Channel 4 rescues Blair-Brown drama

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The Independent Online

Channel 4 is to screen a dramatisation of the infamous dinner at the Islington restaurant Granita over which Gordon Brown is said to have stepped aside to enable his friend, Tony Blair, to lead the Labour Party.

The Deal will tackle the question of what Mr Blair offered the Chancellor in return. It has been suggested that the Prime Minister agreed that if he won, he would eventually give up the keys to Number 10 to allow his fellow moderniser to succeed him.

ITV dropped its plans for the drama when Nigel Pickard arrived as director of programmes. He raised concerns that Mr Blair might not be Prime Minister by the time the film was ready to be broadcast. But Channel 4 said yesterday that it had stepped into the breach. The project will start filming in May. A spokeswoman for Channel 4 said the channel could not comment on why ITV had backed out.

The film charts the rise of the two men from 1983 when they shared an office upon entering the House of Commons, culminating in the dinner at Granita in north London in 1994. As for the answer to the question – we shall have to wait and see.

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