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Irving Allen


The race to complete The Trials of Oscar Wilde
Ken Adam Artist
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Ken Hughes directed it, but he didn’t get on with Irving Allen, who was a partner of Cubby, and every time Irving came on the set he stopped shooting.  He became very neurotic, but what Irving was very good at, he had been an editor, a cutter, before, and knowing that there were these two pictures in competition, he set up four cutting rooms at the time we were shooting, with four editors.  And our picture, which was in colour, came out before the other picture, in colour, and caused quite a sensation, because it looked good and Peter was unbelievably good also.  James Mason was very good, and it was a really well made film.

Sir Kenneth Adam (1921-2016), OBE, born Klaus Hugo Adam, was a production designer famous for his set designs for the James Bond films of the 1960s and 1970s. Initially, he trained as an architect in London, but in October 1943, he became one of only two German-born fighter pilots to fly with the RAF in wartime. He joined 609 Squadron where he flew the Hawker Typhoon fighter bomber. After the war, he entered the film industry, initially as a draughtsman on This Was a Woman. His portfolio of work includes Barry Lyndon and The Madness of King George; he won an Oscar for both films. Having a close relationship with Stanley Kubrick, he also designed the set for the iconic war room in Dr Strangelove. Sir Ken Adam was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2003.

Listeners: Christopher Sykes

Christopher Sykes is an independent documentary producer who has made a number of films about science and scientists for BBC TV, Channel Four, and PBS.

Tags: Albert R Broccoli, Ken Hughes, Irving Allen, Peter Finch, James Mason

Duration: 1 minute, 12 seconds

Date story recorded: December 2010 and January 2011

Date story went live: 14 September 2011