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Interview Day (1996)

Eskimo Day (original title)
Comedy drama about the trials and tribulations of three sets of parents as they finally realise that their children have grown up and reluctantly they have to let them enroll at Cambridge ... See full summary »


Piers Haggard


Jack Rosenthal


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Maureen Lipman ... Shani Whittle
David Ross David Ross ... Bevis
Benedict Sandiford ... Neil
Tom Wilkinson ... Hugh
Anna Carteret ... Harriet
Laura Howard ... Pippa
Alec Guinness ... James
James Fleet ... Simon
Kathryn Pogson ... Malcolm's mum
Grant Warnock Grant Warnock ... Malcolm
Laurie Ventry Laurie Ventry ... Rosemary's dad
Kathy Kiera Clarke ... Rosemary
Susannah Wise ... Miss Wilding
Lila Kaye ... Mother Polly
Pippa Hinchley ... Bobbie the waitress


Comedy drama about the trials and tribulations of three sets of parents as they finally realise that their children have grown up and reluctantly they have to let them enroll at Cambridge University. Written by Jonathan Broxton <j.w.broxton@sheffield.ac.uk>

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Plot Keywords:

university | parenthood | school | See All (3) »


Comedy | Drama


Did You Know?


This was Sir Alec Guinness's final acting role before his death on August 2, 2000, at the age of eighty-six. See more »


[talking about how she feels now that Neil has gone to university]
Shani Whittle: [tearfully] It's Eskimos, isn't it, that when they get old and no use to no-one no more, they just quietly sling their hooks and toddle off into the snow - for good. And their kids don't much bother because they're all too busy catching fish in holes and hoovering their igloos, and life goes on. Well, *theirs* does. Not the poor old useless bugger lying in the snow.
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User Reviews

Well made, well written, poignant comedy drama
15 January 2000 | by chris-826See all my reviews

This is a superbly written and acted comedy drama about the emotional trials and strains on a family as the eldest children go through the University applications process. It focuses particularly on the mothers role in the family, and how she fears she will become redundant after the children leave. (The title refers to an ancient Eskimo practise whereby when the children leave, the mother sees her role as being finished and she just walks out into the snow to die.)

We follow three prospective students through their interview days at Cambridge university, and the relationships they strike up with each other - and how the families react to this as well; a major part of this is the reaction of the rather more 'well-bred' girl's family to the unstated suggestion that she has fallen for the boy from the more 'normal' family.

The plot is very simple, and is really secondary to the superb acting and exploration of the emotions experienced by the families.

It was a particularly poignant drama for me, as it was screened just at the time I was going through exactly the same thing. It pressed all the right emotional buttons, and Maureen Lipman's role as the overworried mother is superbly well played. I'm not sure if it's possible to get hold of this film any more (as it was only screened as a TV movie) but it's definitely well worth seeing if you can. See also the follow-up, Cold Enough for Snow.

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Official Sites:

PBS [United States]





Release Date:

28 May 1996 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Interview Day See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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