Amazon/BBC's A VERY ENGLISH SCANDAL Starring Hugh Grant and Ben Whishaw Available for Streaming June 29
Starring Hugh Grant and Ben Whishaw, the highly acclaimed BBC series A Very English SCANDAL has announced its much-anticipated wide release to US audiences later this month, where it will be available for streaming on AMAZON on June 29. Based on the book of the same name by John Preston, A VERY ENGLISH SCANDAL: Sex, Lies and a Murder Plot at the Heart of the Establishment, now available in a special movie tie-in edition (Other Press), tells the incredible behind-the-scenes story behind one of the twentieth century's greatest political scandals, the Jeremy Thorpe affair, when the rising British political star stood trial for the attempted murder of his male lover. Based on extensive interviews with key figures in play at the time of the scandal, this is a gripping and colorful tale of hypocrisy, deceit, and BETRAYAL at the heart of a leading government's establishment.
Jeremy Thorpe, Member of Parliament and Leader of the Liberal Party, was among the most charming and charismatic political figures of his time. Representative of North Devon, firm anti-Rhodesia advocate, and lover of SILK top-hats, Thorpe was poised to hold the balance of power in a coalition government in 1970. But behind his public persona, he kept many SECRETS and his bad behavior eventually came to light, marking one of the greatest political indignities of our time. A VERY ENGLISH SCANDAL tells of Thorpe's RISE and fall, particularly his struggle to hide - with the help of Peter Bessell, another Liberal MP with questionable morals - his homosexuality.
At a time when homosexuality could be punished with imprisonment, one ex-lover, Norman Scott, posed a great threat to Thorpe's ambitions. Scott demanded financial and other help from Thorpe as he carried around a suitcase full of their love letters. Eventually the cover-up escalated into a BOTCHED murder attempt on Scott and his poor dog one dark night.
Dubbed the "Trial of the Century," Thorpe's case at the Old Bailey, the most famous courtroom in the land, presented many firsts. His case was the first time that a leading British politician stood trial on a murder charge, and the first time that a murder plot had been HATCHED in the House of Commons. It was also the first time that a prominent public figure was exposed as a philandering gay man, in an era when homosexuality had only just became legal.
A cross between "Arrested Development", "House of Cards," and "Spotlight," A VERY ENGLISH SCANDAL engages with the themes of insider cover-ups and anti-establishment fervor familiar to anyone following our current political climate. Preston also skillfully weaves in the history of homosexual law reform.
About the Author
John Preston is a former arts editor of the Sunday Telegraph and Evening Standard. He is the author of four highly acclaimed novels, including The Dig (Other Press, 2016), Ghosting, Ink, and Kings of the Roundhouse, and a travel book, Touching the Moon. He lives in London.
Photo Credit: Amazon/BBC