Philip Saville

Active - 1948 - 2003  |   Genres - Drama, Mystery, Comedy

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Biography by AllMovie

In the realm of television, there are likely few directors as prolific as Philip Saville. A one-time actor who stepped behind the camera as his onscreen career waned in the mid-'50s, Saville appeared in such features as The Straw Man (1953) and On the Run (1956) before making his directorial debut with the small-screen feature Curtains for Harry (1955). Quickly following with such efforts as Hamlet (1964), Oedipus the King (1968), and The Rainbirds (1971), it didn't take long for Saville to hit his stride. In 1986, Saville directed the BAFTA-winning miniseries The Life and Loves of a She-Devil (remade stateside with Roseanne in the lead three years later). In addition to features, he helmed episodes for such popular U.K. series as First Born (1988) and The Buccaneers (1995). Saville later gained possibly his most international exposure to date as the director of the urban comedy drama Metroland (1997), a touching marriage drama featuring Christian Bale and Emily Watson, which told the story of one man's conflict between his current life and how it might have been different had he taken another path. Though Saville subsequently returned to television for most of his work, he ventured into feature territory once again with the 2003 biblical dramaThe Gospel of John, and the 2004 Holocaust drama Love Is a Survivor.

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