Sunday, 8 December 2013

Harry Palmer

The Ipcress File was written by Len Deighton (1929-) and published in 1962 it was his first spy novel. The hero of the story was unnamed, it was Michael Caine who came up with the name 'Harry Palmer' when he was cast for the movie version.

There have been 6 novels by Deighton featuring his anonymous hero - The Ipcress File (1962), Horse Under Water (1963), Funeral in Berlin (1964), Billion Dollar Brain (1966), Spy Story (1974) and Twinkle Twinkle Little Spy (1976).

Jean Courtney: Do you always wear your glasses? 
Harry Palmer: Yes. Except in bed. 

The Ipcress File (1965) Directed by Sidney J. Furie. 109mins.

Michael Caine - Harry Palmer
Nigel Green - Major Dalby
Guy Doleman - Colonel Ross
Sue Lloyd - Jean Courtney
Gordon Jackson - Carswell
Aubrey Richards - Dr. Radcliffe

The Ipcress File won 3 British Academy Awards - Best British Film, Best Cinematography and Best Art Direction. The screenplay received a nomination and Michael Caine was nominated for Best Actor.

DGA Nomination for Outstanding Directorial Achievement (Sidney J. Furie).

Colonel Stok: Do you play chess?
Harry Palmer: Yes, but I prefer a game with a better chance of cheating.
Colonel Stok: I like you, English. You're not as stupid as you look.

Funeral in Berlin (1966) Directed by Guy Hamilton. 102mins.

Michael Caine - Harry Palmer
Paul Hubschmid - Johnny Vulkan
Oscar Homolka - Colonel Stok
Eva Renzi - Samantha Steel
Guy Doleman - Colonel Ross
Hugh Burden - Hallam

Gen. Midwinter: You've disappointed me Harry, you let me down. You've sold out!
Harry Palmer:
What have I done?
Gen. Midwinter:
I am not going to rest until every communist, and everyone who works for the communists, is six feet under ground. Now go and join your communist friend.
Harry Palmer:
You, General, are the biggest idiot I have ever met.

Billion Dollar Brain (1967) Directed by Ken Russell. 111mins.

Michael Caine - Harry Palmer
Karl Malden - Leo Newbigen
Ed Begley - General Midwinter
Oscar Homolka - Colonel Stok
Francoise Dorleac - Anya
Guy Doleman - Colonel Ross
Vladek Sheybal - Dr. Eiwort
Donald Sutherland - Scientist at Computer
Susan George - Russian Girl on Train

Michael Caine would play Harry Palmer again in two made for TV movies - Bullet to Beijing (1995) and Midnight in St. Petersburg (1996), both were filmed back-to-back.

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