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Five classic Ealing comedies coming to Sheringham

PUBLISHED: 11:12 22 February 2018 | UPDATED: 11:12 22 February 2018

Alec Guinness and Stanley Holloway in the Lavender Hill Mob. Photo: General Film Distributors

Alec Guinness and Stanley Holloway in the Lavender Hill Mob. Photo: General Film Distributors

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Much loved Ealing comedy films are quintessentially British and retain an appeal to filmgoers of all ages. Now Sheringham Little Threatre is screening five of the best in just three days.

Alec Guinness, Dennis Price and Anne Valery in Kind Hearts and Coronets. Photo: General Film DistributorsAlec Guinness, Dennis Price and Anne Valery in Kind Hearts and Coronets. Photo: General Film Distributors

Today it is impossible to think of Ealing Studios without thinking of the influential comedies they created. These works are ingrained in the history of British cinema and remain hugely popular with audiences of all ages.

Next month will see five of these films hailed as classic British comedies being screened in a three-day season at Sheringham Little Theatre.

The Ealing Comedies from the 1940s and 50s are famous films from a small London studio renowned for the quality of their writing, star performances, understated humour and British eccentricity.

They include Passport to Pimlico where part of the London Borough does a “Brexit” style severance with ration-book riddled post-war Britain after a bombsite reveals papers giving them independent status.

Poster for The Man in the White Suit. Photo: General Film DistributorsPoster for The Man in the White Suit. Photo: General Film Distributors

Star studded casts include Alex Guinness playing nine members of the aristocratic D’Ascoyne family who are murder targets.

Coastal dwellers will also revel in the antics of the Scottish islanders trying to outwit customs officials over the fate of 50,000 cases of liquor on a ship stranded off their shore.

Theatre director Debbie Thompson said: “We had a live stage version of the Ealing comedy The Ladykillers here last summer and after the success we decided to do a season of reviving these classic films on the big screen.”

The mini-season begins on March 1 with 1951 film Lavender Hill Mob screening at 7.30pm. A meek bank clerk who oversees the shipment of bullion joins with an eccentric neighbor to steal gold bars and smuggle them out of the country as miniature Eifel Towers. The cast includes Alec Guinness, Stanley Holloway, Sid James and, in a very early role, a young Audrey Hepburn.

Gordon Jackson and Morland Graham in Whisky Galore. Photo: General Film DistributorsGordon Jackson and Morland Graham in Whisky Galore. Photo: General Film Distributors

On March 2 they will be showing 1949’s Kind Hearts and Coronets at 2.30pm, which famously features Alex Guinness playing nine characters, when Passport to Pimlico, from 1949, at 7.30pm.

Alex Guiness again stars in 1951’s Man in the White Suit, showing on March 3 at 2.30pm, as chemist Sidney Stratton who creates a white suit that never wears out or gets dirty – threatening the livelihoods of big business and trades unionists.

Whisky Galore (1949), in which Scottish islanders try to plunder cases of whisky from a stranded ship, with a cast including Basil Redford, Joan Greenwood, Catherine Lacey, screens at 7.30pm.

• Ticketsfor each film is £6.50, £3.50 under-16s, more information from the box office 01263 822347 or at sheringhamlittletheatre.com

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