Dame Janet Suzman at Purbeck Film Festival

PURBECK Film Festival, now in its 23rd year, has an exclusive screening of the 1982 film Priest of Love during the opening weekend celebrations, on Sunday, 20th October 2020.

Film director Christopher Miles and Dame Janet Suzman (who plays Frieda, the wife of DH Lawrence) will be at the festival for the event, which is in aid of ME Research UK. The director will introduce the film, and he and Dame Janet will be on stage afterward for a question and answer session.

Christopher Miles has created a riveting portrait of the turbulent relationship between DH Lawrence and his muse Frieda, in some wonderful locations. The relationship created the seedbed for some of the most significant stories ever written about the subtle resonances of love. Written by Alan Plater, with a starry cast including also Ava Gardner and Penelope Keith, it is an opportunity to see Sir Ian McKellen’s first screen performance.

Dilys Powell, the revered film critic of the Sunday Times for over 50 years, reported,:“With astonished delight one finds, watching a film which when first seen four years ago seemed indeed reputable but not really equal to its subject, that it now shows itself as a work of deep understanding and devotion. Yes, devotion, both to the great writer it commemorates and to the art employed to celebrate him.”

Christopher Miles, who researched the project for four years, had a sudden change of finance, which enabled him to cast as he wanted. Priest of Love was Sir Ian McKellen’s first major screen role and was Ava Gardner’s last.

For more information visit purbeckfilm.com

Pictured: Scenes from the film with Ian McKellen as Lawrence, Janet Suzman as Frieda, Penelope Keith as Dorothy Brett, Ava Gardner as Mabel Dodge Luhan, and an on location shot with the director Christopher Miles; © Filmways Pictures.