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Smiley's People 

1:53 | Trailer
The murder of a Soviet defector forces his old handler, British spymaster George Smiley, out of retirement. His investigation leads to an old nemesis, the Soviet spymaster known only as "Karla". This will be their final dance.




Nominated for 3 Primetime Emmys. Another 4 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »





Series cast summary:
Alec Guinness ...  George Smiley 6 episodes, 1982
Eileen Atkins ...  Madame Ostrakova 4 episodes, 1982
Bill Paterson ...  Lauder Strickland 4 episodes, 1982
Vladek Sheybal ...  Otto Leipzig / ... 4 episodes, 1982
Andy Bradford ...  Ferguson 4 episodes, 1982
Bernard Hepton ...  Toby Esterhase 3 episodes, 1982
Michael Byrne ...  Peter Guillam 3 episodes, 1982
Anthony Bate ...  Oliver Lacon 3 episodes, 1982
Tusse Silberg Tusse Silberg ...  Alexandra Ostrakova 3 episodes, 1982
Germaine Delbat Germaine Delbat ...  Madame La Pierre 3 episodes, 1982


Called out of retirement to settle the affairs of a friend, George Smiley (Sir Alec Guinness) finds his old organization, the Circus, so overwhelmed by political considerations that it doesn't want to know what happened. He begins to follow up the clues of his friends past days, discovering that the clues lead to a high person in the Russian Secret Service, and a secret important enough to kill for. Smiley continues to put together the pieces a step ahead or a step behind the Russian killers. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The thrilling sequel to Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy See more »


Drama | Mystery


TV-14 | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Bernard Hepton, who played Toby Hesterhase went on to play George Smiley for BBC radio. The first production was Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy (1988), followed by Smiley's People (1990). See more »


When Smiley is talking to Connie Sachs, she mentions that Karla once had a mistress, upon which Smiley's eyes widen, and with an utterly surprised look, he asks "Who?" She then goes on to tell about how Karla also had a daughter from that relationship.

It's highly improbable that George Smiley, who spent most of his life gathering every bit of detail about Karla, and even wrote "The Karla papers" (according to Saul Enderby) wouldn't know about such an important piece of information about his nemesis. See more »


Toby Esterhase: George, do me a favor, okay? You want a Hungarian babysitter someday, call me. You go messing around with creeps like Kirov and Leipzig, you better have a creep like Toby look after you. You're an old spy in a hurry, George. You used to say they were the worst.
George Smiley: Oh they are, Toby, they are.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The wooden planks in the opening credits are those of park benches. See more »


Follows Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (1979) See more »

User Reviews

One of the great spy films of all time.
12 June 2003 | by Vega74See all my reviews

Definitely the best film version of the books. More artful than Tinker Tailor and much more intense. The characters are more developed, especially Smiley's. The end of the movie had me on the edge of my seat, the suspense was incredible. If you enjoy spy films, this is absolutely essential viewing.

If only they made films this great all the time! (now available on DVD)

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Release Date:

25 October 1982 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Smiley's People See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (6 parts) | (DVD)

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

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