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Kenneth Williams: Fantabulosa! (2006)

TV Movie  -   -  Biography | Comedy | Drama  -  13 March 2006 (UK)
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Martyn Hesford's comedy-drama about the life and times of tortured comic Kenneth Williams based on his diaries.


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Title: Kenneth Williams: Fantabulosa! (TV Movie 2006)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Lou Williams
Charlie Williams
Peter Eade
Martin Trenaman ...
David Charles ...
Rachel Clarke ...
Connor Garnet Comerford ...
Beatrice Comins ...
St Joan / Actress
Timothy Davies ...
1st Doctor
Stephen Critchlow ...


Finicky,hygiene-obsessed comic actor Kenneth Williams,living in a flat block with mutually adoring mother Louie,looks back on his life. At loggerheads with his homophobic father over his career Kenny fulfils his dream of becoming a classical actor but is spun off into comedy,allowing full rein to his crowd-pleasing array of funny voices. A compulsive,often selfish performer off-screen,he becomes a national treasure following the radio show 'Round the Horne' and the successful series of film farces 'Carry On'... though he is disdainful of the latter,given that he once trod the boards with Orson Welles. Privately he is a tormented closet gay,sickened by his sexuality,unlike his friend,promiscuous playwright Joe Orton,and desperately asks his 'Carry On' co-star Joan Sims for a show marriage,which she refuses. Ultimately Louie's death,his own hypochondria,a down turn in work and a sense of his own isolation will result in a fatal encounter with a bottle of tablets in 1988. Written by don @ minifie-1

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Release Date:

13 March 2006 (UK)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


Roy Holder plays a cameo part as the older road worker who talks to Williams when he opens flat window. Holder was a main character in the movie Loot (1970), by Joe Orton, Williams' close friend. See more »


References Carry on Cleo (1964) See more »

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User Reviews

'I wonder if anyone will ever know about the emptiness of my life...'
3 August 2011 | by (NYC) – See all my reviews

'...or wonder about me, and ask themselves what matter of man I was. How to ever tell them, how to ever explain. How to say I never found love, how to say it was all my fault. Who can say where it all goes wrong?'

-Kenneth Williams

Michael Sheen gives a terrific performance in BBCFour's KENNETH WILLIAMS, FANTABULOUSA! A biopic based of the late, great performer, raconteur's diaries.

For anyone who grew up with Mr. Williams, - either in his appearances in the CARRY ON films, or, saw him is such gems as MAKE MINE MINK, or saw his appearances on the chat shows of the 70's and 80's, this will surely bring back memories.

Mr. Williams was a staunch defender of his privacy. Honestly, I don't blame him. He gave himself, generously, on stage and screen. But, due to the UK laws bearing sexual activity between consenting adult males, Mr. Williams felt that, once he was off the stage, he was...'celibate.'

While that's certainly not true, as this film shows (based on Mr. Williams' immaculate diaries), he was conflicted, never able to find...happiness in himself - only through the applause he got.

Michael Sheen does a marvelous job, here - embodying many of the dialects that Mr. Williams used throughout his career, and shows his chameleon-like ability to go from pathos, to bawdy humour in a flash.

A true comic legend, lovingly recreated, warts, and humanity, and all.

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