Francis Urquhart is the chief whip of the Conservative party. When Margaret Thatcher resigns as leader, he remains neutral and after a general election where the conservatives are returned ... See full summary »
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1  
1990  
Top Rated TV #119 | Won 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 5 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »
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Francis Urquhart, the unscrupulous but cunning Conservative Prime Minister, has his survival threatened by a liberal monarch and an upcoming General Election.

Stars: Ian Richardson, Michael Kitchen, Kitty Aldridge
The Final Cut (1995)
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Francis Urquhart is too experienced a politician not to know that everything must end, even his long career as British prime minister. In order to secure his retirement and establish ... See full summary »

Stars: Ian Richardson, Diane Fletcher, Paul Freeman
Yes Minister (1980–1984)
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The Right Honorable James Hacker has landed the plum job of Cabinet Minister to the Department of Administration. At last he is in a position of power and can carry out some long-needed reforms - or so he thinks.

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I, Claudius (TV Mini-Series 1976)
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The history of the Roman Empire as experienced by one of its rulers.

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Yes, Prime Minister (1986–1987)
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James Hacker was propelled along the corridors of power to the very pinnacle of politics - No. 10.

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State of Play (TV Mini-Series 2003)
Crime | Drama | Mystery
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A thriller set in London, in which a politician's life becomes increasingly complex as his research assistant is found dead on the London Underground and, in a seemingly unrelated incident, a teenage pickpocket is shot dead.

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The Thick of It (2005–2012)
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Cast

Complete series cast summary:
...
 Francis Urquhart (4 episodes, 1990)
...
 Mattie Storin (4 episodes, 1990)
...
 Roger O'Neill (4 episodes, 1990)
Alphonsia Emmanuel ...
 Penny Guy (4 episodes, 1990)
...
 Patrick Woolton (4 episodes, 1990)
Diane Fletcher ...
 Elizabeth Urquhart (4 episodes, 1990)
...
 Tim Stamper (4 episodes, 1990)
...
 Michael Samuels (4 episodes, 1990)
William Chubb ...
 John Krajewski (4 episodes, 1990)
Kenneth Gilbert ...
 Harold Earle (4 episodes, 1990)
Christopher Owen ...
 McKenzie (4 episodes, 1990)
David Lyon ...
 Prime Minister Henry Collingridge (3 episodes, 1990)
Kenny Ireland ...
 Ben Landless (3 episodes, 1990)
James Villiers ...
 Charles Collingridge (3 episodes, 1990)
Isabelle Amyes ...
 Anne Collingridge (3 episodes, 1990)
John Hartley ...
 Greville Preston (3 episodes, 1990)
Nicholas Selby ...
 Lord Billsborough (2 episodes, 1990)
Tommy Boyle ...
 Stephen Kendrick (2 episodes, 1990)
John Arnatt ...
 Sir Jasper Grainger (2 episodes, 1990)
Richard Braine ...
 Kevin Spence (2 episodes, 1990)
Hugh Dickson ...
 Dr. Andrew Christian (2 episodes, 1990)
Angela Rippon ...
 Newsreader (2 episodes, 1990)
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Storyline

Francis Urquhart is the chief whip of the Conservative party. When Margaret Thatcher resigns as leader, he remains neutral and after a general election where the conservatives are returned with a reduced majority, he fully expects the new Prime Minister, Henry Collingridge, to give him his just reward: a senior Cabinet post. When he's informed that he is to stay in his current position, he devises a plot to unseat Collingridge and ensure his own election as party leader which would make him Prime Minister. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

TV-14 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

31 March 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ein Kartenhaus  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(4 parts)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

4:3
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Ian Richardson said he based his performance of the scheming Francis Urquhart on the way Shakespeare portrayed Richard III. See more »

Quotes

Francis Urquhart: Playing with the hopes and dreams of a daughter, now gentle, now hard, rebuking and rewarding, chastising and forgiving. The pleasures of a father. Of a father of daughters. What greater power is there than that? Why should a man want more? Why should I yearn to be everybody's daddy?
See more »

Connections

Remade as House of Cards (2013) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The best TV drama serial ever? - "You might very well say that, I couldn't possibly comment"
7 December 2005 | by See all my reviews

This is no doubt one of the best TV drama serials I've ever seen. I got it on DVD and it was so well-done that I saw the first installment (House of Cards) during one night, and the following two installments (To Play the King and The Final Cut) the following two nights. I just could not stop watching it until it was finished. It is very suspenseful, in addition to being intelligent, revealing, and I must say quite cynical. It is based on the book of the same title by Michael Dobbs, who has been a political insider and was at one point Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party. He clearly knows the kinds of things that can happen in the highest echelons of power.

If one is to choose the single best thing in the serial, it is no doubt the performance by Ian Richardson. He is a highly capable and versatile actor and this may well be his best performance. It is really priceless to hear him saying "You might very well say that, I couldn't possibly comment" throughout the series. All the other actors are excellent, the screenplay is of the highest quality, and the whole production is exceptional.


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