique body of work. In his critically-lauded films, bleakness and humour comingle, with always unforgettable results.

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The Last Tree on Easter Island- Penguin Green Ideas with Jared Diamond

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