Studio One presented a range of plays between 1949 and 1959, shown on television and punctuated by advertising from its sponsor, Westinghouse. In deference to the play's theme, adverts only appear at the beginning and end of 'Pontius Pilate', leaving the drama to speak for itself.
Pilate and Herod are played by two British actors who had had long stage and film careers by the 1950s. Cyril Ritchard (Pilate) had been the murder victim in Hitchcock's 'Blackmail', while Francis L Sullivan is probably best known as Jaggers in the 1930s and 1940s versions of 'Great Expectations'. Completing the main parts is Geraldine Fitzgerald as the wife of Pilate, who is drawn to Christ and eventually converts her faith.
So this play presents political intrigue, crises of faith, marital discord, and off-stage drama ( Christ himself does not appear), beautifully acted and sensitively played. Shot live, there is the odd script fluff but this doesn't detract from the enjoyment of the piece.
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