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Richard III (1983)

The Tragedy of Richard III (original title)
Richard of Gloucester uses murder and manipulation to claim England's throne.





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Cast overview, first billed only:
Peter Benson ...
Antony Brown ...
Sir Richard Ratcliffe (as Anthony Brown)
Anne Carroll ...
Paul Chapman ...
Rowena Cooper ...
Arthur Cox ...
Lord Grey / Lord Mayor of London
David Daker ...
Brian Deacon ...
Henry, Earl of Richmond / Second Citizen / First Messenger
Jeremy Dimmick ...
Tenniel Evans ...
Derek Farr ...
Sir Robert Brakenbury / Earl of Surrey


Richard Duke of Gloucester, youngest brother of King Edward IV, will stop at nothing to get the crown. He first convinces the ailing King that the Duke of Clarence, his elder brother, is a threat to the lives of Edward's two young sons. Edward has him imprisoned in the Tower of London; killers in Richard's pay then drown Clarence in a barrel of wine. When news of Clarence's death reaches the King, the subsequent grief and remorse bring about his death. Richard is made Lord Protector, with power to rule England while his nephew (now King Edward V) is still a minor. Before the young king's coronation he has his two nephews conveyed to the Tower, ostensibly for their safekeeping. Richard's accomplice, the Duke of Buckingham, then declares the two boys illegitimate and offers Richard the crown, which after a show of reticence he accepts. After Richard's coronation, he and Buckingham have a falling-out over whether or not to assassinate the two children. Written by Peter Brynmor Roberts

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Release Date:

23 January 1983 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Richard III  »

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Did You Know?


This episode was filmed on the same set as the three Henry VI plays. However, designer Oliver Bayldon altered the set so it would appear to be a ruin, as England reached its lowest point of chaos. In the same vein, the costumes became more and more monotone as the four plays went on; The First Part of King Henry VI (1983) features brightly coloured costumes which clearly distinguish the various combatants from one another, but by this point, everyone fights in similarly coloured dark costumes, with little to differentiate one army from another. See more »


Version of Richard III (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

Great adaptation - why isn't it available on DVD???
29 September 2004 | by (Boston, MA, USA) – See all my reviews

Again, we see another example of a great 'lost' film. This is without a doubt the best Richard III on film (or in this case on videotape). Why, oh why, are so many such great films like this consigned to a film vault somewhere, gathering dust, when they could be making their owners lots of cash??? It's incredible to me that great works of cinematic and TV art are in danger of being permanently lost to us, while lesser works are on videotape and DVD in various versions including letterboxed, full screen, special edition, etc.

This teleplay is among the best British TV dramas ever produced. Won't someone please get great British TV dramas like this released on DVD???

8 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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