The Jewel in the Crown (TV series)


The Jewel in the Crown (TV series)

:"This article is about the 1984 television miniseries. For information about the 1966 novel on which it was based, see The Jewel in the Crown (novel) or Raj Quartet. For the Fairport Convention album, see Jewel in the Crown (album)"infobox television
show_name = The Jewel in the Crown


caption =
format = Serial
camera =
picture_format =
runtime = 50 minutes (per episode)
creator = Christopher Morahan
Jim O'Brien
Ken Taylor
Irene Shubik
Paul Scott (novel)
starring =Art Malik
Om Puri
Geraldine James
Saeed Jaffrey
Karan Kapoor
Peggy Ashcroft
Charles Dance
country = United Kingdom
network = ITV
first_aired = January 9, 1984
last_aired = April 3, 1984
num_episodes = 13
imdb_id = 0086739|

"The Jewel in the Crown" (1984) is a British television serial about the final days of the British Raj in India during World War II, based upon the "Raj Quartet" novels by Paul Scott. Granada Television produced it for the ITV network.

Plot

The film was located in the fictional Indian city of Mayapore and is set during the 1940s against the backdrop of the last days of the British Raj and the Indian independence movement. Hari Kumar (Art Malik) is a young Indian man who was educated at the British public school (the term for a private school) Chillingborough and considers himself "English" rather than Indian. He works as a journalist in India, lives with his aunt, and becomes involved with a British woman, Daphne Manners. One night, Daphne and Hari are attacked in the Bibighar Gardens by a group of unknown men and Daphne is raped.

A lower-middle class British officer, Ronald Merrick, holds Hari responsible for the rape and puts him in prison where he tortures him, even though he knows him to be innocent. Merrick's motives are twofold: he resents Hari's privileged education as well as the fact that Daphne preferred Hari to him (Merrick had previously proposed to Daphne and was rejected). Moreover, as becomes explicit in a later book of the series, Merrick is a repressed homosexual who is not consciously aware of his attaction to Hari. This story becomes the backdrop for a number of intertwining subplots during the end of the British Raj.

After Daphne's death in childbirth, another young British woman, Sarah Layton, becomes the central character. Like Daphne, Sarah is pursued by Merrick, but prefers his subordinate, Guy Perron. Sarah's sister, Susan, is married to the ineffectual Teddy Bingham, who is killed in an enemy attack despite Merrick's attempt to save his life. Merrick later marries Susan.

Hari Kumar is eventually released from prison, but rarely appears in the story. Merrick's activities are known by the authorities and disapproved of, and he dies in disgrace, although his sexual proclivities remain a secret from polite society.

The story line of the television series largely follows that of the novels. More detailed descriptions of the plots are available on the individual pages of the novels:
*The Jewel in the Crown (novel)
*The Day of the Scorpion
*The Towers of Silence
*A Division of the Spoils

Production and reviews

The series made stars of Art Malik and Charles Dance. Other leading actors included Om Puri, Peggy Ashcroft (who won the BAFTA Best TV Actress award for her performance), Tim Pigott-Smith, Geraldine James, Judy Parfitt, Rachel Kempson, Eric Porter, Susan Wooldridge, Saeed Jaffrey, and Karan Kapoor (son of Shashi Kapoor and Jennifer Kendal). The complexities of the plot ensured that no one character was at the centre of the action throughout, and, thanks to a flashback in the final part, only Ronald Merrick (Piggott-Smith) appeared in every episode. All four "Best TV Actress" nominations at that year's BAFTAs went to stars of the series, with Ashcroft winning over Wooldridge, James and Parfitt. Pigott-Smith won Best TV Actor.

It was shot on 16mm film, much of it on location in India. The programme was often screened from grainy prints, but was fully remastered for its 2005 DVD release and ITV3 screening, resulting in much better picture quality.

The series is often mentioned in the same breath as "Brideshead Revisited". In a list of the 100 Greatest British Television Programmes drawn up by the British Film Institute in 2000, voted for by industry professionals, "The Jewel in the Crown" was placed 22nd.

elect Cast

*Peggy Ashcroft - Barbara Batchelor
*Derrick Branche - Ahmed Kasim
*Charles Dance - Sgt. Guy Perron
*Geraldine James - Sarah Layton
*Rachel Kempson - Lady Ethel Manners
*Art Malik - Hari Kumar
*Wendy Morgan - Susan Layton
*Judy Parfitt - Mildred Layton
*Tim Pigott-Smith - Supt./Capt/Maj./Lt. Col. Ronald Merrick
*Eric Porter - Count Dmitri Bronowsky
*Susan Wooldridge - Daphne Manners
*Ralph Arliss - Capt. Samuels
*Geoffrey Beevers - Capt. Kevin Coley
*James Bree - Maj./Lt. Col. Arthur Grace
*Jeremy Child - Robin White
*Warren Clarke - Cpl. "Sophie" Dixon
*Rowena Cooper - Connie White
*Anna Cropper - Nicky Paynton
*Fabia Drake - Mabel Layton
*Nicholas Farrell - Edward "Teddie" Bingham
*Matyelok Gibbs - Sister Ludmila Smith
*Carol Gillies - Clarissa Peplow
*Rennee Goddard - Dr. Anna Klaus
*Jonathan Haley and Nicholas Haley - Edward Bingham Jr.
*Saeed Jaffrey - the Nawab of Mirat
*Karan Kapoor - Colin Lindsey
*Rashid Karapiet - Judge Menen
*Kamini Kaushal - Shalini Sengupta
*Rosemary Leach - Fenella "Fenny" Grace
*David Leland - Capt. Leonard Purvis
*Nicholas Le Prevost - Capt. Nigel Rowan
*Marne Maitland - Pandit Baba
*Jamila Massey - Maharanee Aimee
*Zia Mohyeddin - Mohammad Ali Kasim
*Salmaan Peerzada - Sayed Kasim
*Om Puri - Mr. de Souza
*Stephen Riddle - Capt. Dicky Beauvais
*Norman Rutherford - Edgar Maybrick
*Dev Sagoo - S.V. Vidyasagar
*Zohra Sehgal - Lili Chatterjee
*Frederick Treves - Lt. Col. John Layton
*Stuart Wilson - Capt. James Clark
*Leslie Grantham - Signals Sergeant

Broader context

According to the Museum of Broadcast Communications there was "a cycle of film and television productions which emerged during the first half of the 1980s, which seemed to indicate Britain's growing preoccupation with India, Empire and a particular aspect of British cultural history" [http://www.museum.tv/archives/etv/J/htmlJ/jewelinthe/jewelinthe.htm] . In addition to "The Jewel in the Crown", this cycle also included "Gandhi" (1982), "Heat and Dust" (1983) and "A Passage to India" (1984).

ee also

*"Jewel in the Crown" is also a song by Mike Oldfield on his 1998 album "Tubular Bells III".

External links

*Imdb title|id=0086739
* [http://www.museum.tv/archives/etv/J/htmlJ/jewelinthe/jewelinthe.htm Museum of Broadcast Communications]
* [http://www.screenonline.org.uk/tv/id/501531/index.html British Film Institute Screen Online]


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