The Making of Wolf Hall

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Thursday 22 October 2015

IHR | Senate House | Malet Street | WC1E 7HU

Lecture: 6:00-7:30pm
Reception: 7:30-8:30pm

Peter Kosminsky series director of the BBC’s Wolf hall will be in conversation with Professor Lawrence Goldman (IHR) & Professor George Bernard (University of Southampton) to discuss the making of the BBC 2’s most successful drama in a decade. The discussion will feature clips from the series and be followed by a drinks reception.

Wolf Hall (an adaptation from the Booker prize-winning novels; Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies by Hillary Mantel) was first broadcast on the BBC in January 2015 and reportedly cost £7 million to produce (Guardian 2013).

The drama series featured 102 characters, took 3 months to film in numerous locations across the UK and attracted 26.33 million viewers across the entire drama series (Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board).

Peter Kosminsky, the director of the series, said:

This is a first for me. But it is an intensely political piece. It is about the politics of despotism, and how you function around an absolute ruler. I have a sense that Hilary Mantel wanted that immediacy. … When I saw Peter Straughan’s script, only a first draft, I couldn’t believe what I was reading. It was the best draft I had ever seen. He had managed to distil 1,000 pages of the novels into six hours, using prose so sensitively. He’s a theatre writer by trade (Guardian 2013).

To hear more of what Peter Kosminsky has to say about directing the series, join us in the IHR on Thursday 22 October 2015 at 6pm.

The lecture, screening and reception is free and open for all to attend.  to register your place at the lecture visit the registration page.

If you have any enquiries relating to this lecture, please contact the IHR Events Office (