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The Duke (2022)

Director: Roger Michell Run Time: 96 min. Rating: R Release Year: 2020

Starring: Aimee Kelly, Fionn Whitehead, Helen Mirren, Jim Broadbent, Matthew Goode

Country: United Kingdom
Language: English

About the film:

“With its heart exactly in the right place, it proves a fitting farewell for the multitalented director, Roger Michell.”

—John Nugent for Empire Magazine

Premiered at the 2020 Venice Film Festival. The true story that became the stuff of legend. In 1961, Kempton Bunton, a 60-year old taxi driver, stole Goya’s portrait of the Duke of Wellington from the National Gallery in London. It was the first (and remains the only) theft in the Gallery’s history. Kempton sent ransom notes saying that he would return the painting on condition that the government agreed to provide television for free to the elderly.  Only 50 years later did the full story emerge – a startling revelation of how a good man set out to change the world and in so doing saved his son and his marriage.

About the filmmaker:

The Duke (2022) was Roger Michell’s final narrative feature.

Known for his feature films like the romantic comedy Notting Hill (1999), Michell began his career in theater, directing for the U.K.’s Royal Court Theatre, the Royal Shakespeare Company, and the National Theatre before moving to the BBC, where he crafted an award-winning adaptation of Hanif Kureishi’s autobiographical novel The Buddha of Suburbia (2003). As a director for TV, Michell won BAFTAs for Persuasion (1995) and for the miniseries The Lost Honour of Christopher Jefferies (2014). His other feature films include The Mother (2003), Venus (2006), Morning Glory (2010), Hyde Park on Hudson (2012), My Cousin Rachel (2017), and Blackbird (2019), among others.

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