The past decade has seen a huge resurgence in interest in historical drama. This has manifested itself in the literary world with the likes of Philippa Gregory, C.J. Samson and Hilary Mantel releasing a raft of best-selling novels. Along with award-winning shows such as Victoria and The Crown, many of their works have been successfully adapted for TV and film. Based on a play by Robert Bolt, who also wrote the screenplay, A Man for All Seasons was brought to the big screen by Fred Zinnermann in 1966.
On the pretence of needing an heir, King Henry VIII (Robert Shaw) is bent upon divorcing his wife Catherine and marrying Anne Boleyn (Vanessa Redgrave). Cardinal Wolsey (Orson Welles) is determined to secure his King a divorce from the Pope. A man of impeccable ethics and morality, Thomas More (Paul Scofield), is the only member of the King’s Privy Council to oppose the move. After being promoted to Lord Chancellor, More becomes the victim of political machinations, fuelled by Thomas Cromwell (Leo McKern), Richard Rich (John Hurt), and the King rapidly diminishing patience.
A Man for All Seasons is a beautifully realised story of a man who sticks to his principles until the very end. More was not only a brilliant lawyer, but also a deeply religious and humble man who did his best to alleviate the conditions of the poor. Colin Redgrave, Wendy Hiller, Susannah York and Nigel Davenport are also part of the stellar cast who really bring the period to life. Retaining its theatrical roots, A Man for All Seasons is a powerful historical drama full of plotting, politics and intrigue.
- Gorgeous High-definition presentation
- Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard-of-hearing
- Audio commentary by film historians Nick Redman, Julie Kirgo and Lem Dobbs
- A new video interview with film scholar Neil Sinyard
- The Life of Saint Thomas More – featurette
- Original theatrical trailer
- Masters of Cinema exclusive trailer
- A booklet featuring new writing on the film
A Man for All Seasons is released on Dual format by Eureka Entertainment as part of their Masters of Cinema collection on 20 February.