( …) “Burgess was a Marxist, but he liked good English tailoring too much to be a rabid revolutionary. In the film he is shocked that anybody would consider him dangerous.
( …) “Burgess says: "So little,
music, little art. Timid, tasteful, nice. But one loves it, one loves it."
He died far from little England .
On September 1, 1963, an official of a England Moscow
hospital announced that Jim Andreyevich Elliott -- the name by which Burgess
was known in
-- had died from heart disease. The "Internationale" was played at
his funeral three days later. Apart from MacLean, no one of note attended.” Russia
An Englishman Abroad is a 1983 BBC television drama film, based on the true story of a chance meeting of an actress, Coral Browne, with Guy Burgess (Alan Bates), a member of the Cambridge spy ring who spied for the Soviet Union while an officer at MI6. The production was written by Alan Bennett and directed by John Schlesinger; Browne stars as herself.
The film is set is
in 1958, after Burgess had fled to the
city following MI6's detection of his treason. Burgess barges into Browne's
dressing room in the interval of a touring Shakespeare Memorial Theatre (which
became one of the bases of the Royal Shakespeare Company) production of Hamlet,
in which she portrayed Gertrude, and charms her. Later on she is invited to his
Moscow Moscow flat, finding it with some difficulty, to
measure him for a suit that he would like ordered from his tailor. London
Rather than film in the Soviet Union, Schlesinger used several locations in
. The Caird Hall and
Whitehall Theatre in Dundee stood in for the Moscow theatre, and the grand marble
staircase of Glasgow City Chambers played the part of the British Embassy.Additional
filming was done at Glasgow's St. Andrew's Suspension Bridge ("luckily, in
a snowstorm" Bennett later wrote) and the Moss Heights flats in Cardonald,
which represented Burgess' Moscow apartment. Scotland
Both Browne and Bates were winners of the BAFTA awards for acting for their roles in this production.
Bennett gives the date of Browne's meeting with Burgess as
the introduction to his Single Spies, which contains the text of An Englishman
Abroad in the stage play version and the text of A Question of Attribution
about Anthony Blunt.