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Hey Diddly Dee 

Johnny is the eager-to-please ASM and understudy to arrogant actor Roger Kite,who is due to play Andy Warhol in 'The Fifteen-Minute Factory',an upcoming West End production. Roger treats ... See full summary »

Director:

Marc Warren

Writer:

Marc Warren
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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Lee Boardman ... Lenny
David Harewood ... Victor
Paul Hills Paul Hills ... Stage Doorman
Mathew Horne ... Johnny
Aneirin Hughes Aneirin Hughes ... Harry
Paul Kaye ... Ralph
Kylie Minogue ... Bibbi
Peter Serafinowicz ... Roger
Matt Tester Matt Tester ... Lighting Technician
Faye Thomas Faye Thomas ... Becky
Sophie Lovell Anderson Sophie Lovell Anderson ... Performer
Rupert Baldwin Rupert Baldwin ... Performer
Ailsa Bate Ailsa Bate ... Performer
Josie Dunn Josie Dunn ... Performer
Sophia La Porta ... Performer
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Storyline

Johnny is the eager-to-please ASM and understudy to arrogant actor Roger Kite,who is due to play Andy Warhol in 'The Fifteen-Minute Factory',an upcoming West End production. Roger treats Johnny abominably,forcing him to make his coffee,sort his fan mail and - particularly - keep him away from the theatre's lucky mascot,a black cat called Diddly. As the opening night approaches Kite's attitude to Johnny worsens,causing the young man to hear voices urging him to prevent Kite from starring in the opening. And so,thanks to a faulty trap door,this happens - though did Diddly also play a part in the accident? Written by don @ minifie-1

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Genres:

Drama

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Details

Release Date:

18 April 2013 (UK) See more »

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An Actor's Life for Me!
27 February 2019 | by JamesHitchcockSee all my reviews

There is a curious theatrical superstition that one should never speak the name "Macbeth" inside a theatre and that ill luck will follow those who break this rule. Among actors Shakespeare's masterpiece is generally referred to as "The Scottish Play", although the late Peter O'Toole insisted on calling it "Harry Lauder" after a once-famous Scottish music hall artiste. O'Toole's scrupulous adherence to the superstition, however, did not serve to avert misfortune; his 1980 production of The Scottish Play was a notorious disaster and was savaged by the critics.

This superstition lies at the heart of Marc Warren's black comedy "Hey Diddly Dee", one of a series of short dramas made for the "Sky Arts" channel. The title is a reference to the song from Disney's "Pinocchio" of which the second line is "An actor's life for me!" although the first line of that song is actually "Hey Diddle Dee Dee". A group of actors are rehearsing for a West End play about the life of the artist Andy Warhol. Johnny James, an aspiring young actor, has been cast as understudy to the star of the show, Roger Kite. Johnny has always admired Roger as an actor, but on meeting him in person admires him far less as a man. Kite is rude, arrogant and treats Johnny as a personal servant, insisting that he should make his coffee and sort out his fan mail. (Kite divides his fan mail into three categories, that from women, that from men and that from Doctor Who fans, suggesting that he is a former Doctor).

A crisis comes when Johnny blurts out how much he liked Kite's performance in "Macbeth", thereby breaching the superstition. Although Kite is not superstitious about other matters- he loathes the sight of the theatre's lucky black cat Diddly- he reacts with fury to Johnny's faux pas, although it is not clear whether his wrath is genuine or whether it is feigned in order to humiliate Johnny, to whom he has taken a dislike. Disillusioned by this vision of his idol's feet of clay, Johnny begins to plot his revenge, aided by Kite's jilted girlfriend Bibbi (played by Kylie Minogue in a rare venture into television drama).

Like a number of very short TV dramas, this one might have benefitted from being longer, but it was still worth watching, if only for the performance of Peter Serafinowicz as Kite. Actors may protest that it is very unfair to characterise them all as self-important, conceited "luvvies", but they still cannot resist sending their own profession up in this way, as Hugh Grant did in "Paddington 2" and Kenneth Branagh did as Gilderoy Lockhart in "Harry Potter". What stands out from Serafinowicz's performance is that Kite is, behind all his arrogance and bombast, deeply insecure and that his resentment of Johnny is rooted in jealousy of a youngster who might just prove to be a pretender to his wobbly throne. Despite the brevity of this play, Warren shows a considerable talent for analysiung character.


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