Film Show: ONSTAGE ON STAGE MR BENNETT! Arnold Bennett on Stage and Screen - Brampton Museum, Newcastle-under-Lyme, ST5 0QP Thur 22nd February 2:00PM February 10 2024

A special Staffordshire Film Archive show by Ray Johnson featuring exclusive footage from the many film and stage adaptions of Arnold Bennett novels.

£5 general admission
£4 Arnold Bennett society members

Arnold Bennett was a prolific writer. His novels, short stories and self-help books are well known. What’s less well known is that he had great success on the stage and in the cinema of the day.

Journalist and TV presenter Samira Ahmed, in June 2014, called him: “The Edwardian David Bowie… the most successful and famous British celebrity you’ve never heard of. The JK Rowling of his day, his books sold in huge numbers, he was a figure of huge influence in politics and culture."

From 1908 to 1913 he had five plays on the London stage – with three plays running in the West End at the same time at one point. The Great Adventure (1913) – an adaptation of Buried Alive – ran for over 673 performances and is still one of the longest-running plays in the West End.

There were ten silent film adaptations of Bennett's work from 1914 onwards – most of these were adaptations of theatre versions of his books - through to his first original screenplay The Wedding Dress of 1920 and his last for the wonderful 1929 film Piccadilly, featuring Charles Laughton and Anna May Wong. His final screen collaboration was with director Alfred Hitchcock - abandoned when Bennett resisted it being re-worked as a talking picture.

Arnold Bennett earned more from his plays than from all his other writing.