Behind the scenes of The People Speak
Friday 29 October 2010
The People Speak is a documentary film project inspired by American historian Howard Zinn and developed by writer and academic Anthony Arnove. It presents history as told by the people - and in this case a rather illustrious set of them.
The British version of the project, which was spearheaded by Colin Firth, saw Sir Ian McKellen, Sir Ben Kingsley, Keira Knightley, Juliet Stevenson, Rupert Everett, Colin Salmon, Saffron Burrows, Kelly Macdonald, Noel Clarke, Mark Strong, Joss Stone, Benjamin Zephaniah, Omid Djalili, Tom Robinson, and even The Independent columnist Mark Steel, take to the stage at the Prince of Wales Theatre in London last month to add real human voices to the words of history books.
"The idea was simple," Firth told The Independent’s James Rampton in a interview. "Take the most impassioned speeches about the fight for what is right and bring them to life for a new generation. The reason why it's so powerful is because it's about everything that matters to us: love and life, sex and death, justice and freedom. We've found some amazing speeches from the most unlikely places, British voices that have been ignored for centuries because history is a tale often told by the winners."
The fruit of their dramatic labours is to be screened on the History channel at 9pm this Sunday. But The Independent Online has been given exclusive access behind-the-scenes to bring you video of the rehearsals, interviews with contributors and more.
Watch the assets below for a glimpse behind the scenes:
Robin Thicke admits he didn't write 'Blurred Lines'music
Review: Cilla, ITV TV
To mark Tolstoy's 186th birthdaybooks
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Scottish independence: Ireland since 1919 is a lesson for Scotland in what a Yes vote means
- 2 Thailand deaths: Pair's bloodied bodies found naked on Koh Tao beach
- 3 Vogue under fire for 'Big Booty' article
- 4 Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
- 5 Kanye West stops concert after two fans don't stand up - doesn't realise one is in wheelchair and the other disabled
Robin Thicke admits he didn't write 'Blurred Lines'
Lego breaks out of the toy box and heads for the gallery
Cilla, ITV, review: Sheridan Smith embodies the young singer perfectly
Doctor Who, Listen, review: Possibly Steven Moffat's most terrifying episode
Tyler, The Creator says having new U2 album automatically downloaded on his iPhone was 'like waking up with herpes'
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
Scottish independence: Nationalist leader Jim Sillars threatens pro-union companies with 'day of reckoning' after independence
Scottish independence: Yes campaign feels the heat as Alex Salmond's NHS claims come under furious attack
£23m Birmingham cycle scheme is attacked by Tory councillor for not catering to the elderly
Portuguese academic says British are 'filthy, violent and drunk'