James Graham to dramatise Walden/Thatcher interview for C4

James Graham to dramatise Walden/Thatcher interview for C4
Steve Coogan, image credit Thomas Laisne and Harriet Walter, image credit Georgia Oetker

Steve Coogan and Harriet Walter will play Brian Walden and Margaret Thatcher in a new drama from James Graham about their infamous interview in 1989.

Baby Cow is producing the 2 x 60’ drama, called Brian and Margaret, with Stephen Frears directing. The executive producers are Sarah Monteith, Delyth Scudamore and Rupert Majendie. Dan Winch produces.

Brian and Margaret is based on political editor and TV producer, Rob Burley’s book Why is This Lying Bastard Lying to Me: Searching for the Truth on Political TV, and asks whether the slow death of full-length political TV interviews puts modern democracy at risk.

When two old friends, the ‘much feared inquisitor’, Brian Walden (Coogan), and Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher (Walter), come together for their last ever TV interview, little do they realise they’re about to embark on one of the most infamous political exchanges of all time.

The 45-minute showdown became a national talking point and triggered a series of events that ended with Margaret’s resignation. The pair never spoke again…

Graham said: “I’m beyond excited to be working with this incredible world-class team on a story brought to us by Rob Burley from his book ‘Why Is This Lying B*stard Lying To Me’.

“As we enter another election, and wrestle with the importance and effectiveness of the ‘political interview’, it’s a chance to bring to life the intimate and complicated relationship between Brian Walden and Margaret Thatcher – interrogator, and Prime Minister. An epic one of love and betrayal, and I think an audience will be surprised by a lot of it. I know I was.”

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